School of Humanities and Sciences
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Eva Chernov Lokey Professor in Jewish Studies and Professor, by courtesy, of German Studies and of Comparative Literature
BioGabriella Safran has written on Russian, Polish, Yiddish, and French literatures and cultures. Her most recent monograph, Wandering Soul: The Dybbuk's Creator, S. An-sky (Harvard, 2010), is a biography of an early-twentieth-century Russian-Yiddish writer who was also an ethnographer, a revolutionary, and a wartime relief worker.
Safran teaches and writes on Russian literature, Yiddish literature, folklore, and folkloristics. She is now working on two monograph projects: one on how people in the Russian Empire listened across social lines, recorded and imitated others’ voices in various media, and reflected on listening and vocal imitation, from the 1830s to the 1880s, and the other on the international pre-history of the Jewish joke.
For more information about her activities and publications, see https://dlcl.stanford.edu/people/gabriella-safran
Leon Sloss, Jr. Professor and Professor, by courtesy, of Iberian and Latin American Cultures
BioJosé David Saldívar is a scholar of late postcontemporary culture, especially the minoritized literatures of the United States, Latin America, and the transamerican hemisphere, and of border narrative and poetics from the sixteenth century to the present.
He is the author of The Dialectics of Our America: Genealogy, Cultural Critique, and Literary History (Duke University Press, 1991), Border Matters: Remapping American Cultural Studies (University of California Press, 1997), and Trans-Americanity: Subaltern Modernities, Global Coloniality, and the Cultures of Greater Mexico (Duke University Press, 2012),coeditor (with Monica Hanna and Jennifer Harford Vargas) of Junot Díaz and the Decolonial Imagination (Duke University Press, 2016) coeditor (with Héctor Calderón) of Criticism in the Borderlands (Duke University Press, 1991), and editor of The Rolando Hinojosa Reader (Arte Público Press, 1985).
Additionally, he has published numerous articles in journals such as Cultural Studies, American Literary History, The Americas Review, Revista Casa de las Américas, Daedalus, Modern Fiction Studies, and The Global South. He has served on the editorial boards of Duke University Press, the University of California Press, and currently serves on the editorial boards of the journals American Literary History, The Global South, Aztlan, and World Knowledges Otherwise. He has received personal research grants from The Ford Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, the University of California President's Research Fellowship in the Humanities, the William Rice Kimball Fellowship, Stanford Humanities Center, and the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford (invitation for a future visit).
His teaching is divided evenly between graduate seminars and undergraduate courses, and some of his undergraduate courses are cross-listed in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity.
In 2003, he received the Distinguished Achievement Award for Literary and Cultural Criticism from the Western Literature Association; in 2005, he received the Chicano Scholar of the Year Award from the Modern Language Association; in 2007 he received the Sarlo Distinguished Graduate Student Mentoring Award from the University of California, Berkeley; and in 2016, he was the winner of the American Literature Society’s highest honor, the Jay B. Hubbell Medal. The medal is sponsored by the American Literature Society, an allied organization of the Modern Language Association, and is awarded annually to one “scholar whose lifetime of scholarly work has significantly advanced the study of American literature.” . Before coming to Stanford in January 2010, Saldívar was the Class of 1942 Professor of English and Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.
Hoagland Family Professor, T. Robert and Katherine States Burke Family Director of BOSP, and Professor, by courtesy, of Iberian and Latin American Cultures
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy current research is concerned with the relationships among race, form, genre, representing what Jeffrey T. Nealon has recently term the “post-postmodern.” In the latest version of this research presented at the John-F.-Kennedy-Institut für Nordamerikastudien, Freie Universität Berlin I use Sesshu Foster's "Atomik Aztex" as an example twenty-first century racial imaginaries. Part fantasy, part hallucinatory sur-realism, part muckraking novel in the grand realist protest tradition of Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle (1906), part historical novel in the mode of Vassily Grossman’s great Stalinist era masterpiece, Life & Fate (1980) set during the battle of Stalingrad, part ethnographic history about religious, military, and social structure of the pre-Columbian Aztec (Nahua, Mexica) world, part LA noir, and wholly Science Fiction alternative and counterfactual history, it exemplifies many of the criteria of the “post-postmodern.” Moreover, in addition to this range of formal matters, Atomik Aztex is concerned with two other topics:
•a reconceptualization of the way that race affects the formations of history, and
•the reshaping of the form of the novel in order to represent that reconceptualization.
