Professor Metzidakis’ research interests include modern French, Francophone and comparative literature from the late eighteenth century to the present, with particular attention to poetry, prose poetry, literary theory, and North American French history and culture.
You have arrived a website whose purpose is to give you a brief overview of what I do professionally and who I am. It is designed primarily for students and colleagues who wish to know more about me and my work, or who want to use some recommended online resources. The site contains the following: 1) relevant parts of my CV, 2) passages from or about my published works, 3) links to other sites I have found useful, and 4) a link to my complete CV. You are invited to contact me with any questions or comments you have about this information at email@example.com.
Here is some basic biographical information about me: I was born and raised in a Greek-American family in Springfield, Massachusetts. My entire family on my mother’s side has always lived in Crete, Greece, however. My wife Sara is a retired psychiatric social worker originally from New Britain, Connecticut. We have two grown and married children, Katina and Will, who live and work in NYC. We also have a lake house in Northern Maine, but spend most of our time in NYC, where I continue to do research, write and teach occasional graduate seminars at Hunter College-CUNY.
I earned my Ph.D. in French and Romance Philology from Columbia University in 1982, and wrote my dissertation under the direction of Professors Michael Riffaterre and Julia Kristeva. My research interests include modern French, Francophone and comparative literature from the late eighteenth century to the present, with particular attention to poetry, prose poetry, literary theory, and North American French history and culture. Other research interests include visual/verbal relations between painting, sculpture, film and literature. I am the author of Repetition and Semiotics: Interpreting Prose Poems (1986) and Difference Unbound: The Rise of Pluralism in Literature and Criticism (1995). A second edition of Difference Unbound was published by Rodopi/Brill, and contains a new preface by Mary Ann Caws, a new author’s introduction, and a new index. I also co-authored and edited a major volume of original essays,Understanding French Poetry: Essays for a New Millennium (1st edition by Garland –now Routledge– in 1994; and a 2nd edition in 2001 by Summa, with a preface by Rosemary Lloyd), and was guest editor of two special issues of L’Esprit créateur, one on Andre Breton (1996) and a second on Prose Poetry (1999). I am currently working on two book manuscripts: Des lignes et des lettres: Essais néo-formalistes, and Recollecting French America: A Postmodern Chronology.
A second current book project of mine is titled Recollecting French America: A Personal Chronology. Here is the Prologue to the manuscript, which has already been published in an essay called “The Missouri’s Miner’s Daughter Still Speaks French” reproduced elsewhere on this website. The copyright is mine:
Time talks in differing tongues. Its voices cry out in the wilderness as well as in the city. Faceless voices, headless voices, errant voices, all speak of what was. and of what could have been. Such voices alternate between the personal and collective, the serious and silly, the elitist and vulgar, the factual and imagined, the-lyrical and epic, the tragic and joyful, the mean-spirited and kind, the sensical and nonsensical. Disembodied, they strive to revive presences once alive and whole, now moribund or fragmented. Only full-bodied voices pretend to tell what already is, or what may yet be. more…