Devin Griffiths

Assistant Professor of English

Contact Information
Phone: (213) 740-2813
Office: THH 404

Curriculum Vitae
Personal Website
Course Information

Biographical Sketch

I grew up in Albuquerque and Houston, and attended college at UT-Austin before heading east to continue my studies at Rutgers and Penn. My research examines the intersection of intellectual history, scientific literature, and the digital humanities, with emphasis on nineteenth-century British literature and science. At the center of my research is the question of how literary form shapes our experience of time and natural systems. My work on this subject has appeared in ELH, Studies in English Literature, Nineteenth-Century Contexts, and Book History. My first book, "The Age of Analogy: Science and Literature Between the Darwins,” forthcoming this fall from the Johns Hopkins University Press, examines how historical novels established a new relational understanding of history and furnished a new comparative method that helped to shape the disciplinary formations of both the life sciences and the humanities. My second book project, "The Radical Catalogue," explores the science of order that organized nineteenth-century print and natural history collections to test the relation between empire and modern information technologies.


  • B.A. English, University of Texas at Austin, 2002
  • B.S. Molecular Biology, University of Texas at Austin, 2002
  • M.A. Literatures in English, Rutgers University, 2006
  • Ph.D. Literatures in English, Rutgers University, 2010

  • Postdoctoral Training

    • Post-doctoral Fellow, University of Pennsylvania, 2010-2012  

    Conferences and Other Presentations

    Conference Presentations
    • ""Long Periods of Boredom, Short Periods of Terror": Punctuated Disciplinarity and On the Origin of Species", Modern Language Association, Talk/Oral Presentation, Refereed Abstract, Austin, TX, 01/07/2016-01/10/2016  
    • "Catching Orchid Fever: Darwin and Collective Authorship", Modern Language Association, Talk/Oral Presentation, Refereed Abstract, Austin, TX, 01/07/2016-01/10/2016  
    • "Flat World: Darwin’s Botany and the Contrivance of Ecopolitics", Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts, Talk/Oral Presentation, Refereed Abstract, Houston, TX, 11/12/2015-11/15/2015  
    • "Theorizing the Present", V21 Symposium, Roundtable/Panel, Chicago, Univ. of Chicago, Invited, 10/09/2015-10/10/2015  
    • "Formal Evolution: Novelizing Epic Between the Darwins", The Darwins Reconsidered, Talk/Oral Presentation, Refereed London, UK, University of Roehampton, 09/04/2015  
    • "Smashing the World: Darwin, his Orchids, and Flat Theology", North Atlantic Victorian Studies Association, Talk/Oral Presentation, Refereed Honolulu, HI, NAVSA, 07/09/2015-07/12/2015  
    • "Selling ‘Orchid Fever’ on the Global Market: Darwin’s Botanizing", Interdisciplinary Nineteenth Century Studies , Talk/Oral Presentation, Refereed Paper, Atlanta, GA, 04/16/2015-04/19/2015  
    • "Digital Pedagogy (Stipend Included)", North Atlantic Victorian Studies Association, Roundtable/Panel, Pasadena, CA, Getty Foundation, Case Western, USC, UCSB, Invited, 2013-2014   
    • "Suburban James Hutton", First World Congress on Scottish Literatures, Talk/Oral Presentation, Glasgow, UK, University of Glasgow, Invited, 07/02/2014-07/05/2014  
    • "Deep City, Deep Time: Radical Geology in Romantic Edinburgh", International Conference on Romanticism, Talk/Oral Presentation, Abstract, Tempe, AZ, Arizona State University, Invited, 2012-2013   
    • "The Shadow over Lovecraft", Modern Language Association, Talk/Oral Presentation, Refereed Seattle, WA, 01/05/2012-01/08/2012  
    • "Victorian Pretenders: Oliphant, Stevenson, and Reflections on the ’45", Modern Language Association, Talk/Oral Presentation, Refereed Seattle, WA, 01/05/2012-01/08/2012  
    • "Tweeting the Bible: Mathew Arnold and Victorian Historiography", Northeast Victorian Studies, Talk/Oral Presentation, Refereed College Park, MD, 04/15/2011-04/17/2011  

    Other Presentations
    • "Understanding Analogy: Theory and Method", ISI Natural Language Seminar, Information Sciences Institute, USC, Marina Del Rey, CA, Spring 2015   


    • Griffiths, D. (2016). The Age of Analogy: Science and Literature Between the Darwins. (McAdam, Matthew, Ed.). Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press.

    Journal Article
    • Griffiths, D. (2015). "The Radical's Catalogue: Antonio Panizzi, Virginia Woolf, and the British Museum Library's 'Catalogue of Printed Books'. Book History. Vol. 18, pp. 134-165.
    • Griffiths, D. S. (2015). Flattening the World: Natural Theology and Darwin's Orchids. Nineteenth-Century Contexts. Vol. 37 (5), pp. 431-52.
    • Griffiths, D. S. (2013). The Comparative History of A Tale of Two Cities. ELH. Vol. 80 (3), pp. 811-838.
    • Griffiths, D. S. The Intuitions of Analogy in Erasmus Darwin's Poetics. Sel - Studies in English Literature Vol. 51. 2011 2011: 645-665. Print
    • Griffiths, D. S. Red Hot Fiction: Harnessing Maxwell's Demon in Victorian Literature. Endeavour Vol. 34. 2010 2010: 137-138. Print
    • Olsen, M. J., Stephens, D., Griffiths, D. S., Daugherty, P., Georgiou, G., Iverson, B. Function-based Isolation of Novel Enzymes from a Large Library. Nature Biotechnology Vol. 18. 10 2000: 1071. Print

    Multimedia Scholarship and Creative Works

    • Digital Archive and Multimedia Installation, "The Peries Project" is an online edition of an early-nineteenth century manuscript by the Orientalist John Leyden, produced collaboratively as part of an undergraduate honors seminar led at the University of Pennsylvania. Url:, Spring 2012   

    Honors and Awards

    • USC or School/Dept Award for Teaching, General Education Teaching Award, 2013-2014   

    Service to the Profession

    Conferences Organized
    • Program Committee Member, Panel Chair, North Atlantic Victorian Studies Association, Pasadena, CA, 2012-2013   

  • USC Dornsife Department of English
  • 3501 Trousdale Parkway
  • Taper Hall of Humanities 404
  • University Park
  • Los Angeles, CA 90089-0354
  • Fax: (213) 741-0377