Aarthi Vadde
Assistant Professor in the Department of English

Aarthi Vadde works in the field of 20th-21st century Anglophone literature with particular interests in the historical and technological forces conditioning migration and globalization.  She looks at how literary history interfaces with theories of internationalism, the history of computation, and media studies more generally. 

Her book Chimeras of Form: Modernist Internationalism beyond Europe, 1914-2016 was published by Columbia UP in 2016 and won the ACLA's 2018 Harry Levin Prize for best first book in the field of comparative literature.  It illustrates how modernist and contemporary writers from Rabindranath Tagore to Zadie Smith reimagine the nation and internationalism in a period defined by globalization. Drawing on close readings of individual texts and on literary, postcolonial, and cosmopolitical theory, Vadde explains how modernist challenges to traditional notions of aesthetic form enable newfound understandings of the cohesion and interrelation of political communities.  An interview related to the book is available here .

Vadde is at work on a second book tentatively entitled “The Amateur Spirit: Contemporary Literature in the Sharing Economy” which considers the effect of mass amateurization on literary production and publishing practices.  The concept of mass amateurization historicizes shifts in contemporary literary culture made possible by digital forms of writing, crowd-based informational platforms (from Twitter to Amazon Mechanical Turk), and structural changes to employment. 

In addition to her monographs, Vadde is co-editing two essay collections.  The first is on the history of literary criticism entitled The Critic as Amateur (under contract with Bloomsbury) and the second is the 20-21st century volume of Palgrave's Handbook on Literature and Science.

Vadde joined Duke in 2011 after completing a postdoctoral fellowship in the English Department at Harvard University.


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