Thomas J. Ferraro
Professor of English

Professor Ferraro is an aficionado of the great American stuff--Emily Dickinson, Edward Hopper, the Marx Brothers, and Nina Simone--who writes on literature, film, and the performing arts. He is the author of Feeling Italian: The Art of Ethnicity in America  (NYU, 2005; winner of a 2006 American Book Award), Ethnic Passages: Literary Immigrants in 20th-Century America (U Chicago, 1993), the editor of Catholic Lives, Contemporary America (Duke, 1997), and a contributor to The Columbia History of the American Novel , Scribner's Encyclopedia of American Cultural and Intellectual History , and The Oxford Encyclopedia of American Literature .  Contrary by temperament, at least as a scholar-critic, he is currently at work on a Marian Catholic pedagogy of the great American novel: a revisionist account of the interplay among violative self-making, transgressive sexuality and redemptive sacrifice, in an effort to recapture both the aesthetic wonder and social danger of the canonical warhorses (from Hawthorne's A Scarlet Letter  and Melville's Billy Budd to Chopin, Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Faulkner, and Hurston) .  Of course his arguments don't always turn out as projected--witness the recent accounting of Willa Cather's The Professor's House, in which the resurgent discourse of sin gives Ferraro, like the title character, his comeuppance.
 

Office Hours

Fall 2018 Office Hours

W, 3:15-4:30; Th, 3:15-4:30; and by apt.

323 Allen Building

Duke University

Durham NC 27708-0015

Current Appointments & Affiliations

Contact Information

  • 323 Allen Bldg, Durham, NC 27708
  • Box 90015, Durham, NC 27708-0015

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