Arnold Schmidt, Ph.D.

Professor of English

Research Interests

British Romanticism and Victorianism, Abolition Writings and Slave Narratives, British Women Writers, Empire and Imperialism, Travel Writing and the Grand Tour, British Writers in Italy, Literature of the Sea

Classes Taught

Literature: Medieval, Renaissance, Romantic, Victorian, and eighteenth-century literature Film: American, International, and Contemporary Film; Teachers in Film Creative Writing: Screenwriting, Fiction Writing Humanities: Humanities, Perceptions of Culture


Arnold Schmidt

Contact Information

Building: Demergasso-Bava Hall
Building #21 - See Map
Office: DBH 275

Phone: (209) 667-3246
Fax: (209) 667-3720


Office Hours:
by appointment



Nautical Melodramas, 1820-1850, Editor.  London: Pickering & Chatto.  Forthcoming, 2017.  

Compile, edit, and annotate a three-volume anthology of 24 Victorian plays, with bibliography and illustrations; compose general and author introductions.  Collection includes works by Thomas Dibden, Edward Fitzball, and Douglas Jerrold, among others.   

Byron and the Rhetoric of Italian Nationalism: New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010. 

Winner of the International Byron Society’s 2011 Elma Dangerfield Award for “new and original work related to the life, works and times” of Byron, reviews in the academic press and the Times Literary Supplement have proven quite positive.  Peter Cochran (Cambridge) called it “A tour-de-force of documentation and analysis” and Clare A. Simmons (The Ohio State University) described it as “a fascinating and expertly-researched addition to our understanding of Byron.”  The Wordsworth Circle praised it as “historical and contextual scholarship at its best;” the Italian Quarterly wrote that it combines “careful research and perceptive criticism” and the Byron Journal characterized the book as a “rewarding, well-written and important contribution to Byron studies.” 


  • "The 1848-1849 Revolutions & the Italian Body Politic: Barrett Browning & Clough, Garibaldi & Mazzini." Journal of Anglo-Italian Studies (vol IX 2008). 63-78.
  • "Nostromo, Garibaldi, and the Polish January Rising (1863-64)." Beyond the Roots: The Evolution of Conrad’s Ideology & Art. ed. Wieslaw Krajka. Columbia University Press, 2005. 209-227.
  • “Identity and Difference: The Meaning of Community in Wordsworth’s Early Poetry.” Atenea Revista. 24.2 (December 2004). 147-163.
  • “Bligh, Christian, Murray, and Napoleon -- Byronic Mutiny From London to the South Seas.” Byron Journal. 32.1 (2004). 21-30.
  • "Walter Scott's The Pirate: Imperialism, Nationalism, and Bourgeois Values." Fictions of the Sea. ed. Bernhard Klein. Ashgate Press (2002). 89-103.
  • "Mary Shelley's Tales and the Politics of Reform." Atenea Revista. 21.1-2 (December 2001). 25-32
  • "Godwin, the Slave Narrative, and the Novel of Reform." Entre Lineas. I.1 (June 2001). 37-43.
  • "Wordsworth, Politics, and the Salisbury Plain Poems." Wordsworth Circle 27.3 (Summer 1996). 166-8.
  • "Wordsworth and the Naval Mutinies of 1797." Nineteenth Century Contexts 17.2 (Fall 1994). 204-213.

