Bio

Samuel Diener

I specialize in early modern and eighteenth-century British and American literature, print culture, and history of the book, informed by postcolonial theory and affect theory. I do comparative work in Spanish and Portuguese, and I am working on a book of poetry inspired by the years I spent working in the fishing and foodservice industries before attending university. I am a PhD candidate in English, and I have a secondary PhD field in Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality.

My dissertation project considers a set of colonial exploration narratives from the sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth centuries, focusing on the ways that readers articulated their relationship to imperial projects, inflected by race, gender, and class, both on and with the physical books they used. The project has been supported by residential research fellowships at the John Carter Brown Library and Huntington Library, as well as a Frank Knox Memorial Fellowship and (from 2020-21) a Mellon/ACLS Completion Fellowship.

My July 2019 article in Women Writers in Context approaches this topic through the work of Eliza Haywood, and offers a set of digital tools I built to trace Anglophone women writers' engagement with global geographies. 

I've also been busy with a long-term project on affect and emotional practices in early merchant-capitalist societies. My January 2019 article in Eighteenth Century Fiction is part of this work.