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Jean-Michel Rabaté

Professor of English and Comparative Literature


Fisher-Bennett Hall 339

Office Hours


Tu 2:30 - 3:30 

Jean-Michel Rabaté is a Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of Pennsylvania.  One of the founders and curators of Slought Foundation in Philadelphia (, he is one of the managing editors of the Journal of Modern Literature. Since 2008, he has been a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Rabaté has authored or edited more than 40 books on modernism, psychoanalysis, contemporary art, philosophy, and writers like Beckett,  Pound and Joyce.

His books include Lacan Literario (2007), 1913: The cradle of modernism  (2007, Chinese translation 2013), The Ethic of the Lie (2008), Etant donnés: 1) l’art, 2) le crime  (2010). The Ghosts of Modernity has been republished in 2010. In 2013, he has edited A Handbook of Modernism Studies and a new French translation of Joyce's Exiles, Crimes of the Future (2014), The Cambridge Introduction to Literature and Psychoanalysis, (2014), The Pathos of Distance (2016), Think, Pig! Beckett at the limit of the human (2016), Les Guerres de Derrida (2016).

More recent titles inmclude Rust (2018), Kafka L.O.L. (2018), After Derrida (2018), Rire au Soleil (2019), New Beckett (2019), Understanding Derrida / Understanding Modernism (2019), Knots: Post-Lacanian Readings of literature and film (2020), Beckett and Sade (2020), Rires Prodigues (2021). Forthcoming are the co-edited collection (with Angeliki Spiropoulou), Historical Modernisms: Time, History, and  Modernist Aesthetics and the book James Joyce, Hérétique et Prodigue.





Doctoral Dissertations Chaired


Gabriel Sessions "To Feel Thought as Immediately as a Rose: Philosophy, Modernism, and Utopian Collaborations"


Daniel Snelson "Variable Format: Media Poetics and the Little Database "


Vaclav Paris "Everyday Epic: Evolution, Sexuality, and Modernist Narrative."


Andrew Gaedtke "The Machinery of Madness: Psychosis, Technology, and Modernist Narrative"


John P. Heon "The Dionysia of Science: Humor, Rational Madness, and Comic Experimental Methods in the Works of Bruce Nauman and Thomas Pynchon"
Benjamin Kahan "Modern American Celibacies, 1886-1969"


Alexine Fleck "The Low and the Lost: Ethics, Expertise and Drug-Use Memoirs"
Josh Schuster "Modernist Biotopias: Organicism and Vitalism in Early Twentieth-Century American Poetry"


Damien Keane "Dictating Terms: Irish Writing, Criticism, and the Problem of Information, 1933-1953"


Shanyn Fiske "Haes and Hellenism: Underworlds of the Victorian Mythopoetic Imagination"


Paul Kintzele "On the Verge of the World: Internationalism in the Text of Modernism"


Jeremy Braddock "The Modernist Collector and Black Modernity, 1914-1934"

Courses Taught

fall 2023

spring 2023

ENGL 1071.401 Fashion and Modernity  

fall 2022

ENGL 2071.401 When was Modernism?  

spring 2022

ENGL 065.401 Love in an Age of Cynicism  

fall 2021

spring 2021

fall 2020

ENGL 705.401 Laughtears  

fall 2019

ENGL 065.001 Love in an Age of Cynicism  

spring 2019

fall 2018

ENGL 059.401 All of Beckett  

spring 2018

fall 2017

spring 2017

ENGL 259.401 Beckett and Kafka  

fall 2016

ENGL 259.301 T.S. Eliot's Waste Land  

spring 2016

fall 2015

ENGL 259.301 Beckett, the Late Modernist  
ENGL 294.301 Theory as the Letter B  

spring 2015

ENGL 259.301 Modernisms: 1922/2022  

fall 2014

ENGL 361.401 The Colors of Literature  

fall 2013

ENGL 358.301 Reading Joyce  

spring 2013

ENGL 259.301 Joyce and Kafka  

fall 2012

ENGL 790.402 Return to Lacan  

spring 2012

ENGL 094.402 Theory as the Letter "B"  
ENGL 258.301 Ulysses  

fall 2011

spring 2011

ENGL 259.401 Joyce with Kafka  

fall 2010

ENGL 394.401 The Human Animal  

fall 2009

ENGL 258.301 Reading James Joyce  

spring 2009

fall 2008

ENGL 258.301 Reading Joyce  
ENGL 768.301 Joyce and Proust  

spring 2008

ENGL 257.301 Reading Joyce  

fall 2007

fall 2005

spring 2005

ENGL 790.401 Hegel and After  

fall 2004

ENGL 059.401 Modernisms and Modernities  
ENGL 571.401 History of Literary Theory  

spring 2004

ENGL 204.401 Literary Theory:  
ENGL 571.640 Freud and After  

fall 2003

ENGL 304.401 1913  
ENGL 600.301 Proseminar  

spring 2003

ENGL 204.401 Literary Theory  

fall 2002

ENGL 210.401 Modernist Heroes  
ENGL 404.640 Engaging Contemporary Art  

spring 2002

ENGL 204.401 Literary Theory  

fall 2001

ENGL 210.401 Modernism  
ENGL 600.301 Proseminar  

spring 2001

ENGL 104.401 The Twentieth Century  

fall 2000

ENGL 204.401 Literary Theory  
ENGL 571.401 Literary Theory  

spring 2000

ENGL 104.401 The Twentieth Century  

spring 1999

ENGL 204.401 Literary Theory  

fall 1998

ENGL 095.401 Intro to Cultural Studies  
ENGL 571.640 Freud and After  

spring 1998

fall 1997

ENGL 204.401 Literary Theory  
ENGL 210.401 Modernism  

spring 1997

ENGL 061.001 20th Century British Lit.  

fall 1996

ENGL 204.401 Literary Theory  
ENGL 571.401 Literary Theory  

spring 1995

ENGL 065.001 20th Century British Novel