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Jennifer L. Geddes

Associate Professor


  • BA, University of Virginia
  • MA, University of Virginia
  • PhD, University of Virginia

Research Interests

  • Religion, literature, and culture
  • Hermeneutics and ethics
  • Holocaust studies
  • Evil and suffering
  • Critical theory and literature


  • Responses to the Holocaust
  • Literature and Ethics
  • Evil and Suffering
  • Violence, Literature, and the Sacred
  • Suffering
  • Adorno, Benjamin, and Arendt

Selected Publications

  • “Leopards and Invisible Calculators: Violent Incorporation, Political Theology and Kafka’s 'Leopards in the Temple,'” Political Theology (2018).
  • “Verbal Images of Evil and (In)Humanity during and after the Holocaust,” Nordisk judaistik / Scandinavian Jewish Studies 29.1 (2018): 25–38.
  • “Theodicy, Useless Suffering, and Compassionate Asymmetry: Primo Levi, Emmanuel Levinas, and Anti-Theodicy,” Religions 9.114 (2018) online.
  • Kafka’s Ethics of Interpretation: Between Tyranny and Despair. Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 2016.
  • “The Temptation of Forgetting and the Labor of Memory in ‘The Metamorphosis.’” Journal of the Kafka Society of America (2015): 40–45.
  • “Vulnerability and Violence: Kafka and Levinas on Suffering.” Literature and Theology 29.4. (December 2015): 400–414.
  • “Evil.” The Oxford Handbook of Theology and Modern European Thought. Ed. by Nicholas Adams, George Pattison, and Graham Ward. Oxford University Press, 2013, 213–232.
  • The Double Binds of Ethics after the Holocaust: Salvaging the Fragments. Co-Editor, with John K. Roth and Jules Simon. Palgrave Macmillan, 2009. 
  • “Religious Rhetoric in Responses to Atrocity.” InThe Religious in Responses to Mass Atrocity, ed. by Thomas Brudholm and Thomas Cushman. Cambridge University Press, 2009, 21–37.
  • “Towards an Ethics of Reading Survivor Testimonies.” Studies in the Literary Imagination 41.2 (Fall 2008): 1–15. 
  • Evil after Postmodernism: Histories, Narratives, Ethics. Editor. Routledge, 2001.