Book & Film Reviews

  • Review Article: Susanne Schmid.  British Literary Salons of the Late Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth Centuries.  Kathleen McCormack.  George Eliot in Society: Travels Abroad and Sundays at the Priory.  Nineteenth Century Studies (forthcoming 2015).
  • Review: Martin Scorsese’s HugoJournal of American Studies of Turkey (forthcoming 2015). 
  • Maurizio Molinari, Gli italiani di New YorkAnnali d'Italianistica (2013).
  • Samuel Baker, Written on the Water: British Romanticism and the Maritime Empire of Culture.  Wordsworth Circle (Autumn  2011).  280-281.
  • Jonathan Sachs, Romantic Antiquity: Rome in the British Imagination, 1789-1832Nineteenth Century Contexts (34.1 2012).  73-75.
  • Tracy E Cooper, Palladio’s VeniceItalian Quarterly XLVI (2009, published 2012).
  • Alastair Grieve, Whistler’s VeniceItalian Quarterly XLV. 177-178 (Summer-Fall 2008; published 2011).   84-86.
  • Patricia Fortini Brown, Private Lives in Renaissance VeniceItalian Quarterly XLIV.171-172 (Winter-Spring 2007; published 2010). 106-109.
  • Stefano Carboni, ed., Venice and the Islamic World, 828-1797Italian Quarterly XLIII.169-170 (Summer-Fall 2006; published 2009).  105-107.
  • Roberta De Rossi,  Le donne di Ca’ Foscari. Percorsi di emancipazione.  Studentesse ed insegnanti tra 19 e 21 secolo.  Venezia: Università Ca’ Foscari, 2005.  Annali d'Italianistica (2007).
  • Anthony Julian Tamburri, ed.  Italian Cultural Studies 2002. Selected Essays.  Boca Raton: Bordighera, 2005.  Annali d'Italianistica (2007).
  • Margaret A. Gallucci and Paolo L. Rossi, eds.  Benvenuto Cellini: Sculptor, Goldsmith, Writer.  Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004.  Annali d'Italianistica 24 (2006).  408-410.
  • Janet Levarie Smarr,  Joining the Conversation: Dialogues by Renaissance Women.  Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2005.  Annali d'Italianistica 23 (2005).
  • J.G.A. Pocock,  The Machiavellian Moment: Florentine Thought and the Atlantic Republican Tradition.  Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2003.  Annali d'Italianistica 22 (2004).
  • Rebecca Messbarger,  The Century of Women: Representations of Women in Eighteenth-Century Italian Public DiscourseAnnali d'Italianistica 21 (2003). 
  • 557-9.
  • Frank Felsenstein,  Anti-Semitic Stereotypes, A Paradigm of Otherness in English Popular Culture, 1660-1830Prose Studies 20.1 (April 1997) 148-151.
  • Judith Page, Wordsworth and the Cultivation of Women.  Nineteenth Century Contexts 19 (1996) 443-446.
  • Germaine de Stael, Major Writings of Germaine de StaelSoutheast Women's Studies Review 25.2 (Winter 1995) 4-5.
  • Clare Simmons, Reversing the Conquest.  Wordsworth Circle.  26.4 (Autumn 1995) 225-6.
  • Moira Ferguson, Subject to Others: British Women Writers and Colonial SlaverySoutheast Women's Studies Review 25.3 (Spring 1995) 6-7.
  • Slavoj Zizek, Enjoy Your Symptom: Jacques Lacan in Hollywood and OutStudies in Psychoanalytic Theory 2.2 (Fall 1993) 118-120.
  • James Mellard, Using Lacan, Reading FictionStudies in Psychoanalytic Theory 1.2 (Fall 1992) 106-108.

Encyclopedia, Anthology, & Textbook/cd-rom Contributions:

  • Editorial Advisor, “Giuseppe Garibaldi.”  Edited entry, composed annotated bibliography and bibliography of additional reading.  Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism series published by GALE/CENGAGE Learning (2014).
  • “William Randolph Hearst.”  Encyclopedia of Politics in the American West.  Mesa Verde Publishing (2013).
  • Entries on "Olaudah Equiano," "Royal Africa Company," and "Slave Narratives" for the Historical Encyclopedia of World Slavery; ABC-CLIO, Santa Barbara  (January 1998; entry on "Slave Narratives" revised for Slavery in the United States [2007]).
  • Entries on "Shipwreck Narratives," "Billy Budd," and "Olaudah Equiano" for the Encyclopedia of American Literature of the Sea and the Great Lakes; Greenwood Press (2001).
  • Articles on John Ford's 'Tis Pity She's a Whore for Drama for Students; Gale Research (May 1999).
  • Articles on Eugene O'Neill's Mourning Becomes Electra for Drama for Students; Gale Research (May 1999).
  • Articles on Aeschylus' Prometheus Bound for Drama for Students; Gale Research (January 1999).
  • Articles on Sophocles' Electra for Drama for Students; Gale Research (January 1998).
  • Articles on Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest for Drama for Students; Gale Research (January 1998).
  • Articles on Christopher Marlowe's Doctor Faustus for Drama for Students; Gale Research (January 1997).
  • Articles on Oliver Goldsmith's She Stoops to Conquer for Drama for Students; Gale Research (May 1997).
  • "Sir Patrick Spens," Exploring Poetry, explication and cd-rom entry; Gale Research (April 1996).


