Francis Tobienne, Jr. Ph.D., was born in St. Croix, Virgin Islands in 1975 and grew up on the Isle of Seven Flags. A scientist, poet, linguist, cultural philosopher, literary critic and painter he received a Trinity College Fellowship to study at Trinity College in 1994 and a Purdue Doctoral Fellowship to do his doctoral research in West Lafayette, Indiana in 2007. He received his doctorate and a Graduate Certificate from Purdue in 2013 and published his first book, The Position of Magic In Selected Medieval Spanish Texts, in 2008 while still a Master’s student. In 2014 he was unanimously elected to Phi Beta Kappa upon the nomination of Dr. John J. Contreni, then Justin S. Merrill Dean of the College of Liberal Arts | Purdue.
Tobienne has taught at Phillips Academy—Andover, Eckerd, Purdue, University of South Florida—St. Petersburg and South University, Tampa. His interdisciplinary interests are indicated in that he studied chemistry and biology with focus on medicine, bioethics and literature at Trinity College; literature and literary theory at The Honors College | Michigan State University; medieval literature and language, literary theory, philosophy and cultural studies at Purdue; and bioethics, ethics and reproductive technologies as well as religious studies and education at Harvard. He has served as visiting researcher of magic as intellectual history at Harvard University (2007 and 2008), visiting researcher of the Visconti Tarot texts at Yale University (2013), visiting researcher of Mandeville’s Travels at The British Library (2015), visiting researcher of the Fœlix Consortium and esoteric texts at Dr. Williams’s Library in London (2015), visiting researcher of medical and political science at the Wellcome Library in London (2015), visiting researcher of Frances Yates and alchemical texts at The Warburg Institute in London (2015) and visiting researcher of the macabre in literature and culture at the very desk of Bram Stoker and James Joyce at Marsh’s Library in Dublin, Ireland.
In 2010, he articulated the Mission Statement for Team Dalí, a partnership between The Salvador Dalí Museum (DM) and University of South Florida—St. Petersburg, and still serves as a Founding Member in his role as Senior Research Fellow at the DM. His best known works to date include: The Position of Magic In Selected Medieval Spanish Texts (2008), “Cellular Imitation and Violence Toward the Neighbor” in René Girard & Creative Mimesis (2013), Occultus: the Hidden and Macabre in Literature and Film (2016), Mandeville’s Travails: Merging Travel, Theory and Commentary (2016), “Wonder Woman Matters: pathos and sophia” in Wonder Woman & Philosophy (2017) and “Charting Chaucer: Travel, Mechanical Magic and Controlling the Narrative” in Critical Insights: Chaucer (2017).
He specializes in Medieval and Renaissance Literature, literary theory, pop culture studies, and questions of occultus/secret humanities.
An avid traveler, Dr. Tobienne continues to publish, teach and research throughout Florida, Massachusetts, the Caribbean, England and Ireland.
Elementary / Middle School Language Arts,
||Literary Studies and Theory
||Michigan State University | The Honors College
||English Language & Literature (Honors)
||Biology/Chemistry | Pre-Medical
||Religion, Ethics (Bioethics) & Politics