Associate Professor of English
Phone: (712) 722-6250
I specialize in early and nineteenth-century American literature. My particular interests there include Walt Whitman, Herman Melville, and the literature of European colonization of the Americas. In my American Literature I class, students will become immersed in contemporary research in early American literature. Specifically, they will study American periodicals (newspapers and magazines) to see how the novels and poems of the early American republic connect with a broad range of cultural issues.
I enjoy the ways that the field of English--or the study of language, literature, and culture--intersects with all other disciplines. I have taught a wide range of classes at Dordt: science fiction, business writing, the film section of the CORE arts class (among others). I especially like that English classes regularly involve discussions about life and how to live it. Often, in discussions, literature classes find themselves mixing various disciplines such as biology, sociology, economics, and theology all together. That's the magic of English.
I have a developing interest in science fiction (SF). SF exemplifies the blending of disciplines. In SF, the humanities, the sciences, and modern cultural issues come together in powerful ways. All students can greatly benefit from the study of science fiction. In truth, their lives are science-fictional. Favorites include Gene Wolfe, Philip K. Dick, Stanislaw Lem, and Robert Heinlein. Email me to swap recommendations!
I work as an editor, too. Currently I edit the book reviews for Pro Rege, Dordt College's journal of reformed studies. I have also helped edit the Walt Whitman Quarterly Review and the Walt Whitman Archive.
- American Literature 1 (ENG 201)
- Science Fiction (ENG 222)
- Intro to Film (CORE 160)
- Business and Technical Writing (ENG 305)
- Responding to Literature (CORE 180)
- English Composition (CORE 120)
- Kingdom, Identity, and Calling (CORE 100)
- Mark Twain (KSP Independent Study)
- Ph.D., English, University of Iowa (2012)
- M.A., English, Kent State University (2005)
- B.A., English, Indiana University (2003)
- "The American Alighieri: Receptions of Dante in the United States, 1818-1867" (dissertation)
- "The Divine Comedy as a Civil War Epic", J19: The Journal of Nineteenth-Century Americanists I (Fall 2013).
- "Peddlers of the Rod: Melville's 'The Lightning-Rod Man' and the Antebellum Periodical Market", Leviathan: A Journal of Melville Studies 12 (October 2010).