PhD Program

For those entering the program with an MA, the PhD in English is designed to be a five-year program requiring 30 hours of coursework.* This coursework will contribute to a total of 72 graduate credit hours beyond the BA (the 72-hour total may include credits transferred from the MA degree). Students entering the program with an MA will generally complete their coursework within the first two years.

Students can also enter the PhD program with a BA but without an MA, in which case the program is designed to be a six-year program requiring 72 hours of graduate credit beyond the BA. Of these, 48 hours will consist of coursework,* including at least 27 hours of coursework taken at the 8000-level. Students entering the program with a BA will generally complete their coursework within the first three years. 

Students select and work closely with a faculty advisory committee to plan a course of professional study and training in their chosen primary and secondary fields. The PhD program is meant to provide deep knowledge as well as methodological sophistication. 

* The term "coursework" refers to credits earned in classes and seminars at the graduate level. The term "credit hours" also includes credits earned through dissertation research.

PhD General Course Requirements

The PhD candidate will take 30 hours of coursework beyond the MA. Coursework must include:

  • At least 18 hours in English at the 8000-level (English 8001, English 8005, English 8095 and 9090 hours do not count toward the 18-hour requirement). 

Candidates’ coursework and program of study will be designed to prepare them as competent scholars in the designated fields. All PhD candidates are required to take:

  • English 8005, Introduction to Graduate Studies, a one-hour course in fall semester of the first year in the program
  • English 8010, Theory and Practice of Composition, is required in the first semester for students teaching English 1000
  • A course in English linguistics focused on the structure of the language (English 7600 or an equivalent graduate course at another institution), on its history (English 7610, English 7200, or an equivalent graduate course at another institution), or on sociolinguistic aspects of English (English 7620 or an equivalent graduate course at another institution)
  • A course in literary criticism (English 8050, 8060, 8070, or an equivalent graduate course at another institution)
  • English 8020, The Theory and Practice of Teaching in English (for students who want to teach literature classes)

PhD students in the creative writing program are required to take:

  • 9 workshop hours at the 8000 level 
  • 6 hours of 8000-level seminars whose content includes in-depth analysis of literary texts. Workshops do not fulfill this requirement. 7000-level courses, or courses outside of the English department may be substituted with the approval of the Director of Creative Writing and the Director of Graduate Studies

A student may elect one English 8095 problems course (a maximum of 3 hours credit), with the prior consent of the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS), but the credits will not count towards the 18-hour 8000-level course requirement. Students may also take up to 9 hours of coursework outside English in fields related to their programs of study upon the advice and consent of the advisory committee. In general, students with limited backgrounds in related areas (such as history, philosophy, art history) are encouraged to take coursework in such areas, while students with extensive background in other areas (e.g., one whose undergraduate major or MA is in a field other than English) should choose to concentrate coursework within the department.

Language Requirement

PhD students must fulfill a language requirement to ensure that all students have a familiarity with a language other than English. Students, regardless of specialty, gain substantially by making meaningful connections between their own work and a non-English-speaking culture. 

A student may satisfy the language requirement for the PhD in English by one of the following:

  1. By taking coursework at MU. The student must pass with a grade of B or better an intensive introduction to a language, the two-semester introductory sequence of courses, or one course at or beyond the second semester level in the language chosen. 
  2. By demonstrating to the Director of Graduate Studies that the student has taken courses equivalent to those specified in item #1 at another college or university.
  3. By demonstrating proficiency through a language test. Language tests will be administered by the department in November and April. Those wishing to take a test must notify the DGS in the semester prior. Those students who submitted a TOEFL score as part of their application to graduate school will be considered to have passed the language requirement.

Upon entering the program, students should work with the DGS or a faculty advisor to plan how they will fulfill the language requirement. Projects and areas of study will require different levels of language proficiency. Students’ committees may recommend that they pursue language study beyond the level required by the department.

PhD Sample Timeline

Below is a sample timeline for completing the PhD within five years of funding. Variations to the timeline can be developed in consultation with a student’s advisor and the Director of Graduate Studies.

Year One:

  • Take 8005: Introduction to Graduate Study
  • Take three 3-credit courses each semester
  • Choose an advisor and consult with that person in forming a doctoral committee
  • Draft a plan for fulfilling degree requirements, including the language requirement
  • Take the Qualifying Exam (see information about the Qualifying Exam below for more about timing)

Year Two:

  • Complete course requirements
  • Read for Comprehensive Exam 

Please note that coursework required for the degree must be completed before taking the Comprehensive Exam.

Year Three:

  • Take Comprehensive Exam by the end of the fall semester
  • Have dissertation prospectus conference spring semester
  • Begin writing the dissertation
  • Consult with advisor about professionalization plans

Year Four:

  • Work on dissertation
  • Consider taking 1-credit 8001 seminar(s) (Critical Writing Workshop can be taken before Year Four)

Year Five:

  • Apply for jobs
  • Consider taking a 8001 seminar
  • Defend dissertation by the end of spring semester

Students who are unable to keep to the 5-year funded PhD timeline because of extreme circumstances (e.g., disability, medical condition, family emergency) should consider applying for an additional semester of funding (see "Additional Semester of Teaching Policy" form in the box to the right side of this page).

Although the Department of English offers only 5 years of guaranteed funding, the Graduate School allows 5 years after entering the program for students to pass their Comprehensive Exams and 5 additional years for students to defend their dissertations after passing their Comprehensive Exams. 

Qualifying Exam

The Qualifying Exam satisfies a Graduate School requirement. The student and advisor should decide on a proposed Plan of Study (D-2 form) to be discussed and approved at the meeting by the doctoral committee. The doctoral committee is composed of at least three faculty members from the English department and at least one faculty member from a department other than English.

Students may use this meeting to shape their fields of study or their lists for the Comprehensive Exam, but this is not required to pass the exam.

Students are encouraged to take the Qualifying Exam by the end of their first year, but may take the exam at the beginning of the second year, if they need more time to compose their doctoral committees.  Regardless of the timing of the exam, all students should discuss a plan for fulfilling degree requirements with their advisors and/or with the Director of Graduate Studies by the end of their first year.

The Qualifying Exam must be a formal meeting, scheduled by the committee chair, with at least three of the four members present. The outside faculty member need not be involved in this meeting, but all four members of the committee must sign the D-1 form. The student is responsible for preparing the forms and bringing them to the meeting.

Advising and Committees

Selecting an Advisor

The advisor guides students through the qualifying examination, provides crucial advice for a student’s plan of study, helps with topics for the comprehensive examination, and works closely with students as they research and write dissertations or theses. Advisors will help students select internal and external members of examination and thesis/dissertation committees.

Upon entering the English Department, students will be advised by the Director of Graduate Studies. Through individual meetings and in English 8005, the DGS will help students prepare to approach potential advisors. PhD students should research potential advisors in their first semester by taking classes in their fields of interest, talking with experienced graduate students, and consulting with the DGS. Early in the second semester of their study students should meet with potential advisors to determine academic compatibility. Students will need to find an advisor working in their primary area of concentration. This primary area will consist of some combination of historical period, genre, and approach and should be reflected in professional associations and in job listings. Within these areas of primary interest, most students will choose among a small number of potential faculty mentors. In some cases, students will change fields on account of excellent experiences in their first year of graduate study. In choosing an advisor, one should also consider to what extent the faculty member shares methodological interests with the student.

When meeting with a potential advisor, a student should be prepared to discuss both the topic and the methodology that they desire to pursue. A one- or two-page research proposal detailing the broad questions the project will answer and the means by which research questions will be addressed.

For further information, please see the Graduate School's Guidelines for Good Practice in Graduate Education.

Selecting a Program Committee

Students should approach potential faculty committee members by the end of their first year in the program. The committee is registered with the Graduate School with the D-1 form. 

The PhD Committee consists of at least four faculty members (including the chair). Three of the members will be faculty in the English Department; the fourth may either be an additional member of the English Department or a faculty member from a different department.  Members from outside the department are extremely helpful for some dissertation projects, and students should consult with their faculty advisors about the potential benefits of including one, as well about the composition of their committees in general. As a group, members of the PhD Committee should be equipped to support the student in both prospective primary and secondary fields for the comprehensive examination.

Students can fill out a form to change the composition of the committee, to be signed by the new committee member and the Director of Graduate Studies.