With eighty-two characters populating the story, itself a plotted compendium of at least two radically separate yet intertwined universes of action, in a continually shifting movement from past, present, and future times, Atomik Aztex is a radical experiment in novelistic form. Using the tools of quantitative formalism developed for literary use by the Stanford University Literary Lab, I wish to show how the work of the computational humanities, in conjunction with traditional hermeneutic methods of literary analysis can help us understand the radical turn of contemporary American fiction toward speculative realism.
Assistant Professor of French and Italian and, by courtesy, of Comparative Literature
BioFatoumata Seck is a literary scholar with an interdisciplinary background. She specializes in francophone African and Caribbean studies with an emphasis on cultural and diaspora studies, postcolonial theory and political economy. Her research brings together literary criticism, anthropological theory, and various approaches to materialism to investigate the impact of economic thought and economic processes on Senegalese works of fiction. Her book manuscript "Materialized Imaginaries: Fiction, Economy and the Postcolony" develops methodologies for studying the influence of post-colonial neoliberal reforms on the Senegalese social fabric through the examination of both cultural production and cultural practice. It establishes how Senegalese writers, filmmakers, and artists have engaged in humanistic ways of rethinking economic ideologies and practices through fictional narratives as well as way in which these works inform notions of value, debt, money, and capital.
Seck is a former Assistant Professor at the City University of New York, College of Staten Island (CUNY/CSI) where she has taught and conducted research on literature, film, and cultures of the francophone world and the African diaspora and served as coordinator for the French program. Seck holds a Ph.D. in French with a minor in anthropology and a certificate in African Studies from Stanford University as well as degrees from the University of Georgia and Université Jean Moulin Lyon III. Seck is a native Wolof and French speaker; her teaching cuts across various geographical areas and linguistic traditions (Wolof, French, English, Spanish and Portuguese) and is informed by critical theory on race, gender and ethnicity. In addition to courses about francophone cultures and societies offered at the Division of Literature Cultures and Languages (DLCL), Seck offers courses about the African diaspora in Europe and the Americas at the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity (CSRE). She is also a Center for African Studies (CAS) affiliate faculty member with projects and courses that engage the landscape of African humanities. Her work has appeared in the Journal of African Cultural Studies, the Journal of Haitian Studies, Études Littéraires Africaines and Le Monde Afrique.
Professor of German Studies and, by courtesy, of English, of History and of Comparative LiteratureOn Leave from 10/01/2020 To 06/30/2021
BioKathryn Starkey is Professor of German in the Department of German Studies. Her primary research interests are medieval and early modern German literature and culture with an emphasis on visuality, material culture, language, performativity, and the history of the book.
She is the author of "Reading the Medieval Book: Word, Image, and Performance in Wolfram von Eschenbach’s 'Willehalm'" (Notre Dame 2004), and "A Courtier’s Mirror: Cultivating Elite Identity in Thomasin's 'Welscher Gast'" (Notre Dame 2013). Together with Horst Wenzel (Berlin), Professor Starkey co-edited "Imagination und Deixis: Studien zur Wahrnehmung im Mittelalter" (Stuttgart 2007), and "Visual Culture and the German Middle Ages" (New York 2005). In collaboration with Ann Marie Rasmussen (Waterloo) and Jutta Eming (Berlin), she conducted a three-year research project funded by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation TransCoop Program on “Tristan and Isolde and Cultures of Emotion in the Middle Ages.” This project culminated in the co-edited volume "Visuality and Materiality in the Story of Tristan" (Notre Dame 2012). One of her current projects is a co-authored (with Edith Wenzel [Aachen]) edition, translation, and commentary of songs by the medieval poet Neidhart (ca. 1210-1240) entitled "Neidhart: Selected Songs from the Riedegger Manuscript".
Prof. Starkey has been the recipient of fellowships from the National Humanities Center, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, the UNC Institute for the Arts and the Humanities, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.
Before joining the faculty at Stanford in 2012 she taught in the Department of Germanic and Slavic Languages and Literatures at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.