16th-century French literature, especially Montaigne, lyric poetry, and the novella. Italian Renaissance literature. Intellectual history (especially Aristotelian moral theory, political thought).
Teaching and Research Interests:
My teaching includes all periods of French literature, with a concentration on 15th to 17th centuries, to Italian literature (Petrarch, Ariosto, Castiglione), Ancien Régime social and cultural history, and modern and current French fiction. My research concerns the relationship between intellectual history and literature (narrative fiction and lyric poetry) in the early modern period, focusing on concepts of justice and moderation, legitimate resistance, and gestures and meaning in lyric poetry from Virgil to Renaissance Italy and France. My past research includes poetics and rhetoric, scholastic theology, Aristotelian ethical discourse, and notions of pleasure in literature and philosophy.
Honors & Grants
- National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Summer Stipend (1985)
- American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) Travel Grant (1985)
- Graduate School Summer Research Grant (UW-Madison) (1986)
- Graduate School Summer Research Grant (UW-Madison) (1987)
- ACLS Fellowship (1987-1988)
- Institute for Research in the Humanities Fellowship (1987-1988)
- Graduate School Summer Research Grant (UW-Madison) (1989)
- NEH Conferenct Grant (with Douglas Kelly) (1989)
- Romnes Fellowship (UW-Madison) (1990-1995)
- NEH Fellowship for University Teachers (1992)
- Graduate School Summer Research Grant (1992)
- Graduate School Summer Research Grant (1994)
- NEH Summer Seminar Director (1995)
- Mid-Career Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) Award (UW-Madison) (1995-2000)
- John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship (1997)
- Short-term Residence Fellowship, Herzog August Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel (1997)
- Senior Fellow, Institute for Research in the Humanities (UW-Madison) (2000-2005)
- Senior WARF Professorship (UW-Madison): Alfred Glauser Professor of French (2010-2015)
- Director, Center for Early Modern Studies (UW-Madison) (2011-2012)
- Interim Director, Institute for Research in the Humanities (UW-Madison) (2017-2018)
Lyric in the Renaissance: From Petrarch to Montaigne , 2015
Le départ de Cassandre, l’orgueil de Ronsard et la mort de Laure (Amours 208, 1552-1553), 2015
Moral Admonishment, Amorous Conflict: How to Avoid Severing the Connection, 2015
Petrarch’s Singular Love Lyric, 2015
Aristotle, Epieikeia, and the Novella in France, 2014
The Cambridge Companion to Montaigne (Cambridge Companions to Philosophy) , 2005
- Rhétorique et intersubjectivité: 'Les Tragiques' d'Agrippa d'Aubigné (Tübingen: Papers on French 17th Century Literature, 1983).
- Invention, Death, and Self-Definitions in the Poetry of Pierre de Ronsard (Saratoga: Anma Libri, 1986).
- Divine and Poetic Freedom in the Renaissance: Nominalist Theology and Literature in France and Italy (Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press, 1990).
- Perfect Friendship: Studies in Literature and Moral Philosophy from Boccaccio to Corneille (Geneva: Droz, 1994).
- Vertu du discours, discours de la vertu: littérature et philosophie morale au XVIe siècle en France (Geneva: Droz, “Au seuil de la modernité,” 1999).
- Penser les formes du plaisir littérature à la Renaissance (Paris: Editions Classiques Garnier, 2009).
- What Is Literature? France 1100-1600, ed. with François Cornilliat, Douglas Kelly (Lexington, KY: French Forum, 1993).
- Anteros, ed. with Jan Miernowski (Caen, Orléans: Editions Paradigme, September 1994).
- Au-delà de la Poétique: Aristote et la littérature à la Renaissance / Beyond the Poetics: Aristotle and Early Modern Literature, ed. (Geneva: Droz, 2002).