South Asia Institute
South Asia Institute

Hannah C Wojciehowski

ProfessorPh.D., 1984, Yale University

Hannah C Wojciehowski



globalization and transculturation in pre-modernity; medieval and Renaissance travel literature; neurocriticism


I am an early modernist and literary theorist who specializes in the history of subjectivity.  I completed my Ph.D. at Yale University in the interdisciplinary field of Renaissance Studies (1984).  I am currently Professor of English at the University of Texas and an Affiliate of the Program in Comparative Literature.

Akbar's debates

My research interests are multiple.  My 2011 book Group Identity in the Renaissance World explores the history of what I call ‘group subjectivity.”  Drawing on the psychoanalytic theories of Freud and Anzieu, and the social network theory of Georg Simmel, this book analyzes the unconscious dynamics of group identity formation in a global context, offering a new paradigm for the study of pre-modernity.  This study of collective fantasies as the organizing ‘containers’ of groups has applications for other historical periods, as well.

I am also studying Cārvāka materialism in early modern India.  My article “East-West Swerves:  Cārvāka Materialism and Akbar’s Debates at Fatehpur Sikri” will appear in a special issue of Genre: Forms of Discourse and Culture in 2015.  


Image credit: illustration to the Akbarnama, miniature painting by Nar Singh, ca. 1605 (public domain; wikicommons).   The Mughal Emperor Akbar (r. 1556-1605) holds a religious assembly in the Ibadat Khana (House of Worship) in Fatehpur Sikri.



Affiliated Research/Academic Unit:

Center for European Studies

Center for Women's and Gender Studies 

South Asia Institute




Edition of Shakespeare's Cymbeline. The New Kittredge Shakespeare. Series Editor James H. Lake.  Newburyport, MA: Focus Publishing, 2014.

How Stories Make Us Feel: Toward an Embodied Narratology

Journal Issue:  California Italian Studies, 2(1)

Author: Wojciehowski, Hannah, University of Texas, Austin

Gallese, Vittorio, University of Parma, Italy

Publication Date: 2011

Publication Info:

California Italian Studies, Italian Studies Multicampus Research Group, UC Office of the President


"The Mirror Neuron Mechanism and Literary Studies: An Interview with Vittorio Gallese," California Italian Studies 2, No. 1 (2010).




Mirror Neurons, Mirror Neuron Mechanism, neurocriticism, Vittorio Gallese, neuroscience 


Group Identity in the Renaissance World.  Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011.

“Assessing Empathy: A Slumdog Questionnaire,” Image [&] Narrative 11, No. 2 (2010): 123-145.

“Triangulation in Humanist Friendship:  More, Erasmus, Giles, and the Making of Utopia, Discourses and Representations of Friendship in Early Modern Europe, 1500-1700, ed. Daniel T. Lochman, Maritere Lopez, and Lorna Hutson.  Aldershot, Hants, England: Ashgate, 2011. 45-63.

O Dente do Bugio: Relics, Religion and Rivalry in 16th-Century Ceylon and Goa.”

Santa Barbara Portuguese Studies IX (2007): 234-253.

“The Queen of Onor and Her Emissaries:  Fernão Mendes Pinto’s Dialogue with India,” Emissaries in Early Modern Literature and Culture—Mediation, Tranmission, Traffic:  1550-1700, ed. Brinda S. Charry and Gitanjali Shahani.  Aldershot, Hants, England: Ashgate, 2009.  167-191.

“Literary Theory,” Encyclopedia of British Literature, ed. David Scott Kastan.  5 vols.  Vol. 3.  New York: Oxford University Press, 2006.  301-313.

 “Sex, Death, and Poetry in Cinquecento Venice: Veronica Franco vs. Maffio Venier.”  Italica 83, Nos. 3 and 4 (2006): 367-390. 

 “Francis Petrarch: First Modern Friend,” Texas Studies in Language and

Literature 47, No. 4 (Winter 2005): 269-298.

“St. Augustine.”  The Johns Hopkins Guide to Literary Criticism and Theory.  Eds. Michael Groden and Martin Kreiswirth.  2nd ed.  Baltimore:  The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994, 2005.  57-58. 

Birth Passages: Maternity and Nostalgia, Antiquity to Shakespeare.  By Theresa M. Krier.  Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2001.  Xvii+266 pp.  Modern Philology 102, No. 3 (Feb. 2005):  410-413.

“Religion, Rivalry, and Relics in 16th-Century Goa: The Destruction and Return of the Dalada.”  Manushi.  New Delhi, India. June, 2004.

Wojciehowski.H.C. (2001) Print, Manuscript, Performance: The Changing Relations of the Media in Early Modern England. Libraries and Culture Libraries and Culture

Old Masters, New Subjects: Early Modern and Poststructuralist Theories of Will (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1995).

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