Emeritus Faculty

Profiles of the emeritus/a faculty in the English Department at the University of Louisville
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Dale Billingsley

Dale B. Billingsley received his B.A. magna cum laude in English and history from Texas Christian University (1972), where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He was a Rotary International Fellow at the University of St. Andrews, Scotland (1972-73) and pursued his graduate studies in Renaissance literature at Yale University, where he earned the M.A. (1974), M.Phil. (1975), and Ph.D. (1977). At the University of Louisville he has taught English undergraduate courses in freshman and advanced composition as well as British literature; humanities courses in classical and Renaissance literature and culture as well as theory of the arts; university honors seminars on "science in literature" and history of print; senior honors English seminars; and graduate courses in bibliography and research methods and on Spenser, Shakespeare, Milton and cognitive stylistics. He and his spouse Lin Blackwell Billingsley, who retired in 2008 as administrative assistant in the Women's Studies Program, have four children, all of whom attended the University of Louisville, and five grandchildren.

Thomas B. Byers

Thomas Byers

Thomas Byers received his A.B. and A.M. from Brown University and his Ph.D. from the University of Iowa. At the University of Louisville he taught American literature, film, and interpretive theory. He was the nine-time director of the Study of the US Institute on Contemporary American Literature, funded by the US Department of State. Throughout his career at the University of Louisville he won numerous awards, including the University Distinguished Teaching Award, the Red Apple Award, the College Distinguished Service Award for Service to the Community, and the College Research Award. Dr. Byers was also a Fulbright Senior Fellow and Senior Specialist. Among his publications are the monograph What I Cannot Say: Self, Word, and World in Whitman, Stevens, and Merwyn (University of Illinois Press, 1989) and the journal articles "Back to the Future: The Humanist Matrix" in Cultural Critique 53 (2003) (with Laura Bartlett) and "Titanic Histories" in Zeitgeschichte 29 (2002).

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Julia Dietrich

Julia Dietrich joined the English Department faculty in 1978. She received her doctorate from the University of Cincinnati and teaches courses on medieval literature and culture, on Shakespeare, and on literary and rhetorical theory. Her research and teaching are in the areas of medieval culture and argumentation. Her current research project brings these two interests together in a study of patristic argumentation, specifically the epistemological basis for truth claims. Her journal articles include “Augustine and the Crisis of the 380s in Christian Doctoral Argumentation” in Journal of Early Christian Studies (2018); “Knowledge and Virtue in the Regula Pastoralis of Gregory the Great: The Development of Argumentation for the Late Sixth Century" in Journal of Late Antiquity (2015); and “Boethius’s Reading of the ‘beati Augustini scriptis’ in the Opuscula sacra” in Carmina Philosophiae (2012).

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Susan M. Griffin

Susan M. Griffin received her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. She is the editor of The Henry James Review (Johns Hopkins University Press) and author and editor of books on James, on anti-Catholicism, and on film. Her scholarship and teaching center on nineteenth-century American and British literature and culture, with a focus on fiction. She is an affiliated faculty member in Women & Gender Studies. She has taught courses on Toni Morrison, nineteenth-century ghost fictions, and "Scenes of Reading." She is also a member of the editorial board of Arizona Quarterly and the executive committee of the Henry James Society. She has served as editor of The Henry James Review and edited the Cambridge Edition of Henry James's The Europeans and, with Alan Nadell, The Men Who Knew Too Much: Henry James & Alfred Hitchcock (Oxford UP, 2011). She is the author of Anti-Catholicism and Nineteenth-Century Fiction (Cambridge UP, 2004) and "On Not Knowing Any Better" in Teaching Transatlanticism: Curricular Conversations on 19th Century Anglo-American Print Culture (Edinburgh UP, 2015).

Dennis Hall

Dennis R. Hall

Dennis R. Hall received his Ph.D. from The Ohio State University. With M. Thomas Inge, he edited the multi-volume Greenwood Guide to American Popular Culture (Greenwood Press).

