Aubrey Gabel

Aubrey Gabel

Research interests
20th- and 21st-century French and Francophone literature, culture, and film; gender and sexuality studies, translation studies, sociology and literature, history of avant-gardes and literary groups, visual.culture, comics and graphic novels

Aubrey Gabel (PhD, UC Berkeley) is a specialist in 20th- and 21st-century French and Francophone literature, culture, and film. Her fields of research include the history of literary groups and avant-gardes, gender and sexuality studies, translation studies, and visual culture (especially comics and graphic novels). She is currently working on a book manuscript entitled Not So Secret: Secrecy and Literary Groups, which offers an ethnography of the secret practices of 20th- and 21st-century literary groups and avant-gardes. She is also developing a series of articles that investigate how graphic novelists draw on competing image-text traditions, as a means of investigating contemporary history and politics. At Columbia, Professor Gabel teaches in the Core Curriculum, as well as undergraduate and graduate courses on 20th- and 21st-century literature, culture, and film. Before moving to Columbia, she taught at the University of California, Davis, the University of California, Berkeley, and Paris VII. Outside of the classroom, she is an active freelance translator and interpreter, with interests in oral history.

Not So Secret: Secrecy and Literary Groups explores how French literary groups and avant-gardes were ‘open secrets’: not only were they well known in intellectual circles, but they often broadcasted their secrecy to mainstream publics. This volume interrogates how intellectual groups as diverse as Acéphale, Surrealists, Oulipo, ‘Pataphysics, and Bourbaki performed their secrecy—and to what ends.

Selected Publications

“Not so secret: Oulipian secrecy.” L’Oulipo et la Seconde Guerre Mondiale. Ed. Dominique Glynn, Dominique Moncond’huy, and Philippe Roussin. Bordeaux: Presses universitaires de Bordeaux. Forthcoming.

FrancoForniens: Bringing Oral History into the French-Language Classroom.” Berkeley Language Center Fellows’ Report.

“For Play?: Literary Ludics and Sexual Politics.” Queer Games Studies: Gender, Sexuality, and a Queer Approach to Queer Games Studies. Ed. Bonnie Ruberg and Adrienne Shaw. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, March 2016.