Gur A. Zak
Department of General and Comparative Literature
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Mount Scopus Campus
Tel.: 972-77-4031323; 972-546-749770
2015 - Senior Lecturer, Department of General and Comparative
Literature, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
2009-2015 Lecturer, Department of General and Comparative Literature, The
Hebrew University of Jerusalem
2016 - Chair, Department of General and Comparative Literature, The
Hebrew University of Jerusalem
2008 Ph.D., Medieval Studies, University of Toronto
Dissertation: "Writing from Exile: Petrarch's Humanism and the Ethics
of Care of the Self." Supervisor: Professor Brian Stock
2002 M.A., Medieval Studies, University of Toronto
2001 B.A., History and Communications (Magna cum Laude), Tel-Aviv University
Boccaccio and the Consolation of Literature (manuscript under review).
Petrarch’s Humanism and the Care of the Self. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010 (paperback 2014). (Reviewed: Renaissance Quarterly 64.1 (spring 2011): 159-60; Speculum 86.4 (2011): 1138-9; The Medieval Review 11.12.06 (2011-12); Modern Language Review 107.4 (2012): 1224; European History Quarterly 42.2 (2012): 379-80; Canadian Journal of History 47.3 (2012): 367; Italian Culture 30.2 (2012): 142-4).
Edited Journal Issues
"Renaissance Humanism and the Ambiguities of Modernity,” Special Issue edited with Raz Chen-Morris and Hanan Yoran, The European Legacy 20.5 (2015).
Articles and Book Chapters
“‘Umana cosa è aver compassione’: Boccaccio, Compassion, and the Ethics of Literature,” I Tatti Studies in the Italian Renaissance (2019), accepted, forthcoming.
“Love, Heroism, and Masculinity in Decameron 4.4,” in The Decameron Fourth Day in Perspective, ed. Michael Sherberg (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2019), accepted, forthcoming.
“Boccaccio’s Ulysses and the Limits of Heroism,” in Astonishment: Essays on Wonder in Honor of Piero Boitani, ed. Emilia di Rocco (Rome: Storia e letteratura, 2019), 179-195.
“Between Ghismonda and Massinissa: Boccaccio, Petrarch, and the Uses of Tragedy,” Heliotropia: A Forum of Boccaccio’s Criticism and Interpretation 15 (2018): 233-251.
“Boccaccio’s Fiammetta and the Consolation of Literature,” Modern Language Notes 131.1 (2016): 1-19.
“The Ethics and Poetics of Consolation in Petrarch’s Bucolicum carmen,” Speculum 91.1 (2016): 36-62.
“Petrarch's Griselda and the Ends of Humanism,” Le tre corone 2 (2015): 173-191.
“Renaissance Humanism and the Ambiguities of Modernity: Introduction,” (with Raz Chen-Morris and Hanan Yoran), The European Legacy 20.5 (2015): 427-435.
“Boccaccio and Petrarch,” in The Cambridge Companion to Boccaccio, eds. Steven Milner, Guyda Armstrong, Rhiannon Daniels (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015), 139-155.
“Petrarch and the Ancients,” in The Cambridge Companion to Petrarch, eds. Albert R. Ascoli and Unn Falkeid (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015), 141-154.
“Humanism as a Way of Life: Leon Battista Alberti and the Legacy of Petrarch,” I Tatti Studies in the Italian Renaissance 17.2 (2014): 217-240.
“Modes of Self-writing from Antiquity to the Later Middle Ages,” In The Oxford Handbook of Medieval Latin Literature, eds. Ralph Hexter and David Townsend (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012), 485-507.
“A Humanist in Exile: Ovid’s Myth of Narcissus and the Experience of Self in Petrarch’s Secretum,’ in Metamorphosis: The Changing Face of Ovid in Medieval and Early Modern Europe, eds. Alison Keith and Stephen Rupp (Toronto: Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies, 2007), 204-32.
“’Recollecting the Fragments of the Soul’: Narrative, Fragmentation and the History of Autobiography.’ Hamidrasha 8 (2005): 27-48. (In Hebrew).
“Il progetto autobiografico delle familiares di Petrarca.” Roberta Antognini. Renaissance Quarterly, 63.1 (spring 2010): 181.
“Boccaccio at 700,” American Boccaccio Association Newsletter 41.2 (2014): 3-6.
Free University of Berlin, Cluster of Excellence: Temporal Communities, ‘Petrarch, Compassion, and Humanist Community Building.’ October 2019.
