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Faculty Fellow

W. J. T. Mitchell

Gaylord Donnelley Distinguished Service Professor, Departments of English, Art History, and Visual Arts University of Chicago


W. J. T. Mitchell teaches in both the English and the Art History departments and edits the interdisciplinary journal, Critical Inquiry, a quarterly devoted to critical theory in the arts and human sciences. He works particularly on the history and theories of media, visual art, and literature, from the eighteenth century to the present. Mitchell's work explores the relations of visual and verbal representations in the culture and iconology (the study of images across the media). In addition to publications resulting from his own research, under his editorship Critical Inquiry has published special issues on public art, psychoanalysis, pluralism, feminism, the sociology of literature, canons, race and identity, narrative, the politics of interpretation, postcolonial theory, and many other topics. As a teacher Mitchell encourages students from a variety of disciplinary locations to think about such topics as: "Space, Place, and Landscape," "Fetishism, Totemism, Idolatry," "The Eye and the Gaze," "Violence and Representation," and "The Arts of Memory." A few years ago he developed what has proven an especially successful course in "Theories of Media." In 2003, Mitchell received the University of Chicago's Faculty Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching.

For more details on his research and publications, please visit his profile page at the University of Chicago.


Art and Public Life

Project Team:

2014 – 2017