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Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life

Diane O'Donoghue

Director, Program for Public Humanities & Senior Fellow for the Humanities

Diane O'Donoghue

Diane O'Donoghue

Director, Program for Public Humanities & Senior Fellow for the Humanities

Phone 617.627.6145
Lincoln Filene Hall, Room 313
10 Upper Campus Road, Medford, MA
Biography: 

Diane O’Donoghue is the director of the Program for Public Humanities and Senior Fellow for the Humanities at the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life. She became affiliated with Tisch College, first as a Faculty Fellow and then in her current roles, after two terms as the chair of the Department of Visual and Critical Studies, a Tufts University department located at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts. An art historian, her areas of specialization include the visual culture of early China, about which she authored a monograph on reflection as object and idea in the Bronze Age. From these art historical and archaeological interests came scholarship on issues of the representation of surface and depth, and memory and memorialization, work informed by visual and cultural studies, gender and postcolonial critiques, and the practice and theories of psychoanalysis. Her writings on these issues have been awarded the CORST, Deutsch, and Silberger Prizes and she is a scholar member and on the faculty of the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute.

 “These Words,” an exhibition project created in 2016 with the Chinese Historical Society of New England, circled back to research with Chinese archival sources in the service of both public history and advocacy. In the spring semester 2017, she was adjunct professor of Public Humanities at the John Nicholas Brown Center of Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage at Brown University. Other fellowships include two visiting appointments as a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Vienna, during which time she co-founded an organization of descendant families to advocate for the preservation of Jewish cemeteries and related sites in Austria. Diane O’Donoghue’s new book, On Dangerous Ground: Freud’s Visual Cultures of the Unconscious, will be published by Bloomsbury next year.

Education: 
Ph.D. Art History, Harvard University
B.A. History, Mount Holyoke College
Selected Honors and Awards: 
National Humanities Conference, 2017 Annual Meeting - Closing Plenary Panel
Selected Professional Activities: 
Member, Steering Committee, North East Public Humanities Consortium, 2015-present
Co-chair, Planning Committee, 2019 Annual NEPH Meeting
Selected Funded Research: 

For the “These Words” project (2016):

  • Tisch College Community Research Center
  • Mass Humanities
  • New England Foundation for the Arts (for the work of exhibition partner, Wen-ti Tsen)
Teaching/Courses Taught: 
Public Amnesias and Their Discontents
Critical Discourses: Genealogies and Visual Strategies
Recognitions: Re-Visioning the Uses of Objects
Contemporary Psychoanalytic Theories of Genders and Representation
Bronze Age of China and the Ethics of Metallurgy
Asian Painting/s and Empire
Acts of Emptying: Visual Cultures of Premodern Japan
Multiplicities: The Visual Cultures of Premodern India