May 9th, 2012
A conversation with Rutgers professor of history and current fellow
at the Stanford Humanities Center Leah DeVun on hermaphroditism.
Outro Music: Radiohead, "The Tourist"
DeVun is an Associate Professor of History at Rutgers University, where
she teaches women's and gender history. She received her PhD from
Columbia University in 2004. Her first book, "Prophecy, Alchemy, and
the End of Time: John of Rupescissa in the Late Middle Ages," was
published by Columbia University Press in 2009. She has also published
several essays in journals and edited collections, some of which have
been on apocalypticism, the resurrection, alchemy, and hermaphroditism.
Her research interests lie in the history of science and the history of gender, sex, and sexuality in medieval and early modern Europe. She also studies the legacy of this history in the modern world. Her current project is "Enter Sex: Hermaphrodites and the Demands of Difference," which examines the history of sex difference by looking at how scientists, lawyers, and religious thinkers, among others, have conceived of sex — particularly through their approaches to people with atypical anatomies — in the past and present.
She has won numerous awards and has been awarded several fellowships and research grants, including, most recently, an External Faculty Fellowship at the Stanford Humanities Center for the 2011-2012 academic year.
Professor DeVun is also an accomplished photographer and installation artist. More information on her work as an artist can be found on her official website, www.leahdevun.com.