Leah DeVun

111 Van Dyck, 16 Seminary Place, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ 08901
Rutgers History Website
Rutgers WGSS Website

Email me


I make historical work across different media, including scholarship, lens-based artwork, installations, and interdisciplinary programming. My work focuses on the history of gender and sexuality, the history of science and medicine, the history of premodern Europe, and contemporary feminist and LGBT politics and histories.



Ph.D., History, Columbia University, NewYork, NY (with Distinction), 2004

Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, 2011-Present

Professor of History

Graduate Faculty, Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, 2004-2011

Associate Professor of History, 2010-2011

Assistant Professor of History, 2004-2010

Sarah Lawrence College, Bronxville, NY, 2003-2004

Visiting Assistant Professor of History and Women’s History

Select Publications

Select Exhibitions and Programs


The Shape of Sex: Nonbinary Gender from Genesis to the Renaissance (New York: Columbia University Press, 2021).

Trans*historicities, special issue of TSQ: Transgender Studies Quarterly 5:4 (2018) (co-editor, with Zeb Tortorici).

Prophecy, Alchemy, and the End of Time (New York: Columbia University Press, 2009 [paperback, 2013]). *Winner of the John Nicholas Brown Prize for Book of the Year in Medieval Studies from the Medieval Academy of America

Peer-Reviewed Articles and Book Chapters

“Mapping the Boundaries of Sex in Marvels of the East,” in Trans Historical: Gender Plurality Before the Modern, ed. Greta LaFleur, Masha Raskolnikov, and Anna Kłosowska (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2021).

“Heavenly Hermaphrodites: Sexual Difference at the Beginning and End of Time,” postmedieval: a journal of medieval cultural studies 9 (2018): 132-146.

“I Object,” ASAP/Journal: The Association for the Study of the Arts of the Present 1:2 (2016): 201-6.

“Erecting Sex: Hermaphrodites and the Medieval Science of Surgery,” in “Scientific Masculinities,” special issue of Osiris 30:1 (2015): 17-37.

“Archives Behaving Badly,” (with Michael Jay McClure) in “Queering Archives,” special issue of Radical History Review 120 (2014): 121-30.

“Animal Appetites,” in “On the Visceral: Race, Sex, and Other Gut Feelings,” special issue, GLQ 20:4 (2014):407-36.

“The Jesus Hermaphrodite: Science and Sex Difference in Premodern Europe,” Journal of the History of Ideas 69:2 (2008):193-218.

“‘Human Heaven’: John of Rupescissa’s Alchemy at the End of the World,” in History in the Comic Mode, ed. Rachel Fulton and Bruce Holsinger (New York: Columbia University Press, 2007), 251-261. *Winner of the 2006 Jerry Stannard International Memorial Award for the Best Article of the Year 


“Pedagogy,”Shifter Magazine: Dictionary of the Possible, ed. Avi Alpert and Sreshta Rit Premnath (New York: Shifter, 2016), 131-3 (with Géraldine Gourbe).

“Childhood in the Age of Miley Cyrus,” WSQ: Women’s Studies Quarterly 43:1-2 (2015): 83-6.

“Friendship Books,” in Public Collectors, ed.Marc Fischer (Princeton: Inventory Books, 2014), 101-12. 

Encylopedia Entries

“Hermaphrodites,”in Women and Gender in Medieval Europe: An Encyclopedia, in Routledge Medieval Encyclopedia Online, ed. Ruth Mazo Karras (New York: Routledge, 2019).

“Multiple Entries,” in Cambridge Dictionary of Christianity, ed. Daniel Patte et al. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010).

“Multiple Entries,” in LGBTQ America Today, ed. John Hawley (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2008).

2022 At Home, Pearlstein Gallery, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA (Curator: Leah Appleton)

2022 Tempus Fugit, LatchKey Gallery, New York, NY (Curator: Charles Moore)

2022 Hands Off Our Cuntry, Undercurrent Projects + Artsy, New York, NY (Curator: Savannah Spirit)

2022 At Home, Mainline Art Center, Philadelphia, PA (Curator: Leah Appleton)

2019   The Other Is You BRIC, Brooklyn, NY (Curator: Liz Collins, Sol Nova, and Anna Parisi)

2019   Queer As I, HERE Art Center, New York, NY (Curator: Dan Halm)

2019 Every Woman Biennial, La Mama, New York, NY (Curator: C. Finley)

2018   Lesbian Land, Galerie Verbeeck – Van Dyck, Antwerp Queer Arts Festival, Antwerp, Belgium

2018   Our Troubled Youth, Tracey/Barry Gallery, New York University, New York, NY (Solo)

2018   Mirror Mirror, Paul Robeson Gallery, Newark, NJ (Curator: Anonda Bell)

2018   Cast of Characters, Bureau of General Services, Queer Division, New York, NY (Curator: Liz Collins)

2017   Baxter Street Camera Club Benefit Auction, Baxter Street Camera Club, New York, NY (Curators: Wendy Vogel and Janice Guy)

