Stiliana Milkova

  • Associate Professor of Comparative Literature and Italian
  • Director of Comparative Literature Program

Education

  • AB, Brown University
  • PhD, University of California, Berkeley

Biography

Stiliana Milkova has published extensively on contemporary Italian literature, on 19th-century Russian and Bulgarian literatures, on the relationship between literature and the visual arts, and on literary translation. She is the author of the first English-language scholarly book on Elena Ferrante, Elena Ferrante as World Literature (Bloomsbury, 2021) and the coeditor of the Modern Language Notes (136:1, 2021) special issue Elena Ferrante in a Global Context. Milkova has translated from Italian works by Italo Calvino, Alessandro Baricco, Antonio Tabucchi, Anita Raja, Adriana Cavarero, Tiziano Scarpa, Dario Voltolini, and others.

At Oberlin, Milkova teaches the introduction to Comparative Literature, as well as courses on literature and the visual arts, on literature and architecture, on the figure of the femme fatale in the literary and visual imagination, on contemporary Italian literature (both in Italian and in translation), and on literary translation. She has curated three teaching exhibitions at the Allen Memorial Art Museum: Italy on Paper (2012); On the Threshold: Doors and Windows Represented (2015); and Women Bound and Unbound (2019).

Milkova is also the editor of the online journal Reading in Translation which publishes reviews of translated literature, interviews with literary translators and publishers, essays on the theory and practice of translation, as well as special issues on modern and contemporary writers in translation such as Natalia Ginzburg and Domenico Starnone.

  • Comparative Literature
  • Literature, visual arts, architecture
  • Literary Translation
  • Italian literature
  • Femmes Fatales

  • Contemporary Italian Literature
  • Italian Women’s Writing
  • Literature, Visual Arts, and Architecture
  • Literary Topographies
  • Trauma Studies

Notes

Stiliana Milkova organizes roundtable at Venice Film Festival

September 7, 2021

On September 3, Stiliana Milkova, Associate Professor of Comparative Literature, co-organized and participated in "Elena Ferrante's Lost Daughters," a round table discussion at the 2021 Venice Film Festival in Venice, Italy, on the occasion of the premier of the 2021 film "The Lost Daughter" starring Maggie Gyllenhaal. The event was part of the cultural association Isola Edipo.

Stiliana Milkova interviews Bulgarian author and English translator for article in Reading in Translation

August 17, 2021

Associate Professor of Comparative Literature Stiliana Milkova interviewed the Bulgarian-born writer Nataliya Deleva and her English translator, the Bulgarian-born Izidora Angel, about Deleva's novel Four Minutes (2021), and her forthcoming novel, written in English, Arrival (2022). In the interview, Milkova, Deleva, and Angel reflect on exophonic writing, literary translation, and the power of collaboration between women.

Stiliana Milkova coedits and contributes article to special issue of Modern Language Notes

June 8, 2021

Associate Professor of Comparative Literature Stiliana Milkova coedited a special issue of the scholarly journal Modern Language Notes (MLN, 136:1, 2021) and published an article in the special issue.

Stiliana Milkova publishes two essays on Elena Ferrante

May 11, 2021

Associate Professor of Comparative Literature Stiliana Milkova published two essays, one in the Bulgarian literary journal Literaturen Vestnik (in Bulgarian), and the other in the online journal Reading in Translation. Her Bulgarian essay discusses her recently published book Elena Ferrante as World Literature (Bloomsbury Academic) while her online publication reflects on reading Elena Ferrante's new novel in Bulgarian translation.

Stiliana Milkova publishes article on Elena Ferrante's novels

March 30, 2021

Stiliana Milkova, associate professor of comparative literature, published an article in the scholarly journal "Gender / Sexuality / Italy." Titled "Side By Side: Female Collaboration in Ferrante Fiction and Ferrante Studies," the article proposes that a double creation of female genealogies is at work within Ferrante’s novels and in the critical field that studies them.

 

Stiliana Milkova edits special journal issue on Italian writer Natalia Ginzburg

March 3, 2021

Associate Professor of Comparative Literature Stiliana Milkova edited a special issue for Reading in Translation on the Italian writer Natalia Ginzburg that features 15 essays, interviews, and two first English translations of works by Italo Calvino and by Natalia Ginzburg. Milkova co-translated Italo Calvino's essay "Natalia Ginzburg or the Possibilities of the Bourgeois Novel." 

Stiliana Milkova's book launch to be hosted by Italian Cultural Institute on Feb. 23

February 19, 2021

The book launch of Elena Ferrante as World Literature (Bloomsbury Academic) by Stiliana Milkova, Associate Professor of Comparative Literature, will be hosted by the Italian Cultural Institute in Dublin at 7 p.m. (GMT)/2 p.m. (ET) on Tuesday, February 23.

Elena Ferrante as World Literature studies Ferrante’s works as world literature—that is, as literature that circulates in translation outside its culture of origins. Beginning with the creation of the author “Elena Ferrante” and the figure of the translator, Milkova delves into the intricacies of Ferrante’s texts, offering both an introduction to and a sustained reading of Ferrante’s entire literary production to date. The volume will be presented by Dr. Enrica Maria Ferrara (Trinity College Dublin) in conversation with the Milkova and Ferrante's translator, Ann Goldstein. Register your attendance and receive a link to the event, which will be held via Zoom.