Suzette Henke

Suzette A. Henke holds a B. A. from Santa Clara University and a Ph.D. from Stanford. She has held faculty positions at the University of Virginia and at Binghamton University and joined the University of Louisville in 1991 as Thruston B. Morton, Sr. Professor of Literary Studies. Dr. Henke is author of Joyce's Moraculous Sindbook:  A Study of "Ulysses"; of James Joyce and the Politics of Desire; and of Shattered Subjects: Trauma and Testimony in Women's Life-Writing. She is co-editor, with Elaine Unkeless, of Women in Joyce; and with David Eberly, of Virginia Woolf and Trauma. Professor Henke was awarded a fellowship at La Fondation Camargo in Cassis, France in 1985 and enjoyed a Fulbright at the Universities of Western Australia and Adelaide, 1991-92. She has twice lectured in India for USIS, 1984 and 1990. She twice taught on the SUNY London Program and was a guest professor at Aarhus University in Denmark in 1981; at the University of Haifa, Israel in 1983-84; and in Helsinki Finland, December 1998. In 2011 she re-established the UofL summer London program through the Institute of European Studies. 

Professor Henke has published more than one hundred articles in the field of modern literature and women's studies, with particular attention to such figures as James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, as well as Dorothy Richardson, Hilda Doolittle (H.D.), Doris Lessing, Anais Nin, Samuel Beckett, Robert Coover, Maya Angelou, Maxine Hong Kingston, Dorothy Allison, Audre Lorde, Alice Walker, Sally Morgan, Janet Frame, Keri Hulme, and Sylvia Fraser. She is currently working on a study of Post-traumatic Fiction: Gender and Mourning in Woolf, Joyce, and Lawrence, to be brought out by Palgrave; a book of essays on Post/Modernism/Feminism; and a memoir collection entitled Irises and Oyster Shells. 

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Debra Journet

Debra Journet received her Ph.D. from McGill University. At the University of Louisville, she taught courses on American poetry, modern and contemporary American literature, history and theory of the avant-garde, and poetry and politics. Her research covers the Rhetoric of science, Narrative theory, New media genres, Technical and scientific communication, Science and literature, Narrative and gaming, Multimodal Composition, Research methodologies in rhetoric and composition, First-year composition, and Modern British literature. In 2006 and 2008 Dr. Journet directed the Thomas R.Watson Conference in Rhetoric and Composition. She also served as a member of the CCCC Executive Committee, was a Fulbright Senior Scholar at the Lucian Blaga University (Sibiu, Romania), an Ohio State Visiting Scholar in Digital Media, a Four-time winner of the NCTE Award for Excellence in Technical and Scientific Communication, and a University of Louisville Distinguished Teaching Professor. Her recent publications include The New Work of Composing, with Cheryl Ball, and Ryan Trauman (Utah State, 2012) and Narrative Acts: Rhetoric, Race and Identity, Knowledge, with Beth A. Boehm and Cynthia Britt (Hampton, 2011). Click here for full bio.

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Min-Zhan Lu

Min-Zhan Lu is the author of Shanghai Quartet: The Crossings of Four Women in China (Duquesne, 2001)and, with Bruce Horner, of Writing Conventions (Penguin, 2007) and Representing the Other: Basic Writers and the Teaching of Basic Writing (NCTE, 1999). She is also the editor, with Bruce Horner and Paul Key Matsuda, of Cross-Language Relations in Composition (Southern Illinois UP, 2010). 

Carol Mattingly

Carol Mattingly

Carol Mattingly is the author of Well-Tempered Women: Nineteenth-Century Temperance Rhetoric (Southern Illinois UP, 1999), Appropriate[Ing] Dress: Women's Rhetorical Style in Nineteenth-Century America (Southern Illinois UP, 2002), and Secret Habits: Catholic Literacy Education for Women in the Early Nineteenth Century (Southern Illinois UP, 2016). Her writing also appeared in periodicals including Rhetoric Society Quarterly, Rhetoric Review, Popular Culture Review, and Filson Club History Quarterly.

