Julie Park is a scholar of English literature and culture of the long eighteenth century. Her research examines the unexpected ways in which human subjects are inseparable from the material things, environments and devices of everyday life in historical contexts. Her areas of specialty include material and visual culture, history of subjectivity, the history and theory of the novel, genre and gender studies and archival studies. She writes about such artifacts and spaces as automata, quill pens, camera obscuras, grottoes and follies, exploring their abilities to shape, channel and model the innermost experiences of the embodied self in collaboration with diverse literary forms and genres. She received her B.A. from Bryn Mawr and M.A. and Ph.D. from Princeton.
Her book, The Self and It: Novel Objects in Eighteenth-Century England (Stanford University Press, 2010), argues the eighteenth-century self reached its most lively articulation through the material objects we traditionally consider as "trivial" imitations or supplements of the human: dolls, puppets, automata, fetishes, bound books and fictional narratives. She has been an editor of several special issues, including the prize-winning War for Eighteenth-Century Fiction, and has also been the recipient of many long- and short-term fellowship awards.
She is completing My Dark Room: Spaces of the Inner Self in Eighteenth-Century England, which examines the material environments of inner experience, from writing closets to women's detachable pockets in eighteenth-century England, and their relationships to the developing techniques for mediating interiority in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century literature. An excerpt from this book, "Detachable Pockets and Letter Folds: Spatial Formalism and the Portable Interiors of the Eighteenth-Century Novel," has recently appeared in The Prosaic Imaginary, a special issue of NOVEL.
She has held positions at McMaster University as Assistant Professor of English and Cultural Studies and Co-Editor of Eighteenth-Century Fiction, as well as Associate Professor for Research in English at Vassar College. She is currently a Research Associate at the Huntington Library. Starting in September 2019 she will be a New York University Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellow, Assistant Curator/Faculty Fellow, and Dean’s Fellow hosted by the Division of Libraries and the Libraries’ Humanities and Social Sciences Department, 2019-2021.