Wesleyan portrait of Andrew S. Curran

Andrew S. Curran

William Armstrong Professor of the Humanities

300 High Street,

Professor of French

300 High Street, 203

Chair, Romance Languages and Literatures


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BA Hamilton College
MA New York University
PHD New York University

Andrew S. Curran

Professor Andrew Curran is a specialist of the French eighteenth century with interests in the history of race, the history of medicine, and the Enlightenment philosophe Denis Diderot. At Wesleyan, Curran is the William Armstrong Professor of the Humanities and a member of Wesleyan University’s Romance Languages and Literatures department. His major publications include an edited volume (Faces of Monstrosity in Eighteenth-Century Thought in Eighteenth-Century Life) and two books: Sublime Disorder: Physical Monstrosity in Diderot’s Universe (Voltaire Foundation, Oxford, 2001) and, more recently, The Anatomy of Blackness: Science and Slavery in an Age of Enlightenment (Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 2011 / paper 2013). The Anatomy of Blackness has also appeared in French translation at Classiques Garnier. Elected a Fellow in the history of medicine at the New York Academy of Medicine in 2010, Curran has also received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Mellon Foundation, the Schomburg Center for Research on Black Culture (declined), and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. He was also the co-winner of the James L. Clifford prize for the best article in eighteenth-century studies in 2011 on the history of albinism. Most recently, Curran received a National Endowment for the Humanities Public Scholars award (2016). Curran has served on the editorial board of Studies in Eighteenth Century Culture and is presently on the board of Critical Philosophy of Race and Diderot Studies. He is currently completing an intellectual biography of Denis Diderot for Other Press.

Professor Curran completed his Ph.D. in French literature at New York University in 1996. He taught at Union College in Schenectady, New York, for two years before coming to Wesleyan. He has also directed the Vassar-Wesleyan Program in Paris on two occasions. At Wesleyan, he teaches a variety of classes on French thought and culture from 1600-1900. 

Academic Affiliations

Office Hours

Wed, RLL 203, 2:40-4:00 and Friday at 11:40 - 12:10


Fall 2018
FREN 391 - 01

Spring 2019
FREN 215 - 01
Composition and Conversation