As John L. Loeb Associate Professor of the Humanities, I teach in the Department of English and in the Program in History & Literature at Harvard, where I also serve on the Committee on Degrees in American Studies. In addition, I supervise the American Literature Colloquium and co-chair "Novel Theory Across the Disciplines," a seminar at the Mahindra Humanities Center.
My scholarship and teaching focus on modern and contemporary American literature, the history and theory of the novel, visual media, and methods of interpretation. Recent essays of mine appear in New Literary History, Post45, American Literary History, Contemporary Literature, The Henry James Review, Public Books, and The Los Angeles Review of Books.
My first book, Site Reading: Fiction, Art, Social Form, is available from Princeton University Press. Site Reading received the Erving Goffman Award for Outstanding Scholarship in the Ecology of Social Interaction from the Media Ecology Association.
I am currently at work on two book projects: Art Novels: Fiction in an Age of Visual Media (forthcoming from Princeton UP) and, with designer Peter Mendelsund, The Jacket: Art at the Edges of Literature (forthcoming from Ten Speed Press). Detailed descriptions of these projects can be found here. A sample essay from The Jacket is available here.
With Matthew Hart of Columbia University, I am guest-editing a special issue of ASAP/Journal on “Site Specificity Without Borders.” As a member of the editorial board for a new print and digital anthology of American literature (1492–present) that will be edited by Werner Sollors, Glenda Carpio, and Jeffrey Ferguson, I am curating a cluster of texts and artifacts on “American Environments.”
I received my Ph.D. from the Department of English at the University of Chicago, where I was an Affiliated Fellow at the Franke Institute for the Humanities and a member of the Object Cultures Project. My scholarship has been generously supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, and the Huntington Library.