Advising Guidelines

Recognizing that the advising relationship is a mutual one, in which both advisors and students must take responsibility for good communication—about expectations, about what is working well, and about what can be improved—the following is a codification of the observable behaviors that define high-quality graduate advising.

Given that advisors are in positions of power, high-quality advisors consider how their words and actions can impact mentees’ progress. We see high-quality graduate advising as defined by:

Supporting Academic and Professional Development

  1. Advisors should meet with their advisees at least once each semester to assess progress toward the degree.
  2. Advisors should explain the demands of all aspects of the degree program and work with their advisees to form a communication and collaboration plan in order to do the work of the degree program.
  3. Advisors should work with their students to establish a timeline for completing the degree program that includes a schedule of meetings and exams, selecting courses and/or committee members, and a plan for coordinating with other committee members. Advisors should also prepare their advisees for oral exams and defenses.

Providing and Asking for Timely and Substantive Feedback

  1. Advisors should strive to respond to student emails within one week of receipt, and provide students with feedback on large documents, such as drafts of exam essays and thesis/dissertation chapters, within 3-4 weeks of receiving them.
  2. The advisor should contribute to their students’ professional development by observing their teaching, reviewing documents such as syllabi, conference abstracts, grant and fellowship applications, job letters, etc. Students should allow for at least two weeks for the completing of this work.

Treating Graduate Students as Junior Colleagues

  1. Advisors should help the student to find professional employment inside or outside the academy and access other networks/mentors. This will usually involve writing recommendation letters. The student should give the advisor at least one month’s notice of any letters to be written and the advisor should respect the stated deadlines.
  2. High-quality mentors provide time, resources, and opportunities fairly and equitably across students they advise. The advisor should avoid any appearance of a quid pro quo relationship with the advisee by refraining from accepting gifts, professional favors, domestic labor, or offers to provide refreshments at exams and meetings.
  3. Advisors should be mindful and self-reflective regarding potential subtle barriers for underrepresented advisees (such as race, gender, disability, family responsibilities, mental health and/or personal and financial difficulties) and focus on inclusive ways of achieving the specific tasks and goals associated with degree completing.
  4. Advisors recognize there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to supporting students and enabling their success. High quality advisors make an effort to “meet students where they are” in their professional development and to provide appropriate oversight and scaffolding that allows for continued professional development.
Comprehensive Examination

After all required coursework has been completed, PhD students must take the comprehensive examination. This exam consists of a written section and a two-and-a-half-hour oral exam.

Reading Lists

The major field list should reflect the student’s area of scholarly specialization and take into account the student’s interests and intellectual, pedagogical, and/or professional fields.

The minor field list should be a more narrowly focused secondary specialization (for instance, a student with a major list in African-American literature might have a minor list in twentieth-century American fiction), a genre or sub-genre (creative nonfiction, the sonnet, etc.), or an area of thematic focus (Transcendentalism, nature poetry, etc.).

The criticism and theory list should enhance students’ understanding of critical conversations surrounding the works on their major and minor list and can also be used to develop a separate area of specialization in theory that is anticipated to be useful for the dissertation.

All three lists together should comprise approximately 100-120 book-length works or the equivalent in scholarly articles or works in other media (as decided in consultation with the committee), with the major list roughly equivalent in size to the combined minor and criticism/theory lists.

Written Exam

The written section of the comprehensive exam is comprised of one essay, intended to prepare students for the dissertation. The essay will prepare creative writing students for the critical introduction and/or the creative dissertation. Although the written exam is submitted to the committee prior to the oral exam, it is expected that students will complete their reading of works on all three lists before turning in the final draft of the written exam. The order of this process is crucial, as this reading may well shape a student’s plans for the dissertation and hence inform the topic and substance of the written exam.

The essay will identify and summarize the critical conversation(s) in which a student’s individual dissertation work will participate. This essay may have, but does not require, an original argument. In consultation with their committee members, students are encouraged to shape their written exam to best serve their research needs. The essay must be 15-20 pages, not counting additional materials such as bibliography, illustrations, or charts (which should be placed in an appendix). While the essay should refer to both primary and secondary sources from students’ lists, students may also use other sources relevant to their projected dissertation.

Students will submit two drafts to their committee members: a first draft and a final written exam. The first draft must be submitted for written or oral feedback on how to proceed with revisions at least four weeks and no more than sixteen weeks before turning in the final written exam. The committee will evaluate each version of the essay for range and depth of coverage, specificity of references to the works discussed, theoretical grasp of the material, effective synthesis of important approaches or debates, and clarity of organization and style. Once the final written exam has been submitted, committee members will use these criteria to vote on whether the student has passed the written portion of the exam. To proceed to the oral exam, students must receive no more than one vote of “fail” or “abstain.”

At least one month prior to the submission of the final written exam, students should communicate with committee members, alerting committee members to the date the final written exam will be submitted. The advisor should consult with committee members to schedule a tentative date and time for the oral portion of the exam. The oral portion of the exam should take place at least two weeks and no more than one month after the final written exam has been submitted. The advisor should inform the Graduate Secretary of the time and place scheduled for the oral examination.

On the agreed upon date, the student should submit the final version of the written exam to the Graduate Secretary, who will distribute the exam to the student’s committee. Exams submitted to the Graduate Secretary that are either under or over the required page length will not be sent to committee members, but will be referred to the Director of Graduate Study. Within two weeks of receiving a copy of the exam, committee members will submit evaluations discussing strengths and weaknesses of the essay to the Graduate Studies Secretary, who will forward them to the student and also place copies in the student's file. If the student does not pass the written exam, the oral examination date will be cancelled and the committee will offer advice on rewriting and resubmitting the essay.

University rules require that students are enrolled during the term in which they take their oral exam (to be administered only when MU is officially in session). The oral exam must be completed at least seven months before the defense of the dissertation.  See

Oral Exam

The oral section of the comprehensive exam is designed to test a student’s knowledge of the teaching and research fields represented by their reading lists.  Students should be prepared both to answer focused questions about individual works and to speak broadly about the connections among them.  Students should send final copies of their lists to their committee members at least two weeks before the oral exams.

The oral exam will be scheduled for two and half hours and will consist of:

  • Two hours of questions, with format and time allotted to committee members arranged beforehand by the chair of the student's committee
  • Fifteen minutes during which the committee deliberates about the exam
  • Fifteen minutes during which the committee informs the student whether he or she has passed or failed, and discusses the exam with the student. The student may also use this time to schedule follow up meetings with each committee member so that they can discuss the student’s movement toward the prospectus.

Within one week of the oral exam, the chair of the committee is responsible for writing a brief document (up to one page) discussing the exam-- things the student did well on, and things that might be improved upon. The chair must give a copy of this document to the Graduate Secretary, who will forward it to the student and place a copy in the student's file.

In order to pass the student must receive no more than one vote of “fail” or “abstain” on the oral exam. Students who fail the oral examination will be allowed to retake it, but cannot do so sooner than 12 weeks after, or later than the end of the semester following the initial examination. If the student passes the oral examination, all members of the committee must sign the D-3 form. The chair of the committee is responsible for submitting the D-3 form to the English graduate studies office, and the form must be filed with the Graduate School within two weeks after the final completion of the exams. Per Graduate School rules, failure to pass two comprehensive examinations automatically prevents candidacy.

Full-Time Status and Continuous Enrollment

While studying for the Comprehensive Exams and after completing required coursework, students may elect to take English 9090: Dissertation Hours in order to maintain Full Time status (Full Time status according to the Graduate School is 9 hours before a student advances to ABD status). English 9090 may be taken before completion of coursework only with permission of the DGS.

After students complete their Comprehensive Exams, candidacy for the doctoral degree is maintained by enrolling in two credit hours in the fall and spring semesters and one credit in the summer semester up to and including the term in which the dissertation is defended. Failure to enroll continuously in 9090 Research hours (or alternatively, in the 8001 Critical Writing Workshop or Job Market Workshops) until the doctoral degree is awarded terminates candidacy. Guidelines for continuous enrollment can be found on the Graduate School website.

