Comparative and World Literature The College of Humanities

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Shirin A. Khanmohamadi

Associate Professor
Comparative and World Literature
San Francisco State University
https://sfsu.academia.edu/ShirinKhanmohamadi

Biography

Shirin A. Khanmohamadi (B.A., Brown, Ph.D. Columbia) is an Associate Professor in the Comparative and World Literature department at San Francisco State University, where she specializes in comparative medieval European literature, premodern travel and ethnographic writing, literary and cultural contact between the medieval European and Islamic worlds, and medievalism in contemporary theory and literature. Her articles have appeared in New Medieval Literatures, Exemplaria, and Arthuriana. Her study of premodern ethnographic form, In Light of Another´s Word: European Ethnography in the Middle Ages, was recently published in The University of Pennsylvania Press' Middle Ages Series (2014). Link to review in TMR here.

She is now at work on a book tentatively titled 'Translating Saracens' on the place of 'Saracens' (medieval Muslims) in expressions of 'translatio imperii', or the translation of empire, political authority or cultural prestige to Europe, in a number of late medieval genres. She has been invited to present her research at the UW-Madison, University of Pittsburgh, Northwestern , UCLA, UC-Berkeley, UC-Davis, and Princeton.

Teaching and Research Interests

Comparative Medieval Literary Study; Pre- and Early Modern Travel and Ethnography; The Medieval Mediterranean; Medieval Europe and the Islamic world; Medieval Translatio/n and Adaptation; contemporary medievalisms

Teaching at SFSU

    CWL 230, World Literature

    CWL 400, Approaches to Comparative and World Literature

    CWL 420, Travel and the Literary Imagination

    CWL 423, Comparative European Medieval Literature: Translatio/n and Adaptation

    CWL 424, Multicultural Middle Ages [offered since 2008]

    CWL 450, Literary Crossings

    ENG 501, Age of Chaucer

    ENG 690, Senior Seminar: Chaucer

    CWL 800, Intro to Graduate Study in Comparative Literature (Theory)

    CWL 815, Topics in Critical Theory: Anthropology and Lit Criticism

    CWL 815, Topics in Critical Theory: Theory and the Premodern Text

    CWL 820, Medieval & Early Modern Encounters

    CWL 825, Advanced Study in Comparative Literature

    CWL 896, Directed Reading: Orals

    CWL 898, Masters Thesis

Publications

    In Light of Another´s Word: European Ethnography in the Middle Ages, Philadelphia, PA: The University of Pennsylvania Press (The Middle Ages Series), 2014. Reviewed in TMR.

    "Durendal, translated: Islamic object genealogies in the chansons de geste," postmedieval: a journal of medieval cultural criticism 8.3 (2017): 321-333.

    "Worldly Unease in Late Medieval Travel Reports," in Cosmopolitanism and the Middle Ages, eds. John Ganim and Shayne Legassie, New York: Palgrave New Middle Ages Series, 2013, pp. 105-120.

    “Salvage Anthropology and Displaced Mourning in the Lais of Marie de France,” Arthuriana 21.3 (Fall, 2011): 49-69.

    "Casting a 'Sideways Glance' at the Crusades: the Voice of the Other in Joinville´s Vie de Saint Louis," Exemplaria: a Journal of Theory in Medieval and Renaissance Studies 22.3 (2010): 177-99.

    "The Look of Medieval Ethnography: William of Rubruck´s Mission to Mongolia," New Medieval Literatures 10 (2008): 87-114.

Book Reviews

    Review of Teaching Medieval and Early Modern Cultural Encounters, eds. Karina F. Attar and Lynn Shutters (New York: Palgrave, The New Middle Ages, 2014), Romanic Review, forthcoming 2016.

    Review of Kim M. Phillips, Before Orientalism: Asian Peoples and Cultures in European Travel Writing 1245-1510 (University of Pennsylvania, 2014) in Philological Quarterly, Philological Quarterly 92.4 (Fall, 2013).

