Vesna Kuiken

Visiting Assistant Professor

Ph.D. | Columbia University                                                           
office: HU 344
office hours: T/TH 11.45 am – 12.45 pm       

Professor Kuiken's expertise and research interests include long Nineteenth-Century American literature, early American literature, ecocriticism, post- and trans-humanism, regionalism, theories of democracy and utopia, and Nineteenth-Century European literature. She is currently completing a book, Islandic Life: Archipelagic Ontologies in American Literature, which uncovers a countercurrent in nineteenth-century American literature and shows how a recourse to archipelagic environmental structures enabled the period’s women writers to revise existing concepts of nature and (gender) politics. Kuiken’s work has appeared in the collection of essays American Impersonal: Essays with Sharon Cameron (Bloomsbury, 2014), J19, The Henry James Review, Arizona Quarterly, and Nineteenth-Century Prose. Her essay “1884: The Princess Casamassima, Anarchy, and James's Materialist Poetics” is the recipient of the Leon Edel Prize for the best essay on Henry James in 2016.

     - “Foreign Before ‘The Foreigner’: Caribbean Fetishes, Zombi, and Jewett’s Conjure Aesthetics”   
         Arizona Quarterly (under review), Special issue on women and medicine in nineteenth-century
         American literature.
     - “Idiorrhythmic Regionality, or How to Live Together in Jewett’s Country of the Pointed Firs
        (Arizona Quarterly, Spring 2019, forthcoming).
     - “1884: The Princess Casamassima, Anarchy, and Henry James’s Materialist Poetics,” The Henry
        James Review
38.2 (2017): 113-133, recipient of the 2016 Leon Edel Prize.
     - “‘Fit to Be Free’: From Race to Capacity in Jewett's ‘The Mistress of Sydenham Plantation,’” J19:
        The Journal of Nineteenth-Century Americanists 5.2 (2017), pp. 239-266.
     - “The Impersonal Lives of Margaret Fuller: A Problem of Biography,” Nineteenth-Century Prose
        42.1 (2015): 95-112.
     - “On the Matter of Thinking: Margaret Fuller’s Beautiful Work,” in American Impersonal. Ed. Branka
        Arsić (New York: Bloomsbury, 2014), pp. 99-129.

In progress
    - “Between Rock and Fish: Enchanted Isles in Celia Thaxter and Herman Melville” (invited
       contribution for the collection Speculative Materialisms in the Nineteenth Century, edited by
       Renée Bergland, Christian Haines, and Mark Noble; 2020).
    - “Wild Apple Journalizing: Thoreau’s Vegetal Aesthetics” (in Thoreau and the Vegetal, edited by
       Branka Arsic and Vesna Kuiken; 2020).

Book reviews
    - Gender Protest and Same-Sex Desire in Antebellum American Literature by David Greven,
       Nineteenth-Century Prose 43.1/2 (2016): 515-18.
    - Quiet Testimony: A Theory of Witnessing from Nineteenth-Century American Literature by Shari
       Goldberg, Textual Practice 28.3 (2014): 546-50.
    - A Political Companion to Emerson by Alan Levine and Daniel Malachuk, eds., Emerson Society
       Papers 24.1 (2013).

Review of Kuiken’s work
    - Holly Jackson, “The Radicals’ Reconstruction: Jewett at Port Royal,” J19: The Journal of
       Nineteenth-Century Americanists
6.2 (2018): 229-231.

UAlbany Courses
     - AENG: 210: Thinking Through Concepts (introduction to critical approaches to literature)
     - AENG 226: Nature Writing: Natural Histories of the Americas—Bartram to Hurston (study in
        literary genre)
     - AENG 261: America’s Literary Environments: 1620-1920 (survey of American Literature)
     - AENG 295: Away from Home from Homer to Kafka (Classics of Western Literature)
     - AENG 310: Ecocriticism (literary theory)
     - AENG 310: Posthumanisms (literary theory)
     - AENG 413Y: Eco-Poetics: Nature Writing in the Americas

Professional Service
2019                Reader for the journal Textual Practice
2018                Organizer of an interdisciplinary symposium Anthropocene Now! Ecology, Ethic,
, SUNY-Albany
2014-2016      Senior Research Associate, El Museo del Barrio, New York
2013-2014      Co-organizer of the 19th-Century Reading Group, Columbia University
2013                Co-organizer of the American Studies conference Rethinking Land and Language:
                        Dialogues in Early American and Indigenous Studies, Columbia University