Michael Jonik, visiting professor at Ihrim

Senior Lecturer in English and American Literature, University of Sussex, UK
Visiting Professor 2022-23 - April 17 to 27, 2023
Inviting Professor: François Specq Michael Jonik is an internationally recognized researcher of authors, primarily from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries (Edwards, Melville, Dickinson, Thoreau, Emerson and James). Michael Jonik teaches contemporary American Literature and Critical Theory at the University of Sussex. He was previously a postdoctoral fellow at the Cornell University Society for the Humanities.

Michael Jonik is one of the most active and prolific European scholars in the field of American Literature. He has published numerous studies of a wide range of American authors in the most prestigious journals and publishers (Cambridge University Press, Oxford University Press, etc.) and has given guest lectures at numerous universities. He is one of the convenors of one of the major international research networks on nineteenth-century American literature, Branca (British Association of Nineteenth-Century Americanists).

His current research project, foreshadowed by some of his recent articles, is on Henry David Thoreau: Thoreau’s Radical Ecologies: Philosophy, Politics, Collective Agency (accepted by University of Minnesota Press). His research has led him to participate in two colloquia on Thoreau organized at ENS de Lyon (in 2009 and 2017).

Michael Jonik’s work naturally relates to the issues of the IHRIM laboratory. This invitation is all the more relevant for the laboratory since the United Kingdom is one of the first European poles of study on eighteenthand nineteenth-century America. Michael Jonik is an extremely active researcher of international stature, whose wide-ranging skills and innovative perspectives will surely stimulate the students and the scientific community of ENS de Lyon.

Monday, April 24. 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Biohistory and American Indigenous Languages in Henry David Thoreau’s "Indian Notebooks"

Wednesday, April 26. 10:00 am - 12:00 am
Life, Form and Power in Ralph Waldo Emerson’s "Experience"

  • Herman Melville and the Politics of the Inhuman (Cambridge University Press, 2018), 268pp.
  • The New Cambridge Companion to Ralph Waldo Emerson, Editor (under contract with Cambridge University Press)
  • Anarchists, Scientists, Lovers and Con-men: Risk and the Nineteenth-Century Novel (in preparation).

Selected articles/Book chapters

  • "Infinite subdued vexation": Desire, Inaction and Philosophy in Melville’s Pierre", Revue française d’études américaines, June 2021
  • "James and Turgenev", Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Literature, Ed. Andrew Kahn, Oxford University Press, in press