    Review of Thomas F. Madden, The New Concise History of the Crusades: Updated Student Edition (Rowman& Littlefield, 2005) in The Medieval Review 07.10.31, October, 2007.

Selected Honors

    San Francisco State University Research Leave, Spring 2018

    San Francisco State University Sabbatical Award, Research Leave, Spring 2014

    In Light of Another's Word selected for subvention by Mellow Modern Language Initiative (for first, comparative books), 2012.

    San Francisco State University Presidential Award, Research Leave, 2007-2008

    San Francisco State University Vice-President´s Award, Spring 2007

    San Francisco State University Affirmative Action Award, Spring 2006

    Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship, awarded by The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, 2003-2004

    A. W. Mellon Research Fellowship for study of Arabic in Fez, Morocco, Summer, 1999

    Miron Cristo-Loveanu Essay Prize for best M.A. Thesis in English & Comparative Literature, Columbia University, 1998.

Invited University Lectures and Presentations

    Invited Lecture, “Inclusion and Exclusion in the Middle Ages” Lecture Series, Princeton University Program in Medieval Studies, April, 2018.

    Keynote Speaker, “The Middle Ages in the Wider World” UC-Davis Conference and Workshop, University of California Multi-Campus Research Project, Davis, CA, April, 2018.

    Invited Faculty Respondent, 43rd Annual Sewanee Medieval Colloquium: "Borders and Margins", The University of the South, Sewanee, TN, March 10-11, 2017.

    Guest Lecturer, Prof. Zrinka Stahuljak seminar in Travel and Translation, Comparative Literature department, UCLA, Winter Quarter 2017.

    Invited Presentation, Medieval and Early Modern Colloquium, UC-Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, Fall 2016.

    Invited Lecture, Northwestern University Medieval Colloquium, Chicago, IL, 2016.

    Invited Lecture, "Medieval Europe and its Others," University of California-Berkeley Office of Resources for International and Area Studies (ORIAS), Berkeley, CA, July 21, 2015.

    Invited Lecture, University of Madison-Wisconsin Center for the Humanities’ Mellon Workshop Series, “Imagines Mundi: the Global Middle Ages,” Madison, Wisconsin, 2015.

    Invited Lecture, University of Pittsburgh Faculty Research Group on “Medieval and Renaissance Globalisms,” Pittsburgh, PA, 2015.

    Recent Conferences

      “Translating Saracens: Genealogies of Islam in Medieval European Epic,” Medieval Association of the Pacific, 50th Anniversary Conference, UC-Davis, Davis, CA, March 31-April 2, 2016.

      “Figuring Arab Imperium in the Chansons de Geste,” Session: Crusade and Literary Genre, 50th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, MI, May 14-17, 2015.

      “Time and the Saracen,” Session: Temporal Estrangements, 3rd Biennial Meeting of the BABEL Working Group, UC Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA, October 16-18, 2014.

      “Overt and Covert Classics: Alternative Translatio’s in Medieval European Vernacular Literature,” Seminar: On the Classics: debating a concept across the Premodern Mediterranean World, American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA), New York University, New York, NY, March 20-23, 2014.

      Chair, “Assimilation and Exchange” Roundtable, ‘Minorities in the Mediterranean, a Symposium and Workshop,’ The Mediterranean Seminar / UC Multi-Campus Research Project, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA, March 7-8, 2014.

      “Hyper-Framing the Decameron,” Boccaccio in Washington, DC: The Second Triennial Conference of the American Boccaccio Association (ABA), Washington, DC, October 4-6, 2013.

      “Medievalisms of the Postmodern: Contemporary Fiction and the Crusades,” Receptions: Reading the Past Across Time and Space, University of California, Davis, Davis, CA, September 27-29, 2013.

      “Authors before Authority: tracing the differences of premodern European textual practices,” Seminar: The Prehistory of the Postcolonial: Language and Literature before Global Modernity, American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA), Toronto, Canada, April 4-7, 2013.

      Last Update: 7-16-2008

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