studied philosophy and history in Berlin and Paris before he went to do his PhD at the Comparative Literature Department of Stanford University (CA) entitled »Kalendergeschichte and fait divers. The poetics of circumscribed space«. Since 2011 he has held a postdoc position at the DFG research training group »Visibility and Visualisation. Hybrid Forms of Pictorial Knowledge« at Potsdam.
currently holds the Danily C. and Laura Louise Bell professorship of English and comparative literature at Stanford University, California. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, has been a fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg of Berlin and scientific advisor to the French Ministry of Research.