Departmental Directory

Rajani Sudan

Associate Professor

Ph.D., Cornell University


Rajani Sudan is a specialist in early modern British literature. Trained as a romanticist, her initial interest in the origins of Romantic literature has drawn her back in time, from the nineteenth to the eighteenth century and earlier, and turned her attention outward from Britain to the global encounters of the first British Empire. Her first book, Fair Exotics: Xenophobic Subjects in English Literature (UPenn, 2002) traces the simultaneous fascination with and fear of foreign people, a twin sensibility that underpinned Romantic subjectivity. She teaches courses on cultural representations of imperial identity in eighteenth-century Britain, but is also interested in science studies, cyberculture, and popular Hollywood film. Sudan is on leave in the Fall of 2006 completing research for her next book, Mud, Mortar, and Other Technologies of Empire, a study that focuses on the non-European origins of that quintessential European era, the Enlightenment.



Courses taught

  • Technologies of Empire
  • Sex and the City in the Eighteenth Century
  • Literature and Film: Apocalypse and Empire
  • Revisiting the Gothic Novel

Publications (selected)

  • Fair Exotics: Xenophobic Subjects in English Literature 1720-1850 (Philadephia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2002)
  • “Mud, Mortar, and Other Technologies of Empire.” The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation 45:2 Summer 2004 (released Fall 2005): 147-169
  • “Girl Erupted” in Re-Load: Rethinking Women and Cyberculture, Mary Flanagan and Austin Booth, eds. (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2002): 355-373
  • “Sexy SIMS, Racy SIMMS” in Race in Cyberspace, Beth E. Kolko, Lisa Nakamura, and Gilbert B. Rodman, eds. (New York: Routledge, 2000): 69-86.