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Thomas Patrick Wisniewski

Thomas Wisniewski

Department of Comparative Literature

PhD Candidate

Harvard University

Thomas Patrick Wisniewski is completing his Ph.D. in Comparative Literature at Harvard University, where he was previously appointed Jacob K. Javits Fellow and Krupp Foundation Research Fellow. His research centers on rhythm and the comparative arts in European Modernism. He has published in journals including Biography, World Literature Today, Gradiva, In Other Words, Italica, Italian Culture, Pusteblume, Forum Italicum, Music & Literature, L’anello che non tiene, and Quaderni d’italianistica. His work has been awarded the Frederick Sheldon Traveling Fellowship, the Susan Anthony Potter Prize, the Luisa Vidal de Villasante Award, the Harvard Horizons Fellowship, and the Global Humanities Junior Fellowship, Freie Universität Berlin. He has held visiting lectureships at Boston University, Tufts University, and Harvard College. He completed an M.A. in Italian Literature from Middlebury College, an A.M. in Comparative Literature from Dartmouth College, and a B.A. in Italian Literature and B.M.A. in Saxophone Performance from the University of Michigan. Trained as a classical saxophonist, he has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in Italy, France, Argentina, and the United States.

The Rhythm of Prose

Thomas' project centers on the historical and literary significance of prose rhythm. To that end, he is researching how classical rhetoric and the study of prose rhythm achieved a rebirth of intellectual interest during the Renaissance. He further aims to understand how literary and scholarly attention to rhythm in Early Modern Europe came to impact the later work of modernist prose stylists, including Karen Blixen, whose manuscripts and recordings he is currently studying at the Royal Library in Copenhagen, Denmark.