Faculty Profile

Claire Seiler

Associate Professor of English (2010)

Contact Information

seilercl@dickinson.edu

East College Room 310
717.245.1921

Bio

Seiler's research and teaching span modern and contemporary U.S., British, and Irish literatures and cultures. Her recent writing has appeared in Contemporary Literature, Modernism/Modernity, Auden at Work (2015), Around 1945: Literature, Citizenship, Rights (2016), and elsewhere. She is currently completing her first book, "Midcentury Suspension," which offers a new literary history of the immediate postwar and rethinks period and political frames that broadly govern the study of 20th-century literature. Recent courses include: Celtic Revival/Harlem Renaissance; War, Race, and U.S. Literature since 1945; Women Write War; and a senior research seminar centered on Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man. In 2014-15, she was a Visiting Scholar at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; in 2016-17, she is serving as chair of Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies.

Education

  • B.A., Middlebury College, 2002
  • M.Phil., Trinity College, Dublin, 2004
  • Ph.D., Stanford University, 2010

2017-2018 Academic Year

Fall 2017

ENGL 101 Women Write War
Cross-listed with WGSS 101-01. This course studies American women’s war writing from the Civil War through the “war on terror.” Our guiding questions include: what literary forms have women writers adapted or developed to represent war, as well as the social, political, bodily, and emotional effects of armed conflict? How has women’s war writing participated in debates about feminism, citizenship, civil and human rights, and the American project? How have women's intersectional experiences and changing social roles impacted the genre of war writing, and vice versa? Primary texts include works of poetry, fiction, and autobiography by Gwendolyn Brooks, Willa Cather, Emily Dickinson, Elyse Fenton, Frances E.W. Harper, Naomi Shihab Nye, Leslie Marmon Silko, Toyo Suyemoto, and Natasha Trethewey.

WGSS 101 Women Write War
Cross-listed with ENGL 101-05. This course studies American women’s war writing from the Civil War through the “war on terror.” Our guiding questions include: what literary forms have women writers adapted or developed to represent war, as well as the social, political, bodily, and emotional effects of armed conflict? How has women’s war writing participated in debates about feminism, citizenship, civil and human rights, and the American project? How have women's intersectional experiences and changing social roles impacted the genre of war writing, and vice versa? Primary texts include works of poetry, fiction, and autobiography by Gwendolyn Brooks, Willa Cather, Emily Dickinson, Elyse Fenton, Frances E.W. Harper, Naomi Shihab Nye, Leslie Marmon Silko, Toyo Suyemoto, and Natasha Trethewey.

ENGL 220 Intro to Literary Studies
In literary studies, we explore the work texts do in the world. This course examines several texts of different kinds (e.g., novel, poetry, film, comic book, play, etc.) to investigate how literary forms create meanings. It also puts texts in conversation with several of the critical theories and methodologies that shape the discipline of literary study today (e.g., Marxist theory, new historicism, formalism, gender theory, postcolonial theory, ecocriticism, etc.). This course helps students frame interpretive questions and develop their own critical practice. This course is the prerequisite for 300-level work in English.

ENGL 321 Celtic Revival/Harlem Renaiss
This course studies two major art movements of the modernist period, both of which tie formal innovation to questions of national citizenship, racial equality, and political autonomy. How did these “minor” literatures challenge majority national or imperial cultures? What events and forms galvanized the social and aesthetic work of the Celtic Revival (Ireland) and the Harlem Renaissance (US)? Primary readings cover several genres (fiction, drama, poetry, and essays); primary authors include, among others: Langston Hughes, James Joyce, Nella Larsen, Alain Locke, J.M. Synge, Jean Toomer, and W.B. Yeats.

Spring 2018

ENGL 220 Intro to Literary Studies
In literary studies, we explore the work texts do in the world. This course examines several texts of different kinds (e.g., novel, poetry, film, comic book, play, etc.) to investigate how literary forms create meanings. It also puts texts in conversation with several of the critical theories and methodologies that shape the discipline of literary study today (e.g., Marxist theory, new historicism, formalism, gender theory, postcolonial theory, ecocriticism, etc.). This course helps students frame interpretive questions and develop their own critical practice. This course is the prerequisite for 300-level work in English.