European Studies

Figure of thought, field of imagination, multitude of languages:  Europe takes many forms in the research at Romance Studies.  Generations of colleagues have created an internationally recognized body of work, and today on campus, European studies offer a framework for key debates in the humanities and social sciences. Students will discover a rich variety of critical projects in aesthetics and poetics, cultural and intellectual history, political theory, and psychology among other sciences. Each is explored through French, Spanish, and Italian or through any inventive combination of them. The question of migrant and so-called minority traditions such as Galician is also vital. Some ten years ago, graduate students helped to pioneer a model of Romance Studies conjoining, for example, Italian and Spanish, European and Latin American issues, French and Italian. Our strengths continue to deepen in this transcultural, transhistorical mode.  

For such constantly mutating ideas of Europe, the faculty has developed several frames of analysis: from Mediterranean to transAtlantic, from Ottoman to Maghrebine, all along its mythical North-South axis. The challenge in all our investigations: to experiment with major paradigms of critical thinking and artistic creation; this across an array of media and genres including digital and other avant-garde writing, manuscript folios, performance art, photography. Recent seminars explore: Gramsci’s notion of the subaltern; revolution in the novel; travel narrative in the Mediterranean world;  the afterlives of premodern Italian and French fiction; mass culture and the Spanish civil war; Jacques Rancière; the question of cultural memory; visuality and New Wave film, gender and modernism.  Students are encouraged to design their own conceptual frameworks and put them to the test through the process of writing a thesis.

European studies operates as a collaborative venture.  Numerous critics, writers, and artists participate in our seminars so that students have the opportunity from their first semester on campus to debate with leading thinkers in the field. Working groups also provide a forum for discussion with other colleagues pursuing European questions in History and Art, among other disciplines. As graduate students begin their research, links to universities and centers in Europe connect them to colleagues in Barcelona, Bologna, Madrid, Paris. Exchange agreements with the Ecole Normale Supérieure, the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences sociales, make a year’s research time abroad an integral part of the program. 

Fredric Jameson, Knut Schmidt Nielsen Professor of Comparative Literature

Office: 101 Friedl Bldg, 1316 Campus Drive Box 90670, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 684-4155

Knut Schmidt-Nielsen Professor of Comparative Literature, Professor of Romance Studies (French), and Director of the Center for Critical Theory. Professor Jameson received his Ph.D. from Yale in 1959 and taught at Harvard, Yale, and the University of California before coming to Duke in 1985. He...

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Deborah Jenson, Professor of Romance Studies

Office: 205 Languages, Box 90257, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 668-0337

As the Director of the Franklin Humanities Institute I work with faculty and students in 18 departments and programs in the humanities, arts, and interpretive social sciences to work toward a vibrant future of humanities contributions to the Duke mandate of "Knowledge in the Service of Society."... Full Profile »

Michele Longino, Professor of Romance Studies

Office: 111 Language Center, Durham, NC 27708-0257

Phone: (919) 660-3121

Professor of French & Italian Studies, received her Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, and taught at Rice University before coming to Duke in 1989.  She is an early modern specialist on the French Classical age, 1650-1700. Her interests in the epistolary genre and in women's...

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Toril Moi, James B. Duke Professor of Literature

Office: 114 S. Buchanan Boulevard, B184 Smith Warehouse, Durham, NC 27708-0403

Phone: (919) 668-6407

Toril Moi has three broad areas of interest: feminist theory and women's writing; the intersection of literature, philosophy and aesthetics; and ordinary language philosophy in the tradition of Wittgenstein, Cavell and Austin.

Toril Moi also works on theater. In her work on literature... Full Profile »

José María Rodríguez García, Associate Professor in the Department of Romance Studies

Office: 214 Language Center, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 660-3113

Global Iberia/ Oceanic Americas; cosmopolitanism and autochthony; history of lyric forms and of literary translation; Galicia's political-intellectual history; Colombia's political-intellectual history; late/ belated Hispanic and transnational modernisms, esp. Zambrano, Tàpies & Paz Full Profile »

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Richard Rosa, Associate Professor of Romance Studies

Office: 205 Language Center, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 660-3100

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Anne-Gaelle Saliot, Assistant Professor of Romance Studies

Office: 219A Language Center, Durham, NC 27708

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Stephanie Sieburth, Professor of Romance Studies

Office: 219D Language Center, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 660-3125

19th and 20th Centuries Spanish and Latin, American Literature and Culture, Gender Studies, Mass Culture and Psychology Full Profile »

Helen Solterer, Professor in the Department of Romance Studies

Office: 217B Language Center, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 660-3118

My research focuses on pre-modern literatures and cultures in French, and other vernaculars.  I understand fiction in historical action, shaped not only by the eventfulness of its first era, but equally by that of others, including the critic’s contemporary one.  
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Anne Garreta, Research Professor of Literature

Office: 101D Friedl Bldg, Literature Program, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 668-5389

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David F. Bell, Professor with Tenure

Office: 209 Language Center, Durham, NC 27708

Phone: (919) 660-3100

Nineteenth-century French literature and culture; critical theory; literature and science; literature and technology. Full Profile »

Roberto Maria Dainotto, Professor of Romance Studies

Office: 219A Language Center, Durham, NC 27708

Modern and contemporary Italian culture. Publications include Place in Literature: Regions, Cultures, Communities (Cornell UP, 2000); Europe (in Theory) (Duke UP, 2007); The Mafia: A Cultural History (Reaction Books, 2015);  and the edited volume ... Full Profile »

Michael Hardt, Professor of Literature

Office: 106 Friedl Building, Buchanan and Trinity, Durham, NC 27708-0670

Phone: (919) 684-3408

Michael Hardt's writings explore the new forms of domination in the contemporary world as well as the social movements and other forces of liberation that resist them. In the Empire trilogy -- Empire (2000), Multitude (2004), and Commonwealth(2009) -- he and Antonio Negri investigate the... Full Profile »