Sean Matharoo

Sean Matharoo

Assistant Professor
Dey Hall 125
Students Advised
Basma Jaafar
Alexandra Goldych

Accepting graduate students 


Ph.D. [Comparative Literature (Interdisciplinary Studies)] University of California, Riverside, 2020

M.A. [Comparative Literature (Interdisciplinary Studies)] University of California, Riverside, 2016

B.A. [English] University of Florida, 2011

About Professor Matharoo

Sean Singh Matharoo is a transdisciplinary scholar of French- and English-language speculative literature, media, and philosophy, which he studies in the contexts of postcolonial studies, the energy humanities, and performance studies. As an alumni of the Carolina Postdoctoral Program for Faculty Diversity, he is updating his thesis into a book, which is provisionally titled The Damned of the Anthropocene: Performatively Modeling Energy Aesthetics for a New Structuralism. Matharoo’s research responds to the Anthropocenic energy crisis and the need to transition to alternative energy sources by studying how literature, media, and philosophy contribute to the decolonization of petroculture by impelling us to find, in language, the gift of solar-powered futures. Important to this project is a theoretical framework whose possibility conditions include: 1) Georges Bataille's political theory; 2) Claude Lévi-Strauss's structural anthropology; 3) the vitalist-structuralist pluralism of francophone Belgian science-fiction author J.-H. Rosny aîné’s Les sciences et le pluralisme (1922), which he is translating into English; and, 4) Alexandre Kojève's later unpublished writings on the concept of "energology," which are held at the Richelieu-Louvois site of the Bibliothèque Nationale de France in Paris.

Matharoo is also a noise musician whose collaborative pieces about the environment may be understood to problematize the presupposition of colonial-racial divisions in thinking and being.

He is Book Review Assistant Editor for Ecozon@: European Journal of Literature, Culture and Environment, and is a partner/collaborator with Vision Inclusive.

Publications, Articles, & Presentations

“The Damned of the Alienocene: Reclaiming the Disaster.” Alienocene: Journal of the First Outernational, stratum 8, October 2020.

“Ubik Does Not yet Exist: Reading Philip K. Dick’s Ubik as a Case of Extro-Science Fiction.” Philip K. Dick: Essays of the Here and Now (Critical Explorations in Science Fiction and Fantasy), edited by David Sandner, McFarland, 2020, pp. 61-70.

“Samuel R. Delany.” Oxford Bibliographies in American Literature, 2019, doi: 10.1093/obo/9780199827251-0198.

“A fata morgana at the end of the world, or towards the eco-racial disaster of J. G. Ballard’s The Drowned World.” J. G. Ballard and the Natural World, special issue of Green Letters: Studies in Ecocriticism, vol. 22, no. 4, 2018, pp. 366-380.

“‘A weird creature that’s operating in the theater’: Cult, synaesthesia and the ethico-politics of horror in Danny Perez and Animal Collective’s ODDSAC.” Sonic horror, special issue of Horror Studies, vol. 7, no. 2, Autumn 2016, pp. 275-291.

Awards & Honors

UC Riverside Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award 2019-2020

Finalist for the 2020 Walter James Miller Memorial for Student Scholarship in the International Fantastic

2017-2018 Fulbright U.S. Student Program Award (Department of Literary Studies, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium)

Typical Courses

In Fall 2021, Sean facilitated a seminar (FREN 690) on race and the apocalypse in French and francophone literature and media and philosophy, with a focus on science fiction, horror, and le fantastique.

In Fall 2022, he is facilitating two undergraduate courses: 1) Les bandes dessinées (FREN 355) and 2) The Postcolonial Fantastic (FREN 379).