Astrid Haas portrait


I am an Associate Professor in American Literature and Culture at the University of Bergen, Norway. I hold a PhD in English from the University of Münster and a Habilitation degree in North American Studies from Bielefeld University (both Germany). Before coming to Bergen, I worked as a researcher and lecturer at the universities of Bielefeld, Wuppertal, and Giessen in Germany and at the University of Central Lancashire in the UK. My research interests include the genres of autobiography, travel writing, drama, and graphic fiction. I also work in Ethnic, Gender, Sexuality, and Science Studies and on popular culture. Browse this website for more information about my work. I also teach modules on American literature and culture.

For more information about me, see my CV: CV_Astrid_Haas


Black Mobilities in the Atlantic World

Institute for Black Atlantic Research, University of Central Lancashire, UK.
13-14 January 2022 (online via Teams)

Black Mobilities onference poster design



Practices and discourses of mobility have been crucial for the Black experience across the Atlantic World. Civilizations from Africa and Europe have been in contact since antiquity, and interactions between Africa and the Americas may date back to premodern times as well. Later, Atlantic slavery and the globalized economy it enabled depended on the mobile placement and displacement of unfree black labor on both sides of the ocean. The acts and movements of Black resistance and liberation in the Circum-Atlantic resulted from and further enabled the discursive and corporeal mobilization of Black individuals and groups, from slave revolts to Black Lives Matter. Moreover, many works of Black cultural expressions not only resulted from various forms of Black mobility but, in turn, also sought to engender such mobilities themselves.

The conference “Black Mobilities in the Atlantic World” assembles presentations on Black mobilities in and among the Americas, Africa and Europe from a variety of academic disciplines and countries across the three continents surrounding the Atlantic. The event explores different forms and developments of Black mobilities from the colonial era to the present in their interactions with different socio-cultural identities, discourses, and practices. It thereby bridges often separately-studied fields such as Black Diaspora Studies, Area Studies, Transnational and Mobility Studies to complement—and complicate—the discourses of Black mobilities in the Atlantic World. The conference takes place in a hybrid format on UCLan’s Preston campus and online, with the option to move fully online if necessary.


Dr. Astrid Haas
Institute for Black Atlantic Research | School of Humanities, Language and Global Studies
University of Central Lancashire | Preston PR1 2HE | UK
see the CONTACT PAGE on how to contact me via email.
You can find the Conference Program and the Call for Papers here: CONFERENCE PAGE

The video recordings of the conference’s keynote lecture and creative practitioners’ roundtable discussion can be accessed here: VIDEO RECORDINGS


finalist for the Rodríguez Family Award for Most Significant Scholarly Book, Texas Institute of Letters, March 2022.

Lone Star Vistas: Travel Writing on Texas, 1821-1861

Astrid Haas
University of Texas Press, 2021

Postdoctoral book cover


Purchase Options:

You can purchase the book from these sites:
 – Americas / Caribbean: University of Texas Press. Click here: UTP WEBSITE
 – Europe / Middle East / Africa / Asia Pacific: Combined Academic Publishers. Click here: CAP WEBSITE
Check out the pages for potential discounts.


Every place is a product of the stories we tell about it—stories that do not merely describe but also shape geographic, social, and cultural spaces. Lone Star Vistas analyzes travelogues that created the idea of Texas. The book focuses on the forty-year period between Mexico’s independence from Spain (1821) and the beginning of the US Civil War. Here, Astrid Haas explores accounts by Anglo-American, Mexican, and German authors – members of the region’s three major settler populations – who recorded their journeys through Texas. They were missionaries, scientists, journalists, emigrants, emigration agents, and military officers, and officers’ wives. They all contributed to the public image of Texas and to debates about the future of the region during a time of political and social transformation. Drawing on sources and scholarship in English, Spanish, and German, Lone Star Vistas is the first comparative study of transnational travel writing on Texas. Astrid Haas illuminates continuities and differences across the global encounter with Texas. Her book also highlights how the individual backgrounds of the writers affected their views on nature, settlement, military engagement, indigenous resistance, African American slavery, and Christian mission.



“Haas’s well-written treatment of this diverse collection of travelogues highlights the deeply held racist attitudes of Anglo-American and European visitors and settlers toward the Native American and mixed-blood Hispanic peoples they encountered in Texas, as well as their almost unanimous tolerance of Black slavery, which structurally embedded deep divisions into the future. Fortunately, this volume provides yet more well-documented evidence refuting current political discourses in Texas and across the United States condemning critical race studies as an unfounded creation of the academy.” ~Journal of Southern History

“The different travelogues that Haas analyses offer a glimpse at the evolution of opinions about the many parts of Texas by contemporaries as German and Anglo-American settlers began populating the area…. The manuscript itself offers scholars of this period a thoroughly-detailed road map for further research into the literature and lives of lesser-known figures of early Texas.” ~Western Historical Quarterly

“[A] cogent and detailed examination of travel narratives about Texas from Mexico’s independence from Spain in 1821 to the beginning of the Civil War in 1861…. Haas’s meticulous research and broad net gives her work authority and relevance. Scholars interested in Texas history and the early narrative construction of the state will find Lone Star Vistas a must-read.” ~Western American Literature

“As Texas became a destination for large-scale immigration in the wake of Mexico’s independence from Spain, many learned of the region through published travelogues, emigrant guides, and scientific reports. Lone Star Vistas is the first comparative study of transnational travel writing on Texas, analyzing 40 years of work from the three major settler populations: Anglo-American, Mexican, and German. Haas explores how these vivid accounts shaped public knowledge and created the very idea of Texas.” ~The Alcalde


“Lone Star Vistas is an intellectually sophisticated study that critically examines Anglo-American, Mexican, and German travel writings as discursive colonial constructions of Texas landscapes and cultures. Astrid Haas’s greatest accomplishment is her detailed analysis of how Anglo-Americans constructed, rationalized, and institutionalized a racial ideological hierarchy, by putting in conversation their Manifest Destiny claims to Texas against the German critique of the callous ways American enterprise evolved. Haas also offers a unique analysis of Mexican scientific and military travelogues, which provides new insights into nineteenth-century Mexican scholarship about Texas. Highly recommended.” ~Martha Menchaca, Americo Paredes Center for Cultural Studies, University of Texas, Austin

“In the nineteenth century Texas became an important destination for large-scale immigration from both North America and Europe. Europeans, especially, became aware of Texas through a plentitude of published travelogues, emigrant guides, and scientific reports. These are important not only for their historical depictions of Texas but also for what they reveal about the writers of the period and the sensibilities they represented. By focusing on representative commentaries in this thoroughly researched and well-documented study, Astrid Haas has revisited former perspectives on Texas while elucidating important cultural contexts that made Texas appealing as a destination for both European and Anglo immigration.” ~James C. Kearney, Department of Germanic Studies, University of Texas, Austin

“Astrid Haas’s thoroughly researched and richly detailed book is an important contribution to inter-American studies and early borderlands studies. Lone Star Vistas reveals how Texan landscapes and cultures served as a canvas for the projection of a multitude of spatial imaginations created by Mexican, Anglo-American, and German travelers. This well-written study gives deep insight into the ways scientists, the military, settlers, professionals, visitors, and immigrants with different agendas helped shape public knowledge of a region that few people in the antebellum period had a chance to travel to.” ~Gabriele Pisarz-Ramirez, Department of American Studies, University of Leipzig, Germany