James J. Hodge

Assistant Professor, Department of English and the Alice Kaplan Institute for the Humanities


James J. Hodge (Ph.D. University of Chicago) is Assistant Professor in the department of English and the Alice Kaplan Institute for the Humanities. He specializes in digital media aesthetics at the crossroads of cinema, art history, and literary studies, especially experimental media art genres such as new media art, avant-garde film, and electronic literature. Focusing also on media and critical theory he has special interests in phenomenology and psychoanalysis (object relations). Above all, he is devoted to the question of how artistic forms reflect the incoherence of lived experience. His book project, Animate Opacity: Digital Media and the Aesthetics of History argues that animation in new media art plays a newly significant role in the expression of historical temporality in the digital age. His recent research concerns the impersonality of contemporary media with regard to new networked genres such as the animated .gif.

With Danny Snelson he is co-organizer of the Ordinary Media Research Workshop, a biweekly forum at Northwestern investigating the ways in which digital technologies come to saturate everyday experience and inform artistic practice in the early 21st century.

Present and past course offerings include Media Theory, New Media Art, Critical Internet Studies, Digital Media Studies, Hitchcock and Beyond, Digital Media Theory, Animating Media, Identification, and Cinema and Digital Media.