Karen Thornber

Asia Pacific Observatory

Affiliate information

Professional Title Professor of Comparative Literature and of East Asian Languages and Civilizations
Institution Harvard University
Departmental Affiliation Comparative Literature, Regional Studies East Asia
Related affiliates
Xiangzhan Cheng July 15, 2018
Yvonne Chia-hua Lin July 15, 2018
Huei-min Tsai July 15, 2018
Sharon Yi-hsuan Tseng July 15, 2018
Syaman Rapongan July 15, 2018
All affiliates

Karen Thornber

Professor of Comparative Literature and of East Asian Languages and Civilizations

Karen Thornber is Harry Tuchman Levin Professor in Literature and Professor of East Asian Languages and Civilizations at Harvard University. She is the author of three major scholarly monographs. Most recent is Global Healing: Literature, Advocacy, Care (Brill 2020), which draws on literatures from 20 languages and close to 50 nations, across six continents. Thornber’s two previous major scholarly monographs both won multiple international awards: Ecoambiguity: Environmental Crises and East Asian Literatures (Michigan 2012) and Empire of Texts in Motion: Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Taiwanese Translations of Japanese Literature (Harvard 2009).  Thornber’s fourth single-authored monograph, Gender Justice and Asian Literatures, is under preliminary contract with the Modern Languages Association Publication Program. In addition, Thornber is (co)editor of several volumes including one on Global Indigeneities and Environment, and the award-winning translator of Japanese literature. Thornber has held many leadership positions at Harvard, including the Harvard Environmental Humanities Initiative.