Professional and Biographical Information


I teach twentieth- and twenty-first century African American women’s literature and culture classes that pair traditional reading assignments with a mosaic of film, art, and music. Students in my courses examine diverse novels by Toni Morrison, Gwendolyn Brooks, Alice Walker, Nella Larsen, and Ann Petry; analyze art by Lorna Simpson at the Mead Art Museum; visit Sojourner Truth’s home in Northampton; and explore the musical legacy of Billie Holiday and Aretha Franklin. This sonic, visual, and kinesthetic tapestry emboldens students to broaden their critical thinking and textual analysis skills, while providing them with a foundation for completing thoughtful writing projects and inspiring visual essays.

My “Black Women’s Narratives and Counter-narratives” class assignment was featured in the New York Times.


I have presented my research at Saint Joseph’s University, the University of Hull-Yorkshire, England’s Wilberforce Institute for the Study of Slavery and Emancipation (WISE), National Women’s Studies Association (NWSA), the Collegium for African American Research (CAAR), American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA), American Studies Association (ASA), the American Literature Association (ALA), and the Multi-ethnic Literatures of the US (MELUS) conference.

Fellowships & Awards

Duke University Mellon Mays Summer Institute on Tenure and Professional Advancement (SITPA) Scholar, 2015-2017

Robert E. Keiter 1957 Postdoctoral Fellow and Visiting Assistant Professor, Amherst College, Sexuality, Women’s and Gender Studies Department, 2012-2014

Five College Dissertation Fellowship, Amherst College, Women’s and Gender Studies Department, 2011-2012.

Dissertation Fellowship, Middle Tennessee State University, English Department, 2010-2011.

Mellon Faculty Seminar, Mead Art Museum, Amherst College, 2012

Abraham Lincoln Graduate Fellowship, University of Illinois-Chicago, 2011

Image of Research Competition, (Finalist), University of Illinois-Chicago, 2011

Abraham Lincoln Graduate Fellowship, University of Illinois-Chicago, 2008

Grace Holt Memorial Award, University of Illinois-Chicago, 2008

School of Criticism & Theory Residency Award, Cornell University, 2006

Diversifying Faculty in Higher Education Fellowship, Illinois Board of Education, 2004