Stefan H. Uhlig

Stefan Uhlig sitting

Position Title
Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature

Affiliated Faculty of the Graduate Program in German Studies and the Program in Critical Theory
Undergraduate Advisor for Comparative Literature

809 Sproul
Office Hours
Online by email appointment.

Education and degrees

  • Ph.D., University of Cambridge
  • B.A., University of Cambridge

Research interests

I work on the history of literary studies, rhetoric, poetics, historiography, aesthetics, and the history of education. I teach anglophone and European literary writing from the late seventeenth into the early nineteenth century. Before coming to UC Davis, I was a Fellow and Director of Studies at King's College in the University of Cambridge. The discussion linked at offers a snapshot of some of the questions that I am interested in.

Courses taught

  • COM 142 (Not) At Home in Romantic Poetry 
  • COM 195 The Bildungsroman
  • COM 141 Comparative Critical Theory
  • COM 164D The Enlightenment
  • COM 120 Writing Nature: 1750 to the Present
  • COM 7 Fantasy and the Supernatural
  • COM 210 Aristotle's Poetics and its Afterlives
  • COM 255 Graduate Colloquium in Comparative Literature
  • Freshman Seminar: What is the Point of an Interpretation?
  • Freshman Seminar: Democratic Education

Selected Publications

Edited volumes and journal issues

Goethe, Worlds, and Literatures, co-edited and introduced with Daniel Purdy and Chunjie Zhang, special issue of Seminar: A Journal of Germanic Studies, 54.2 (2018)

Wordsworth’s Poetic Theory: Knowledge, Language, Experience, co-edited and introduced with Alexander Regier (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010)

Aesthetics and the Work of Art: Adorno, Kafka, Richter, co-edited and introduced with Peter de Bolla (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009)


“Rhetoric and Aesthetics,” in The Cambridge History of Rhetoric: Volume 4, Seventeenth to Nineteenth Centuries (1650-1900), ed. Adam Potkay and Dietmar Till (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2023)

“The Poetics of Independence,” The Cambridge History of European Romantic Literature, ed. Patrick Vincent (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2020)

“Humboldt’s Populations,” in Latin American Literature in Transition, 1800-1870, ed. Ana Peluffo (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2020)

“Secondary Affect in Lessing, Mendelssohn, and Nicolai,” in Affect and Literature, ed. Alex Houen (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2020), 49-65

“Goethe’s Figurative Method,” in The Oxford Handbook of European Romanticism, ed. Paul Hamilton (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016), 315-39

“Ferguson’s School for Literature,” in The Poetic Enlightenment: Poetry and Human Science, 1650-1820, ed. Tom Jones and Rowan Boyson (London: Pickering & Chatto, 2013), 43-57

“The Long Goodbye to Rhetoric,” in REAL: Yearbook of Research in English and American Literature. Volume 28: Mobility in Literature and Culture, 1500-1900, ed. Ingo Berensmeyer, Christoph Ehland, and Herbert Grabes (Tübingen: Narr, 2012), 237-64

“Wordsworth and Poetic Objecthood,” in Wordsworth’s Poetic Theory, ed. Stefan H. Uhlig and Alexander Regier (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010), 36-42

“Wordsworth, Gray, and the Ordinary Life of Poetry,” in The Meaning of “Life” in Romantic Poetry and Poetics, ed. Ross Wilson (New York: Routledge, 2009), 33-56

“Changing Fields: The Directions of Goethe’s Weltliteratur,” in Debating World Literature, ed. Christopher Prendergast (London: Verso, 2004), 26-53


Review of Stefani Engelstein, Sibling Action: The Genealogical Structure of Modernity (New York: Columbia University Press, 2017), Goethe Yearbook, 26 (2019), 327-9

Review of César Domínguez, Haun Saussy, and Darío Villanueva, Introducing Comparative Literature: New Trends and Applications (New York: Routledge, 2015), Comparative Critical Studies, 15:1 (2018), 132-7

Review of B. Venkat Mani, Recoding World Literature: Libraries, Print Culture, and Germany's Pact with Books (New York: Fordham, 2017), The German Quarterly, 90:3 (2017), 404-6

Review discussion with Jon Klancher, Orrin Wang, and Ross Wilson, of Jon Klancher, Transfiguring the Arts and Sciences: Knowledge and Cultural Institutions in the Romantic Age (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013), posted at Romantic Circles (2015),

Review of Frederick Burwick and James C. McKusick, ed., Faustus: From the German of Goethe. Translated by Samuel Taylor Coleridge (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2007), The Review of English Studies, 61:251 (2010), 645-8

Review of David Marshall, The Frame of Art: Fictions of Aesthetic Experience, 1750-1815 (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2005), Modern Philology, 105:2 (2007), 381-5