Jason Bartulis



Research Interests: 

American Literature; Contemporary Anglophone Literature; African American Intellectual History; Transnational Modernism; History and Theory of Literary Criticism; Philosophy of Art; Mind; Religion; History and Theory of Photography; Music

Dissertation Title: 

"A Secular Form of Life: Religion, Literature, and Criticism, 1933-2011"


  • “The (Super)Naturalistic Turn in Contemporary Theory,” Nonsite, no. 8 (2013), http://nonsite.org/issue-8-the-music-issue.
  • “From Theological Theater to Theological Therapy: Flannery O’Connor’s Modernist Graces,” (Currently Under Review).
  • Review Article: “Encountering Religion: Responsibility and Criticism after Secularism,” by Tyler Roberts. The Journal of Religion, Vol. 95, no. 2, (April 2015), pp. 274-276.


My dissertation,  "A Secular Form of Life: Religion, Literature, and Criticism, 1933–2011," sets out to characterize a neglected tradition of secular literature and criticism at a time when the availability--indeed, the very intelligibility, to say nothing of the desirability--of a secular form of life has become an object of intense scholarly analysis and suspicion. I am also laying the groundwork for a second project, tentatively entitled, "Open Fields: Ethics, Aesthetics, and the Very Idea of a Natural History," which is being generously supported by the Mellon Foundation and administered through the "Humanities Without Walls: Global Midwest." Here, I join a team of social scientists and museum professionals, extending my literary and philosophical research into institutional contexts--specifically, fine art and natural history museums--where questions concerning representative material, materiality, and mediation are especially urgent to questions concerning aesthetics, ethics, and "lived" religion.

Teaching Experience: 

I am currently employed as a Lecturer at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
My stand-alone courses at the University of Chicago include: "The Church on the Brain, the State on the Body," and "Skeptical, Natural, Supernatural: an Introduction to Literary Theory."