About

photo credit: Nina Subin

Laura Kipnis is a cultural critic/essayist and former video artist whose work focuses on sexual politics, aesthetics, shame, emotion, acting out, moral messiness, and various other crevices of the American psyche. Her seven books–including Unwanted Advances: Sexual Paranoia Comes to Campus; Men: Notes from an Ongoing Investigation; How to Become A Scandal; Against Love: A Polemic; The Female Thing: Dirt, Sex, Envy, Vulnerability; and Bound and Gagged: Pornography and the Politics of Fantasy in America–have been translated into fifteen languages. Her latest book, Love in the Time of Contagion: A Diagnosis, came out in February 2022 from Pantheon. Kipnis is professor in the Department of Radio/TV/Film at Northwestern University, taught previously at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Michigan, and has been a visiting professor at NYU (Performance Studies Dept.), Columbia University School of the Arts (MFA Non-fiction program), University of British Columbia, and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She’s received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Michigan Society of Fellows, the NEA and Yaddo; and has contributed essays and reviews to The New York Review of Books, New Republic, The Nation, The Guardian, Atlantic, Harper’s, Playboy, the New York Times Magazine, the New York Times Book Review, BookforumSlate, Critical Inquiry and New Left Review. Her essays have been included in The Best American Essays in 2016 (edited by Jonathan Franzen), and 2023 (edited by Vivian Gornick), and in The Contemporary American Essay (edited by Phillip Lopate). Kipnis has a BFA from San Francisco Art Institute, an MFA from Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, and attended the Whitney Museum Independent Study Studio Program. She lives in New York.