Teaching & Syllabi


At the undergraduate and graduate level, I teach courses on Victorian literature and the history of science, aestheticism and decadence, and climate change in culture from the nineteenth century to the present.

I also teach in the Media Aesthetics core sequence, which introduces first-year students to theories and histories of media, broadly conceived. Some of the topics we address include Plato’s critiques of imitation and writing in the Republic and the Phaedrus, early responses to photography and cinema, semiotics, and hermeneutics.


University of Chicago

Climate Change in Literature, Art, and Film, Fall 2018
Nineteenth-Century Ecological Thought, Winter 2017.
Science Fiction: Theories and Origins, Fall 2016
Climate Change Fiction, Winter 2016
Aestheticism and Decadence, Fall 2015
Literary Environments, Winter 2015
Victorian Speculative Fiction: Agency, Time, and Utopia, Fall 2014
Oscar Wilde and His Contexts, Spring 2013
Oscar Wilde’s London (Study Abroad), Fall 2012
The Politics of Aestheticism, Winter 2012
Science and the Literary Imagination, Winter 2012
Psychology and Literature in the Nineteenth Century, Winter 2011
Late Victorian Literature, Winter 2011
Media Aesthetics: Image, Text, Sound, 2010-2017

University of California, Berkeley

Science and Literature: The Two Cultures, Summer 2009
Irrationality, Madness, and Superstition in Victorian Prose, Summer 2008
Aestheticism and Decadence, Summer 2007
Introduction to Literary Theory, Spring 2007
Reading and Meaning, Fall 2005
The Aesthetics of Evil, Summer 2005
Theories of the Lie: Plato to Derrida, Spring 2005, 2008, 2009
Twentieth-Century Theories of Interpretation, Fall 2006
The Politics of Performance, Summer 2006
Early Modern Europe and its Others, Fall 2004
The Scientist and the Detective, Spring 2004
Violence and Persuasion, Fall 2003