Harm-Peer Zimmermann

Harm-Peer Zimmermann, Prof. Dr.

Professor of Popular Literature and Media

Phone: +41 (0)44 634 58 65

Room number: AFL-G-255


Fields of research

  • Narratology: traditional and current forms of narration, theory of narrativity
  • Cultural Studies of aging and dementia: narrative gerontology, narrations of and discourses on age and dementia
  • Cultural Studies of literature and media, cultural theory, history of folklore and cultural studies


  • 1997 Habilitation at Kiel University (Germany): “Ästhetische Aufklärung. Zur Revision der Romantik in volkskundlicher Absicht”
  • 1988 PhD at Kiel University: “Kriegervereine in Schleswig-Holstein 1864-1914”, acknowledged with the Kiel Award for the Advancement of Sciences in 1990
  • 1976–1986 M.A. in Folklore and Cultural Studies, Sociology, History, Philosophy, Literature and Scandinavian Studies (Danish) at the University of Kiel

Academic and Non-Academic Appointments

  • since 2012 Professor of Popular Literature and Media Studies at the University of Zurich
  • 1999–2012 Professor and Director at the Department of European Ethnology/Cultural Studies at Marburg University
  • 1997–1999 Professor of Ethnology at Freiburg University
  • 1990–1997 Teaching and Research Assistant and Assistant Professor at the Department of Folklore and Cultural Studies at Kiel University
  • 1987–1989 Research Assistant in the DFG project: “Formen der geschlossenen Armenfürsorge in schleswig-holsteinischen Städten 1542-1914”
  • 1976–1983 Journalist for different newspapers in Schleswig-Holstein (Germany)

Appointments in Research Institutions and Memberships

  • Brüder Grimm-Gesellschaft: Member of Scientific Board
  • Ferdinand-Tönnies-Gesellschaft: Member of Scientific Advisory Board
  • Ferdinand-Tönnies-Gesamtausgabe: Member of International Editorial Board (Editor Vol. 4)
  • 2010-2012 Chairman of the Commission for Narratology, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Volkskunde
  • 2007-2010 Member in the Expert Commission for the preparation of the Sixth Report on Old Age of the Federal Government of Germany
  • 2006-2012 Member of Advisory Board “Hessen – Land of the Brothers Grimm”, Hessisches Ministerium für Wissenschaft und Kunst (HMWK)
  • 2000-2012 Member of Board: Centre of Gender Studies and Feminist Future Research at Philipps University Marburg
  • 2000-2012 Juror: Brothers Grimm Award, Marburg University

Activities as Editor

  • Journal of Aging Studies (Elsevier) – Member of Editorial Board
  • Fabula. Zeitschrift für Erzählforschung. Journal of Folktale Studies. Revue d'études sur le conte populaire – Editor in Chief
  • Züricher Schriften zur Erzählforschung und Narratologie (ZSEN) (Marburg: Jonas) – Editor in Chief
  • Ferdinand Tönnies Gesamtausgabe (Berlin: De Gruyter) – Editor Vol. 4

Research projects, publications and academic teaching experience