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Alan Thomas

Editorial Director

I acquire scholarly and trade books in the humanities, particularly literature, criticism, and biography. I look for ambitious manuscripts marked by writerly assurance and unorthodox thinking. Recent trade books include Teju Cole’s Black Paper: Writing in a Dark Time, Amitav Ghosh’s The Nutmeg’s Curse: Parables for a Planet in Crisis, Emily Ogden’s On Not Knowing: How to Love and Other Essays, and Lydia Moland’s Lydia Maria Child: A Radical American Life.

Recent books on my literary studies list include John Guillory’s Professing Criticism, Jennifer Fleissner’s Maladies of the Will, Elisa Tamarkin’s Apropos of Something, and several titles in the Thinking Literature series, co-edited by Nan Z. Da and Anahid Nersessian. In the area of literary translation, I have published works by Thomas Bernhard, Christophe Boltanski, Yves Bonnefoy, Friedrich Durrenmatt, Roger Grenier, Robert Musil, Christa Wolf, and others. I also publish occasional books of photography and photography criticism, such as W. Eugene Smith’s Dream Street and The Jazz Loft Project, Ashley Gilbertson’s Bedrooms of the Fallen, and Walter Benn Michaels’s The Beauty of a Social Problem. My own publications include writings for the Los Angeles Review of Books, Places Journal, and Design Observer, as well as the photobook 55x5. You can also find me on Twitter, Instagram, and my personal website.

I am fortunate to work with senior editorial associate Sara Bakerman and assistant editor Randy Petilos, who acquires complementary books in medieval studies and poetry in translation.

Associate editor David Olsen is my collaborator on the Phoenix Poets series.

Prospective authors are encouraged to consult our submission guidelines. We also provide an overview about publishing with Chicago here.

Alan Thomas


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