Christine Fouirnaies

Christine Fouirnaies
Ph.D., University of Oxford, 2019
Teaching at UChicago since 2018
Research Interests: Literature and the Arts | Visual Culture and Iconography | History of the Book | Literary History | History of Literary Criticism | Modernism | Auto/Biography | Prose Fiction | Nonfiction Prose


My research centers on the literary representation of lived experience. Focusing on experimental literature from the early twentieth century to the present moment, I seek to illuminate issues of representation by engaging with mostly non-fictional writing, visual media, and material culture. I conjoin my investigations with an interest in literary scholarship’s connection to various theoretical and historical approaches, to archival work, (post)criticism, and personal investments.

Double Exposure: Photography and the Illustrated Life, my current book project, takes up the discordant relationship between text and image in the rendering of a life by examining the well-established but ordinarily overlooked practice of illustrating auto/biographical works with photographs. The book considers photographic plates in modernist auto/biographies, glossy spreads in mid-century photo books, and embedded photographs in contemporary life-writing. Proposing new ways of thinking ownership, privacy, and voice in relation to portraiture, Double Exposure unearths the hidden stories that these photographs contain but cannot on their own recount.


  • “‘We Go’: Gertrude Stein’s Automobilism and WWI Writing.” Forthcoming in Modernism/modernity.
  • “Nabokov’s Madeleine: Photographic Evocations in Speak, Memory.” Forthcoming in Nabokov Studies.
  • “Was Virginia Woolf a Snob? The Case of Aristocratic Portraits in Orlando,” Woolf Studies Annual, 22 (2016): 21-40.


ENGL 24526 Forms of Autobiography in the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries: This course examines the innovative, creative forms autobiography has taken in the last one hundred years in literature. From unpublished sketches to magazine essays and full-length books, we will see autobiography take many forms and engage with multiple genres and media.

ENGL 24528 Seeing Ourselves: Photography and Literary Non-Fiction: This course explores literary non-fiction that engages theoretically and/or creatively with photography. Key topics include the dynamics of self-expression, the ethics of representing others, and the politics involved in image-text representations of race, gender, and nationality.

Subject areas: Media Studies, Gender and Sexuality Studies, Critical Theory and Objects of Study, Black Studies, American Literature, British Literature, 20th Century American Literature, 20/21st Century British Literature