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Danielle Bobker, PhD

Associate Professor, English

Sina Queyras
Office: S-LB 668-07 
J.W. McConnell Building,
1400 De Maisonneuve Blvd. W.
Phone: (514) 848-2424 ext. 2337
Availability: Office hours, Thursday 2-4, or by appointment


BA, Honours, English & Drama, with High Distinction, University of Toronto 
BEd, English, Drama, & French, University of Toronto 
MA, English, Concordia University 
PhD, English, Rutgers University 

Reading eighteenth-century satire alongside the philosophy of humour, feminist cultural studies, and contemporary affect theory, my current research questions some basic assumptions about humour, especially the common idea that laughter trivializes or degrades its objects. However, rather than getting behind one theory of humour or another, I'm interested in considering how a reception-oriented approach can illuminate the great variety of responses elicited by the humour of satirists like Aphra Behn, Jonathan Swift, John Gay, and Jane Collier—as well as many other comedians, past and present.

I also have longstanding interests in other aspects of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century literature and culture, including the history of gender and sexuality, and book and media history. My book, tentatively titled The Closet: An Intimate History (forthcoming from Princeton University Press in 2020), explores how the closet, the most private room in eighteenth-century architecture, helped to shape the collective modern fantasy that any two people can and should feel connected to one another, regardless of the differences and distances between them.  


I support the efforts made by CASE and SAGE, our undergraduate and graduate English student associations, as well as numerous administrators, faculty, and staff in and beyond Concordia’s Department of English and Creative Writing, to heal and rebuild our relationships and communities and to ensure that everyone involved in sexual misconduct investigations, not least student complainants, are kept informed and receive just and compassionate treatment.

Research, teaching, and supervision interests

17th & 18thC literature 

satire & humour studies

gender & sexuality


intimacy & affect

print culture & media shift

material culture


Selected publications

"Satire and Offensive Humor," Options for Teaching Modern British and American Satire, eds. Evan Davis and Nicholas D. Nace, forthcoming from Modern Language Association Press, 2019.

“Toward a Humor-Positive Feminism: Lessons from the Sex Wars," Online: Los Angeles Review of Books (17 December 2017) and Print: Special Issue: Comedy, Los Angeles Review of Books Quarterly Journal 17 (February 2018), 48-57. link

“Coming Out: Closet Rhetoric and Media Publics,” History of the Present: A Journal of Critical History 5.1 (Spring 2015) 31-64. link

"The Literature and Culture of the Closet in the Eighteenth-Century: A Pedagogical Resource,” Digital Defoe: Studies in Defoe and his Contemporaries 6.1 (October 2014) 70-94. link

"Intimate Points: The Dash in the Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin,” Papers on Language and Literature 49.4 (2013) 1-29. link

"Female Favouritism, Orientalism, and the Bathing Closet in Memoirs of Count Grammont," Eighteenth Century Fiction 24.1 (2011) 1-30. link

"Lady Mary’s Imperfect Employment,” Aphra Behn Online: Interactive Journal for Women in the Arts 1640-18301 (2011)1-23. link

"Sodomy, Geography, and Misdirection in Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure," Special ed. Novelists on the Novel / La Poétique des romanciers, Eds. Isabelle Daunais and Allan Hepburn. University of Toronto Quarterly 79.4 (2010) 1035-1045. link

"Carriages, Conversation, and A Sentimental Journey," Studies in Eighteenth Century Culture 35 (2006) 243-66. link


With Joseph Drury, McKenzie Lee, The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue.The Eighteenth Century Commons (April 2018). link

Claude Rawson, Swift's Angers, Eighteenth-Century Studies 49.1 (Fall 2015) 104-106. link

Chloe Wigston Smith, Women, Work, and Clothes in the Eighteenth-Century Novel, Eighteenth-Century Fiction 27.2 (January 2015) 309-311. link

Belle: A New View of Eighteenth-Century Racism," ABO Public: Interactive Forum for Women in the Arts, 1640-1830 (August 25 2014). link

with Meredith Evans, “Why We Love Paulo Sorrentino’s This Must Be the Place," Lemon Hound (September 27 2013). link

Kristina Straub, Domestic Affairs: Intimacy, Eroticism, and Violence between Servants and Masters in Eighteenth-Century Britain, Gender and History 22 (2010) 222-224. link

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