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Nathan Brown
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Nathan Brown

  • Assistant Professor
  • Department of English
  • Program in Critical Theory
  • Program in Science & Technology Studies
264 Voorhies
Davis, CA


Ph.D., UCLA, 2008 

M.A., Queen's University, 2002 
B.A., Queen's University, 2001

Nathan Brown's research and teaching focus on 20th and 21st century poetry and poetics, continental philosophy, and science/technology studies. His first book, The Limits of Fabrication: Materials Science and Materialist Poetics, is in press with Northwestern University Press, forthcoming Spring 2014. The Limits of Fabrication examines concepts of form and practices of fabrication in nanoscale materials science and contemporary materialist poetics, updating the context in which poetry might be considered a form of building. He is currently engaged in two other book projects. Absent Blue Wax: Rationalist Empiricism considers the resurgence of rationalism in contemporary French philosophy in relation to various radical empiricisms.  The project includes specific engagements with the work of Descartes and Hume, Gaston Bachelard,  Louis Althusser, Gilles Deleuze, Alain Badiou, Quentin Meillassoux,  C.S. Peirce, and Alfred North Whitehead. Research toward a new book project—titled Metrical Modernity and focused on the concept of measure in philosophy, science, and poetry—is funded by a 2013-2014 UC Davis Hellman Fellowship.

Professor Brown also teaches courses in the Designated Emphasis Program in Critical Theory and in Science & Technology Studies. He is the coordinator of Conjuncture - A Series of Symposia on 21st Century Philosophy, Politics, and Aesthetics. With Cynthia Mitchell, he runs a residency program in the Sierras, The Mercury School.


Publication Spotlight

The Art of the Concept
Eds. Nathan Brown and Petar Milat
This special issue of Frakcija: Performing Arts Journal is the reader for a 2012 symposium held at MaMa Multimedia Institute in Zagreb, Croatia. The symposium was the third in an ongoing series titled Conjuncture: 21st Century Philosophy, Politics, and Aesthetics, coordinated by Nathan Brown and Petar Milat. Conjuncture has included events titled 21st Century Materialism (2009), To Have Done With Life (2011), and Modernity: The Bitter End (2013). Our topic in 2014 will be Sophistry: The Powers of the False (June 27-29).
The Art of the Concept includes contributions by Michel Chion, Martin Hägglund, Alexander Garcia Düttmann, Evan Calder Williams, Alexi Kukuljevic, Robert S. Lehman, Amanda Beech, Vera Bühlmann, Audrey Wasser, and Nathan Brown. Order here. More information about the symposium is available at

Articles and Book Chapters

Reviews, Interviews, Responses, Short Essays


Recent and Upcoming Graduate Courses


Graduate Reading Courses in Critical Theory


Selected Undergraduate Courses

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