department of english

114 Swan Hall, 60 Upper College Road, Kingston, RI 02881

Main Office: 401.874.5931 - Graduate Office: 401.874.4663

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Naomi Mandel

  • Professor, Affiliated Professor of Film Media
  • Contemporary Literature and Culture; Popular and Digital culture; Holocaust Studies; American Studies; Critical Theory, Philosophy, and Rhetoric.
  • Phone: 401.874.4011, Office: 175B Swan Hall
  • Email:


Naomi Mandel specializes in contemporary literature and critical theory, with particular research interests in the aesthetics and ethics of violence. She has published on Slavery, the Holocaust, online activism, and the terror attacks of September 11, 2001. Her research is multidisciplinary, and includes published work on film, visual media, cyberculture, and graphic novels, as well as literature and philosophy.

Mandel’s first book, Against the Unspeakable: Complicity, the Holocaust, and Slavery in America, critically examines the view that vast and violent events are unspeakable: that they are beyond the limits of representation, comprehension, and thought. Her second book, Disappear Here: Violence After Generation X, is a bold, novel analysis of a profound cultural change that occurred in the 1980s and 1990s—a period in which developments in technology, media, and global politics revised long-standing cultural, philosophical, and ethical approaches to violence, to reality, and to the ever-elusive meaning of “real violence” in the media age.

Mandel’s commitment to interdisciplinary, collaborative, and international work is also evident in her edited collections. Novels of the Contemporary Extreme, co-edited with Alain-Philippe Durand, investigates the contemporary phenomenon of “extreme fiction” and explores its international dimension with essays on novels from North and South America, Europe, and the Middle East. Bret Easton Ellis: American Psycho, Glamorama, Lunar Park, brings together scholars of this cult figure from the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East. An early adopter of digital publishing platforms and open access scholarship, Mandel is a co-founder of the online Journal of Mundane Behavior, where she edited a special edition on Atrocity, Outrage and the Ordinary.


Contemporary literature and culture; popular and digital culture; Holocaust Studies; American Studies; critical theory, philosophy, and rhetoric.


  • Ph.D. University of California, Irvine (Critical Theory Emphasis)
  • M.A. University of California, Irvine
  • B.A., B.M., Tel Aviv University

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