Dissertation and Defense


As soon as possible after passing the comprehensive examination, a candidate should explore a dissertation topic under the guidance of the student’s adviser. Candidates must formally present and describe the topic in a prospectus of no more than 15 pages (excluding bibliography). For the student to remain in good standing, the prospectus and a signed Dissertation Prospectus Approval Form (posted to the right on this page) must be submitted to the English graduate studies office within three months of a successful oral defense of the Comprehensive Examination or first two weeks of the semester following.  In the event revisions are requested by the committee, the advisor will keep the signed form until revisions are made and then submit the form to the office. The advisor should schedule the prospectus conference.

The prospectus should contain five elements:

  1. The state of current scholarship in the relevant fields
  2. The nature of the dissertation’s intervention in current scholarship
  3. A description of method
  4. A description of the materials—that is, the objects/archives studied and consulted
  5. A short bibliography  

In the case of students writing creative dissertations, the prospectus should primarily describe the critical introduction (see “Creative Dissertation” below); ten pages is a good goal here.

The prospectus should be drafted in consultation with the adviser. Once drafted, it will be the subject of the Prospectus Conference, a meeting of the dissertation committee (outside member optional) covering the student’s ideas and research plans, including schedule. If a majority of the student’s committee doesn’t approve the prospectus, suggestions for revision will be made and the student will submit the revised prospectus only to the adviser; for this reason, students should schedule their meeting with enough time to revise and meet the deadline.

The prospectus must be completed for the student to begin writing, but it is also important because it usually forms the basis of grant applications and dissertation descriptions when the student goes on the job market. It is of long-term use to have a prospectus on file early, even though it is understood that the dissertation may change during research and writing. 


Two types of dissertations are written for our program: the scholarly dissertation and the creative dissertation. 

The scholarly PhD Dissertation is a work of original scholarship in a recognizable field covered by departmental expertise. Most dissertations in English are between 200 and 350 pages and combine an original argument with research into the field you explore. By the end of the process of researching and writing the dissertation, the successful student will be one of a few world experts in the field addressed. Therefore topics should be specific enough to allow students to stake a claim to expertise, while broad enough to speak to the general field in which the dissertation is placed. The dissertation becomes the central document upon which you build your academic reputation. At best, it will be ready to go as a book project. Chapters of your dissertation will likely serve as writing samples on the academic job market and might be revised into publications either before or after you have defended it and received your PhD. The dissertation itself will be read by the student’s adviser and a minimum of three other readers. One member of the committee may be a member of a department other than English. In the process of research and writing, some students work closely with an entire committee; others focus on the responses of their primary adviser to preliminary work.

PhD candidates in Creative Writing generally write a creative PhD dissertation, which may take the form of a collection of poetry, a novel, a novella, a book-length collection of short stories, or a book-length work of creative non-fiction. To exercise this option, the candidate must have taken 9-12 hours of creative writing seminars as part of the PhD coursework. In addition to the creative part of the dissertation, the candidate will compose a Critical Introduction, which is an article-length and rigorous critical essay that substantively engages the candidate’s areas of critical interest.

By the rules of the Graduate School, seven months must elapse between a student's successfully passing the PhD Comprehensive Examination and submitting the PhD dissertation.


Defense usually occurs within a month of submission to the committee of an acceptable dissertation. Committee members prepare questions in advance and the defense consists of a conversation regarding the scholarship and writing of the dissertation. The defense is customarily a celebratory occasion. But committee members can—and sometimes do—ask challenging questions that undercut specific and general issues in the project. Students have a chance to incorporate suggestions from the defense into the final document submitted to the Graduate School. Therefore, it is useful to schedule the defense some weeks before the final deadline for submission to the Graduate School in the term in which the student wishes to graduate. For the dissertation to be successfully defended, the committee must vote to pass it with no more than one abstaining or dissenting vote. If the dissertation is not passed, the student can revise in accordance with suggestions and resubmit.

The advisor will schedule two and half hours for the defense. It will consist of: two hours of questions and conversation, fifteen minutes during which the committee deliberates about the exam, and fifteen minutes during which the committee discusses the outcome and any revisions to be incorporated into the final copy turned in to the Graduate School.

PhD students may elect to invite people outside of their committees to attend their defenses. The student and advisor should agree on whether the audience can be present for the whole defense or just the opening portion. The audience may not be present for committee deliberations from which the PhD candidate is excluded. Audience members may observe but cannot ask questions, give comments, or reduce the allotted time for committee questioning in any way. Recording or livestreaming the defense is not permitted.

For instructions on filing your dissertation, see:

Current and Recent Dissertations

Dissertations in Progress

Updated 9/8/2023


Heather Asbeck

“Pockets in Print: Reading the Material Circumstances of Women's Lives, 1840-1870”

Director: Nancy West

Micaela Bombard

“The Problem of Pain”

Director: Gabriel Fried

K. Mikeal Borgard

"Terrorism Literature: An Undefined Genre"

Director: Phong Nguyen

Tyler Corbridge

"The Desert Whaling"

Director: Phong Nguyen

Hayli Cox

“What Remains”

Co-Directors: Julija Ŝukys and Phong Nguyen

Traci Cox


Director: Anand Prahlad

Cass Donish

"Poetry and Prose"

Director: Gabriel Fried

Blake Estep

"'Continually Reimagined and Contested': A Narrative Theory Approach to Four Reconstruction Novels"

Director: John Evelev

Chelsea Fabian

“Identities Unbound: Queer Liminality, Futurity, and Other-World Speculative Fiction”

Director: Becca Hayes

Ariel Fried

“Messy Ideals and Possible Alternatives: Identity, Subjectivity, and Affective Relationality in Medico-Scientific, Popular, and Canonical Victorian Literatures”

Director: Elizabeth Chang

Jolie Mandelbaum

“The Monstrous Ordinary: Systems of Power in Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Gothic Literatures”

Director: Elisa Glick

Thanh Nguyen

"The English and Vietnamese of Vietnamese Immigrants in the US"

Director: Michael Marlo

Jesutofunmi Omowumi

“The African Diasporic Novels of Geo-Poethics: Decolonizing Black

Anthropocenes in the Contemporary Climate Change Crisis”

Director: Christopher Okonkwo

McKenzie Peck

"A History and Examination on Robert Thornton and His Manuscripts"

Director: Emma Lipton

Maurine Pfuhl

"Heavily Perfumed Women"

Director: Julija Ŝukys

Shelby Preston

"Performing Disidentifications in Chivalric Romance at the Anglo Scottish Border"

Director: Emma Lipton

Yoonjae Shin

“Gothic Jurisprudence: Genre, Gender, and the Rule of Law”

Director: Noah Heringman

Allison Wiltshire

"Breakable Binaries: Twins in African and African American Literature, Film, Artwork, and Culture"

Co-Directors: Christopher Okonkwo and Sheri-Marie Harrison


Recent Dissertations


Bailey Boyd (PhD 2023) Fathoming”

Lindsay Fowler (PhD 2023) "Bury the Key: A Book of Houses"

Heather-Heckman-McKenna (PhD 2023) "Eighteenth-Century Sensibility and the Subversive Female Body"

Erin Regneri (PhD 2023) "We Must Look a Long Time Before We Can See: The Art and Science of Thoreau's Early Work"


Ashley Anderson (PhD 2022) Sifting the Feminine Bones: Essays”

Megan Abrahamson (PhD 2020) “Medieval Romance, Fanfiction, and the Erotics of Shame”

Gregory Allendorf (PhD 2019) “Bottle Fly”

Jordi Alonso (PhD 2021) "An Island of Nymphs:" Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Victoria Women's Classical Education"

London Brickley (PhD 2019) “Science Frictions: Science, Folklore, and ‘The Future’”

Elise Broaddus (PhD 2020) "`the back-and-forth form': Epistolary Mediation in Late Medieval English Literature"

Gwendolyn Edward (PhD 2021) "Refrain"

Carley Gomez (PhD 2021) "The First Inch of a Saguaro"

Elijah Guerra (PhD 2022) “Spatial Politics in Genre in the 21st Century Arabic Novel in English”

Jacob Hall (PhD 2022) “The Conditions”

Kate Harlin (PhD 2020) “'One Foot on the Other Side': Suicideality in Contemporary African Diaspora Fiction”

Aaron Harms (PhD 2021) "Selling You On Flexibility: Toward a Flexible Framework for Reflexive Administration of Writing Centers"

Emilee Howland-Davis (PhD 2019) “Magical Safe Spaces: The Role of Literature in Medieval and Early Modern Magic”

Vedran Husic (PhD 2020) “Book of Apparitions”

