Victoria Aarons, Ph.D. | Trinity University
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Victoria Aarons, Ph.D.

Victoria Aarons holds the O.R. & Eva Mitchell Endowed Chair in Literature at Trinity University, where she teaches courses on American Jewish and Holocaust literatures.

Among other titles, Victoria Aarons is the author of A Measure of Memory: Storytelling and Identity in American Jewish Fiction and What Happened to Abraham?: Reinventing the Covenant in American Jewish Fiction, both of which received a Choice Award for Outstanding Academic Book. Her work has appeared in a number of scholarly journals, essay collections, and reference works, including the two-volume compendium Holocaust Literature: An Encyclopedia of Writers and Their Work.

Dr. Aarons is guest editor for a special issue of Philip Roth Studies titled Philip Roth and Bernard Malamud: Texts of a Relationship. She is on the editorial board of several scholarly journals and was an invited scholar at the Conference in Honor of Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel's 80th Birthday, hosted by Boston University's Elie Wiesel Center for Judaic Studies, where she spoke on "Bearing the Weight of History: Trauma and Narrative Fragmentation."

Selected Publications

  • “Found Objects: The Legacy of Third-Generation Holocaust Memory.” Forthcoming in Translated Memories. Eds. Bettina Hofmann and Ursula Reuter.
  • “Jewish American Literary Forms: 1914 to the Present.” Forthcoming in The Blackwell Companion to American Literature. Eds. Susan Belasco, Theresa Strouth Gaul, Linck Johnson, and Michael Soto. Wiley Blackwell Pub., 2017.
  • “Not Getting It: The Allure of the Counterlife in Early and Late Roth.” Forthcoming in Philip Roth Studies 13.1 (Spring ) 2017.
  • “Introduction: Saul Bellow in His Times.” The Cambridge Companion to Saul Bellow. Ed. Victoria Aarons. Forthcoming Cambridge UP, December 2016.
  • “Bellow and the Holocaust.” The Cambridge Companion to Saul Bellow. Ed. Victoria Aarons. Forthcoming Cambridge UP, December 2016.“Guardians of the Torah: Ambiguity and Antagonism in The Promise.” Chaim Potok: Confronting Modernity through the Lens of Tradition. Ed. Daniel Walden. Penn State University Press, 2013. 30-46.
  • “Memory’s Afterimage: Post-Holocaust Writing and the Third Generation.” Third-Generation Holocaust Narratives: Memory in Memoir and Fiction. Ed. Victoria Aarons. Lexington Books/Roman & Littlefield, 2016. 17-38.
  • “Introduction: Approaching the Third Generation.” Third-Generation Holocaust Narratives: Memory in Memoir and Fiction. Ed. Victoria Aarons. Lexington Books/Roman & Littlefield, 2016. xi-xxii.
  • “Midrash, Memory, and ‘miracles or near-miracles’: Bernard Malamud’s All-Too-Human Project.” Bernard Malamud: A Centennial Tribute. Eds. Victoria Aarons and Gustavo Sánchez-Canales. Wayne State University Press, 2016. 89-106.
  • “‘Moved by a memory’: Bernard Malamud’s Literary Landscape. An Introduction.” Bernard Malamud: A Centennial Tribute. Eds. Victoria Aarons and Gustavo Sánchez-Canales. Wayne State University Press, 2016. 3-14.
  • “Faces in a Sea of Suffering: The Human Predicament in Saul Bellow’s The Victim.” Special Issue. Guest editors, Victoria Aarons and Gustavo Sánchez-Canales. Partial Answers: Journal of Literature and History of Ideas, 14/1 (Johns Hopkins UP, 2016): 63-81.
  • “Saul Bellow as a Novelist of Ideas: Introduction to the Forum.” Special Issue. Guest editors, Victoria Aarons and Gustavo Sánchez-Canales. Partial Answers: Journal of Literature and History of Ideas, 14/1 (Johns Hopkins UP, 2016): 57-62.
  • “Grace Paley’s Urban Jewish Voice: Identity, History, and ‘The Tune of the Language.’” Special Issue: Grace Paley. Guest Editor: Paule Lévy. Journal of the Short Story in English – Les Cahiers de la Nouvelle 65 (Autumn 2015): 25-38.
