Lauren Berlant

Lauren Berlant (1957-2021) was George M. Pullman Professor of English at the University of Chicago. Her national sentimentality trilogy — The Anatomy of National Fantasy (Chicago, 1991), The Queen of America Goes to Washington City (Duke, 1997), and The Female Complaint (Duke, 2008) — morphed into a quartet, with Cruel Optimism (Duke, 2011) addressing precarious publics and the aesthetics of affective adjustment in the contemporary U.S. and Europe. A co-editor of Critical Inquiry, they were also the editor of Intimacy (special issue of Critical Inquiry, 2000); Our Monica, Ourselves: The Clinton Affair and the National Interest (NYU Press, 2001, with Lisa Duggan); Compassion: The Culture and Politics of an Emotion (Routledge, 2004); On the Case (special issue of Critical Inquiry, 2007); and Reading Sedgwick (Duke, 2019). She blogs at Supervalent Thought and is also a founding member of the artist/activist group Feel Tank Chicago.