Sean Ironman (PhD 2020) “As Many Roast Bones As You Need”

Kate Kelley (PhD 2019) “Policing the Boundaries of Whiteness: Monsters Made in the USA”

Travis Knapp (PhD 2021) "Anti-Calvinist? Ceremonial Conformity and Laudian Writing, Reconsidered (c. 1590-1640)"

Neriman Kuyucu (PhD 2020) “Transnational Spaces, Transitional Places: Muslimness in Contemporary Literary Imaginations”

Peter Lang (PhD 2022) “Between the body and language: Subjectivity and the literary arts”

Lawrence Loiseau (PhD 2019) “A Lacanian Reply to Marx: The Necessity of Topology in the Formation of the Social”

Timothy Love (PhD 2021) "Black Skin Matters: The Significance of Color in Early Modern England"

Jennifer McCauley (PhD 2020) “When Trying to Return Home: Stories”

Teresa Mildbrodt (PhD 2019) “Sharp Things, or the Silver Lines are Not Scars”

William Moore (PhD 2019) “Brain Catalogue”

Angela Netro (PhD 2022) "The Wise Avenue"

Rebecca Pelky (PhD 2020) “Through a Red Place”

Katie Rhodes (PhD 2022) Rites of Leaving”

Brian Rodriguez (PhD 2021) "Beautiful Phantoms: British Literature, Political Economy, and Biopolitics from 1780-1855"

Donald Quist (PhD 2021) “The Freedoms of B. Kumasi”

Bradley Smith (PhD 2018) “Canon”

Joseph D. Smith (PhD 2019) “Worried Notes: Poems”

Nicole Songstad (PhD 2021) "Social Networks of Friendship in the Writings of Early Medieval English Women"

Steven Watts (PhD 2020) “Occupy, Blockade, Circulate: Narrating Community in 21st Century Crisis Fiction”

Kacy Walz (PhD 2022) The Graduate Student Novel: A New Subgenre in University Fiction”

Jake Young (PhD 2020) “All I Wanted” (creative); “On Poetry: The Emergence and Function of Meaning” (critical)


Jessie Adolph (PhD 2018) “Dee-Jay Drop that ‘Deadbeat’: Hip-Hop’s Remix of Fatherhood Narratives”

Khem Aryal (PhD 2015) “Rewriting the Creative: Toward a Happenings Theory of Creative Compositions” (critical); “The Last Monarchist:Stories from Nepal” (creative)

Dorothy Atuhura (PhD 2018) “Documenting ‘Harm’: Mediated Representations of Gendered Bodylore from Sub-Saharan Africa”

Constance Bailey (PhD 2015) “It Takes a Village: Twentieth Century Black Women’s Fiction and the Spiritual Apprenticeship Narrative”

Allison Balaskovits (PhD 2015) “Magic for Unlucky Girls:Stories”

Anne Barngrover (PhD 2016) “Brazen Creature”

Toby Beeny (PhD 2018) “Ecclesiastical Advice Literature in Anglo-Saxon England”

Colin Beineke (PhD 2018) “Assembling Comics: The House Style and Legacy of RAW Books and Graphics”

Deanna Benjamin (PhD 2018) “The Education of a Gambler’s Daughter”

Julie Christenson (PhD 2018) “Interpretive Cultures and Anglo-Saxon Texts”

Corinna Cook (PhD 2018) “Leavetakings”

Andrew Darr (PhD 2018) “Masculinity in Early Modern English Revenge Drama and City Comedy”

Joanna Eleftheriou (PhD 2015) “This Way Back: Essays from Cyprus”

Lauren Fath (PhD 2015) “My Hands, Remembering”

Marissa Fugate (PhD 2016) “Midnight’s Children: The Adolescent Body in the Age of Nations”

Lianuska Guiterrez (PhD 2015) “And the Wood Doll Arose and Told, I’m a Real”

Ryan Habermeyer (PhD 2017) “Babbler: A Novel”

Rachel Hanson (PhD 2016) “Dislocations”

Stephen Haynie (PhD 2018) “Escalations: Stories”

Brianne Jaquette (PhD 2015) “The Locomotive and the Tree: Industrial Pittsburgh’s Late Nineteenth-Century Literary Culture”

Sarah Johnson (PhD 2017) “Mr. Boswell Peels an Orange”

Jennifer Julian (PhD 2017) “I’m Here, I’m listening: Short Stories”

Ruth Knezevich (PhD 2015) “Narrative as Archive: Ethno-Historical Paratexts in British Literature, 1760-1830”

Patrick Lane (PhD 2016) “Medieval Death Trip”

Miranda Mattingly (PhD 2016) “A Circuit of Haunting Pictures: Theorizing the Space of Readership in ‘Condition of England’ Literature and the Periodical Press, 1845-1889”

Elizabeth McConaghy (PhD 2015) “Migrations”

LaTanya McQueen (PhD 2017) “When the Evening Comes” (fiction); “And It Begins Like This” (nonfiction)

Juliette Paul (PhD 2015) “Transatlantic Geographies of Faith in the Long Eighteenth Century”

Kavita Pillai (PhD 2018) “The Refashioning of Fundamentalist Nostalgia in the Age of Globalization: Charting the Rise of the Right Wing via Textual Trends”

Nick Potter (PhD 2018) “Big Gorgeous Jazz Machine”

Nick Robinson (PhD 2016) “Our Family Walks”

Eric Russell (PhD 2016) “Nature, Materiality, and Human Agency in the Literature of the Great Lakes, 1790-1853”

Travis Scholl (PhD 2018) “Of the Burning”

Eric O. Scott (PhD 2018) “The Pagan’s Progress, or, The Invention of Pilgrimage”

Carli Sinclair (PhD 2018) “‘This Land is My Land’: Authority and Landscape in American Women’s Nonfiction, 1843-1903”

Magi Smith (PhD 2016) “The Drama of Dissent: Pamphleterring Culture and Performative Protestantism:1650-1795”

Gregory Specter (PhD 2014) “Harriet Beecher Stowe and the Circulation of Texts”

Jennifer Spitulnik (PhD 2015) “No People Like #ShowPeople: Broadway Performers”

Christopher Strelluf (PhD 2015) “We Have Such a Normal, Non-Accented Voice’: A Sociophoentic Study of English in Kansas City

Raymond Summerville (PhD 2016) “The Fetishization of Firearms in African‐American Folklore and Culture”

Chun Ye (PhD 2016) “HAO”

Jihun Yoo (PhD 2015) “The Frontier Myth and The Frontier Thesis Contemporary Genre Fiction”

Job Placements






PhD 2023

Bailey Boyd

Student Services Coordinator, Learning Center, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

Creative Writing


Lindsay Fowler

Instructor of English, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

Creative Writing

Bury the Key: A Book of Houses

Heather Heckman-McKenna

Instructor of English, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

Creative Writing

Eighteenth-Century Sensibility and the Subversive Female Body

Erin Regneri

Instructor of English, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

Nineteenth Century American

We Must Look a Long Time Before We Can See: The Art and Science of Thoreau's Early Works

PhD 2022

Elijah Guerra

Assistant Professor of English Composition, University of Cincinnati


Spatial Politics in Genre in the 21st Century Arabic Novel in English

Ashley Anderson

Instructor of English, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

Creative Writing

Sifting the Feminine Bones: Essays

Jacob Hall


Creative Writing

The Conditions

Peter Lang

Lecturer, University of Central Arkansas

Critical Theory

Between the body and language: Subjectivity and the literary arts

Katie Rhodes

Medical Student, University of Missouri School of Medicine

Creative Writing

Rites of Leaving

Kacy Walz

Writing Instructor, Walden Writing Center, Walden University

America Literature

The Graduate Student Novel: A New Subgenre in University Fiction

PhD 2021

Donald Quist

Assistant Professor of English, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

Creative Writing

The Freedoms of B. Kumasi

Brian Rodriguez

Instructor of English, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

Romantic Literature

Beautiful Phantoms: Literature, Political Economy, and Biopolitics from 1780-1855.

