Literature, ethics, and quantification. Charles Dickens. William Blake.
ProfHacker; Victorian fiction, Dickens, Carlyle, Eliot; digital humanities; psychoanalysis; cyber- and steampunk; graphic narrative; higher education; labor; educational technology
Victorian Literature and Culture
19th-Century British Women Writers
Victorian studies (especially Dickens, Eliot), fat studies, food studies, Harry Potter, composition, writing centers, English as a second language, fantasy, mythology, Christian poetics, graduate education, film, reader-response theory, fan communities, etymology, trickster figures, children’s and young adult literature, serial fiction
My first book, Aging, Duration, and the English Novel: Growing Old from Dickens to Woolf, is forthcoming from Cambridge University Press. It theorizes duration and the conventions of realism through an analysis of representations of old age and aging, especially through the way novelists plot the development of characters over time. I am currently working on a second book, The Aging of Empire: Forms of Patronage in Great Britain and India, 1857-1947, which focuses on how the Victorians mapped a politics of age onto the asymmetrical relation between colonizer and colonized. This project demonstrates how progressive, linear models of imperial expansion derived their power from a tacit comparison to the development of a human life, entangling anxieties about the durability of empire with figures relating to old age and youthful inheritance.
… American Studies Association, Fall 2018.
“Presenter, Cultural Extinction,” MLA19, Winter 2019
Keynote,” Friends of Dickens New York, January 2018.
Presenter, “The Legal Ecology of Sustainable Citizenship,” Legal Ecologies roundtable, …
Sophie Christman Lavin recently earned her Ph.D. in English Literature from SUNY Stony Brook University in New York. Her research areas include: nineteenth and twentieth-century environmental literary criticism, ecocinema studies, and political and cultural ecologies. Her dissertation, “The Sustainable Victorians?” analyzes novels, poems, and prose to argue that a type of proto-sustainability emerged in the locus of the Victorian Anthropocene. Recent teaching experience includes: Introduction to Fiction, Nature in the Nineteenth Century, Ecopoetics, and The Modern Victorian Environment. Sophie has volunteered as an editor at the Cambridge journal Victorian Literature and Culture. She is also an Open SUNY fellow in the Center for Excellence in Online Teaching. Sophie’s recent research presentations include the keynote at Friends of Dickens NY, a session at the University of California at Santa Barbara’s 2016 online carbon-free conference The World in 2050: Imagining and Creating Just Climate Futures and the twenty-second annual Dickens Society Symposium. In 2017, Sophie was awarded the Society for Cinema and Media Studies second place student essay award. During the 2018/19 academic year, she will continue to be in research residence at the Wertheim Study Room of the New York Public Library Her scholarship has been published in Adaptation, The Journal of Ecocriticism, and Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment. Sophie’s co-authored article “The Climate of Ecocinema,” appears in The Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Communication. Her most recent publication is the “Foreword” for the Routledge text The Ecophobia Hypothesis.
I received my MFA at Washington University in Saint Louis and my Ph.D. in English, with Creative-Writing dissertation, at University of Tennessee where I am a post-doctoral lecturer. I study poetics and the Victorian Novel with an emphasis on place, the environment, and labor. My articles have appeared in Dickens Studies Annual and George Eliot-George Henry Lewes Studies. My fiction and poetry explore the rural landscape and labor, subjects I see as underrepresented in contemporary writing. My current novel project, Present Blusters, explores the hidden past of the Hudson Valley through the story of a woman who, after getting Lyme disease, sees ghosts on the rundown estate where she lives. One chapter is forthcoming in Witness, while another has appeared in cream city review as the winner of the A. David Schwartz Fiction Prize.
…217;s The Girlhood of Shakespeare’s Heroines in a Series of Tales.” Texas Studies in Literature and Language (2015)
“Dickens’s Little Women; or, Cute as the Dickens.” Victorian Literature and Culture (2013)
“If the Shoe Fits . . . Trol…
Charles Dickens’s Networks: Public Transport and the Novel. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2012.
(Oxford, Amazon) Paperback, 2013.
The Art of Alibi: English Law Courts and the Novel. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins, 2002. (Hopkins, Amazon)
History, form, and sociology of the novel; narrative and temporality, nineteenth-century British literature