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Jesús Costantino

Jesus Costantino

Assistant Professor

American Literary Studies


Research Area/s

20th-Century American Literature, Film Studies, Critical Theory, Visual Culture, Class and Race Studies

Contact Information

Office Location: Humanities 339


Jesús Costantino received his PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, in 2011. His approach to twentieth-century American literature and visual media combines aesthetic philosophy, theories of violence, and critical studies of class and race. He is currently completing his first book, Fighting Form: Race, Abstraction, and American Visual Politics, 1880-1950, in which he connects the seemingly disparate histories of modernist abstraction, new media technologies, and modern identity formations—race, ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality—by accounting for their shared preoccupation with the sport of boxing.

Inspired by the global impact of depictions of Detroit and New Orleans, he has also begun work on a new project titled Under the Sign of Disaster Triumphant that analyzes the social and economic histories buried in images of modern American ruin and claims that these images take part in ongoing global processes of violent dispossession. Supplementing these two book-length projects, he continues to explore the interplay between visual media and the literary arts in essays on Gordon Parks’s fashion photography, independent video game design, and photo-texts of the Depression era.

Publications include

  • Editor, with Alenda Chang and Braxton Soderman, “Permadeath and Precarity,” Special Issue of The Journal of Gaming and Virtual Worlds (2017). Forthcoming.
  • "The Squared City: Prizefighting, Tenement Reform, and Spatial Physiognomy at the Turn of the Century," American Literary Realism (2017). Forthcoming.
  • “Harlem in Furs: Race and Fashion in the Photography of Gordon Parks,” Modernism/modernity 23.4 (2016).
  • “The Boxer’s Pain, the Bull’s Prose: Race, American Boxing, and Hemingway’s Ring Aesthetics,” The Space Between: Literature and Culture, 1915-1945. Vol. 15 (2015).
  • “Seeing without Feeling: Muybridge’s Boxing Pictures and the Rise of the Bourgeois Spectator.” Film & History 44.2 (Fall 2014): 66-81.

Department of English Language and Literature
Humanities Building, Second Floor
MSC03 2170
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001

Phone: (505) 277-6347
Fax: (505) 277-0021