Nicole Songstad

Library Supervisor, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN


Anglo-Saxon Women and Social Networks: Mapping Sisterhood, Alliances, and Friendship

Jordi Alonso

MA Student, Classical Studies Program, Columbia University of New York

Creative Writing, Poetry

An Island of Nymphs: Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Victorian Women’s Classical Education

Gwendolyn Edward

Assistant Professor of English/Creative Writing, Murray State University, Murray, KY



Carley Gomez

Pre-Law Advisor, Lead for Professional Development, Center for Pre-Law Advising, University of Madison-Wisconsin, Madison, WI

Creative Writing, Fiction

The First Inch of a Saguaro

Aaron Harms

Director, Writing Center, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

Rhetoric and Composition

Selling You on Flexibility: Toward a Flexible Framework for Reflexive Administration of Writing Center

Travis Knapp

Tenure-Track Assistant Professor, English Department, Valley City State University, North Dakota


Anti-Calvinist? Ceremonial Conformity and Laudian Writing, Reconsidered (c. 1590-1640)

Timothy Love

Lecturer, English Department, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama

Early Modern British Literature

Black Skin Matters: The Significance of Color in Early Modern England

PhD 2020

Elise Broaddus

Instructor of English, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

Medieval Literature

The Back-And-Forth Form: Epistolarity in Late Medieval Literature

Megan Abrahamson Part-Time Faculty, Central New Mexico Community College Medieval Literature Medieval Romance, Fanfiction, and the Erotics of Shame
Katelyn Harlin Assistant Professor of Postcolonial Literature, Eureka College African Diaspora Studies 'One Foot on the Other Side': Suicideality in Contemporary African Diaspora Fiction
Vedran Husic

Adjunct Professor, Saint Leo University (FL)

Creative Writing, Fiction Book of Apparitions
Sean Ironman

Post-Doctoral Fellow of Writing, US Naval War College, Newport, RI

Creative Writing As Many Roast Bones As You Need
Neriman Kuyucu Teaching Focused Position, Koç University (Turkey) Diaspora Literature and Academic Writing Transnational Spaces, Transitional Places: Muslimness in Contemporary Literary Imaginations
Jennifer McCauley Fiction Editor, Pleiades Creative Writing, Fiction When Trying to Return Home: Stories
Rebecca Pelky Assistant Professor of English/Film, Clarkson University (NY) Creative Writing, Poetry Through a Red Place
Steven Watts Lecturer, School of Business, University of Wisconsin-Madison Contemporary Literature Occupy, Blockade, Circulate: Narrating Community in 21st Century Crisis Fiction

PhD 2019

Gregory Allendorf

Adjunct Instructor, English Department, University of Missouri 

Creative Writing, Poetry

Bottle Fly

Devin Day

Instructor, Writing Program, University of Massachusetts

Contemporary American Literature

The Great Recession and the Genre Turn

Emilee Howland-Davis

Senior Lecturer, Writing, Language, and Literature Department, University of Wisconsin-Superior 

Medieval Studies

Magical Safe Spaces: The Role of Literature in Medieval and Early Modern Magic

Kate Kelley

Visiting Assistant Professor, Religious Studies, University of Missouri


Policing the Boundaries of Whiteness: Monsters Made in the USA

Teresa Milbrodt

Assistant Professor, Michigan State University (Michigan) 

Creative Writing, Fiction

Sharp Things, or the Silver Lines are Not Scars

William Moore

 Associate Content Producer, Three Ships (Raleigh, North Carolina)

Creative Writing, Nonfiction

Brain Catalogue

Bradley Smith

English Teacher, Liberty High School (Missouri) 

Creative Writing


J.D. Smith

Genealogist & Lecturer at The Rheinland American: Genealogy Services 

Creative Writing

Worried Notes: Poems

PhD 2018

Jessie Adolph

Assistant Professor of English, Georgia State University, Decatur, Georgia


“Dee-Jay Drop that ‘Deadbeat’: Hip-Hop’s Remix of Fatherhood Narratives”

Dorothy Atuhura

Lecturer, Kyambogo University (Uganda)


Documenting "Harm:" Mediated Representations of Gendered Bodylore from Sub-Saharan Africa

Deanna Benjamin

Assistant Dean and Academic Coordinator, Washington University (Missouri) 

Creative Writing

The Education of a Gambler's Daughter

Julie Christenson 

Rare Book Librarian at Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, Texas


Interpretive Cultures and Anglo-Saxon Texts

Corinna Cook

Fulbright Visiting Researcher Award, Whitehorse, Yukon

Creative Writing


Stephen Haynie


Creative Writing

“Escalations: Stories”

Leanna Petronella

Content Creater @ Aceable (Texas)

Creative Writing

The Imaginary Age: Poetry

Kavita Pillai

Product Engagement for Strategic Accounts, Deem, Inc. 

Global Literature

“Democracy and the Failure of Liberalism: Globalization and the Reemergence of Orientalist
Essentialism in Hindutva’s Construction of Fundamentalist Hindu Identity”

Nick Potter

Visiting Assistant Professor, School of Visual Studies, University of Missouri

Creative Writing

Big Gorgeous Jazz Machine

Travis Scholl

Managing Editor, Theological Publications at Concordia Seminary (Missouri)

Creative Writing


Eric O. Scott

Field Rep, Laborers International Union of North America Local 773 Mid Missouri

Creative Writing, Creative Non-fiction

The Pagan’s Progress, or, The Invention of Pilgrimage

Carli Sinclair

Visiting Professor, Stephens College (Missouri)

Ninteenth-Century American Literature

“‘This Land is My Land’: Authority and Landscape in American Women’s Nonfiction, 1843-1903”

PhD 2017

Toby Beeny

Master Instructor, Indian River State College (Florida) 

Medieval Literature

Ecclesiastical Advice Literature in Anglo-Saxon England (critical dissertation)

Colin Beineke

Professor of English, SCAD - The University of Creative Careers (Georgia) 

Contemporary American Literature

Assembling Comics: The House Style and Legacy of RAW Books and Graphics (critical dissertation)

Andew Darr

English Teacher, Centralia High School (Missouri) 

Early Modern Literature

Masculinity in Early Modern English Revenge Drama and City Comedy (critical dissertation)

Ryan Habermeyer

Assistant Professor of English, tenure-track, Salisbury University (Maryland) 

Creative Writing and Literature

Babbler: A Novel (fiction) and Fairy-Tale Phantoms: On the Cultural Hauntings of Ever After (critical dissertation)

Jennifer Julian

Fiction Writer in Residence at Allegheny College (Pennsylvania)

Creative Writing, fiction

I’m Here, I’m Listening: Nine Short Stories and a Novella (fiction)

LaTanya McQueen

Assistant Professor, Coe College (Iowa)

Creative Writing, fiction

When The Evening Comes (novel); And It Begins Like This (essays)

PhD 2016

Anne Barngrover

Assistant Professor of Creative Writing-Tenure Track, Saint Leo University (Florida)

Creative Writing, Poetry

Brazen Creature (poetry)

Rachel Hanson

Oliver O'Connor Creative Writing Fellow, Colgate University 

Creative Writing, Nonfiction


Patrick Lane

Tenure-Track Position, Culver-Stockton College (Missouri)

Creative Writing, Fiction

Medieval Death Trip

Megan Peiser

Assistant Professor of Eighteenth-Century Literature at Oakland University (Michigan)

Eighteenth-Century Literature

British Women Novelists and The Review Periodical, 1790-1820

Nick Robinson

Associate Professor, Claflin University

Creative Writing, Poetry

Our Family Walks

Eric Russell

Lecturer, Central Michigan University (Michigan)

Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century American Literature

Nature, Materiality, and Human Agency in the Literature of the Great Lakes from 1790 to 1853

Maggie Smith

Associate Professor, Moberly Area Community College

Early Modern Literature

The Drama of Dissent: Pamphleterring Culture and Performative Protestantism: 1650-1795

PhD 2015

Khem Aryal

Assistant Professor, Arkansas State University

Rhetoric and Composition

The Displaced: Stories from Nepal (fiction) and The Creative of the Critical: Toward a Happenings Theory of Creative Composition (critical dissertation)

Constance Bailey

Assistant Professor of African American Literature and Folklore, Georgia State University 

English/African American Studies

It Takes a Village: Twentieth Century Black Women's Fiction and the Spiritual Apprenticeship Narrative

Joanna Eleftheriou

Assistant Professor, University of Houston-Clear Lake

Creative Writing, Nonfiction

This Way Back: Essays from Cyprus

Lauren Fath

Assistant Professor, Highlands University (NM)

