Shannon Draucker

draucker My dissertation project, Sounding Bodies: Music and Physiology in Victorian Narrative, draws together the fields of literature, music, science, and gender and sexuality studies to explore literary responses to new nineteenth-century understandings of the physics and physiology of sound. As acoustical theorists such as Hermann von Helmholtz and John Tyndall discussed sound’s ability to penetrate the human ear, cause the heart rate to rise and the skin to sweat, activate the nerves and muscles, and precipitate bodily convulsions, music became more closely linked to sensual experience in the Victorian imagination. Focusing on the works of lesser-known novelists (Bertha Thomas, Sarah Grand, Vernon Lee) as well as more canonical authors (Charles Dickens, George Eliot, Thomas Hardy), I show how scenes of music listening and performance allowed Victorian authors to offer radical depictions of bodily experiences of pleasure, desire, and intimacy. You can view my CV here.

PhD in English and American Literature, Boston University, expected May 2019
MA in English and American Literature, Boston University, 2014
AB in English and Music, Dartmouth College, 2013

“‘Vibrating through all its breadth:’ Musical Fiction and Materialist Aesthetics in the Strand Musical Magazine.” Forthcoming in Victorian Periodicals Review (Spring 2018). Winner of the 2017 Rosemary VanArsdel Essay Prize.

-“Love Triangles in The Knight’s Tale and the Limitations of Queering: Same-Sex Desire and Female Oppression.” The Madison Journal of Literary Criticism, Vol. 3 (Spring 2013)

Courses Taught:
As Sole Instructor:
WS 305 C1: “Music, Gender, and Intersectional Social Change” (Topics in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, taught as Senior Teaching Fellow in WGS), Fall 2017
EN 121: “Subversive Voices: Protest and Resistance in Global Fiction” (Readings in World Literature), Spring 2017
WR 100: “La vie bohème: Art and Counterculture from the Latin Quarter to the Lower East Side” (Introduction to College Writing), Fall 2016

As Teaching Assistant:
EN 375: “Home and World” with Professor Julia Brown
EN.WS 326: “Arts of Gender: Performing Gender in Drama, Dance, Film, and Theory” with Professor Carrie Preston