Ph.D., Princeton Univ.
M.A., Univ. of Pittsburgh
B.A., Bucknell Univ.
Karen Humphreys has taught courses in French literature, language and cinema at Trinity College since 1998. Her research focuses on nineteenth-century French literature and culture and extends into the early twentieth century, particularly in the areas of surrealist poetry and collage. She has published articles on dandyism, Barbey d’Aurevilly, the reception of women writers in the press in France between 1830 and 1870, and intersections in verbal and visual representation in surrealist poetry. Currently, she is completing a book on Barbey d’Aurevilly and his role as fiction writer and critic in the print culture of nineteenth-century Paris.
In all of her courses, student participation is the focus of classroom interaction. In order to understand a language or culture, one must engage with it— actively, collectively, and personally. Student responses to her teaching include commentary such as: “particularly impressed with Professor Humphreys’ tactic of incorporating films, YouTube videos, music, and art into our discussions;” “very interesting, intellectually worthwhile class;” and “she doesn't just teach French from a textbook…” Humphreys hopes that each semester, students will leave her course with either a deeper understanding of literature or cinema, stronger writing skills, increased language proficiency or a passion for Francophone culture.