  • Screenplay: wrote The Junkie Priest, a 1988 script based on the best-selling life story of Father Daniel Egan. Howard Koch, who wrote Casablanca, was Senior Story Consultant for Shirley Jones Productions.
  • Wrote the story for the "Tommy's Lost Weekend" episode of the Warner Bros. sitcom Alice(1984); episode nominated for a 1985 Emmy Award. Received 1986 Letter of Commendation from Los Angeles County for its treatment of teenage alcoholism.
  • Playwright: Lonnie Chapman’s Group Repertory Theatre’s Playwriting Unit (North Hollywood); wrote Brotherly Love, a two-act drama showcased in a workshop production (1985).
  • Screenplay: wrote a script for Deja Vu, a 1984 Cannon Films feature starring Jaclyn Smith, Nigel Terry, Shelley Winters, and Claire Bloom.
  • Assistant Producer, "The Silence," an American Film Institute production, nominated for a 1983Academy Award, best short dramatic film.


Invited Speaker

  • “California in Silent Film.”  Second Tuesday Talks, Turlock (9 September 2014).
  • “California’s Silent Film Locations.”  Carnegie Arts Center, Turlock (18 May 2014).
  • “Robert Weine’s  Cabinet of Dr. Caligari and German Expressionism.”  Initiated event, which featured live music, and lectured.  Carnegie Arts Center, Turlock (1 November 2013).
  • “‘Only think -- a free Italy!!!’ -- Byron and the Risorgimento.”  Istituto Italiano di Cultura di San Francisco, co-sponsored by the Italian Embassy (2 April 2011). 
  • “Byron and the Risorgimento.”  George L. Graziadio Center for Italian Studies and Club Italia, CSU, Long Beach (23 February 2011).
  • “Italian Unification.”  Interviewed, National Public Radio, Jeffrey Callison’s Insight (11 October 2010).
  • "Film & Television Writing."  Bristol Community College (April 2003).
  • "Wordsworth, Cambridge, and the French Revolution."  State University of New York at New Paltz Conference on the Academic Novel (April 1996).

Conference Papers: International/National

  • “Byron the Risorgimento: the Crisis of Leadership in the Venetian Tragedies.”  Byron in Italy.  Manchester University (4-5 December 2014, U.K.).
  • “British Workers and West Indian Slaves in Michael Scott’s Tom Cringle’s Log;”  organized a panel on British and Continental European Romantic-era writers treating the conference theme of the “Urban and Urbanity.”  Nineteenth Century Studies Association (7-9 March  2013, Chicago).
  • “The Ship of State as Post-Culloden Allegory in Kidnapped.”  'Stevenson, Time and History' (8-10 July 2013, University of New South Wales).
  • “Empire & Evolution in Conan Doyle's Lost World & Hoyt’s Silent Film Adaptation.”  Nineteenth Century Studies Association (7-9 March  2013, Fresno).
  • “Staging the Sins of the Father: Robert Louis Stevenson’s Admiral Guinea and Victorian Abolition Discourse.”  North American Victorian Studies Association (3-6 November 2011, Vanderbilt University).
  • “Using the Past to Inspire Italy’s Future: d’Azeglio and the Historical Novel.”  (28 October 2011, Italian Cultural Institute, London).
  • “Myth of Venice: Staging the Revolution in Byron’s Marino Faliero.”  Nineteenth Century Studies Association (11-13 March  2011, Tampa).
  • “Pirates & Opium: Boys, Adventure Fiction, & Imperial Ideology.”  Nineteenth Century Studies Association (3-6 March 2011, University of New Mexico).
  • “Stevenson’s Pacific Tales and the Theatre of Imperialism.”  VISAWUS (28-30 October 2010, University of Hawaii).  Panel organizer and presenter.
  • Sailors, Slaves, and Women: The Politics of Maritime Discourse.”  Navigating Cultural Spaces: Images of Coast and Shore (1-3 October 2010, University of Kiel, Germany). 
  • “Uses of History: Byronic Rhetoric and the Italian Political Novel.”  International Byron Society Conference (26-31 July 2010, Boston).
  • “Byron & the Conversazione: Don Juan’s Narrator as Saloniere.”  International Byron Conference (10-13 July 2007, Venice, Italy).
  • Session organizer, three panels: “Venice in the Literary Imagination.”  Presenter, “Byron & Eighteenth-Century Venetian Salon Culture.”  American Association of Italian Studies (3-6 May 2007, Colorado Springs, Colorado).
  • Panel Organizer, “Constructing Italy: National Culture & the Culture of Nationalism.”  Presenter, “The 1848 Revolutions & the Italian Body Politic: Borders Between Literature & Activism.”   “Empire Conference on Borderlands & Border Cultures.”  (16-18 March 2006, Stanislaus State).
  • "Competing Representations of the 1848 Revolutions: Browning & Clough, Garibaldi & Mazzini."  The Browning Society Conference on Anglo-Italian Relationships 1845-1865 (28 September-2 October 2005, Vallombrosa, Italy).
  • "Reading the Body in Verri & Beccaria: Juridical Torture as a Means of Truth Production."  American Society for Eighteenth Century Studies (31 March - 3 April 2005, University of Nevada, Las Vegas)
  • "Wordsworth and the Wreck of the Earl of Abergavenny."  Maritime Empires (July 2001 National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London UK).
  • "Nostromo, Garibaldi, and Italian Republican Theory."  Conrad's Footsteps (June 2001 Maria Curie-Sklodowska University, Lublin Poland).
  • "Alfieri, Cellini, & Vico: Italian Autobiography & the Construction of Subjectivity." British Society for Eighteenth Century Studies (January 2001 Oxford University).
  • "Byron's Venetian History Plays and Pietro Verri's Osservazioni sulla tortura."  Group for Early Modern Cultural Studies (November 2000 New Orleans).
  • "Walter Scott's The Pirate: The Unspeakable, The Unspoken, and Middle Class Values."  Sea Changes Conference on Maritime History and Literature (July 2000 Greifswald, Germany).
  • "Abandoned (M)others & Others: The Family as Site of Racial and Rational Anxiety in Wordsworth's Poetry."  Interdisciplinary Nineteenth Century Studies Conference (April 2000 Yale University).
  • "Wordsworth's Elegies: Money, Nelson and Brotherly Love."  Interdisciplinary Nineteenth Century Studies Conference (UC/Berkeley April 1997).
  • "Political Reform and the Short Fiction of Mary Shelley."  Eighteenth & Nineteenth Century British Women Writers (March 1997 UC/Davis).
  • "Wordsworth, Politics, and the Salisbury Plain Poems."  Wordsworth Summer Conference at Dove Cottage (August 1996 Grasmere, England).
  • "Politics, Identity, and Literary Piracy in Lord Byron's The Island."  American Conference on Romanticism (September 1995 Marquette University).
  • "Wordsworth, Parker, and Execution Tropes: The End of Ideology."  Wordsworth Coleridge Association, M.L.A. Convention (December 1994 San Diego).
  • "Wordsworth and the Naval Mutinies in 1797."  Interdisciplinary Nineteenth Century Studies Conference (April 1992 Loyola University).

