Timothy Hampton Becomes New Townsend Center Director

May 02, 2017
Timothy Hampton Portrait

Timothy Hampton, Aldo Scaglione and Marie M. Burns Distinguished Professor of Comparative Literature and French, is the new director of the Townsend Center for the Humanities.  

A scholar of the Renaissance and early modern periods, Professor Hampton has published widely on literature in its many forms across several languages and national traditions. His books include Fictions of Embassy: Literature and Diplomacy in Early Modern Europe and Literature and Nation in the Sixteenth Century: Inventing Renaissance France. He is currently working on three projects that demonstrate the breadth of his interests: a history of cheerfulness, a book about Bob Dylan's poetics, and a study of colonies before the rise of modern colonialism. 

Professor Hampton has served as chair of the Department of French and directed the Designated Emphasis in Renaissance and Early Modern Studies. In 2014-15 he was a fellow at the Institut d’Etudes Avancées in Paris, and in 2013 he was recognized with the Campus Distinguished Teaching Award, Berkeley’s highest honor for teaching excellence.

Professor Hampton, who joins the Townsend Center in its thirtieth year, succeeds Alan Tansman, Louis B. Agassiz Professor of Japanese, who concluded his five-year term as director in June 2017.