Ph.D, English, Stanford University, 2003
B.A., English, University of Maryland, 1997
My work explores the intersection between the European Enlightenment and the literary form most often claimed as its logical outgrowth, the novel. More specifically, in my first book Chance and the Eighteenth-Century Novel: Realism, Probability, Magic I argue for the novel as an agent of re-enchantment, seeking not so much to instantiate ascendant scientific principles but, rather more radically, attempting to heal the rift between the animistic and materialist worldviews. Such a thesis guides my readings of the rise of lottery addiction, the emergence of tarot cartomancy, and the "realism" of Defoe, Fielding, Sterne, and Sade, among others.
I am currently at work at two subsequent projects: the first investigating the historical construction of time within eighteenth-century literature and culture; and the second developing a poetics of graphic storytelling and representation.
Select Publications (click image for ordering information)
"Syllepsis, Mimesis, Simulacrum: The Monk and the Grammar of Authenticity," Criticism (2009)
"'A Dreadful Course of Calamities': Roxana's Ending Reconsidered," ELH 74.2 (2007): 493-508.
"Equiano's 'Loud Voice': Witnessing the Performance of The Interesting Narrative," Texas Studies in Language and Literature 48.2 (2006): 123-44.
"The Gambler's Plot: Modern Culture and the Problem of Randomness,” New Directions in Eighteenth-Century Studies workshop, Indiana University, 2008.
"Narrative Re-Enchantment: Sterne, Hume, Freud.” Indiana University, Johns Hopkins University, 2008
"Can the Novel Enlighten?”, Harvard University, Columbia University, Concordia University, 2007
"Humean Realism: Fielding's Amelia and the Problem of Induction," ASECS annual meeting, Montreal, 2006
"Natural Preternaturalism: The Gothic Novel and the Rise of Tarot Cartomancy,” SUNY-Binghamton, University of Western Ontario, University of Southern California, Clark University, 2004-6
Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Humanities, Johns Hopkins University, 2006-8
Mabelle McLeod Lewis Dissertation Fellowship, Mellon Dissertation Fellowship, Stanford University, 2001-3
Key Scholar, College of Arts and Humanities Senior Scholar, Joyce Tayloe Horrell
Scholarship for Academic Promise in English Literature, University of Maryland, 1992-7