Conference Papers: Regional

  • “Reflections of the Slave Trade: Images of Pearl Divers in Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Ebb Tide.”  Pacific Coast Conference on British Studies (9-12 March 2012, Huntington Library).
  • Cantoni il voluntario: The Body Politic and the Ideology of Garibaldi’s Fiction.”  California Interdisciplinary Conference on Italian Studies (March 2009 Stanford University).
  • "Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s Casa Guidi Windows: Italian Nationalism & the Great Exhibition."  Victorian Interdisciplinary Studies Association of the Western United States (October 2003 University of Texas at Austin).
  • "Gladstone's Political Evolution: Dante, Pellico, Manzoni and the Rhetoric of Italian Nationalism."  Victorian Interdisciplinary Studies Association of the Western United States (October 2002 University of Idaho).
  • "Clough's Amours de Voyage, Mazzini's `duties,' and the Avoidance of History." Victorian Interdisciplinary Studies Association of the Western United States (November 2001 U.C.L.A.).
  • "Burney & Wollstonecraft: Images of Sea Captains as Tyrannical Fathers."  Western Society for Eighteenth Century Studies (February 2000 University of Nevada, Las Vegas).
  • "Mary Shelley's Tales and the Politics of Reform."  Western Association of Women Historians (May 1997 Asilomar, CA).
  • "Competing Ethnographies: Regency vs. Empire Visions of Captain Cook's 'Noble Savages.'"  Western Society for Eighteenth Century Studies (February 1997 UC/Berkeley).
  • "Political Success and Social Failure: Victorian Historiography and Carlyle's French Revolution."  Victorian Interdisciplinary Studies Association of the Western United States (November 1996 CSU/Northridge).
  • "The King, the Hero, and the Body Politic: Cannibalism in Walter Scott's The Talisman."  Northwest Conference on British Studies (October 1996 Lewis & Clark, Portland OR).
  • "Wrecking & Smuggling in Walter Scott's The Pirate: Constructing Nineteenth Century Morality from Eighteenth Century Criminality."  DeBartolo Conference (February 1994 University of South Florida).
  • "The Construction of the Other in Mary Shelley's Short Fiction."  South American Modern Language Association (November 1993 Atlanta).
  • "Wollstonecraft's Maria and the 'Other' Woman."  Southeast Women's Studies Association (April 1993 Vanderbilt University).
  • "Godwin and Abolition: a Reading of Caleb Williams."  Southeast Society for Eighteenth Century Studies (March 1993 University of Alabama, Birmingham).
  • "A Busy Day: Burney and Abolition."  College Language Association (March 1992 University of Tennessee, Knoxville). 
  • "Material Culture and Burney's Comedy of Disruption."  Southeast Association for Eighteenth Century Studies (February 1992 Wake Forest University).
  •  "Dramatic Writing Techniques for Teaching Voice and Argument."  Conference on Computer-Assisted Composition (July 1990 University of Maine, Orono).


