Masha Raskolnikov is Associate Professor of English at Cornell, and field member in Feminist, Gender and Sexuality Studies as well as Medieval Studies and Comparative Literature. She is interested in a wide variety of topics in medieval literary culture and contemporary theory: Middle English, Old French and Latin literatures, theories of representation, allegory, medieval philosophy and rhetoric, contemporary critical theory, methods for historicizing sexuality, and the intersections and conflicts within feminist and queer studies. She has taught graduate courses, most recently, on the work of Judith Butler; on the medieval poem Piers Plowman; on the intersections of medieval and contemporary critical theory; on transgender/transsexual memoir; and on how medieval “dream vision” poetry imagines the medieval unconscious.
Her first book, Body Against Soul: Gender and Sowlehele in Middle English Allegory came out in the series Interventions: New Studies in Medieval Culture (Ohio State University Press, 2009). It examines the literalization of philosophical dualism that takes place when medieval authors produce personification allegories pitting figures like "Body" and "Soul" against one another in debate, arguing that such debates function as a mode of thinking about psychology, gender and power in the Middle Ages. Other publications include “Transgendering Pride” in the inaugural issue of postmedieval: a journal of medieval cultural studies; “Promising the Female, Delivering the Male: Transformations of Gender in Piers Plowman” in the Yearbook of Langland Studies; "Between Men, Mourning: Time, Love and the Gift in the Roman de la Rose" in GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies and "Confessional Literature, Vernacular Psychology, and the History of the Self in Middle English," in Literature Compass, as well as "Pninian Performatives" in a collection called Nabokov at the Limits: Redrawing Critical Boundaries.
Masha’s current project is concerned with the rhetoric of apology. She received her Phd from the Department of Rhetoric at UC Berkeley in 2002.
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