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B.A. Princeton University (English Literature)
M.A., Ph.D. University of Chicago (Comparative Literature)

Fields of Research:

Literary theory and philosophy, gender and sexuality studies, media studies

My research concerns the history and practices of literary theory, especially post-war theory in France and its world-wide dissemination.  My most recent book is The Theorist’s Mother, which attends to traces of the maternal in the lives and works of canonical theorists from Marx and Freud to Lacan and Derrida.  I was the editor and co-translator of Jacques Ranciere’s The Philosopher and His Poor, and have co-edited five other collections of essays.  A new book project, “Ventriloquisms,” explores interactions between body and voice across different literary traditions and media forms.

Books (click on image for details):


Other Publications:

  • Subjects of Responsibility: Framing Personhood in Modern Bureaucracies, edited with Austin Sarat and Martha Merrill Umphrey (Fordham University Press, 2011)
  • After Sex? On Writing since Queer Theory, edited with Janet Halley (Duke University Press, 2010)
  • The Future of the Literary Past (with Meredith L. McGill), PMLA 125:4 (October 2010), 959-967.
  • "Editor's Introduction: Mimesis and the Division of Labor," in Jacques Rancière, The Philosopher and his Poor  (Durham: Duke UP, 2004), ix-xx 
  • Performativity and Performance edited with Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick (Routledge, 1995)
  • Nationalisms and Sexualities,  edited with Mary Russo, Doris Sommer, and Patricia Yaeger (Routledge, 1992)

Graduate Courses:

  • Introduction to Theory and Graduate Literary Study, graduate seminar (Comp Lit)
  • Philosophy and the Question of Literature (Graduate seminar)
  • "The Linguistic Turn": Literature, Language, Philosophy graduate seminar (Comp Lit)


Undergraduate Courses:

  • Flaubert in Theory (Honors seminar)
  • French Nineteenth-Century Novel in Translation
  • Literature across Borders (Comp Lit)
  • Fiction and Ideology (Comp Lit)
  • Comparative Science Fiction (Comp Lit)
  • Victorian Novel (Amherst College)
  • Science Fiction (Amherst)
  • Marxism and Psychoanalysis (Amherst)
  • Literature, Violence, and the State (Amherst)
  • Representing Sexualities in Word and Image (Amherst)