Robert Miller

Professor Robert Miller taught English at the University of Louisville and served as chair of the English Department. He received his Ph.D. from The Ohio State University in 1968 and joined the faculty of the University of Louisville the same year.

Karen Mullen

Karen Mullen received her Ph.D. from the University of Iowa and taught in the English Department at the University of Louisville.

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Sena Naslund

Sena Naslund received her Ph.D. from the Iowa Writer's Workshop at the University of Iowa. She is the author of numerous novels and collections of short fiction. Her novels Ahab's Wife (1999) and Four Spirits (2003) were named a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. At the University of Louisville, she was recognized with the university-wide Distinguished Teacher award as well as the University's award for outstanding Creative Activity. She has served as the Writer in Residence at the University of Louisville and as Program Director for the MFA in Writing at Spalding University. In addition to teaching creative writing, she taught a large variety of literature courses, including top-level seminars in literature. In 2005 she was named the Kentucky Poet Laureate by Governor Ernie Fletcher.

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Mary I. Rosner

Mary I. Rosner received her B.A. from SUNY New Paltz and her M.A. and Ph.D. from The Ohio State University. After teaching at the Iowa State University for three years, she came to the University of Louisville, where she has published essays on classical rhetoric, the rhetoric of science, Victorian literature and culture, writing center work, technical writing, and the rhetoric of travel writing. Her publications include History, Reflection, And Narrative: The Professionalization Of Composition 1963-1983, co-edited with Beth A. Boehm and Debra Journet (Ablex, 1999).

Jeffrey Skinner

Jeffrey Skinner

Poet, playwright, and essayist Jeffrey Skinner is the 2014 winner of a Guggenheim Fellowship in Poetry and a 2015 Artist in Residence at the CERN particle accelerator. His prose book The 6.5 Practices of Moderately Successful Poets was published to wide attention and acclaim, and his collection of poems, Glaciology (Southern Illinois UP) was chosen in 2012 as winner in the Crab Orchard Open Poetry Competition. Skinner has published five previous collections: Late Stars (Wesleyan UP), A Guide to Forgetting (Graywolf), The Company of Heaven (Pitt Poetry Series), Gender Studies (Miami UP), and Salt Water Amnesia (Ausable). He has edited the anthologies, Last Call: Poems of Alcoholism, Addiction, and Deliverance; and Passing the Word: Poets and Their Mentors. His numerous chapbooks include Salt Mother, and Animal Dad, which was chosen by C.K. Williams for the New York City Center for Book Arts Poetry Competition in 2005. His poems have appeared in most of the country’s premier literary magazines, including The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The Nation, The American Poetry Review, Poetry, FENCE, Bomb, DoubleTake, and The Georgia, Iowa, and Paris Reviews. Skinner’s play Down Range had successful runs in New York City in 2009 and in Chicago in 2014. His play Dream On had its premier production in 2007, by the Cardboard Box Collaborative Theatre in Philadelphia. Click here for full bio.

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Thomas A. Van 

Thomas A. Van received his Ph.D. from Duke University and was a Professor of English at the University of Louisville.

Elaine O. Wise

Elaine Wise is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Agnes Scott College and was a Woodrow Wilson Graduate Fellow at Indiana University.  She specializes in Medieval and Renaissance literature and cultures, having taught a variety of courses in world literatures, Shakespeare, and interdisciplinary theory. Former chair of the Division of Humanities and Faculty Athletics Representative to the NCAA, she served on the faculties of English and Humanities for fifty-five years, having been honored with the University’s Trustee’s Award as well as the College and University Distinguished Teaching Award and Distinguished Service Award.  She currently serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council of the College of Arts and Sciences.