Diane O’Donoghue

Senior Fellow for the Humanities

Diane O’Donoghue is the Senior Fellow for the Humanities at Tisch College. She joined the Tufts faculty in 1991, teaching in the Department of Visual and Critical Studies (in affiliation with the School of the Museum of Fine Arts) in both the undergraduate and graduate programs. She served for two terms as department chair and has been a recipient of the Excellence in Teaching award. She is an art historian (Ph.D. Harvard University) who specialized in the Bronze Age of China and has taught courses on the visual cultures of Asia, as well as on theories of representation, gender, and art criticism.

It was in the course of writing Reflection and Reception: The Origins of the Mirror in Bronze Age China (Stockholm: Östasiatiska Museet, 1990) that she began to recognize that, in addition to serving as cultural and political documents, excavated objects produced meanings of depth and surface, of materiality and memory. To pursue these questions from another perspective, she became an affiliate scholar at the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute, where she was a Silberger Scholar, and was elected to membership and appointed to the faculty. Dr. O’Donoghue has been the Fulbright/Sigmund Freud Scholar of Psychoanalysis at the University of Vienna and the Freud Museum.

She has received the CORST Prize, for her writing on psychoanalysis and archaeology, from the American Psychoanalytic Association, and was awarded a second Fulbright Fellowship for Austria, where she was affiliated with the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. She was the Ortner-Chopin Visiting Professor, also in Vienna, in 2010, and the Scholar-in-Residence at the Erikson Institute for the spring semester of 2014. She is currently completing a book project that investigates the role of visual cultures in Freud’s construction of the unconscious. A recipient of the Felix and Helene Deutsch Prize for writing on Freud’s Interpretation of Dreams, she has published on a variety of cultural objects—ruins, maps, “antiquities,” and illustrated books—as they informed the psychoanalytic theories of mind. She serves on the editorial board of American Imago: Psychoanalysis and the Human Sciences.

Dr. O’Donoghue was a Tisch College Faculty Fellow in 2013-2014. Her project involved the work of the descendants’ organization that she co-founded in Vienna in 2009 to advocate for the restoration of Jewish cemeteries in Austria. Along with other activities, they organize reparative public projects to counter the effects, from the Nazi era onward, of anti-Semitic and racist desecrations of burial sites and memorials. Read more about that project here.

Tisch Talks in the Humanities

Spearheaded by Prof. O’ Donoghue, the Initiatives in the Public Humanities at Tisch College will sponsor this series of monthly brown bag lunches during the spring semester of 2016. The Tisch Talks in the Humanities seek to identify areas of mutual interest and concern through conversations informed by contemporary civic and cultural practices.

All sessions will take place in the Rabb Room of Tisch College, Lincoln Filene Hall.

Stages of Detention
March 4 | 2:00 p.m.
Rabb Room, Tisch College

Noe Montez, Assistant Professor in the Department of Drama and Dance; and Amy Remensnyder, Professor of History at Brown University and Public Humanities Fellow at the John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage, will share work involving theatricality and pedagogy, respectively, within spaces created for incarceration.

Of Intimacies and Alchemy
April 4 | 3:00 p.m.
Rabb Room, Tisch College

This panel will address the potential for re-visioning historical narratives of colonialism and human labor through literary, material, and sensory productions. The topic will put into conversation the recent work of two of the participants:The Intimacies of Four Continents, by English Department Professor Lisa Lowe;  and Alchemy of the Soul, an exhibition (on view until early April at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem) by María Magdalena Campos-Pons, faculty member at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Professor Adriana Zavala, Associate Professor in the Department of Art and Art History, will be the program’s discussant.