  • Visiting Scholar, American Academy in Rome.  During my CSU sabbatical, conducted research on Italian historical novels at Rome’s Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale.  (15-28 September 2014).
  • Conducted research at the State Library of New South Wales and the Mitchell Library’s Special Collections.  (Sydney, Australia, 1-23 July 2013).
  • Conducted research at the British Library, the library of the Victoria & Albert’s Museum of Childhood, and the National Maritime Museum Library.  (London, Greenwich, 4-22 January 2013).
  • Visiting Scholar, American Academy in Rome.  During my CSU leave, conducted research on Italian Romanticism in Rome at the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale.  (March 2008).
  • Conducted research at the British Library and the Library at the Victoria & Albert Museum.  (London, 4 January-4 February 2005).
  • Participant, National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Seminar, "New Perspectives on Italy in the Age of the Risorgimento." Directors: Prof. John Davis, University of Connecticut, and Prof. David Kertzer, Brown University.  (The American Academy in Rome, June 30-Aug 1, 2003).
  • Visiting Scholar, American Academy in Rome.  During my CSU sabbatical, conducted research (on Byron, British writers in Italy, Italian history, and the Grand Tour) in Rome at the Biblioteca Vaticana, Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale, and the Keats-Shelley House Library, and at the Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana in Venice.  (March-May 2002).
  • "Footsteps of Conrad." Two week directed tour of significant places in the life of Joseph Conrad, including Kasmerez-Dolney, Warsaw, Lublin, and Krakow.  Director: Prof. Wieslaw Krajka, Maria Curie-Sklodowska University, Lublin, Poland. (June 2001).
  • Participant, National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Seminar, "Campania Felix: Nature, Mythology, and the Works of Man."  Directors: Prof. Jean D'Amato Thomas, Louisiana Scholars' College, and Prof. Richard Monti, University of Wisconsin.  (Villa Virgiliana, Baia, and Naples, Italy; 28 May-1 July 2000).
  • Wordsworth Summer Conference at Dove Cottage (27 July-10 August 1996 Grasmere, England).

Professional Recognition

  • 2012: Outstanding Research Professor of the Year, Stanislaus State.
  • 2011: Research Commendation, Stanislaus State College of Humanities, Social Sciences.
  • 2010: Byron and the Rhetoric of Italian Nationalism received an Elma Dangerfield Award from the International Byron Society recognizing "new and original work" related to the British romantic author Lord Byron.
  • Story writer, "Tommy's Lost Weekend" of the Warner Bros. sitcom Alice, nominated for a 1985 Emmy Award.  Received 1986 Letter of Commendation from Los Angeles County for its treatment of teenage alcoholism. 
  • Assistant Producer, "The Silence," an American Film Institute production, nominated for a 1983 Academy Award, best short dramatic film.

Community Service

  • Initiated and conducted Memoir/Autobiography Workshop (August 2007, Modesto Senior Citizen Center).
  • Conducted writing workshop for Secondary Counselors for Migrant Education in Merced County Office of Education (9 February 2006).
  • Initiated and conducted "Writing Your Life" autobiography workshop (March 2001, Covenant Village Senior Citizens Center, Turlock CA).
  • Initiated and organized student dramatic writing program, in which more than one hundred elementary students from the Planada School District wrote and produced an original play; coordinated Stan State undergraduates, graduate students, and Planada faculty volunteers (Spring 1998).
  • Initiated and organized book and clothing donations to the Planada School District and migrant worker community (Fall 1997, Spring 1998).
  • Volunteer Instructor, "Writing Autobiography" (Spring 1995 Knowles Center for Senior Citizens, Nashville). 
  • Literacy Volunteer, Columbia County's Adult Literacy Program (1988-1989).


Between 1979-1988, by-lined news stories, feature articles, and reviews appeared in the following newspapers and magazines: Adweek, American Cinematographer, Back Stage, Commercials Monthly, Duchess County Magazine, Emmy, Hollywood Reporter, Millimeter, On Location, the Middletown Times Herald Record, the Poughkeepsie Journal, Screen, and Shooting Commercials.