Personal Information & Interests

 

I am a professor in the School of Arts, Technology, and Emerging Communication at the University of Texas at Dallas. I am also the co-creator and co-host of the weekly podcast The Comics Alternative, a show of “two guys with PhDs talking about comics.”  Also, I’m the founder and the previous executive editor of the journal, Philip Roth Studies. I received my B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and both my M.A. and Ph.D. from Purdue University.  In terms of my scholarly focus, I primarily work in comics studies and contemporary American fiction.  Other areas of reading and research include American ethnoracial narrative, film studies, Jewish American fiction, late nineteenth-century American literature, and narrative theory.

I am the general editor of Bloomsbury Academic’s brand new (and soon-to-be-announced) Bloomsbury Comics Studies Series, genre- and theme-based critical studies written for classroom use, but whose focus and readability are intended for non-scholarly audiences, as well.

Right now I am in the middle of several larger projects.  One is a collection of interviews with the Hernandez brothers — Gilbert, Jaime, and Mario — for the University Press of Mississippi’s “Conversations with Comic Artists” series. In addition to this, I’m working on turning the fall 2007 special issue of MELUS that I guest edited into a book-length collection of essays (you can get a copy of this special comics issue by going here).  The working title of the book is “Coloring American: Multi-Ethnic Engagements with Contemporary Comics,” and it will include essays on a variety of comics and graphic novels that concern, in one way or another, issues of race and ethnicity in the United States.  Another edited collection I’m working on concerns Jewish comics and graphic novels.  This will be an expansion of the the Winter 2011 special issue of Shofar that I pulled together.  

My motto: Ambiguity is sacred.  As Pierce Inverarity tells Oedipa Maas, “that’s all the secret, keep it bouncing.”