Sabbatical Update: Dan Gunn

English Professor Dan Gunn has taught at UMF since 1980, offering courses, in the history and theory of the English novel, including Shakespeare and Samuel Richardson. He has written on Jane Austen, George Eliot, Samuel Richardson, James Joyce, and Talking Heads, among other subjects. During his time at UMF, he has served as Faculty Senate Chair, Chair of the Humanities Division, Acting Dean of Arts and Sciences, and Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. He has published critical essays on Jane Austen, George Eliot, James Joyce, Samuel Richardson, and other novelists in distinguished academic journals, including Narrative, Nineteenth-Century Literature, James Joyce Quarterly, and Eighteenth-Century Fiction. He has also published occasional essays in the Georgia Review, the Iowa Review, the Ohio Review and other magazines. He won a fellowship to the National Humanities Center in 1988, a UMF Trustee Professorship in 2003, and the Theo Kalikow Award in 2014.

Dan is currently on a year-long sabbatical that began Fall 2014. Recently, he has been in Farmington, where he has been working in the library, participating in the Emerson reading group, and singing in the community chorus. In the spring, he will hold an appointment as Visiting Professor of English at the Université du Maine in Le Mans in March, and he and his wife will be living together in France and Italy for three months.

This last fall he worked on an essay about narration and free indirect discourse in Henry James’s The Ambassadors, and he hopes, this spring, to turn to a second essay, on the figure of the absent mother in Elizabeth Gaskell’s Mary Barton. He has also preparing three lectures he will be giving in France: one on history, representation and self-representation in Richard II and TransAtlantic, which will be a plenary address at the “Historical Auto/Biographies in the Arts” conference in Le Mans; a second on children in Jane Austen, featured in the Université du Maine 3LAM research group’s “EN/JEU” series, on childhood and adolescence; and a third on the police shooting in Ferguson, Missouri, and its aftermath.

Although he is enjoying the time he has to work on the aforementioned projects, he is also enjoying the time he has for pleasure reading, including Trollope’s Barsetshire novels; Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah; Thomas Pikety’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century; Bill Roorbach’s The Remedy for Love; Janet Browne’s biography of Charles Darwin; George Saunders’ The Tenth of December; Karl Ove Knausgaard’s My Struggle; and other books.

He will return to UMF full-time teaching Fall 2015.