William Cohen Appointed Associate Provost and Dean for Undergraduate Studies

July 2, 2015

Provost Rankin's announcement follows, and lauds Cohen's achievements as a scholar, teacher, and administrator.

William Cohen named Associate Provost and Dean for Undergraduate StudiesIt is with great pleasure that I announce the appointment of Dr. William A. Cohen as the new Associate Provost and Dean for Undergraduate Studies.  Dr. Cohen is professor of English and has served as chairperson of that department for the last three years.  Previously he was director of undergraduate studies (2006-09) and associate chair (2010-12) of English.  Thus, he has had great experience leading large, complex units that provide critical service to the entire University community. 
Dr. Cohen’s scholarship and teaching focus on literature and culture of the Victorian period; the history of sexuality, awareness of the body and the senses; and literary theory.  He has published numerous research articles and three books on these topics and is currently at work on a fourth book, entitled Intermediate French: British Literature from the July Monarchy to the Dreyfus Affair, which considers the affective dimensions of the French language--especially when incompletely mastered--in works by English-speaking authors.  Dr. Cohen’s publications have appeared in PMLA, Novel: A Forum on Fiction, Nineteenth-Century Literature, ELH, and elsewhere. His work has been supported by the Mellon Foundation, the Camargo Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the William Andrews Clark and Huntington libraries.  He has lectured widely at universities and as a conference keynote speaker internationally.  He currently chairs the executive committee of the Victorian Division of the Modern Language Association and serves on the PMLA Advisory Committee.  He holds a B.A. from Swarthmore College and a Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley.
Until Dean Thornton Dill can identify and have in place a new or interim chairperson of English, Dr. Douglas Roberts will serve as Associate Provost and Dean ad interim of Undergraduate Studies.  Doug has served as Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies for several years and is very well qualified for this task.  I am extremely grateful that he is willing to take on this additional responsibility during this transition period.
I also want to take this opportunity to thank the search committee members, and particularly the chairperson, Dean Darryll Pines, for their good work and input during this important search process. Thanks also to Betsy Beise and Lynn Mullineaux from the Provost’s office who assisted the search committee.
Please join me in welcoming Dr. William Cohen to this important post and in thanking Doug Roberts for his interim service.

Mary Ann Rankin
Senior Vice President and Provost