Creative Writing, Nonfiction

My Hands, Remembering

Brianne Jaquette

Assistant Professor, College of the Bahamas 

Nineteenth Century American Literature

The Locomotive and the Tree: Industrial Pittsburgh’s Late Nineteenth-Century Literary Culture

Ruth Knezevich

Postdoctoral Fellow, Royal Society of New Zealand Marsden Trust

Long 18th Century

Narrative as Archive: Ethno-Historical Paratexts in British Literature, 1760-1830

Juliette Paul

Assistant Professor, Christian Brothers University

Eighteenth-Century British Literature

Transatlantic Geographies of Faith in the Long Eighteenth Century

Jennifer Spitulnik

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Stephens College (MO)


No People Like #ShowPeople: Broadway Performers' Ethnographic Social Media

PhD 2014

Jess Bowers

Assistant Professor of English, Maryville University

Creative Writing, Fiction

Shooting a Mule and Other Stories

Meagan Ciesla

Assistant Professor, Gonzaga University

Creative Writing, Fiction

County Road 23

Naomi Clark

Assistant Professor and Director of the Writing Center, Loras College (IA)

Rhetoric and Composition

Toward a New Critical Materialist Rhetorical Methodology: Ideographic Tracking of Family Values from Eugenics to Neoliberalism

Darcy Holtgrave

Associate Health Professions Adviser, Honors College, University of Missouri


"Welcome to my Couch": an Ethnographic Description and Narrative Analysis of Youtube Blogs on Mental Illness

Shelli Homer

Associate Faculty, MiraCosta College

African Diaspora Literature

The Space of the South and Self-Definition in African American Return Migration Novels of the Post-Civil Rights Era

Claire McQuerry

Assistant Professor, Kutztown University (Pennsylvania)

Creative Writing, Poetry

The Heart Can Thirst Because Obsession is a More Country: Poems and Lacemakers

Bethany Peterson

Assistant Professor, Grand Valley State University (MI)

Creative Writing, Nonfiction


Melissa Range

Assistant Professor, Lawrence University

Creative Writing, Poetry


Alison Rutledge

Student Success Coordinator, STEM Division, Southern Oregon University

Victorian Literature

Impressions and Characters: Travel Writing and Narration in the Novel from Victorian to Modern

Gregory Specter

Visiting Assistant Professor, Duquesne University 

Nineteenth Century American Literature

Harriet Beecher Stowe and the Circulation of Texts

Christopher Strelluf

Assistant Professor, University of Warwick (UK)


"We have such a normal, non-accented voice": A Sociophonetic Study of English in Kansas City

PhD 2013

Joseph Aguilar

Assistant Teaching Professor, Worcester Polytenic Institute

Creative Writing, Fiction

House of Halls

Luke Gibbs

Professor, Evangel University

British Romanticism

 Great Britain and Latin America: The Romantics and Informal Empire

Stephanie Kartalopoulos

Learning & Performance Business Partner at Forward Air Corporation, Georgia

Creative Writing, Poetry


Caitlin Kelly

Lecturer, Case Western Reserve University

Eighteenth Century British Literature

Private Devotion, Common Prayer, and the British Novel, 1700-1815

Zaid Mahir

Instructor, University of Central Missouri

World Literature

 A Comparative Study of Robert Coover’s The Public Burning and ‘AbdulKhaaliq al-Rikaabi’sSaabiAyaam al-Khalq

Katharine McIntyre

Assistant Professor, Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Creative Writing, Fiction

 The Moat

Rebecca Mouser

Assistant Professor, Missouri Southern State University

Medieval Literature

 Oral Tradition, Anglo-Saxon Heroic Poetry and the Fourteenth Century: ‘Reading’ the Oral in the AlliterativeMorte d’Arthur and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

Darren Pine

Online Instructor-Mizzou Online, University of Missouri

Medieval Literature

The Poetics of the Medium: Aesthetic Forms and Technologies of the Word in the English Middle Ages

Claire Schmidt

Associate Professor, Missouri Valley College

Folklore & Oral Tradition

"If You Don't Laugh You'll Cry": The Occupational Humor of White American Prison Workers and Social Workers

Derek Updegraff

Associate Professor, California Baptist University

Medieval Literature

Style and Structure, Politics and Preaching: The 'Lives of Saints' and Other Alliterative Works by AElfric of Eynsham

Ramsay Wise

Instructor, University of Missouri

Film Studies

Film in Post-World War II American Fiction

Megan Woosley

Assistant Professor, Department of English, Francis Marion University (South Carolina)

Medieval Literature


PhD 2012

Jonas Cope

Assistant Professor, California State University-Sacramento

British Romanticism

The Dissolution of Character in Late Romantic British Literature, 1816-1837

Gregory Dunne

Professor, Miyazaki International College (Japan)

Creative Writing, Nonfiction

Passing Figures 

Sharon Emmerichs

Assistant Professor, University of Alaska-Anchorage

Renaissance Literature

Crossing Boundaries: Shakespeare and the Language of Transgression  

Robert Long Foreman

Assistant Professor, Rhode Island College

Creative Writing, Nonfiction

We Are All Dealers in Used Furniture 

Kevin Henderson

Chair, Languages and Literature, Assistant Professor, and Faculty Coordinator for English, Drury University

Rhetoric and Composition

Dissertation: Writing to Feel / Feeling to Write: Utilizing Emotion Theory and Performance Studies in Creative Writing Pedagogy

Shelley Ingram

Assistant Professor, University of Louisana-Lafayette


“To See a Little Differently”: Racialized Discourses in the Study of American Literature

Debbie Lelekis

Assistant Professor, Florida Institute of Technology

American Literature

Spectatorship in the Crowd in American Literature, 1880-1920

Joanna Luloff

Assistant Professor, University of Colorado-Denver

Creative Writing, Fiction;

Transnational Literature

Remind Me Again What Happened(creative dissertation) and The Novel as NGO: Border and Genre Crossings in 20th/21st Transnational Literature(critical dissertation)

Dustin Michael

Assistant Professor, Savannah State University

Creative Writing

Triptych: Essays of Place and Travel

Neesha-Elizabeth Navare

Assistant Professor, Savannah State University

Creative Writing 

Night and Day

John Nieves

Assistant Professor, Salisbury University (MD)

Creative Writing, Poetry

 Second Person Ethereal 

Peter Ramey

Assistant Professor, Northern State University (SD)

 Medieval Literature

The poetics of the medium: aesthetic forms and technologies of the word in the English Middle Ages

Joseph Scott

Lecturer, Center for English Language Learning, University of Missouri

American Literature

The American Alien: Immigrants, Expatriates and Extraterrestrials in Twentieth-Century U.S. Fiction

Erin Wilson

Visiting Affiliate Assistant Professor, Loyola University (MD)

Victorian Literature

Somatic Subjects: The Pathological Path to Victorian Womanhood

Ramsay Wise

Lecturer, Missouri Science and Technology 

American Literature

Film in Post-World War II American Fiction

PhD 2011

Katy Didden

Assistant Professor, Ball State University

Creative Writing, Poetry


Philip Howerton

Professor, Missouri State University-West Plains

American Literature, Rhetoric and Composition

 The Other Ozarks: A Critical Anthology

Shelley Ingram

Assistant Professor and Assistant Head of English Department, University of Louisiana-Lafayette

American Literature

"To See a Little Differently": Racialized Discourses in the Study of American Literature

Peter Monacell

Chair of the Language and Communication Studies Department and Assistant Professor of English, Columbia College (MO)

American Poetry

 Poetry of the American Suburbs

Chad Parmenter

Visiting Assistant Professor,
Niagara University (NY)

Creative Writing, Poetry

My America

Angela Rehbein

Associate Professor, West Liberty University

Eighteenth-Century British Literature

Domesticating the Empire: women writers and colonial discourse in late eighteenth- century British literature

Todd Richardson

Associate Professor, University of Nebraska-Omaha


A Ghost is Born: The Construction and Consumption of Folk Authenticity

PhD 2010

Leigh Dillard

Professor of English, University of North Georgia

British Novel 1740-1900

Illustrated Editions: Depicting the Eighteenth-Century Novel

Chatham Ewing

Digital Library Strategist, Cleveland Public Library

American Literature

American Little Magazines of the Mid-20th Century: Network Analysis, Influence and Canons

Lania Knight

Senior Lecturer, University of Cloucestershire (UK)

