Elizabeth A. Wilson is a Samuel Candler Dobbs Professor in the Department of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. She has held appointments at the University of New South Wales, the Australian National University and the University of Sydney prior to coming to Emory. She has held fellowships at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton (2003-2004), the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard (2011-2012), and the Council of Humanities, Princeton University (Fall 2019). In 2016-2017 she was the PI for an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminar (“New Scholarship on the Affects”). Her work has explored how biological data, psychoanalysis, and affect theory can be used to foster conceptual innovation in feminist theory. Her most recent book (A Silvan Tomkins Handbook: Foundations for Affect Theory) is co-authored with Professor Adam Frank (University of British Columbia). This Handbook provides readers with a clear outline of Tomkins’s affect theory and with definitions of the key terms and conceptual innovations in the theory, enabling his work to be used in a wide variety of interdisciplinary contexts. The Digital Publishing in the Humanities Initiative at Emory has made A Silvan Tomkins Handbook available Open Access. Professor Wilson is currently undertaking archival research on Valerie Solanas and the politics of anger and pathology in feminist theory. Professor Wilson is currently a member of the Digital Monograph Writers Workshop at Emory’s Bill and Carol Fox Center for Humanistic Inquiry (FCHI), a workshop supported by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and in 2023-2024 she is a Senior Fellow at the FCHI.


PhD 1994 Department of Psychology, University of Sydney, Australia

B.Sc (Hons) 1986 Department of Psychology, University of Otago, New Zealand

Other Publications


2020 A Silvan Tomkins Handbook: Foundations for Affect Theory. University of Minnesota Press.

2015 Gut Feminism. Durham: Duke University Press.

2010 Affect and Artificial Intelligence. Seattle: University of Washington Press.

2004 Psychosomatic: Feminism and the Neurological Body. Durham: Duke University Press.

1998 Neural Geographies: Feminism and the Microstructure of Cognition. New York: Routledge.



2013 A report on the academic job market in Gender, Women’s, Sexuality, Feminist and Queer Studies 2006-2018 [co-authored with Jigna Desai]. Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, 48(3), 709-740 (data deposited at Emory DataVerse)

2023 Tomkins in tension [with Adam Frank]. In Affect Theory Reader 2: Worldings, Tenions, Futures (pp. 103-121). Durham: Duke University Press.

2020 Affect, Genealogy, History (Review Symposium on Ruth Ley’s The Ascent of Affect: Genealogy and Critique). History of the Human Sciences 33(2): 143-150.

2018 I’m not sure: Response to Rosalind Smith. Australian Humanities Review, Issue 63, November http://australianhumanitiesreview.org/2018/12/02/im-not-sure-response-to-rosalind-smith

2018 Acts against nature. Angelaki: Journal of the Theoretical Humanities, 23(1), 19-31

2015 Introduction: Antinormativity’s queer conventions [co-authored with Robyn Wiegman] differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies, 26(1), 1–25.

2012 Like-minded [co-authored with Adam Frank] Critical Inquiry, 38(4): 870-877

2011 Another neurological scene. History of the Present, 1(2), 149–169.

2011 Feminist conversations with Vicki Kirby and Elizabeth A. Wilson. Feminist Theory, 12(2), 227–234.

2010 Underbelly. differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies, 21(1), 194–208.

2009 ‘Would I had him with me always’: Affects of longing in early artificial intelligence. Isis, 100, 839–847.

2008 Affect, artificial intelligence, and internal space. Emotion, Space and Society, 1, 22–27.

2005 “Can you think what I feel? Can you feel what I think?”: Notes on affect, embodiment, and intersubjectivity in AI. Scan: Journal of Media Arts Culture, 2(2).

2004 Gut feminism. differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies, 15(3), 66–94.



Book Forum–Elizabeth A. Wilson’s Gut Feminism

Blog Posts


    2016-2017  Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminar: New Scholarship on the Affects. Principle Investigator. Working Group: Professor Carla Freeman (Emory WGSS; Senior Associate Dean), Professor Lynne Huffer (Emory WGSS), Professor Michael Moon (Emory WGSS).

    Elizabeth A Wilson

    Profile picture of Elizabeth A Wilson


    Active 4 months ago