Gourgouris, Stathis 1958-

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GOURGOURIS, Stathis 1958-

PERSONAL: Born December 18, 1958, in Los Angeles, CA; married Neni Panourgia; children: Petros Konstantinos. Education: University of California, Los Angeles, B.A., 1981, M.A., 1984, Ph.D., 1990. Politics: Left. Hobbies and other interests: Music.

ADDRESSES: Home—511 West 118th St., Apt. 51, New York, NY 10025. OfficeColumbia University Center for Comparative Literature and Society, B 1-2 Heyman Center, New York, NY 10027. E-mail[email protected].

CAREER: Princeton University, Department of Comparative Literature, assistant professor, 1992—.


poetry collections; in greek

Ptoseis [Falls], Plethron (Athens, Greece), 1988.

Autochthonies [Indenticide], Planodion (Athens, Greece), 1993.

Also author of an introduction to physics, published by To Melani (Athens, Greece), 2005.


Dream Nation: Enlightenment, Colonization, and the Institution of Modern Greece, Stanford University Press (Stanford, CA), 1996.

(Translator) Yiannis Patilis, Camel of Darkness (Selected Poems 1970-1990), Volume 36 [Princeton, NJ], 1997.

Does Literature Think?: Literature as Theory for an Antimythical Era, Stanford University Press (Stanford, CA), 2003.

Contributor of articles to books, including Modernism in Greece? Essays on the Critical and Literary Margins of a Movement, edited by Mary N. Layoun, Pella (New York, NY), 1990; Violence, Identity and Self-Determination, edited by Samuel Weber and Hent de Vries, Stanford University Press, 1997; Balkan as Metaphor: Between Globalization and Fragmentation, MIT Press (Cambridge, MA), 2002; Walter Benjamin and the Arcades Project, Continuum (New York, NY), 2005; Diaspora Entrepreneurial Networks: Four Centuries of History, Berg, 2005; Nation, Language, and the Ethics of Translation, Princeton University Press (Princeton, NJ), 2005; and Dreams of a Nation: Essays on Palestinian Film, Verso, 2005. Contributor to journals, including Cardozo Law, South Atlantic Quarterly, Thesis Eleven, New Literary History, Emergences, Boundary 2, Gramma, Performing Arts Journal, Qui Parle, Diaspora, Strategies, Journal of Modern Greek Studies, Journal of the Hellenic Diaspora, Toplum ve Bilim, Modern Poetry in Translation, Agenda, Harvard Review, Jacaranda Review, Compages, New York Times, LA Weekly, Planodion, Poiisi, Nea Estia, O Politis, Eleutherotypia, To Vima, I Epochi, I Lexi, Mondo Greco, and Skhedia.

SIDELIGHTS: Stathis Gourgouris is, as he explained to CA, both a poet and a philosophical/theoretical thinker. "Though I recognize these to be distinct domains of writing, I nonetheless see my work in these domains to be a single project. My interest is 1) to raise questions about why humanity seems historically driven to repress its creative capacities and attribute its fate to various transcendental authorities (God, the State, Masters of all kinds, Ideals of all kinds); and 2) to capture in writing the fleeting and always finite pleasures of real existence, bodily existence, in this world and no other." Gourgouris's specific areas of interest and specialization include literary theory and philosophy, eighteenth-through twentieth-century European literature, enlightenment and national culture, the poetics of modernism, and Hellenic studies.

In his 1996 work, Dream Nation: Enlightenment, Colonization, and the Institution of Modern Greece, Gourgouris refers to a variety of texts and Greek histories in raising questions regarding Greece's past and future. Reviewing Dream Nation in the Times Literary Supplement, critic Peter Bien noted that Gourgouris's work joins a trend of studies on "invented nationality" by intellectuals in the 1980s and 1990s. Bien observed that Dream Nation is directed to a specialized audience, and commented that readers may "struggle with a narrative that traverses the same ground over and over" and employs some challenging academic jargon. But the reviewer felt that aspects of the book would be useful to a general audience as well, "especially [Gourgouris's] questioning of the way in which the Greek Enlightenment created the first phase of national identity."



Times Literary Supplement, May 29, 1998, p. 34.