My research mainly deals with popular fiction and the various ways that Americans have represented themselves, their fears and their desires in it throughout the long twentieth century. For the past several years I've been particularly interested in evangelical Christian popular culture and fiction, especially in the way that it articulates certain aspects of American rural and working class cultural identity.
I grew up on a small farm (an apiary) in the Slate River Valley, outside of Thunder Bay. Before coming to Laurier I worked for some years at Palcky University in Olomouc, Czechoslovakia, as well as at McMaster, SUNY Buffalo and Dalhousie. In my time at Laurier Brantford I have taught in or administered in several programs, including English, Contemporary Studies (SCE), and Cultural Analysis and Social Theory (CAST). I am especially proud to have been one of the co-developers and initial instructors of the Foundations course “Academic Skills in the Humanities.”
Most of my spare time is taken up chasing around my several kids, but when I get a bit I like to go swimming or hike someplace with lots of trees and few people.
I am currently working on a series of articles that deal with the way American evangelical culture organizes the stories and images it uses to articulate understandings of how people fit into the world (in its natural and supernatural dimensions) and how people should understand moral agency. These articles will become the basis for a book provisionally entitled The Evangelical Imagination.
I currently work with students in the Laurier English graduate program (MA and PhD), and in the Laurier Cultural Analysis and Social Theory (CAST) MA program. In the English program, I work with students who are dealing with American and popular literatures, and in CAST I will work with students who wish to do cultural analyses of North American popular cultures.
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