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Rita Felski

Niels Bohr Professor, Department for the Study of Culture, University of Southern Denmark, 2016-
William R Kenan, Jr. Professor of English, University of Virginia
Editor, New Literary History

Ph.D. Monash University, 1987
M.A. Monash University, 1982
B.A. Cambridge University, 1979

My current research centers on questions of method and interpretation. My most recent book “The Limits of Critique” (Chicago 2015) is on the role of suspicion in literary criticism. Similar issues are explored in an edited collection, “Critique and Postcritique”, co-edited with Elizabeth Anker and forthcoming with Duke University Press. I am now immersed in a new project on forms of aesthetic attachment: how and why we get stuck to works of art. Individual chapters are devoted to the complexities of attunement, identification, and affiliation. I also have longstanding interests in feminist theory, modernity and postmodernity, genre (especially tragedy), comparative literature, and cultural studies.
In 2016 I was awarded a Niels Bohr Professorship (Danish National Research Foundation and University of Southern Denmark) to lead a research project on "Uses of Literature: The Social Dimensions of Literature".

Aesthetics, Interpretation, Literary Theory, Methodology

The Limits of Critique, The University of Chicago Press, 2015
Comparison: Theories, Approaches, Uses, Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008
(co-edited with Susan Stanford Friedman)
Rethinking Tragedy, Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008
Uses of Literature, Wiley-Blackwell, 2008
Turkish translation 2010; Polish translation 2016
Literature after Feminism, The University of Chicago Press, 2003
Korean translation 2010
Doing Time: Feminist Theory and Postmodern Culture, NYU Press, 2000
The Gender of Modernity, Harvard University Press, 1995
Korean translation 1998; Chinese Translation 2017
Beyond Feminist Aesthetics: Feminist Literature and Social Changes, Harvard University Press, 1989

Forthcoming Works
Critique and Postcritique, Duke University Press, 2017
(co-edited with Elizabeth Anker)

Recent Special Issues of New Literary History
"Recomposing the Humanities - with Bruno Latour" 47, 2-3, 2016
"Song" 46, 4, 2015
"Beyond Bourdieu and other Essays" 46, 3, 2015
"Feminist Investigations and Other Essays" 46, 2, 2015
"Political Theory" 45, 4, 2014
"Interpretation and its Rivals" 45, 2, 2014
"Use" 44, 4, 2014
"The French Issue: New Perspectives on Reading from France" 44, 2, 2013
"A New Europe?" 43, 4, 2012
"In the Mood" 43, 4 , 2012
"Context?" 42, 4, 2011
"Character" 42, 2, 2011
"What Is an Avant-Garde?" 41, 4, 2010
"New Sociologies of Literature" 41, 2, 2010
"Tribute to Ralph Cohen" 40, 4, 2009

Recent Articles
"Latour and Literary Studies" in PMLA, 2015
"Fear of Being Ordinary" in Norwegian Journal for Gender Studies, 3-4, 2014
"Digging Down and Standing Back" in English Language Notes, special issue “After Critique”, 2013
"Charmy: A Problem for Art Theory?" in Emilie Charmy, ed. Matthew Affron (University Park: Penn State University Press, 2013)
"Context Stinks" in New Literary History, 2011
"Suspicious Minds" in Poetics Today, 2010
"After Suspicion" in Profession, 2009
"Everyday Aesthetics" in The Minnesota review, 2009
"Remember the Reader" in The Chronicle of Higher Education, December 17 2008
"From Literary Theory to Critical Method" in Profession, 2008
"Cultural Studies" in The Routledge Social Science Encyclopedia, 2008
"Tragic Women" in Moderne Begreifen: Zur Paradoxie eines sozio-aesthetischen Deutungsmusters, ed. Christine Magerski et al. (Deutsche Universitätsverlag, 2007)
"Object Relations" in Contemporary Women’s Writing, 2007
"‘Because it is Beautiful’: New Feminist Perspectives on Beauty" in Feminist Theory, 7, 2, 2006
"Redescriptions of Female Masochism" in Minnesota Review, 2005
"Modernist Studies and Cultural Studies" in Modernism/Modernity, 2004
"Introduction" in New Literary History, special issue “Rethinking Tragedy”, 35, 1, 2004
"The Role of Aesthetics in Cultural Studies" in Aesthetics and Cultural Studies, ed. Michael Bérubé, Blackwell's, 2004
"Introduction" in New Literary History, special issue on "Everyday Life," 2002
"Afterword" in Women and Modernity: Renegotiating the Public Sphere 1880-1930, ed. Ann Ardis (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002)
"Telling Time in Feminist Theory" in Tulsa Journal of Women's Studies, 21, 1, 2002
"Why Academics Don't Study the Lower Middle Class" in Chronicle of Higher Education, January 25, 2002
"Med Ratt Att Grata" (Tragic Women) in Dagens Nyheter (Sweden), March 21, 2001
"Von der Postmoderne zur Moderne" (From the Postmodern to the Modern) in Transit (Vienna), 19, 2000
"Feminist Futures" in International Journal of Cultural Studies, 3 , 2000
"Being Rational, Telling Stories" in Feminist Theory, 2, 2000
"Nothing to Declare: Identity, Shame and the Lower Middle Class" in PMLA, 115, 1 , 2000
"The Invention of Everyday Life" in New Formations, 39, 1999/2000
"Why Those Who Dismiss Cultural Studies Don't Know What They're Talking About" in The Chronicle of Higher Education, July 23, 1999
"Images of the Intellectual: From Philosophy to Cultural Studies" in Continuum 12, 2, 1998
"Introduction" in Sexology and Culture: Labelling Bodies and Desires, 1890-1940, ed. Lucy Bland and Laura Doan, University of Chicago Press and Polity Press, 1998
"Feminist Aesthetics" in The International Encyclopaedia of Aesthetics (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998)
"The Doxa of Difference" in Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, 23, 1 (Fall 1997)
"Judith Krantz, Author of 'The Cultural Logics of Late Capitalism'" in Woman: A Cultural Review, vol 8, no. 2, 1997

Honorary Doctorate, University of Southern Denmark, 2016
Guggenheim Fellowship, 2010
SW Brooks Visiting Lecturer in English, University of Queensland, 2010
Harry Lyman Hooker Distinguished Professor, McMaster University, 2005
Research Fellow, Institut für die Wissenschaften vom Menschen, Vienna, 2000
George A. Miller Visiting Professor, University of Illinois, 1998
Australian Research Council Major Grant, 1993
Fellowship, Commonwealth Center for Literary and Cultural Change, University of Virginia, 1991
Fellowship, Society for the Humanities, Cornell University, 1989-1990
William Parker Riley Prize, best article in PMLA

Articles about Rita Felski
Rita Felski was the main subject of a long article in The Chronicle of Higher Education, which referenced her Niels Bohr Professorship and identified her as the leader of a new movement in literary criticism: Marc Parry, "What's Wrong with Literary Studies",  Chronicle of Higher Education, November 27 2016.

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University of Virginia

Department of English

Rita Felski