2017   Black Mirror, SPRING/BREAK Art Fair, New York, NY (Curator: Milk & Night Curatorial)

2017   Post Election, September Gallery, Hudson, NY (Curators: Kristen Dodge and Kate Gilmore)

2017   Chimeras, Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, Omaha, NE (Curator: Risa Puleo)

2016   Rosetta, Unisex Gallery, Brooklyn, NY (Curators: Jennifer Simmons and Sara Maria Salamone)

2016   The Summit (in collaboration with Lauryn Siegel), Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY (Curator: Liz Collins)

2016   Queering Space, Green Gallery, Yale University School of Art, New Haven, CT (Curators: Loren Britton, Shikeith Cathey, Christie DeNizio, Erik Freer, Johnathan Payne, Asad Pervaiz, Res, Buzz Slutsky, and Erica Wessman)

2016   WE:AMEricans, Station Independent Projects, New York, NY (Curator: Ruben Natal-San Miguel)

2016   ARTPAPERS 40th Anniversary Exhibition, Atlanta, GA

2015   Heavy Petting (in collaboration with Riitta Ikonen), DOSE Projects, Brooklyn, NY (Curator: Laura Splan)

2015   Paper and Performance: The Bent Page, Blanton Museum of Art, University of Texas, Austin, TX (Curator: Katie Anania)

2015   Transiting Desire, She Works Flexible, Houston, TX (Curator: Lynne McCabe)

2015   I Will Resist With Every Inch and Every Breath: Punk and the Art of Feminism, Elizabeth A. Sackler Center at the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY (Organizer and moderator: Leah DeVun)

2015   Friendship and Freedom, MASS Gallery, Austin, TX (with Edie Fake and Nightmare City) (Curator: Erin Gentry)

2014   The Future Is History: Feminist Legacies in Contemporary Art, Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY

2014   On the Cruising of Archives, MoMA PS1 Contemporary Arts Center, Long Island City, NY (Artist’s talk, with Ulrike Müller, David Evans Frantz, and FRANK)

2014   Lead and Follow, The Front, New Orleans, LA (Solo; Curator: Stephanie Patton)

2014   If We Carry On Speaking the Same Language to Each Other, We Are Going to End Up Repeating the Same History, Parmer Projects, Brooklyn, NY (Curator: Amanda Parmer)

2014   Permanency: Selections from the Permanent Collection, Leslie-Lohman Museum, New York, NY

2013   Lesbian Herstory Archives 40th Anniversary Exhibition, Johannes Vogt Gallery, New York, NY

2013   Four Core Chamber, Martina Johnston Gallery, Berkeley, CA

2013   Zeitgeist, SOMArts, San Francisco, CA

2013   Bodies in Motion, VU Gallery, Western Wash. University, Bellingham, WA

2013   If I Had A Camera…Re-Imagining Film and Media through a Feminist Lens, Sage Art Center, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY

2012   Latent Images, ONE Archives Gallery and Museum, University of Southern California, West Hollywood, CA (Solo; Curator: David Evans Frantz)

2012   10.-22.-38 Astoria, The Lab, San Francisco, CA

2012   Twisted Sisters, DODGE Gallery, New York, NY (Curators: Janet Phelps and Kristen Dodge)

2012   Teenage Wasteland, Co-Lab, Austin, TX

2012   Diminishing Returns, CANAL/Otis College of Art and Design, Los Angeles, CA

2011   Femininity Constructed, Satellite Gallery at the University of Texas, San Antonio, San Antonio, TX (with Sarah Sudhoff)

2011   The Gun and Knife Show, Centraltrak, Dallas, TX (Curator: Heyd Fontanot)

2010   Our Hands On Each Other, Women and Their Work, Austin, TX (Solo; Curator: Risa Puleo)

2009   New American Talent, The Contemporary Austin, Austin, TX (Juror: Hamza Walker)

2009   Beauty Knows No Pain, Houston Center for Photography, Houston, TX (with O. Rufus Lovett; Curator: Madeline Yale)

Using Format