PhD Student

Structure, Subject, Shape researching the legacy of structuralism and rationalism, theories of abstraction, history of the human sciences, semiotics, psychoanalysis, historical epistemology, humanism, the gothic, and environmental humanities

philosophy of the concept vs. philosophies of life

Cade Olmstead
Doctoral Student, Department of English, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Philosophy & Literature
Literary Theory
Intellectual History
Science Studies / Environmental Humanities


PhD (Literary Studies), University of Wisconsin-Madison | 2023-Present

MA (English), University of Vermont | 2021-2023
Thesis: The Crypt of Being: On the Gothic Sensibility of Reason

BA (Philosophy & Sociology, magna cum laude), University of Northern Iowa | 2016-2020

Teaching & Research
Graduate Teaching Assistant (English, instructor of record, 6 courses) | 2021-2023

Visiting Researcher (U.S. Fulbright), Institute of Philosophy ZRC-SAZU and the University of Ljubljana | 2020-2021

Undergraduate Research Fellow, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences | 2018

Research Assistant, Center for Social and Behavioral Research, University of Northern Iowa | 2017-2020

Administrative Intern, Iowa Department of Commerce | 2017

Page, Iowa State Senate | 2016

Peer-Reviewed Publications
Olmstead, Cade M. "In the Court of the Jester: On Comedy and Democracy." Demos vs. Polis?: Essays on Civic Responsibility and Participation, edited by James Griffith and Dagmar Kusa, Kritika & Kontext, 2019, pp. 142-147.

Conference Presentations

Panel paper. "'Just as Well Not:' Negation from Science to Utopia." Madison Language and Literature Conference, University of Wisconsin-Madison. (April 27, 2024)

Panel paper. "The Crypt of Being: The Gothic Sensibility of Reason." LACK iv: Psychoanalytic Theory in 2023, LACK, University of Vermont. (April 20-22, 2023)

Panel paper. "Can a Father Kill? Psychic Debts and the Imaginary Father." Midwest Popular Culture Association, DePaul University. (October 14-16, 2023)

Panel paper. "History on the Couch: Historicism and its Failures." The (In)efficacy of Literature, Graduate Student Symposium, Department of English, University of Vermont. (April 8, 2022)

Panel paper. "In the Court of the Jester: On Comedy and Democracy." Demos vs. Polis Liberal Herald Conference, Bratislava International School of Liberal Arts. 2nd place finalist. (November 22-23, 2018)

Technical Reports
Ki H. Park, Mary E. Losch, Rodney Muilenburg, Abigail Cobb, Cade Olmstead, and Erin Heiden. "2018 Iowa Gambling Treatment Outcomes System: C. Six Month Follow-Up Report." Cedar Falls, Iowa: Center for Social and Behavioral Research, 2018. Prepared for the Iowa Department of Public Health. (2018)