Michael W. Clune


Clune photo

Michael W. Clune specializes in American literature, literature and science, and poetry. His work investigates two basic questions: What difference does literature make? What methods might best illuminate that difference in the context of the modern research university? His first book, American Literature and the Free Market (Cambridge University Press, 2010), examines how postwar writing from Frank O’Hara’s poetry to nineties gangster rap takes on social power by offering an escape from society.

His second book, Writing Against Time (Stanford University Press, 2013), explores the effort to create an image immune to the erosive effects of neurobiological time. Elements of this project have appeared in the journals Representations, Criticism, and Behavioral and Brain Sciences.

Clune’s first work of creative nonfiction, White Out, was chosen as a Best Book of 2013 by The New Yorker, NPR’s “On Point,” The Millions, and other venues. His second memoir, Gamelife, on computer games as spiritual education, is forthcoming from Farrar, Straus and Giroux in fall 2015. He is at work on a series of articles on what literature knows.

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Guilford House 315


PhD, Johns Hopkins University