  • “The Making of American Jewish Identities in Post-War American Fiction.” The Edinburgh Companion to Modern Jewish Fiction. Eds. David Brauner and Axel Stähler. Edinburgh, UK: Edinburgh University Press, 2015. 43-52. Recipient of the Association of Jewish Libraries’ Judaica Reference Award.
  • “The Perils of Desire in Philip Roth’s Early Fiction.” CLCWeb: Comparative Literature and Culture 16.2 (June 2014). Thematic Issue, “History, Memory, and the Making of Character in Roth’s Fiction.” Guest editors, Victoria Aarons and Gustavo Sánchez-Canales.
  • “Introduction to History, Memory, and the Making of Character in Roth’s Fiction.” CLCWeb: Comparative Literature and Culture 16.2 (June 2014). Thematic Issue, “History, Memory, and the Making of Character in Roth's Fiction.” Guest editors, Victoria Aarons and Gustavo Sánchez-Canales.
  • “A Genre of Rupture: The Literary language of the Holocaust.” The Bloomsbury Companion to Holocaust Literature. Ed. Jenni Adams. London: Bloomsbury, 2014. 27-45.
  • “Memory, Conscience, and the Moral Weight of Holocaust Representation.” Ethics, Art, and Representations of the Holocaust: Essays in Honor of Berel Lang. Eds. Jacob Golomb, Caroline S. Gould, and Simone Gigliotti. Lexington Books/Rowman & Littlefield, 2014. 183-198.
  • “Guardians of the Torah: Ambiguity and Antagonism in The Promise.” Chaim Potok: Confronting Modernity through the Lens of Tradition. Ed. Daniel Walden. Penn State University Press, 2013. 30-46.
  • “The Trauma of History in The Gates of the Forest.” In Elie Wiesel: Jewish, Literary, and Moral Perspectives. Eds. Steven T. Katz and Alan Rosen. Indiana University Press, 2013. 146-159.
  • “Just as he’d feared from the start”: The Treachery of Desire in Philip Roth’s Nemesis.” Philip Roth. Ed. Aimee Pozorski. Critical Insights/Salem Press, 2013. 220-235.
  • “Foreword: Saul Bellow’s Urban Landscapes.” Saul Bellow Journal, Special Issue. Guest editor, Victoria Aarons, 26, nos. 1–2 (Winter/Fall 2013): v-vii.
  • “Expelled Once Again: The Fantasy of Living the Counterlife in Roth’s Nemesis.” Philip Roth Studies, Special Issue. Guest editor, Pia Masiero, 9.1 (Spring 2013): 51-63.
  • “‘Washed up on the shores of truth’: Saul Bellow’s Post-Holocaust America.” A Political Companion to Saul Bellow. Eds. Gloria Cronin and Lee Trepanier. University of Kentucky Press, 2013. 129-151.
  • “Foreword: Roth’s Psychoanalytic Selves.” Philip Roth – The Continuing Presence: New Essays on Psychological Themes. Ed. Jane Statlander-Slote. Northeast Publishers, 2013. vii-xi.
  • “A Roundtable Memorializing Saul Bellow and the Herzog Years: Response.” Saul Bellow Journal, 25, no. 2 (2012): 76-78.
  • “Saul Bellow.” The Cambridge Companion to American Novelists. Ed. Timothy Parrish. Cambridge University Press, 2012. 230-240.
  • “The Certainties of History and the Uncertainties of Representation in Post-Holocaust Writing.” Studies in American Jewish Literature, 31.2 (Fall 2012): 134-148.
  • “Where Is Philip Roth Now?” Studies in American Jewish Literature, 31.1 (Spring 2012): 6-10.
  • “Biography of Saul Bellow.” Saul Bellow. Ed. Allan Chavkin. Critical Insights/Salem Press, 2012. 20-26.
  • “Jewish American Fiction.” The Cambridge Companion to American Fiction After 1949. Ed. John Duvall. Cambridge University Press, 2012. 129-141.
  • “The New Jewish Literature,” coauthored with Mark Shechner and Thane Rosenbaum. Zeek: A Jewish Journal of Thought and Culture. The Jewish Daily Forward. On-line Journal. 7 April 2011.

Grants & Awards

  • Choice Award for Outstanding Academic Book
  • Piper Professor Award for Outstanding Scholarly and Academic Achievement
  • Z. T. Scott Faculty Fellowship for Outstanding Achievement in Teaching and Advising