Areas of Interest
Milton, early modern poetry, Reformation exegesis, Hebrew and Latin philology, rhetoric, and hermeneutics
B.A., The City College of New York
CUNY M.A., Queens College, CUNY
Ala’s dissertation, “Re-forming Righteousness: Milton’s Hebraic Poetics,” argues that Milton’s theology and exegesis of righteousness is informed by Hebrew and Jewish exegesis, and that an ethics of righteousness shapes the poetics of Milton’s major poems. A second, long-term project involves the comparison of conceptualizations of literal interpretation in Reformation exegesis through an analysis of early modern discourse on literalism and the exegesis that attends it. She has presented papers at the Northeast MLA, the Newbery Library, and the RSA. She is a recipient of The Nanovic Institute Dissertation Fellowship and has served as an assistant editor for Milton Studies.
Recent Scholarly Activity
“Abraham and Paradise Lost: Testing Righteousness,” The Renaissance Society of America Annual Conference, Toronto, March 2019.
“Righteous Standing in Paradise Regained and Psalm 106,” Multidisciplinary Graduate Research Conference, Newberry Library, Chicago, January 2018. Paper presentation.
“A “Crabbed Textuist” in Paradise: Innate Knowledge and Literal Hermeneutics in Paradise Lost.” Northeast Modern Language Association Annual Conference. March 2016. Paper presentation.
“A “Crabbed Textuist” in Paradise: Innate Knowledge and Literal Hermeneutics in Paradise Lost.” Multidisciplinary Graduate Research Conference, Newberry Library. January 2016. Paper presentation.