Spotlight on Kathleen Fitzpatrick: Open Access Week 2013

In honor of Open Access Week 2013 (October 21-25), we will be profiling an influential figure in the scholarly communication landscape each day.

Wednesday, October 23

photo of Kathleen Fitzpatrick

Kathleen Fitzpatrick


  • M.F.A. in English, Louisiana State University, 1991
  • Ph.D. in English, New York University, 1998

Current Positions

  • Director of Scholarly Communication, Modern Language Association
  • Visiting Research Professor of English, New York University
  • Professor of Media Studies, Pomona College

Notable Affiliations

  • Co-founder/co-editor of the digital scholarly network, MediaCommons
  • Board of Directors, Council on Library and Information Resources
  • Advisory Board, Open Library of the Humanities
  • Chair, Publications Committee, Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations
  • Executive Committee, Association for Computers and the Humanities

Notable Publications

  • Planned Obsolescence: Publishing, Technology, and the Future of the Academy. NYU Press, 2011. Pre-pub version available at
  • The Anxiety of Obsolescence: the American Novel in the Age of Television, Vanderbilt University Press, 2006.
  • "Giving It Away: Sharing and the Future of Scholarly Communication”. Journal of Scholarly Publishing, 2012. Available at
  • “Peer-to-Peer Review and the Future of Scholarly Authority”. Social Epistemology, 2010. Available at
  • “The Humanities, Done Digitally”. The Chronicle of Higher Education, special section on technology, 2011. Available at

Interesting Facts

  • Fitzpatrick is a self-described Mac “zealot”.
  • She was named one of “12 Tech Innovators Who Are Transforming Campuses” by The Chronicle of Higher Education in 2012.
  • Fitzpatrick’s book Planned Obsolescence went through an open peer review process prior to publication.

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