Dr. Hans Leaman

Dr. Hans Leaman

Law, History

Fon: +49 (551) 4956 - 205
Fax: +49 (551) 4956 - 170

Hans Leaman received his J.D. from Yale Law School and his Ph.D. in History and Renaissance Studies from Yale University.  He subsequently taught at Yale for two years as Mellon Postdoctoral Associate in the Integrated Humanities, developing interdisciplinary courses on refugee studies, religious liberties, and the history of liberal arts education. 

He wrote his dissertation on consolation literature that Reformation-era Lutheran and Anabaptist pastors wrote to comfort confessional brethren when they faced exile on account of religious non-conformity. He interpreted the pastoral letters as identity-forming documents for both the exiles and the host societies that provided them refuge.  Hans is also interested in the community-formation and integration of migrant groups in more modern eras, and he has recently been studying German immigrants’ slow integration into English-speaking American society and American evangelicals’ perceptions of refugees and refugee policy in the past century. 

His project at MPI-MMG will evaluate the legal interpretations of religious freedom that have recently arisen in Western societies in response to immigrants’ religious practices.  He will examine courts’ construal of “religion” in both refugee law and human rights law, with special attention to predominantly Protestant societies’ treatment of material religion. 


[2016] “Johann Christoph Sauer (1695-1758): Pioneer of the German-American Press,” in Immigrant Entrepreneurship: The German-American Experience since 1700, eds. Hartmut Berghoff & Uwe Spiekermann, Bulletin of the German Historical Institute, Supplement 12: 93-112.

[2014] “ ‘Count Every Step in My Flight’: Rhegius’ and Luther’s Consolations for Evangelical Exiles, 1531-1533,” in Exile and Religious Identity, 1500-1800, eds. Gary Waite & Jesse Spohnholz. London: Pickering & Chatto.

[2014] Dissertation:  The Consolation of Exile: Confessional Migration and Refuge in Reformation Germany. Dept. of History and Renaissance Studies Program, Yale University.

[2012] “Remembering Egypt: Evangelicals, Conservatism, and Immigration in America,” in History, Memory, and Migration: Perceptions of the Past and the Politics of Incorporation, eds. Irial Glynn & J. Olaf Kleist. London: Palgrave MacMillan, pp. 106-137.

[2006] “History and its Use in Supreme Court Decision Making on Religion” & “Pledge of Allegiance and the First Amendment,” Encyclopedia of American Civil Liberties, ed. Paul Finkelman. New York: Routledge, Vol. II: 766-768, 1178-1179.