Assistant Professor, Transnational Studies Department
Ph.D., Columbia University (English and Comparative Literature)
GGS 101 Introduction to Women’s and Gender Studies
GGS 265 Sexuality and Orientation
GGS 228 Introduction to Feminist Theory
GGS 661 Gender in the Humanities: Modes of Interpretation
English Literature, Drama, Queer Theory, Affect and erotic desire, Race and early colonialism, History of sexuality; Psychoanalysis; Historicism and
Dr. Varnado teaches courses in sexuality and gender theory, literature and the humanities, and qualitative methodologies. She received her Ph.D. from Columbia’s department of English and Comparative Literature, combining a specialization in the drama and prose of the English Renaissance with focuses on queer theory and the histories of sexuality and gender. She is at work on a book project, The Shapes of Fancy: Queer Circulations of Desire in Early Modern Literature, which expands the category of what can be called queer desire beyond historical evidence of same-sex sexual practices, to modes of feeling and desiring (such as longing for impossible transformation, or being used) that have often been overlooked in the period, thereby exploring the queer potential of readerly identification and recognition for studying desire in other historical moments. An essay on what offstage and un-staged sex looks like, “Invisible Sex!” will appear in the upcoming collection Sex Before Sex: Figuring the Act in Early Modern Literature. She has been active in the Shakespeare Association of America, the Modern Languages Association, and the American Comparative Literature Association. Varnado’s other teaching and research interests include witchcraft and witch persecutions, performance theory, bodily sex and reproduction, ethnography and ritual in the trans-Atlantic sphere, death and memorialization, literary theory, and cultural studies.