Chris Gabbard

Associate Professor

English • College of Arts & Sciences

Areas of Expertise

  • disability studies in the Humanities
  • narrative medicine
  • Restoration and eighteenth-century British literature
  • Jonathan Swift
  • satire


Certified Online Instructor --UNF  2011

Ph.D. -- Stanford University 1999

BA and MA -- San Francisco State University 1993


I came to UNF in 2001 from Stanford, where I wrote a dissertation on late-seventeenth English stereotypes about the Dutch. When I arrived at UNF, I began developing an interest in Disability Studies in the Humanities, and I now serve on the editorial board of The Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies. This field delves into the nature, meaning, and consequences of what it is to be defined as disabled and explores the historical and cultural dynamics of disability. 


Sabbatical semester, 2011


American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS)

Southeastern Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (SEASECS)

Society for Disability Studies (SDS)

Modern Language Association (MLA)

Grants and Contracts Awarded

Summer Scholarship Grant, Univ. North Florida, 2010, 2009, 2007, 2004
Postdoctoral Fellowship, Stanford University, 1999-2000

Publications & Presentations


  •  “From Custodial Care to Caring Labor: The Discourse of Who Cares in Jane Eyre” in The Madwoman and the Blindman: Jane Eyre, Discourse, Disability. Ed. David Bolt, Julia Miele Rodas, and Elizabeth J. Donaldson. Ohio State UP, 2012.
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  • “Disability Studies and the British Long Eighteenth Century” and accompanying “Teaching Guide.” Literature Compass 8.2 (Feb. 2011): 80–94
  • “Odd Quirks: The Story of My Son.” Papa, PhD: Essays on Fatherhood by Men in the Academy. Ed. Mary Ruth Marotte, Paige Martin Reynolds, and Ralph James Savarese. Rutgers UP, 2010. 217-223.
  • “A Life beyond Reason.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. 12 Nov. 2010. B13>.
  • “From Idiot Beast to Idiot Sublime: Mental Disability in John Cleland’s Fanny Hill.” PMLA: Publications of the Modern Language Association of America 123.2 (March 2008): 375-389.
  • “What He Found Not Monsters, He Made So”: The I-word and The Bathos of Exclusion.” Journal of Literary & Cultural Disability Studies 2.1 (Winter 2008).
  • “Clashing Masculinities in Aphra Behn’s The Dutch Lover. SEL (Studies in English Literature 1500-1900) 47.3 (Summer 2007): 557-572.
  • “The Dutch Wives’ Good Husbandry: Defoe’s Roxana and Financial Self-Fashioning.” Eighteenth-Century Studies 37.2 (2004), 237-251.
  • “Gender Stereotyping in Early Modern Travel Writing on Holland.” SEL (Studies in English Literature 1500-1900) 43.1 (2003), 83-101.
  • “Sirens without a Song: Gender Stereotyping in Marvell’s ‘The Character of Holland’.” ELN (English Language Notes) 40.1 (2002): 61-76.
  • “‘The She-Tyrant Reigns’: Mary II and the Tullia Poems.” Restoration: Studies in English Literary Culture, 1660-1700 25.2 (2001): 103-116.
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  • A History of Intelligence and “Intellectual Disability”: The Shaping of Psychology in Early Modern Europe, by C. F. Goodey. Burlington VT: Ashgate, 2011, for the Journal of  Literary and Cultural Disability Studies (forthcoming)
  • Autism and Representation. Edited by Mark Osteen. New York: Routledge, 2008, for the Disability Studies Quarterly (30.1) Winter 2010>.
  • Reasonable People: A Memoir of Autism and Adoption by Ralph James Savarese. New York: Other Press, 2007, for the Disability Studies Quarterly, Winter, 2008
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  • Idiocy and Wit: Reading Intellectual Dis/Ability in the Age of Reason. Chapters on Behn, Locke, Defoe, Swift, Cleland, Sterne, Sarah Scott.
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  • "A Race of Changelings: Swift's Yahoos as Mentally Disabled Other" as part of “Literary and Artistic Representations of the ‘Other’ in France and England," Southeastern American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (SEASECS) annual conference (March 2012), Atlanta GA.
  • “‘That Secret Something’: The Mentally Disabled Primitive in Daniel Defoe’s Mere Nature Delineated" as part of the panel “The Didactic and Non-fictional Works of Daniel Defoe” (Daniel Defoe Society) American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS) annual conference (March 2009), Richmond VA.
  • “Defoe’s Peter the Wild Boy and the Conundrum of Species” Southeastern Society for Disability Studies (SEASECS) annual conference (March 2009), Charlotte NC.
  • “‘I Shall Not At Present Meddle’: John Locke’s Immaterial Mind” as part of the panel “The Immaterial Eighteenth Century” American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS) annual conference (March 2008), Portland OR.
  • “From Demonization to Idiocy: the Evolving Master Trope of Exclusion.” Southeastern American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (SEASECS) annual conference (February 2008), Auburn, AL.
  • “‘The wit may be somewhat trimmed’: Mental Disability in Thomas Willis’ The Soul of Brutes” as part of the panel “The Restoration: New Approaches.” American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS) annual conference (2007), Atlanta.
  • “Abjection in Cyberspace: The Streaming Video of Terri Schiavo” as part of the panel “Media Spectacles of Disability 2005: Million Dollar Baby and the Schiavo Case.” Modern Language Association (MLA) annual conference (2005), Washington DC.
  • “The (m)other of all Others: Are Undergraduate Literature Students Ready for Disability Studies?" as part of the panel “Fresh Voices in Disability Studies.” Modern Language Association (MLA) annual conference (2005), Washington DC.
  • “‘Warlike or effeminate’? Masculinity in Aphra Behn’s Comedy The Dutch Lover. American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS) annual conference (2005), Las Vegas NV.
  • “‘Instinct-ridden as He Was’: Idiocy as Animality in John Cleland's Fanny Hill." Southeastern American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (SEASECS) annual conference (2005), Myrtle Beach SC.
  • Panel Chair: “Defect, Deformity, and Disfigurement in the Long Eighteenth Century.” American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS) annual conference (2004), Boston.

GabbardContact Information

(904) 620-2273

Office Hours

Bldg 8, rm 2215