Edited with Lynn Wolff: Witnessing, Memory, Poetics: H. G. Adler and W. G. Sebald (Rochester: Camden House, 2014)

  • ‘Filling a significant void in Sebald studies […] is Finch and Lynn L. Wolff’s thorough and far-reaching study of H.G. Adler and W.G. Sebald, the latter author being virtually single-handedly responsible for a resurgence of interest in the former. […] The book is a collection of excellent articles by numerous Sebald scholars, all of them original and, as one might expect, well-versed in the primary as well as secondary literature.’ Mark M. McCulloh, Monatshefte 108:1 (2016), 149-152
  •  ‘This volume of essays on H. G. Adler and W. G. Sebald approaches the two German-language authors as a paradigmatic case study of the relationship between early literary witnesses to the Holocaust, and the ensuing dialog about the testimonies of historical traumas so indicative of the complexities of cultural politics in Holocaust writing.’ – Lia Deromedi, Witnessing, memory, poetics: H. G. Adler and W. G. Sebald, Holocaust Studies 21:3 (2015), 194-196
  • ‘In the most illuminating essays, the intertextual relationship that connects Adler to Sebald serves as a springboard to a more expansive, contextual discussion of universal issues of postwar German literature.’ Margarete Landwehr, Journal of Austrian Studies 48:3
  • ‘The main body of the volume comprises eleven contributions, ranging from a careful documentation of the sources on Adler and Theresienstadt at Sebald’s disposal (Jo Catling, 55–78), to an exploration of the Kafkaesque in Adler and Sebald, Kafka being a crucial point of reference for both men (Martin Modlinger, 201–231), and two studies on Adler’s post-war contexts, one on various entanglements between Adler, Broch, Adorno, and Sebald (Helen Finch, 232–53), the other on Adler’s take on the literary scene in the post-war Federal Republic (Frank Finlay, 254–74). As edited collections go, this is an unusually coherent volume and will be of value not least because the contributions are all richly documented, offering access to a broad and diverse range of relevant sources.’German Quarterly Fall 2014, 210.

Sebald’s Bachelors: Queer Resistance and the Unconforming Life (Oxford: Legenda, 2013. Discussed in this blog post)

  • ‘An early review of W.G. Sebald’s first fictional work published in English, The Emigrants (1996), contained the observation that his narrators and his other significant characters are ‘always male’… Yet until Helen Finch’s study of Bachelors in Sebald, there has been no satisfactory or truly systematic study of male characters and homoerotic undercurrents in Sebald.’ – Mark R. McCulloh, Monatshefte 108.1 (2016), 150-52
  • ‘Finch’s study illuminates the underexplored dimension of Sebald’s oeuvre, sexuality in general and queerness in particular, making an important contribution to Sebald scholarship.’ –  Lynn L. Wolff, Modern Language Review 111.1 (2016), 292-94
  • ‘Calling attention to a constitutive lack in the literature on the subject of homosocial relations and homosexuality in Sebald, largely ignored even by Maya Barzilai’s gender analysis,2 Finch’s book is undoubtedly significant for increasing hermeneutic agency for queer readers but also for consistently highlighting the ways in which queerness intersects with other Sebaldian concerns: Jewish culture and history, colonialism and orientalism, the natural history of destruction, and capitalism and modernity. […] the queer dimension of the Sebaldian is comprehensively explored; the book serves as a report on the condition of Sebald scholarship; and in its own way it is consistently argued and tightly phrased. Sebald’s Bachelors is undoubtedly a provocative springboard for students and scholars engaging with Sebald’s oeuvre’. – Christopher Madden, ‘Book Review: Sebald’s Bachelors: Queer Resistance and the Unconforming Life’,  Textual Practice 29:2 (2015), 396-400
  • ‘Whilst there are few studies dedicated to queer readings of his narratives, the volume demonstrates that the Sebaldian queer is a fruitful area for further research. Finch’s original and compelling reading of the bachelor trope is a particularly progressive addition, not only to existing scholarship on Sebald’s writing, but also to queer literary theory more broadly. Most notably, her analysis also illuminates the largely overlooked queer aspects of his literary legacy, as well as their centrality in his ‘profoundly important intervention in European literature and politics’. – Hannah O’Connor, ‘Review: Sebald’s Bachelors: Queer Resistance and the Unconforming Life by Helen Finch (Oxford: Legenda, 2013)’, Assuming Gender 4:1 (2014), 81-84
  • ‘An ambitious, thin book that contains a dense, closely argued ‘queer reading of Sebald’s work’. The result is one of the most important books on Sebald to date. I am sure that there are a number of Sebald readers, casual and otherwise, who will look askance at a queer reading of his work, but, as Finch demonstrates, the clues – both obvious and coded – are there in plain sight.’ — Terry Pitts, Vertigo 19 September 2013
  • ‘Brillant ist das Buch von Finch überall da, wo es — dem Versprechen des Untertitels getreu — den Themen ‘Queer Resistance and the Unconforming Life’ bei Sebald nachgeht. Sie identifiziert das Werk durchgehende Motive oder zeigt höchst überzeugend, wie queerness und Erzählform bei ‘Schwindel. Gefühle’ zusammenhängen.’ — Uwe Schütte, Skug 97.1-3 (2014), 63-64
  • ‘Helen Finch’s genuinely ground-breaking study of the work of W. G. Sebald explores the hitherto under- researched dimension of queer affinities and non-conformist lives in both the fictional and, cru- cially, the critical work of the now canonical writer. The concise and persuasive monograph theorizes the ‘Sebaldian queer’ […] an important addition to the critical material and will challenge any interested Sebald scholar.’ – review, Forum for Modern Language Studies 50:4 (2014), 505-506 doi:10.1093/fmls/cqu048

