Dr Anna-Sophie Jurgens

PhD in Literary & Cultural Studies (LMU), Magister in Comparative Literature (LMU) -- FHEA
Science Communication
ANU College of Science

Research interests

Science Communication

Cultural meanings of science

Circus, science and technology

Popular Entertainment Studies

Performance histories of mad scientists, clown robots and violent clowns in culture

Intersections between science and art / Artistic Research



"Dr Anna-Sophie Jürgens walks the tightrope between pop culture and science" by Olivia Congdon, ANU College of Science (2023).

Researcher's projects

I am a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Science Communication at the Australian National Centre for the Public Awareness of Science of the Australian National University, and the founder and head the Popsicule - ANU's Science in Popular Culture and Entertainment Hub. 

I explore the cultural meanings of science and have published on the history of comic mad scientists, clown scientists, Joker Science, science and humour, and comic performance and technology in culture in numerous academic journals. I am the guest editor of two special themed journal issues published in 2020 with the Journal of Science & Popular Culture (on popular performance and science) and Comedy Studies (on violent clowns). My recent books include Circus and the Avant-Gardes (co-editor, Routledge 2022), Circus, Science and Technology: Dramatising Innovation (editor, Palgrave Macmillan 2020) and Manegenkünste: Zirkus als ästhetisches Modell (co-editor, transcript 2020).  

I am editor-in-chief of the peer-reviewed open access online journal w/k - Between Science and Art (English section) and associate editor of the Journal of Science & Popular Culture.

As a member of the network of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation I can act as a potential host for Feodor Lynen Postdoctoral Fellowships, applications are welcome!





ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7347-2488 


– Monograph – 


Jürgens, A.-S. (2016): Poetik des Zirkus – Die Ästhetik des Hyperbolischen im Roman (Poetics of the Circus – Hyperbolic Aesthetics in Fiction), Heidelberg: Winter, 453 pages.



– Edited collections & special themed journal issues – 


Hemkendreis, A. and A.-S. Jürgens (Eds.) (2023): Communicating Ice through Popular Art and Aesthetics. Palgrave Macmillan (in press).


Jürgens, A.-S. and Mirjam Hildbrand (Eds.) (2022): Circus and the Avant-Gardes: History, Imaginary, Innovation, New York: Routledge.



Jürgens, A.-S. (Ed.) (2020): Circus, Science and Technology: Dramatising Innovation, Cham: Palgrave Macmillan.


Special themed journal issue on “Violent Clowns”, guest editorial by A.-S. Jürgens | Comedy Studies 11/1 (2020) (online 2019), 14 papers.


Special themed journal issue on popular performance, guest editorial by A.-S. Jürgens | Journal of Science & Popular Culture (peer-reviewed, 2020), 10 papers on “Popular Performance & Science”.

Fuchs, Margarete, Jürgens, A.-S., Schuster, Jörg (Eds.) (2020): ManegenkünsteZirkus als ästhetisches Modell, Bielefeld: transcript. 



Jürgens, A.-S., Wierschem, M. (Eds.) (2017): Pat­terns of Dis|Order – Beiträge zur Kulturgeschichte der Un|Ordnung, Münster: LIT Verlag, 398 pages.



Jürgens, A.-S., Tesche, T. (Eds.) (2015): LaborARTorium – Forschung im Denkraum zwischen Wissen­schaft und Kunst (LaborARTory – Research in between Science and Art), Biele­feld: transcript, 336 pages.  



– Peer reviewed journal articles & book chapters – 


Jürgens, A.-S. (2023/in press, accepted May 2022): ""Human or Machine?" Performing Androids, “Elektro-Homos,” and the “Phroso” and “Moto Phoso” Manias on the Popular Stage around 1900", Journal of Popular Culture.