Fineman, Joel

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Joel Fineman, son of Alan Fineman and Sylvia Balakoff Fineman, was born in New York City on January 14, 1947. He received his B.A. (cum laude) in English from the University of California, Berkeley in 1968 and his M.A. and Ph.D. in English from the State University of New York at Buffalo in 1974.

From 1969 to 1971, Fineman was a teaching assistant at SUNY-Buffalo. He became an instructor at the University of the Negev in Beersheva, Israel for the years 1972-1973. Through a teaching fellowship, he returned to New York in 1974 as an adjunct instructor at Hunter College, City University of New York. In 1976-1977, Fineman was honored as the Andrew W. Mellon Post-Doctoral Fellow at The Center for the Humanities, Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. Lastly, he returned to the University of California, Berkeley as an assistant professor in 1977; he was promoted to associate professor status in 1983.

In addition to the honor of being named a Mellon Fellow in 1976, Joel Fineman was a Visiting Fellow at New York University's Institute for the Humanities in the summer of 1980 and won a National Endowment for the Humanities Research Fellowship in 1981. In 1985 he was named a Fellow by the Guggenheim Foundation and in 1986 he was the recipient of the James Russell Lowell Prize, given to him by the Modern Language Association of America for his crowning achievement, Shakespeare's Perjured Eye: The Invention of Poetic Subjectivity in the Sonnets.

Fineman supplemented his personal academic pursuits by his participation on the editorial boards of several journals, including Representations and October. He was a frequent guest lecturer at universities and scholarly institutions in both the United States and abroad.

Joel Fineman died March 28, 1989 at the age of 42. At the time of his death, he was working on his proposed second book, Shakespeare's Will, a study of the playwright's influence on theorization of person.

From the guide to the Joel Fineman Papers, ca. 1974-1989, (The Bancroft Library)

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referencedIn Paul de Man papers, 1948-1984 University of California, Irvine. Library. Department of Special Collections
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