Stiliana Milkova selected to judge 2021 Italian Prose in Translation Prize

January 19, 2021

Associate Professor of Comparative Literature Stiliana Milkova was selected as one of three judges for 2021 Italian Prose in Translation Prize awarded by the American Association of Literary Translators (ALTA). The other two judges are Oberlin alum Will Schutt and translator and writer Minna Zallman Proctor.

Stiliana Milkova publishes book review

September 18, 2020

Stiliana Milkova's invited review of Elena Ferrante's new novel The Lying Life of Adults was published in Public Books. 

Stiliana Milkova edits special journal issue and publishes a translation

September 7, 2020

Stiliana Milkova, associate professor of comparative literature and Italian, edited a special issue of the online journal Reading in Translation dedicated to Elena Ferrante's new novel The Lying Life of Adults. The special issue consists of seven original articles and two first English translations of essays by the Spanish writers Eloy Tizón and Greta Alonso. Professor Milkova also published in The Literary Review a translation from Italian of Tiziano Scarpa's poem "The Philosophy Student."

Stiliana Milkova Publishes Essay

July 28, 2020

Stiliana Milkova, associate professor of comparative literature and Italian,  published an essay on the HBO TV series "My Brilliant Friend" in Arcade

Stiliana Milkova Interviewed

June 25, 2020

Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Italian Stiliana Milkova was interviewed in Italian about the RAI/HBO TV series "My Brilliant Friend." In her interview, Milkova discusses a key change in the adaptation of the TV series from Elena Ferrante's eponymous cycle of four novels. Milkova also reflectes on the role of place and space in Ferrante's novels.

Stiliana Milkova Publishes Translation of Interview

June 4, 2020

Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Italian Stiliana Milkova published a translation from Italian of a long interview with the Italian feminist philosopher Adriana Cavarero in the scholarly journal Narrative (2020).

Stiliana Milkova Publishes Essay

April 24, 2020

Stiliana Milkova, assistant professor of comparative literature and Italian, published an essay in the Michigan Quarterly Review, reflecting on the pandemic, translation, and the myths of reading and creativity.

Stiliana Milkova Speaks at Seminar and is Nominated for Pushcart Prize

December 13, 2019

Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Italian Stiliana Milkova was an invited speaker at the "Global Ferrante" seminar in Siena, Italy. You can watch her presentation in Italian.

Milkova's translation of Alessandro Baricco's "The Boodman Syndrome" was nominated for a 2019 Pushcart Prize.

Stiliana Milkova Reviews Volume of Essays

November 22, 2019

Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Italian Stiliana Milkova reviewed Elena Ferrante's new volume of essays Incidental Inventions.

Stiliana Milkova Publishes Two Translations from Italian

October 14, 2019

Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Italian Stiliana Milkova publishes two translations from Italian: Alessandro Baricco's "The Boodman Syndrome" in the Arkansas International and Dario Voltolini's "At Obrycki's" in Michigan Quarterly Review.

Stiliana Milkova Co-Organizes International Conference

June 23, 2019

Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Italian Stiliana Milkova co-organized the first international conference on Elena Ferrante, held June 7-8, 2019 at Durham University (UK). The conference gathered scholars from around the world to discuss the global phenomenon of the contemporary Italian writer whose identity is unknown. In spring 2019, Professor Milkova taught a related course titled The Global Phenomenon of Elena Ferrante.

Stiliana Milkova Publishes Article

April 6, 2019

Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature Stiliana Milkova published an article in the prestigious Italian scholarly journal Contemporanea. Written in Italian and titled "Il Minotauro e la doppia Arianna: Spazio liminale, labirinto urbano e città femminile," the article proposes the city, and more specifically the city as labyrinth, as a framework for analyzing Elena Ferrante’s novels.

Stiliana Milkova Gives Invited Lecture

April 3, 2019

Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature Stiliana Milkova gave an invited lecture at New York University's Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò titled "Ariadne and the Minotaur: Literal and Symbolic Labyrinth in Elena Ferrante's 'My Brilliant Friend'." Oberlin alumni and current students were in attendance. The talk was recorded and can be accessed here.

Professor Milkova was also an invited participant in a round table on Elena Ferrante at Rutgers University where she joined a conversation about the study of Ferrante's works.

Stiliana Milkova Interviewed

April 18, 2017

Stiliana Milkova, assistant professor of comparative literature, was interviewed on "Fahrenheit," the leading program about culture and literature which is broadcast on Italian national radio. The interview covered the first international conference about the author Elena Ferrante which took place on April 7, 2017 in Naples, Italy. Professor Milkova was an invited participant at the conference.

The podcast of the interview (in Italian) can be heard here.

Stiliana Milkova Organizes Seminars

April 10, 2014

Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature Stiliana Milkova organized two two-day seminars on "Frames in Literature and Across the Arts" at the convention of the American Comparative Literature Association at New York University, which ran from March 20 to 23. She also presented a paper on literary frames in Gogol, Tolstoy, and Dostoevsky. 

News

Teaching in the New Normal: Translation Symposium

April 26, 2020

These days, the classroom has taken on new meaning for both faculty and students at Oberlin. In this edition of Teaching in the New Normal, Professor Kirk Ormand describes how this year’s Translation Symposium looked different than in years past.