Jelena Todorović

Position title: Resident Fellow (2019-2020)

Vilas Associate Professor of Italian, French and Italian, UW-Madison

Portrait image of Jelena Todorovic standing in front of a Madison lake wearing a black-and-white polka-dotted dress, red earrings, and small tortoise shell glasses

Textual Authority and the History of Dante’s ‘Vita Nova:’ Revisiting Editorial Objectivity in the Era of ‘Fake News’

“Textual Authority” investigates past generations’ understanding of authorship and textual authority and the processes by which that understanding evolved into our own relationship with the author(ity) on the one hand and with the critical method on the other. In reconstructing, re-interpreting, and re-contextualizing the complex print circulation history of Dante’s ‘Vita Nova,’ I examine the (in)stability of a written text in its many iterations that depend on one another and on editorial decisions that must be acknowledged as co-creative. More broadly, I engage the interest of all humanities scholars as we reinterpret our role in the ‘post-truth‚’ world of ‘fake news.’

Jelena Todorović received her B.A. in Italian from the University of Belgrade, Serbia, and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Italian from Indiana University in Bloomington. Currently, she serves as Associate Professor of Italian at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her research and teaching interests span from medieval Latin, Old Occitan, and Italian poetry, to material philology, textual criticism, history of the book. Her essays were published or are forthcoming in Studi danteschiDante StudiesHeliotropiaBoccaccio in AmericaLectura Boccaccii, Medioevo letterario d’Italia, etc. She authored a monograph titled Dante and the Dynamics of Textual Exchange: Authorship, Manuscript Culture, and the Making of the ‘Vita Nova’ (Fordham University Press, 2016) and has co-edited with Ernesto Livorni the volume titled Petrarch and His Legacies (forthcoming with the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies). She is currently finishing her book manuscript tentatively titled Dante’s Vita Nova in Print Culture: Balancing Boccaccian Authority and the Critical Method Through Five Centuries of Editorial Practice.