Debra Fried

Associate Professor (Retired)


Debra Fried teaches a wide range of English and American literature, with a focus on poetry. Courses include surveys of English literature (from Beowulf to Hardy); graduate and undergraduate seminars in poetic meter and rhythm; and special topics such as the language of lyric poetry; American Transcendentalism; and filmic adaptations of Henry James. Professor Fried’s work appears in On Puns; Tradition and the Poetics of Self in Nineteenth-Century Women’s Poetry; and other collections. An abiding interest in ancient Greek and Latin poetry, nineteenth-century neoclassicism, and the history of poetic explication and commentary inform her current project: a study of what counts as a “detail” in poems and the shifting status of particularity as a poetic value.

Research Focus

  • Nineteenth-century American poetry and poetics; Dickinson, Thoreau
  • History and theory of the lyric in English; lyric genres
  • Prosody, poetic form, and historical poetics
  • Transatlantic Romanticisms and modern American poetry
  • Linguistic, sociolinguistic, and stylistic approaches
  • Poetry and the visual arts; poetry and everyday aesthetics
  • Classic American film and film theory