Italian Studies, University of Pennsylvania, ‘Identification, Passion, Compassion: Dante, Petrarch, Boccaccio and the Ethics of Pietà.’ March 25, 2018.
The Annual Dante Lecture, Yale University, ‘Identification, Passion, Compassion: Dante, Petrarch, and the Ethics of Pietà.’ October 19, 2017.
Italian Studies, University of Pennsylvania, ‘Humanist Ethics: Petrarch to Machiavelli.’ March 29, 2012.
‘The Implications of Reading Brian Stock,’ An International Conference, Toronto, Ontario, March 14, 2019 (organized with Sarah Powrie)
‘Compassion in Dante’s Inferno: Literary and Philosophical Encounters,’ An International Conference, Jerusalem, Israel, December 26-28, 2017 (organized with Mimmo Cangiano, Yoav Rinon, and Tzachi Zamir)
Bibliotheca Dantesca: Annual Journal of Research Studies
2014 Mellon Visiting Fellowship, The Villa I Tatti Harvard Center for
Italian Renaissance Studies, Florence, Italy
2011-2014 The Allon Fellowship for Outstanding Young Researchers, Israel
2010-2014 The Israel Science Foundation Research Grant
Project title: “The Ethics of Writing in the Italian Renaissance”
2009-2012 The Minerva Center for the Humanities Research Fellowship, Tel-Aviv
2007-2009 The Bernard Lewis Post-Doctoral Fellowship, Department of History,
‘Boccaccio’s Poetics of Heroism.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, Toronto, ON, March 2019.
‘Petrarch and the Tragic.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA, March 2018.
‘Identification, Passion, Compassion: Dante and the Ethics of Pietà.’ Presented in the International Conference ‘Compassion in Dante’s Inferno,’ Jerusalem, December 2017.
‘Compassion and Literary Empathy in Boccaccio’s Decameron and Epistles.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, Chicago, IL, March 2017.
‘Boccaccio and the Consolation of Tragedy.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, Boston, MA, March 2016.
‘Pastoral and Consolation in the Italian Trecento.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, Berlin, Germany, April 2015.
‘Boccaccio, Petrarch, and the Ethics of Elegy.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, New York, April 2014.
'Ethics and Literary Form in the Works of Angelo Poliziano.' Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, San Diego, April 2013.
'Petrarch's Griselda and the Ethics of Narration.' Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, Washington DC, March 2012.
‘Humanism as a Way of Life: Spiritual Exercises from Petrarch to Poliziano.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, Montreal, Canada, March 2011.
‘Alberti and the Ethics of Writing.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, Venice, Italy, April 2010.
‘Giovanni da Ravenna and the Legacy of Petrarch.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, Los Angeles, California, March 2009.
‘Petrarch’s Humanism and the Ethics of Care of the Self.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, Chicago, Illinois, April 2008.
‘Ovid, the Other Humanist.’ Renaissance Society of America Annual Meeting, Miami, Florida, March 2007.
‘Narcissus’s Reflections: Petrarch, Poliziano, and the Crisis of Identity in the Late Middle Ages.’ International Conference on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, Michigan, May 2005.
‘What Is Wrong with This Image? Ovid’s Myth of Narcissus and Early Renaissance Experience of Selfhood.’ Centre for Medieval Studies and Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies Annual Conference, University of Toronto, March 2005.
‘Narrative and Identity in the Writings of Petrarch and Hayden White.’ Canadian Society of Medievalists Annual Conference, University of Manitoba, June 2004.
‘Petrarch and the Crisis of Autobiography.’ Vagantes Conference, Cornell University, March 2004.
American Boccaccio Association
Medieval Academy of America
Modern Languages Association
Renaissance Society of America
Award for Excellence in Teaching, The 'Avnei Pina' Program at the Hebrew University, 2014.
Award for Excellence in Teaching, The 'Avnei Pina' Program at the Hebrew University, 2013.
Masterpieces of World Literature (BA survey course)
Introduction to Poetry (BA introductory course)
Representations of the Self in the Renaissance (BA seminar)
Autobiographies in Western Culture (BA seminar)
Le tre corone: Dante, Petrarch, Boccaccio and the formation of the Italian Canon (BA seminar)
Modern Theory and Criticism (MA introductory course)
Writing and Gender in the Italian Renaissance (MA seminar)
Ethics and Literature from Antiquity to the Renaissance (MA seminar)
Hebrew, English, Italian, Latin, French, German