Ramona Naddaff

Associate Professor, Head Graduate Advisor, Director, The Art of Writing, Doreen B. Townsend Center for the Humanities

Ramona Naddaff’s research and teaching interests include history of ancient rhetorical theory; philosophy and literature; history of philosophy; theory of the novel; and literary censorship.  In her book, Exiling the Poets: The Production of Censorship in Plato’s Republic, Naddaff offers an interpretation of the ancient quarrel between poetry and philosophy.  Underscoring not only the repressive but also the productive dimension of literature censorship, Naddaff brings to light Plato’s fundamental ambivalence about the value of poetic discourse in philosophical and political theory. She has written various essays on Plato, poetry, and art;  the writing and censorship of Flaubert’s Madame Bovary; philosophy of music; and literary censorship.  Naddaff is currently writing a book on Flaubert’s writing philosophy, practices, and collaborations entitled, Never Alone: Flaubert as Author, Editor, and Collaborator and has become increasingly interested in the history of writing and of the book. Never Alone traces the writing, publication, and censorship of Flaubert’s Madame Bovary. At the heart of this history is a story of influential collaborations; changing identities and unstable boundaries:  between author and editor, between author, editor and censor, between lawyer, censor and literary critic.

  A co-director and editor of Zone Books, Naddaff is responsible for publishing titles in philosophy, history, anthropology, political theory and history of science. She is co-editor of the three-volume Fragments for a History of the Human Body as well as  the series editor of the multi-volume anthology Postwar French Thought. Naddaff has founded and directed two programs at the Doreen B. Townsend Humanities Center: Course Threads (2008-2010) and Art of Writing (2015-present.) Naddaff has received numerous awards, including Berkeley Discovery  Departmental Innovation Award; the Phi Beta Kappa Northern California Association for Excellence in Teaching;  the Humanities Research Fellowship; the Mellon Research and Project Development Grants ; the Mellon Fellowship for Digital Humanites and  the ACLS Junior Faculty Fellowship.  During Spring 2021, was a Poetry and the Senses Fellow at the Art Research Center. Naddaff currently serves on the boards of Libraries without Borders and Inequality Media

Education: PhD (Philosophy), Boston University

Research interests: 

Ancient Greek Philosophy and Culture
Ancient Greek Rhetoric and Poetics
History of Philosophy
Theory of Literary Censorship
Theory of the Novel