Journal Articles


  • Ressentiment beyond Nietzsche and Amery; H. G. Adler between Literary Ressentiment and Divine Grace’ in Re-thinking Ressentiment. On the Limits of Criticism and the Limits of its Critics, ed. Jeanne Riou, Mary Gallagher (Bielefeld: Transcript, 2016), pp. 71-86
  • ‘Prague Circles: H. G. Adler’s Kafkaesque Hope’ in H. G. Adler. Life, Literature, Legacy, ed. Julia Creet, Sara R. Horowitz and Amira Bojadzija-Dan (Evanston: Northwestern UP, 2016), pp. 251-272
  • ‘Introduction: The Adler-Sebald Intertextual Relationship as Paradigm for Intergenerational Literary Testimony’, with Lynn Wolff, in Witnessing, Memory, Poetics: H. G. Adler and W. G. Sebald (Rochester: Camden House, 2014), pp. 1-24
  • ‘Generational Conflicts, Generational Affinities: Broch, Adorno, Adler, Sebald’ in Witnessing, Memory, Poetics: H. G. Adler and W. G. Sebald (Rochester: Camden House, 2014), 232-253
  • ‘”Like refugees who have come through dreadful ordeals”: The Theme of the Anglo-Irish in The Rings of Saturn‘, in A Literature of Restitution: Critical Essays on W. G. Sebald, eds Jeannette Baxter, Ben Hutchinson, Valerie Henitiuk (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2013), pp. 158-183
  • ‘Elfriede Jelinek, Gier’, in The Novel in German since 1990, ed. Stuart Taberner, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011),  pp. 151-164
  • ‘Recalling the goddess Pandora: From Utopia to Resignation, from Goethe to Peter Hacks in Irmtraud Morgner’s Amanda’, in Edinburgh German Yearbook vol. 3 (2009): Contested Legacies – Constructions of Cultural Heritage in the GDR, pp. 218-232
  • ‘Günter Grass and Gender’, in: The Cambridge Companion to Günter Grass, ed. Stuart Taberner (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009), pp. 81-95
  • ‘Günter Grass’s account of German Wartime Suffering in Beim Häuten der Zwiebel: Mind in Mourning or Boy Adventurer?’, in: ‘Germans as Victims’ in The Literary Fiction of the Berlin Republic, eds Karina Berger, Stuart Taberner, (Rochester: Camden House, 2009), pp. 170-191
  • “Die irdische Erfüllung”: Peter Handke’s Poetic Landscapes and W. G. Sebald’s Metaphysics of History‘, in: W. G. Sebald and the Writing of History, eds Anne Fuchs, Jonathan Long (Würzburg: Königshausen & Neumann, 2007), pp. 179-197



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