Brett Brehm

Brett Brehm is visiting assistant professor of French.  He received his B.A. in English from Amherst College, his M.A. in art history from the Courtauld Institute of Art/University of London, and his Ph.D. in comparative literature from Northwestern University.  His research and teaching interests focus primarily on auditory and visual culture studies, nineteenth-century French and American literature, critical theory, media studies, and urban studies.  His current book project, Kaleidophonic Modernity: Sound, City, Technology, examines the prehistory of phonographic technologies in nineteenth-century literature.  Through comparative analyses of literary works and scientific advances in the nineteenth century, he probes literary representations of the built environment for its acoustical vestiges.  In these textual records, he finds new means of critiquing the origins of our present-day obsessions with and anxieties about technological devices. Brett has recently presented papers on French theoretical perspectives on Herman Melville's "Bartleby the Scrivener" and nineteenth-century New York City (American Comparative Literature Association annual conference); French poet and inventor Charles Cros and concepts of acoustic surveillance (Nineteenth Century French Studies Association conference); and Eugène Atget's photographs of Paris (Courtauld Institute of Art, London, "Art History and Sound").