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Diana Garvin

Diana  Garvin profile picture
  • Affiliation: faculty
  • Title: Assistant Professor of Mediterranean Studies
  • Phone: 541-346-4021
  • Office: 102 Friendly Hall
  • Office Hours: Tuesday office hours, 11:30am to 12:30pm; Wednesday virtual office hours, 8:00pm to 9:00pm via Skype handle dianagarvin
  • Interests: Modern History of Southern Europe and East Africa, Fascism and Neo-Fascism, Feminist and Postcolonial Theory, Food Studies, Film Studies
  • Curriculum Vitae


Ph.D., Romance Studies, 2016 - Cornell University                                                    

A.B., Romance Studies, 2006 - Harvard University



Singing Truth to Power: Melodic Resistance and Bodily Revolt in Italy’s Rice Fields.” Annali d’Italianistica, special edition “Speaking Truth to Power from Medieval to Modern Italy.” Eds. Jo Ann Cavallo and Carlo Lottieri. 34 (2016): 371-398. (Winner of the 2017 Russo and Linkon Award for Best Published Article for Academic Audiences, Working-Class Studies Association.)

“Taylorist Breastfeeding in Rationalist Clinics: Constructing Industrial Motherhood in Fascist Italy.” Critical Inquiry. 41 (2015): 655-674.

Essays in Edited Volumes

Producing Consumers: Gendering Italy through Food Advertisements.” In Representing Italy through Food.  Eds. Peter Naccarato, Ken Albala, and Zachary Nowak.  New York: Bloomsbury, 2016: 143-161. 

Communicative Blogging for Student Engagement and Blended Literacy.”  In Doing Research to Improve Teaching and Learning: A Guide for College and University Faculty. Ed. Kimberly Williams.  New York: Routledge, 2015: 103-106.

Conference Proceedings

Autarchic by Design: Aesthetics and Politics of Kitchenware.”  In Food and Material Culture: Proceedings of the 2013 Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery. London: Prospect Books, 2013: 11-19. 


Antonio Negri, “To the Origins of Biopolitics. A Seminar” (“Alle origini del biopolitico”). In Biopower: Foucault and Beyond.  Eds. Vernon W. Cisney and Nicolae Morar. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2016: 48-64.

Roberto Esposito, “The Person and Human Life”  (“Persona e vita umana”). In Theory after “Theory.”   Eds. Derek Attridge and Jane Elliott. Co-trans. Thomas Kelso. New York: Routledge, 2011: 205-219.                                

Travel Guide                 

Let’s Go: Spain and Portugal 2006. Ed. Diana Garvin. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2005.


Diana's current project, “Feeding Fascism: Tabletop Politics in Italy and Italian East Africa, 1922-1945,” examines the history of everyday life across Fascist Italy and the Horn of Africa (modern-day Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Somalia) through decolonial methodology and feminist approaches to the archive.  Specifically, she uses food as a lens to examine daily negotiations of power, demonstrating how women’s work to feed their families speaks to broader questions of gendered forms of labor, the social construction of race and racism, and what is at stake in the struggle for nourishment and flavor both in multi-ethnic Italy and across the global south.  Fellowships from Oxford and Cornell University, the Wolfsonian-FIU Museum and Research Center, the CLIR Mellon Foundation, and the Julia Child Foundation, as well as grants from FLAS, AAUW, NWSA, and AFS, have supported her research at over thirty international archives, libraries, and museums.

As this year’s winner of the Rome Prize, Diana will spend the 2017-2018 academic year at the American Academy in Rome where she will conduct research for her second project, “When Cuisines Collide.”  In October 1935, dictator Benito Mussolini's shock troops flooded the shores of Abyssinia, seizing Ethiopian cities and townships to establish Italian settler colonialism in East Africa.  "When Cuisines Collide" examines the interplay of East African and Italian culinary culture from the Fascist period to the present day to trace the legacies of colonialism to contemporary kitchens.  All five senses engage through the materials: marketplace maps, children’s cups and dishes, and breastfeeding photography demonstrate how the regime embedded political ideology in everyday actions like cooking and eating.


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