Tom McEnaney

  • Associate Professor

  • 4327 Dwinelle Hall
  • OH: Make appointment by email

Associate Professor of Latin American and Caribbean Literature and Culture. He holds a joint appointment in the Department of Comparative Literature and serves on the Executive Committee of the Berkeley Center for New Media, and the Executive Board of UC Cuba.His work emphasizes the connections between Argentine, Cuban, and U.S. literature, the history of media and technology, sound studies, linguistic anthropology, computational (digital) humanities and new media studies. His work has been featured in Cultural Critique, La Habana Elegante, The Journal of Musicology, PMLARepresentations, Revista de Estudios Hispánicos, Sounding Out!, Variaciones Borges, and others. His book, Acoustic Properties: Radio, Narrative, and the New Neighborhood of the Americas (FlashPoints at Northwestern University Press, 2017) was shortlisted for the Modernist Studies First Book Prize and was the subject of a forum at Syndicate. The book investigates the co-evolution of radio and the novel in Argentina, Cuba, and the United States, charting the rise and fall of populism and state socialism, and how authors in these countries began to re-conceive novel writing as an act of listening in order to shape the creation and understanding of the vox populi.

From 2020-2022, Professor McEnaney will be a Mellon New Directions Fellow with an emphasis in cultural analytics. He is also at work on a book about textual and musical experiments with tape technology in the late 1960s and their consequences for testimonial writing, rock nacional , electronic music, and audiobooks in the Americas.  Before returning to Berkeley, he was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Comparative Literature at Cornell University. While at Cornell, Professor McEnaney also founded the Latin American Journals Project, an online archive and hub of digitized literary journals and newspapers from throughout Latin America and the Hispanophone Caribbean. The aim of this project is to increase access to and work with these extraordinary journals for people across the world. (Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley)

Selected recent publications

Acoustic Properties: Radio, Narrative, and the New Neighborhood of the Americas (FlashPoints at Northwestern University Press, 2017)

“The Sonic Turn” in diacritics, Vol. 47, No. 4 (2020): 80-109.

“Rigoberta’s Listener: The Significance of Sound in Testimonio” in PMLA, Vol. 135, No. 2 (March 2020): 393-400.

“Forgotten Histories of the Audiobook: Tape, Text, Speech, and Sound from Esteban Montejo and Miguel Barnet’s Biografía de un cimarrón to Andy Warhol’s a: a novel” in The Journal of Musicology, Vol. 36, No. 4 (2019): 437-463.

“This American Voice: The Odd Timbre of A New Standard in Public Radio” in The Oxford Handbook of Voice Studies (2019): 97-124.

“Real-to-Reel: Social Indexicality, Sonic Materiality, and Literary Media Theory in Eduardo Costa’s Tape Works” in Representations 137 (Winter 2017): 145-168.

“Language-in-Use and Literary Fieldwork” (w/Michael Lucey) (Introduction to a special issue on “Language-in-Use and the Literary Artifact”) in Representations 137 (Winter 2017): 1-22.

“Realismo Sonoro y Fidelidad Literaria: Las obras de cinta de Eduardo Costa” in Revista de estudios hispánicos, Tomo L, Número 2 (Junio 2016): 371-386.

“No Transmitter: Clandestine Radio Listening Communities in Ricardo Piglia’s The Absent City” in Cultural Critique no. 91 (Fall 2015): 72-97.

“Hello Americans: Hemispheric Perspectives and Orson Welles” in Sounding Out!, August, 2013.

“Diane…The Personal Voice Recorder In Twin Peaks” in Sounding Out!, April 2, 2012.

“The Digital Revolution? History, Photography, and the Body of Fidel Castro” in La Habana Elegante, No. 49, Primavera-Verano 2011.

Book Reviews and Review Essays

Review of Karen Benezra, Dematerialization: Art and Design in Latin America, Hispanic Review, Vol. 89, No. 4 (Autumn 2021): 507-511.

Review of Dylon Robbins, Audible Geographies in Latin America: Sounds of Race and Place in Revista de Estudios Hispánicos, Tomo 55, Número 2, (Junio 2021): 487-490.

“The Archaeology of A Discipline and the Discipline to Come” in Immanent Frame (online) for a forum dedicated to Michael Allan’s In the Shadow of World Literature, August, 2017.

“Wireless Materials: Radio Cultures in Ireland, Latin America, and the United States at the Mid-Century (A Review Essay)” in Sound Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal, Vol. 1, No. 1 (2015): 171-176.

Review of Kate Jenckes, Borges After Benjamin in Variaciones Borges, Vol. 23, April 2007.