Slideshow CK


Nersessian, Anahid
Assistant Professor
Humanities 242
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B.A. Yale University, 2005
Ph.D. English, University of Chicago, 2011


My research and teaching are rooted in the literature of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, with a special emphasis on the Romantic period. I am particularly invested in the study of rhetoric and form: my first book, Utopia, Limited (Harvard, 2015), finds Romantic poetry modeling minimally harmful practices of renunciation, self-containment, and adaptation in a world of finite resources, while my current project, The Calamity Form, explores tropological and figurative perspectives on ecological crisis. This second project also engages the history of literary criticism alongside the philosophy of science, from Kant to Ian Hacking. I am the editor of the Broadview Press edition of Percy Bysshe Shelley's long poem, Laon and Cythna, and managing editor of the open-access journal Environmental Humanities


Utopia, Limited: Romanticism and Adjustment (Harvard UP, 2015).

Ed., Laon and Cythna; or, the Revolution of the Golden City (Broadview, 2016).


"Form and Explanation," with Jonathan Kramnick. Critical Inquiry (forthcoming)

"Literary Agnotology." ELH (forthcoming)

"Romanticism as Method." Romantic Circles Praxis (forthcoming).

"Utopia's Afterlife in the Anthropocene." The Routledge Companion to the Environmental Humanities, ed. Ursula K. Heise, Jon Christensen, and Michelle Niemann (Routledge, 2017)

"Two Gardens: An Experiment in Calamity Form." MLQ 74.3 (2013): 307-329.

"Romantic Liberalism and the Juridical Comedy." Studies in Romanticism 50.4 (2012): 639-659.

"Radical Love: Shelley after the Jacobin Novel." ELH 79.1 (2012): 111-134.

"Empire and Attachment: A Transnational Tale." European Romantic Review 22.3 (2011): 339-346.

Reviews and Other Writing

"Traveling Light: Farewell to Leonard Cohen." Los Angeles Review of Books. November 15, 2016.

"Form Fatigue." Open Set: Art, Humanities, Culture. September 30, 2015.

"Who Cares?" We, Reading, Now digital colloquy at Arcade: Literature, Humanities, and the World, Stanford University. July 10, 2015.

"A Conversation Between Friends." Interview with Michael Robbins, Los Angeles Review of Books. January 27, 2015.

"Short Cuts." Public Books. January 15, 2015

Review of Forest Pyle, Art's Undoing: In the Wake of a Radical Aestheticism (Forham UP, 2013). The Wordsworth Circle 45.4 (2014): 313-314.

"Animal Studies." Public Books. April 8, 2013.

Review of Orrin Wang, Romantic Sobriety (Johns Hopkins UP, 2011). Modern Philology 111.2 (2013): 229-231.

"Poetry at the Tipping Point." Review of Michael Robbins, Alien vs. Predator (Penguin, 2012). Contemporary Literature 53.3 (2012): 599-605.