Creative Writing, Fiction

Adaptation: Re-Creating the Novel as a Stage Play

Damon Kraft

Interim Provost and Associate Professor, Kansas Weslyan University

Medieval Literature

Merchants and the Medieval Mirror

Lily Mabura

Assistant Professor, 
American University of Sharjah (UAE)

African Diaspora Studies and Creative Writing, Fiction

Representations of the violently displaced black female self in contemporary African literature: (scholarly dissertation); House on a jade sea (creative dissertation)

Marc McKee

Assistant Teaching Professor, University of Missouri

Creative Writing, Poetry

 The Consolationeer 

Scott Mitchell

Honors College Coordinator for the Online Campus at Georgia State University Perimeter College


"This sweet touch": alienation and physical connection in the works of Michael Ondaatje, Shyam Selvadurai, and Salman Rushdie

Willow Mullins

Visiting Assistant Professor, 
Ohio State University

Global Literature

Philanthropic Tourism and Artistic Authenticity: Cultural Empathy and the Western Consumption of Kyrgyz Art

Stefanie Wortman

Manager, Technical Documentation, Oracle Health, Kansas City, MO

Creative Writing, Poetry

 Permanent Collection

PhD 2009

Sarah Barber

Associate Professor, 
St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY

Creative Writing, Poetry

The Kissing Party (poetry)

William Connolly

Affiliate Assistant Professor of English, 
Fontbonne University

Creative Writing, Nonfiction

The Eight Leaves (creative nonfiction)

John Estes

Associate Professor and 
Director of Undergraduate Creative Writing, 
University of Alabama

Creative Writing, Poetry

Sufficient Wildness (poetry)

Emily Friedman

Assistant Professor, 
Auburn University

Eighteenth-Century British Literature

Beginning's Ends: New Senses of Ending and the Rise of the Novel

Joseph Green

Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning, University of Dubuque

British Novel to 1945

Victorian Natural History as Cultural History

Gretchen Henderson

Adjunct Lecturer, Georgetown University 

Creative Writing, Fiction

 On Marvellous Things Seen and Heard

Elizabeth Langemak

Assistant Professor, LaSalle University

Creative Writing, Poetry

Reluctant Sublime: Poems (poetry)

Jeremy Reed

Associate Professor, Central Methodist University

20th century American Literature

The American Dream from the Margins in 20th-Century Fiction

Emily Rosko

Associate Professor, College of Charleston

Creative Writing, Poetry

Prop Rockery (poetry)

Amy Wilkinson

Clinical Assistant Professor of Writing in the Core Program, New York University

Creative Writing, Fiction

Kaylene Can't Drive and Other Stories(fiction)

PhD 2008

Julie Buchsbaum

Humanities Librarian, 
University of Kansas

Creative Writing, Poetry

Still Life with Rooms People Live In (poetry)


Crystal Lake

Professor, Wright State University

Eighteenth-Century Studies and Romanticism

Ruin Nation: The Aesthetics of Decay and the Politics of Decline in Britain, 1740-1820

Nathan Oates

Professor and Director of Undergraduate Writing Studies,
Seton Hall University

Creative Writing, Fiction

The World is Mist (fiction)

David Henderson

Adjunct Faculty,
St. Charles Community College

Folklore and Oral Tradition

The Medieval English Begging Poem

Lisa Higgins

Program/Project Support Coordinator Senior, Missouri Folk Arts Program, University of Missouri


Reconstructing gender, personal narrative, and performance at the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival

Jeffrey Pethybridge

Chair, Summer Writing Program Director, Naropa University 

Creative Writing, Poetry

 The January Party (poetry)

Lisa Rathje

Executive Director at Local Learning: The National Network for Folk Arts in Education


 Re/presenting traditions: identity, power, and politics in folklife programming

Zak Watson

Chair of the English and Philosophy Department, Missouri Southern State University

Critical Theory and Restoration Literature

Breathing in the Other: Enthusiasm and the Sublime in Eighteenth-Century Britain

PhD 2007

Jason Arthur

Associate Professor, Chair of English
Rockhurst University (Missouri)

American Literature (1865-1965)

Thinking Locally: Provincialism And Cosmopolitanism In American Literature Since The Great Depression

Nicky Beer

Associate Professor, 
University of Colorado-Denver

Creative Writing, Poetry

 The Diminishing House (poetry)

Erin Clair

Associate Professor and Director of College Operations, Arkansas Tech University

20th century Gender and Sexuality Theory

Death Becomes Her: Modernism, Femininity, and the Erotics of Death

Na'Imah Ford

Assistant Professor, 
Florida Agricultural & Mechanical U

Postcolonial and African American Literature

A Theory of Yere-Wolo: Coming-of-Age Narratives in African Diaspora Literature

Emily Isaacson

Associate Professor and Director of the Honors Program, Heidelberg University

Renaissance and Restoration Drama

Domesticating the Citizen: Household Authority, the Merchant Class Family, and the Early Modern Stage

Mike Kardos

Associate Professor, 
Co-Director of Creative Writing,
Editor of Jabberwock,

Mississippi State University

Creative Writing, Fiction

One Last Good Time (fiction)

Jason Koo

Associate Teaching Professor, Quinnipiac University (Connecticut)

Creative Writing, Poetry

Man on Extremely Small Island(poetry)

Nadine Meyer

Associate Professor,
Gettysburg College

Creative Writing, Poetry

 The Anatomy Theater (poetry)

Bryan Narendorf

Associate Professor and Chair,
LaSalle University

Creative Writing, Poetry

Against the Terrible Death (poetry)

Sophia Nikoleishvili

Universidad Autonoma de Madrid

18th century British Literature and Art

The many faces of Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe: examining the Crusoe myth in film and on television

Michael Piafsky

Associate Professor and Director of Writing Program, Spring Hill College

Creative Writing, Fiction

Laughter and Other Lies (fiction)

Catherine Pierce

Professor (full),
Co-director of Creative Writing, 
Mississippi State University

Creative Writing, Poetry

Famous Last Words (fiction)

Sharon Robideaux

Assistant Professor, tenure-track,
Ferris State University

Rhetoric and Composition

Like dancers following each other's steps: an analysis of lexical cues in student writing for differing audiences

PhD 2006

William Bradley

Writing Center Coordinator,
Heidelberg University 

Creative Writing, Nonfiction

Second Life (creative nonfiction)

Rebecca Dunham

Professor (full),
Creative Writing Program
University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

Creative Writing, Poetry

The Miniature Room (poetry)

Steven Gehrke

Associate Professor,
University of Nevada-Reno

Creative Writing, Poetry

Michelangelo’s Seizure (poetry)

Christie Hodgen

Professor (full), tenure-track
University of Missouri-Kansas City

Creative Writing, Fiction

Hello, I Must Be Going (fiction)

Linda Johnson

Assistant Professor, tenure-track 
Texas Southern University

Africana Literature


Claiming/Reclaiming Africana Womanist Texts

Scott Kaukonen

Associate Professor, 
Sam Houston State University

Creative Writing, Fiction

Ordination (fiction)

James Kimbrell

Professor (full),
Florida State University

 Creative Writing, Poetry

The gatehouse heaven (poetry)

Jacqueline McGrath

Professor of English, 
College of DuPage


The Politics of Belief: Ethnography of the Catholic Workers, or Theorizing the Activist Literature of Dorothy Day

Elizabeth Thomas-Horn

Editor, International Journal of Conflict and Reconciliation,
University of Missouri

Visiting Professor, Central Methodist University (2008-2017)

Creative Writing, Poetry

Confessions of an Apprentice God: Poems

C. Michael Land

Associate Professor, 
Director of Community Service Learning Program
Assumption College

 Creative Writing, Fiction

Highway 82 (fiction)

PhD 2005

Heather Maring

Associate Professor,
Arizona State University

Creative Writing, Poetry

Water Margins (poetry)

James Andrew Miller

Assistant Professor, tenure-track,
Purdue University-Calumet

20th century American Literature

Matters of Life and Death: Political Crisis and the Ghost Film

Andrew Mulvania

Associate Professor, tenure-track, 
Washington and Jefferson College

Creative Writing, Poetry

Also in Arcadia (poetry)

