Susan Ryan received her PhD in English at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1999), with concentrations in American literature and American studies. Her research interests include U.S. reform movements; the history of authorship and reception; affect studies/cultural history of emotion; literatures of the American Civil War; archival and digital research methods; and American periodicals. She is the author of The Grammar of Good Intentions: Race and the Antebellum Culture of Benevolence (2003) and is completing a book-length study titled “The Moral Economies of American Authorship,” under contract with Oxford University Press.
Prerequisite: ENGL 102 or 105 Note: Approved for the Arts and Sciences upper-level requirement in written communication(WR). An introduction to English Studies, providing an overview of forms such as poetry, drama, and the novel, and an introduction to terminology and methods used in analyzing texts.
Prerequisite: ENGL 102 or 105. A survey of American writers. Historical period: 1700-1900.
Prerequisite: ENGL 102 or 105 or WGST 199. Note: Cross-listed with WGST 325. The literary treatment of women by both female and male authors of the Western tradition.
Prerequisite: ENGL 102 or 105. A survey of prose fiction to 1870, establishing standards for the novelistic tradition. Historical period: 1700-1900.
Prerequisite: ENGL 102 or 105; ENGL 300 or 310 Note: Approved for the Arts and Sciences upper-level requirement in written communication (WR). Formerly ENGL-319; credit may not be earned for this course by students with credit for ENGL-319. Study of selected works, in a variety of genres, from American Literature produced from 1830 to the Civil War. Historical period: 1700-1900.
Prerequisite: ENGL 102 or 105; ENGL 300 or 310. Note: Approved for the Arts and Sciences upper-level requirement in written communication (WR). An intensive study in the works from a particular literary movement ( e.g. Magical Realism, Postmodern Fiction, or Visual Poetry). May be repeated once for credit. Historical period: varies by semester-see schedule of courses.
Involves discussion and analysis of advanced research topics leading to the dissertation.
Ph.D., English, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
B.A., English, Washington University, St. Louis
American literature and culture before 1900.
Nineteenth-century American literature and culture; print culture studies.
Current project: "The Moral Economies of American Authorship"
Honors & Awards
Honorable Mention, Gustave Arlt Book Prize in the Humanities, Council of Graduate Schools, 2004.
Summer Research Stipend, National Endowment for the Humanities, 2004.
Olorunsola Faculty Research Award, University of Louisville, 2003.
C19: The Society of Nineteenth-Century Americanists
American Studies Association
Book:The Grammar of Good Intentions: Race and the Antebellum Culture of Benevolence
(Cornell UP, 2003).
Articles and book chapters:
“Moral Authority as Literary Property in Mid-Nineteenth-Century Print Culture.” The Cambridge History of American Women Writers
, ed. Dale Bauer (Cambridge UP, 2012). 333-72.
"Stowe, Byron, and the Art of Scandal," American Literature 83 (March 2011): 59-91.
“Douglass, Melville, and the Moral Economies of American Authorship.” Frederick Douglass and Herman Melville: Essays in Relation, ed. Robert S. Levine and Samuel Otter. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 2008. 88-109.
“Blood and Treasure: A Response to Eric Lott.” American Literary History. 20 (spring/summer 2008): 124-31.
“Reform.” Keywords for American Cultural Studies, ed. Glenn Hendler and Bruce Burgett. New York: New York University Press, 2007. 196-99.
“The Bostonians and the Civil War.” Henry James Review 26 (2005): 265-72.
“Charity Begins at Home: Stowe’s Antislavery Novels and the Forms of Benevolent Citizenship.”American Literature 72 (2000): 751-82.
"Misgivings: Melville, Race, and the Ambiguities of Benevolence." American Literary History 12 (2000): 685-712.
"Acquiring Minds: Commodified Knowledge and the Positioning of the Reader in McClure's Magazine, 1893-1903." Prospects: An Annual Journal of American Cultural Studies 22 (1997): 211-38.
"'Rough Ways and Rough Work': Jacob Riis, Social Reform, and the Rhetoric of Benevolent Violence." ATQ: Nineteenth-Century American Literature and Culture 11 (Sept. 1997): 191-212. Special issue: "Philanthropy in Nineteenth-Century America."