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Faculty and Staff Profiles

Alessandra Benedicty, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor


Center for Worker Education


Affiliated Departments

American Studies


25 Broadway 7-46

p: (212) 926-6625 x207

f: (212) 925-0963


  • Profile

    Alessandra Benedicty is Assistant Professor of Caribbean and Francophone Literatures and director of the Master of Arts in the Study of the Americas at the Division of Interdisciplinary Studies at The City College of New York. The City College is one of the senior colleges and Manhattan-based campuses of the City University of New York (CUNY), as well as the first free public institution of higher education in the United States. Previously, she worked at the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in New York as Director of Development (2007-2009) and before that at the Québec Government Office in New York as Attachée for Inter-Governmental and Academic Affairs (2004-2007).


  • Education

    Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Madison, French and Francophone Literatures

    D.E.A., Université de Paris IV-Sorbonne, Comparative Literature

    B.A., University of California, Santa Barbara, French, Italian and Film Studies 

  • Courses Taught

    Benedicty teaches courses on immigration, globalization, gender studies, Arabic literature in translation, Caribbean and Canadian studies, research methodologies, and has taught courses in English, French, and Italian. 

  • Research Interests

    Benedicty’s current scholarship focuses on Haitian art, culture, and literature. Its methodology is interdisciplinary, drawing upon art history, literary theory, anthropology, religious studies, and political philosophy. In 2010, with Jerry W. Carlson she received President Lisa Staiano-Coico’s City Seeds Award to organize a series of nine lectures and conduct research in African-derived religions; they have recently received a grant to work on Caribbean cinema in Spring 2014; she has received a grant to study manuscripts related to the Loudun possessions in France in the early seventeenth century; and, for 2012-2013, she was selected to participate in the Seminar on “Poverty” organized by the Center for the Humanities at the Graduate Center (CUNY), funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the office of Executive Vice Chancellor Alexandra Logue, and the office of Provost Chase Robinson at the CUNY Graduate Center.


  • Publications

    Benedicty’s recent publications include: “Towards an Intellectual History of Possession: Reading ‘la crise’ as a Textual Space in Vodou and André Breton’s Haitian Lectures and Nadja” in Studies in Religion/ Sciences religieuses, “Barthes, Genette and Laferrière: Crafting and Commenting Writing in Dany Laferrière’s How to Make Love to a Negro” in Contemporary French and Francophone Studies, “Narrational Devices, Discourses of Emanicipation: Frankétienne’s Les Affres d’un défi” in The Journal of Haitian Studies, and “Aesthetics of ‘Ex-centricity’ and Considerations of ‘Poverty,’” an extended reflection inspired by Kaiama L. Glover’s recent research in Small Axe: A Caribbean Journal of Criticism, amongst others. She is currently finishing a book project French Theory and Spirit Possession: Haitian Literature and Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Thought. She is second editor on a volume titled Revisiting Marie Vieux Chauvet: Paradoxes of the Postcolonial Feminine.

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