Stuart Burrows teaches classes on nineteenth and twentieth century American fiction and poetry, the history of photography, film, and literary theory. His first book, A Familiar Strangeness: American Fiction and the Language of Photography (2008), argued that the invention of the camera transformed the way American writers conceived of the limits and the purpose of representation. His essays have appeared in a range of edited collections (most recently Melville's Philosophies) and journals such as American Literary History, J19, Nineteenth Century Literature, NOVEL, and Romantic Circles. Writers discussed include James Agee, Jane Austen, Willa Cather, Raymond Chandler, Zora Neale Hurston, Sarah Orne Jewett, and Luchino Visconti.
Professor Burrows is currently completing two books. The first, Henry James and the Invention of the Present, argues that James' work offers a radically different account of memory to that of contemporaries such as Henri Bergson, Sigmund Freud, and Marcel Proust, one in which the past does not shape the present, nor the present construct or discover the past. The present in James' fiction, paradoxically, is the place in which the past lives on, constantly changing, as if it were not past at all. The second, The Third Person: Consciousness in the Modern Novel, examines the relationship between narrative voice and subjectivity. Offering a new history of free indirect discourse, The Third Person explores modes of address in modern American and European fiction, from Austen to William Faulkner. A separate project, on film, explores the work of Michelangelo Antonioni, André Tarkovsky, and Abbas Kiarostami.