John Limon

John J Gibson Professor of English
email
413-597-2567
Hollander Hall Rm 215

Education

B.A. Harvard University (1974)
Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, English (1981)

Areas of Expertise

American literature, American modernism, American postmodernism, the world novel, death theory, comedy.

Courses

Note: courses in gray are not offered this academic year.

ENGL 272 / AMST 272

American Postmodern Fiction

Scholarship/Creative Work

Death’s Following:  Mediocrity, Dirtiness, Adulthood, Literature (Fordham:  2012).

The Second World War in American Fiction,” in The Edinburgh Companion to Twentieth-Century British and American War Literature (2012:  Edinburgh UP).

“Addie in Non Man’s Land,” in As I Lay Dying:  Norton Critical Edition (Norton:  2010).

“American Humor in History,” American Literary History, vol. 21, no. 2, summer 2009.

Professional Affiliations

Please see my CV for Professional affiliations and more:

Johnlimoncv

I am John J. Gibson Professor of English and chair of the English Department.   I teach courses almost entirely in American Literature—including courses on modernism, postmodernism, and Faulkner—although for several years I taught a course in the world novel.   A couple of my books are dedicated to putting American literature in relation to extrinsic forms of history:  The Place of Fiction in the Time of Science:  A Disciplinary History of American Literature (Cambridge:  1990) and Writing After War:  American Writing from Realism to Postmodernism (Oxford:  1994).  (The former book engages the philosophy of science of Kuhn, Feyerabend, Popper, and others; the latter, with the war philosophy especially of Clausewitz and Elaine Scarry.)  A third book, on the other hand, has almost nothing to do with American literature (it features chapters on Stoppard, Sebald, and Thomas Bernhard):  Death’s Following:  Mediocrity, Dirtiness, Adulthood, Literature (2012:  Fordham).  (It’s a theory of death.)  And one book has almost nothing to do with literature at all, but centers on the comedy of Lenny Bruce, Nichols and May, Brooks and Reiner, David Letterman, Richard Pryor, Ellen DeGeneres, and Paula Poundstone:  Stand-up Comedy in Theory, or, Abjection in America (2000:  Duke).  In progress, possibly, is an article on Orhan Pamuk; and a book on escapism, with articles on American classic film comedies, The Sound of Music, and  much, much more.