Our Faculty

Matthew Elliott

Associate Professor of English

Contact Information


Office Hours

Office: Administration Building, Room 470


Ph.D., M.A., University of Maryland, College Park; B.A., Catholic University of America


My area of specialty is twentieth century U.S. literature. In my teaching and research, I emphasize the multiculturalism of US literature and culture, so I engage with a wide array of writers, some traditionally "canonical" while many others are lesser-known writers, often as a consequence of marginalization during their career due to their gender, class, or racial identity. I especially enjoy introducing to students aesthetically powerful and historically compelling works by writers who few of my students have heard of before, like the short stories of Hisaye Yamamoto, who wrote many of her stories shortly after being imprisoned in an "internment camp" during WWII, or Chester Himes, a politically radical African American writer who spent most of his career as an expatriate in France.

In analyzing literature in my courses and my own work, I emphasize the importance of historical and cultural context. I'm interested in the relationship between literary texts and culture, particularly how each reflects and refigures the other. This focus on cultural context also has led my teaching and research beyond any strict focus on literary texts and into more interdisciplinary territory. In addition to teaching many courses that focus on film alongside literature, most of my courses count towards the American Studies major.

What I Love About Emmanuel:

Emmanuel's small classes allow for great class discussions. I love the high-level of interaction in my English and American studies classes, and I love hearing the many voices and diverse views of my students.

Courses I Teach

  • ENGL 1103 – Introduction to Academic Writing
  • ENGL 2303 - Dreams and Diversity in the American Novel
  • ENGL 2304 - American Voices I: Suvery of American Literature until 1865
  • ENGL 2413 - African American Literature
  • ENGL 2604 - American Voices II: Survey of American Literature from 1865
  • ENGL 3601 - Crime Stories and American Culture
  • ENGL 4995 - English Internship
  • ENGL 4999 - Senior Seminar: Constructing Canons in American Literature
  • FYS 1101 - Race and American Cinema
  • AMST 1101 - Introduction to American Studies

Publications + Presentations

  • Elliott, Matthew. “Hisaye Yamamoto.” CLC: Contemporary Literary Criticism, vol. 518, Gale, 2022.Forthcoming.

  • Elliott, Matthew. “The Search for the Self in Genetic Genealogy.” Studies in Popular Culture 43.1 (Fall 2020). 89-103.

  • Elliott, Matthew. “Teaching for the Times: Hisaye Yamamoto’s ‘Wilshire Bus.’” Pedagogy: Critical Approaches to Teaching Literature, Language, Composition, and Culture 20.3 (October 2020). 558-562.

  • Elliott, Matthew. “‘Amazing Stories Hidden Within’: The Reinvention of Identity in Genetic Ancestry Advertisements.” The Journal of Popular Culture 53.1 (February 2020). 58-71.

  • Elliott, Matthew. “The Inconvenient Ancestor: Slavery and Selective Remembrance onGenealogy Television.” Studies in Popular Culture. 39.2 (Spring 2017): 73-90.Winner of Studies in Popular Culture’s 2017 Whatley Award.

  • Elliott, Matthew. "John Fante's Ask the Dust and the Fictions of Whiteness." Twentieth-Century Literature 56.4 (Winter 2010): 530-544.

  • Elliott, Matthew and Winfried Fluck (Editors). National Dreams and Rude Awakenings: Essays on American Literature, from the Puritans to the Postmodern. Emory Elliott. American Studies: A Monograph Series Vol. 194. Heidelberg, Germany: Winter Universitätsverlag, 2010. (Authored Preface and co-authored Introduction to this volume).

  • Elliott, Matthew. "Ethnicity, Race, and the Literary Marketplace in John Fante's Ask the Dust and Dreams from Bunker Hill." Florida English 8 (October 2010): 47-59.

  • Elliott, Matthew. "Sins of Omission: Hisaye Yamamoto's Vision of History." MELUS 34.1 (Spring 2009): 47-68.

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