Cynthia Chase

Graduate Faculty Member

Yale University, Ph.D.
Princeton University, B.A.
Cynthia Chase


Cynthia Chase teaches courses in the Departments of English and Comparative Literature on European Romanticism, critical theory, autobiography, and poetry. She is the author of Decomposing Figures: Rhetorical Readings in the Romantic Tradition and the editor of Longmans Critical Readers Romanticism, and has published many articles on Romanticism and critical theory, especially psychoanalysis and deconstruction.

Current research projects: How do works of literature written in the Romantic period survive for today’s public? I am writing about how this happens via critical interpretation, such as that of Paul de Man, and via other kinds of works of art, such as opera. This question is bound up with the history of interpretations of the French Revolution, ranging all the way from present-day discussions of human rights to directors’ and performers’ decisions about how to stage a play or an opera, for instance Andrea Chénier, the late nineteenth century opera about a poet who was guillotined during the Revolution in 1794. My current research involves hands-on investigation of conflicts in the ways Wordsworth and Keats are read and of problems in the process of staging or performing a writer’s life and work.


Research and Teaching Interests

  • Romanticism
  • Critical Theory
  • Wordsworth
  • Poetry
  • Autobiography

Current Projects

  • Book on Wordsworth, Rousseau, and critical theory