John Porter

Associate Professor of English, 
Central Methodist University

Renaissance Drama

Socioeconomic Definitions of African Muslims in Tudor Drama

RaShell Smith-Spears

Associate Professor,
Jackson State University

19th century American Literature

Black Love Ain’t Love: How the Image of Black Romantic Relationships Was Used in the Construction of National Identity

Stacy Tintocalis

Assistant Professor,
University Alabama - Birmingham,
Visiting Writer,
Missouri - St Louis

Creative Writing, Fiction

Honeymoon in Beirut (fiction)


Anthony Varallo

Professor (full), Director of Undergrad Creative Writing,
College of Charleston

Creative Writing, Fiction

Houses Left Behind and Other Stories(fiction)

PhD 2004

David Allred

Professor (full), tenure-track,
Snow College

Folklore and Oral Tradition

Fiction, Folklore, and Reader Competency: The Politics of Literary Performance Arenas

Kevin Allton

Assistant Professor,
University of Southern Indiana

Creative Writing, Fiction

The Bride of Fog

Jean Braithwaite

Associate Professor,
University of Texas - Rio Grande Valley

Creative Writing, Nonfiction

FAT: The Story of My Life With My Body (creative nonfiction)

Mary Jill Burkindine

Panola College 


The World According to East African Writers: A Bakhtinian Analysis with Teaching Applications

Averill Curdy

Associate Professor​, 
Northwestern University

Creative Writing, Poetry

From the Lost Correspondence: Poems

Deborah Forssman-Hill

Adjunct Instructor, 
University of Central Arkansas

Rhetoric and Composition

Working Language Together: The Transforming and Transformative Voices of Three Women on the Academic Page

William Grattan

Associate Professor,
North Carolina Wesleyan College

Creative Writing, Fiction

Ghost Runners

Rachel Palencia Harper

Associate Director, Honors College, 
University of Missouri-Columbia

American Literature 1820-1945; Rhetoric and Composition

Jean Kenyon Mackenzie's "The Trader's Wife": A Critical Edition

Sally Hartin-Young

Freelance Writer/Editor 

Creative Writing, Fiction

In the Dark We Are All the Same(fiction)

Eric Leuschner

Chair & Associate Professor,
Fort Hays State University

History and Theory of the Novel to 1960

Prefacing Fictions: A History of Prefaces to American and British Novels

Joanie Mackowski

Associate Professor,
Cornell University

Creative Writing, Poetry

Tails (poetry)

Bern Mulvey

Arizona State University

Creative Writing, Poetry

The Mirror Kingdom (poetry)

Kira Salak

Writer for National Geographic Adventure

Creative Writing, Nonfiction

Four Corners: One Woman's Solo Journey into the Heart of Papua New Guinea (creative nonfiction)

PhD 2003

Anjail Rashida Ahmad

Associate Professor of English &
Director of Creative Writing, 
North Carolina A&T State University

Creative Writing, Poetry

Only Violet Can Rupture Like This(poetry)

Marilyn Lake

Freelance Writer, 
Hutchinson, Kansas

Creative Writing, Fiction

Our Mother's Ghosts (fiction)

David Todd Lawrence

Associate Professor of English, 
University of St. Thomas

African American Literature

"Negotiating Cooly": The Intersection of Race, Gender, and Sexual Identity in Black Arts Poetry

Nicole Pekarske

University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Creative Writing, Poetry

Intermissa, Venus (poetry)

Laura Rotunno

Associate Professor of English 
and Integrateive Arts,
Penn State University-Altoona College

19th century British Literature

Readdressed: Correspondence Culture and 19th Century British Fiction

Denise Stodola


Associate Professor &
Writing Center Coordinator
Kettering University

Medieval Literature

Transitional Materials: Crossing the Boundaries between Medieval and Modern Conceptions of Writing As A Step Toward Constructing A Pedagogical "Masterpiece in a Composition Classroom"

Billie Stephanie Powell Watts

Associate Professor, 
Lehigh University

Creative Writing, Fiction

Talk to me while I'm listening: A Novella (fiction)

Bobby M. Watts

Associate Professor, tenure-track,
Lehigh University

Creative Writing, Poetry

Past Providence (poetry)

PhD 2002

Charles Bradshaw

Associate Professor of English, 
University of Tennessee-Martin

American Literature to 1865; Rhetoric and Composition

Republican Aesthetics and the Discourse of Conspiracy in Federalist Literature

Tina Hall

Associate Professor of English, 
Hamilton College

Creative Writing, Fiction

All These Things I've Called Lover(fiction)

Karen Holmberg

Associate Professor, tenure-track,
Oregon State University

Creative Writing, Poetry

The Perseids

Hoa Ngo

Visiting Assistant Professor of English,
Hamilton College

Creative Writing, Fiction

Prayers for Imperfection (fiction)

Darlene Sybert

Northtown Community Center (St. Joseph, MO)

Romantic Poetry

Two Ways of Knowing and the Romantic Poets

John Tait

Associate Professor of English and Creative Writing, 
University of North Texas

Creative Writing, Poetry

What To Do With the Rest of Your Life(fiction)

Rebecca Wardell

Adjunct/Sessional instructor,
University of Manitoba

19th century British Literature

Men, Mentors, and Masculinity in Three of George Eliot's Novels

PhD 2001

Bryan Carter

Assistant Professor of Africana Studies, University of Arizona

African American Literature

Left Behind: Passing Through African American Literature

Marta Ferguson

Sole Proprietor, Freelance Writer,
Wordhound Writing & Editing Services, LLC

Creative Writing, Poetry

Mustang Sally Pays Her Debt to Wilson Pickett

Reinhold Hill

Vice Chancellor & Dean,
Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis


Rooted Ethnography: Writing Culture From the Inside Out

Katherine H. Lee

Associate Professor,
Multicultural American Lit, 

Indiana State University

Critical Theory; 20th century American Literature

North American Orientalism: The Career and Work of Winifred Eaton (1875-1954)

Colin Ramsey

Professor (full),  
Director of Graduate Studies
Appalachian State University

American Literature to 1865

The Labor of Writing: Literary Culture and the Artisan Class During the American Revolution

Evelyn Somers-Rogers

Associate Editor, Missouri Review,
University of Missouri-Columbia

Creative Writing Fiction

The Discontinuity of History: Stories Real and Otherwise

PhD 2000


Sandra Camargo

Adj Assistant Professor, 
Media and Cinema Studies,
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Film Studies

Once More With Feeling: Film Genre and Emotional Experience

Matthew Chacko

Assistant Professor, tenure-track,
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

Creative Writing, Fiction

Broadcast from the Flood and Other Stories (fiction)

Jacqueline M. Chambers

Staff Director, 
St. Louis Region, 
University of Missouri-St. Louis


The Needle and the Pen: Needlework and Women Writers’ Professionalism in the Nineteenth Century

Kenneth DeShane

Chair of General Eduation, Global University


Insider Ethnography: The Believer's Dilemma

Pamela (Johnston) Hartsock

Senior Technical Editor, 
HELIX Environmental Planning

19th century American Literature

A Girl Like You

Michele Reese

Associate Professor, 
University of South Carolina, Sumter

Creative Writing, Poetry

Following Phia

Lawrence (Dale) Rigby

Associate Professor of English, 
Western Kentucky University

Creative Writing, Nonfiction

Of Goat Glands, Potency Pills, and Other Conjugal Acts

Entering the PhD with a BA Degree

Admissions Criteria:

We admit students with only a BA into our PhD program only if their academic records are extremely strong, if they demonstrate in their applications the necessary maturity for a PhD program, and if they already had a good idea of the area in which they want to research and specialize.

Funding and teaching load:

These students are paid the PhD stipend for each of 6 years; they teach 2 courses each semester.

6-year timeline:

The timeline is essentially the same for students entering our PhD program with a BA as it is for students entering with an MA, except that an extra year of coursework is needed in year 2 to allow students to complete the 72 graduate credit hours required by the Graduate School for students entering a PhD program with a BA.

Degree Requirements:

The degree requirements are the same for students entering the PhD with a BA as they are currently for those entering with an MA except that 72 graduate credit hours are required. Forty-eight of these credit hours will consist of coursework, with at least 27 hours of coursework being completed at the 8000-level. 

MA Information:

Students who enter the PhD program with a BA will not get an MA degree along the way. However, if a student chooses not to complete the PhD degree, they can get an MA degree by either writing an MA thesis or completing the comprehensive exam for the PhD degree (which can also function as an MA exam).