Ayelet Ben-Yishai
Department of English Language and Literature
University of Haifa
Mount Carmel, Haifa 31905 ISRAEL


Curriculum Vitae

Curriculum Vitae


2006 - present: Lecturer (Assistant Professor) of English, University of Haifa, Israel
2005 - 2006: Lecturer, English and Comparative Literature, UC Berkeley
1998 - 2004: Graduate Student Instructor, Comparative Literature, UC Berkeley


Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley Comparative Literature, 2005.
M.A. Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Comparative Literature 1998, cum laude.
LL.B. Hebrew University Law School, Jerusalem, 1994.
Bachelor’s Degree in Law; Admitted to the Israeli Bar Association, 1995.


Common Precedents: The Presentness of the Past in Victorian Law and Fiction Oxford University Press, 2013.

Articles and Book Chapters

  • Ben-Yishai, A. & E. Bar-Yosef, “Emergency Fictions” in Cambridge History of the Indian Novel in English, Ulka Anjaria (ed.) Cambridge University Press (forthcoming 2014).
  • “Legal Culture” in Ashgate Research Companion to Anthony Trollope, Deborah Dennenholtz Morse, Margaret Markham (eds.) Ashgate Press (forthcoming 2014).
  • "Teaching Legal Realism: The Realist Novel and the Law”. In Austin Sarat, Cathrine Frank and Matthew Anderson (eds.), MLA Options for Teaching Literature and Law. New York: MLA Publications, 2011. 136-146.
  • "A Common Endeavor: Anthony Trollope and the Law". In Carolyn Dever and Lisa Niles (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to Anthony Trollope. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2011. 155-167.
  • “Victorian Precedents: Narrative Form, Law Reports, and Stare Decisis”, Journal of Law, Culture, and the Humanities, 4.3 (2008): 382-402.
  • “The Fact of a Rumor: Anthony Trollope’s The Eustace Diamonds”, Nineteenth-Century Literature,62.1 (2007): 88-120.
  • “The Dialectic of Shame: Representation in the Metanarrative of Salman Rushdie’s Shame”, Modern Fiction Studies, 48.1 (2002): 194-215. [See also below in Book Articles].
  • Reprinted in Harold Bloom (ed.), Modern Critical Views on Salman Rushdie, New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 2003. 247-266. [See also above under Refereed Journal Articles, D2].
  • Roe, D. & A. Ben-Yishai, "Exploring the Relationship Between the Person and the Disorder among Individuals Hospitalized for Psychosis", Psychiatry: Interpersonal & Biological Processes, 62.4 (1999): 370-380.

Invited Lectures & Colloquium Talks

“Claiming Continuity:  Family Planning, Political Dynasties and Narrative Form in the Indian Emergency”

Institute for Research in the Humanities

University of Wisconsin – Madison

November 2013

“The Ongoing Trauma of Partition” (with Dr. Ornit Shani)

India Lunch Series

University of Haifa

December 2010

“A Common Endeavor: Anthony Trollope and the Law”

Nineteenth-Century Colloquium

Columbia University

September 2009

“Common Precedents”

Faculty Seminar

Tel Aviv University School of Law

March 2009

"Give Me a Precedent: Past, Present and Future in Victorian Fiction and Law"

Law and Literature Workshop

University of Toronto School of Law

April 2008

“Common and Civil: Legal Traditions and Realist Fiction"

Comparative Literature Department Seminar

Hebrew University

December 2007

"Victorian Precedents"

Law and Humanities Colloquium

Cornell University Law School

March 2007

“Victorian Commonalities: Gossip, Fiction and the Problem of Legal Positivism”

Nineteenth-Century Group


October 2005


Selected Scholarly Conferences

2014 Realism Conference

U of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana

Locating Commonalities

Invited Talk

2013 The 10th Political Lexicon Conference

Minerva Humanities Center, Tel Aviv University


Invited Talk

2013 Law, Culture and the Humanities

London, UK

“Author Meets Readers” Panel for my book Common Precedents.
Discussants: Professor Bernadette Meyler, Law, Cornell; Dr. Anat Rosenberg, Law, IDC


2013 ACLA

Toronto, Canada

The Persistence of Realism in the Postcolonial Novel: Shashi Deshpande’s Middle-Class Conventionality

Co-organizer of panel on “Global Realism”

2012 North American Victorian Studies Association

Madison, WI

Who are ‘We’ when ‘We’ Live in This Way?: Networking as a Novel Form

2011 Trajectories of Partition in South Asia and the Middle East: Comparative Perspectives.

New Delhi, India

“Teaching the Partition of the Indian Subcontinent in Haifa, 2011: The Ethics and Politics of Comparative Pedagogy”

Invited Talk

2010 Interdisciplinary Nineteenth-Century Studies

Austin, Texas

“Illegitimate Offspring: Disruption and Continuity in Collins’ The Woman in White

2010 American Comparative Literature Association

New Orleans, LA

“Dickensian Today: Realism in the Postcolonial Novel”

2009 Matters of State: Bildung and Literary-Intellectual Discourse in the Nineteenth Century

Leuven, Belgium

“A Common Endeavor: Anthony Trollope and the Law"

Invited Talk
2009 Jerusalem Dickens Conference

Hebrew University,

A Fine Balance: The Pleasures of Realism in the Postcolonial Novel”

2008 North American Victorian Studies Association

New Haven, CT

"Incremental Temporalities: Victorian Common Law Culture and 'Time Immemorial'"

2007 Narrative

Washington DC

“Truthful Precedents: Middlemarch and the Question of the New”

Organized Panel and presented paper

2006 Law, Culture and the Humanities

Syracuse, NY

“Victorian Precedents”

2005 north American Victorian Studies Association

Charlottesville, VA

“A Truthful Precedent for Middlemarch

2005 Modern Languages Association

Washington DC

“Narrative Legitimacy: Wilkie Collins’ The Woman in White

2004 north American Victorian Studies Association

Toronto, Canada

“Obsessed with Law (and Literature): A critical survey of Victorian research today”

2004 South Asian Literary Association

Philadelphia, PA

“Rohinton Mistry, Honor? de Balzac and the Realist Novel of Social Critique”

Major Research Grants


Funded by



Role in Research

2012-2015 Israel Science Foundation The Persistence of Realism in Postcolonial Fiction: The Case of the Indian Novel in English Dr. Eitan Bar-Yosef

Primary Researcher

2012-2014 Van Leer Institute < Twentieth-Century Partitions: Legacies of British Rule (Interdisciplinary Research Group) Dr. Ornit Shani Primary Researcher

Selected Fellowships, Awards and Prizes


Honorary Fellow, Institute of Research in the Humanities, University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Fellow, Summer Institute in Literary Studies, National Humanities Center


Lady Davis Postdoctoral Fellowship, Hebrew University, Israel (declined)


Mabelle McLeod Lewis Memorial Fund Dissertation Fellowship


Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor Award