I am a researcher and professor who works on the environmental humanities, animal studies, posthumanism, science studies, new materialism, gender theory, cultural studies, and multicultural American literatures. I focus on the sites where theoretical problems intersect with ethical and political matters, where scholarly questions collide with everyday life. I pursue cross-disciplinary modes of inquiry that allow the unexpected to emerge.

Academic Training: I received my Master's in English from University of Wisconsin-Madison and my PhD in English, along with a graduate certificate in interdisciplinary critical theory, from University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, where I was fortunate to study with Cary Nelson, Amanda Anderson, Michael Berubé, and Robert Dale Parker and to teach Women's Studies 111 with Lauren Onkey, Paula Treichler, and Carol Neeley. I participated in the exciting Feminist Theory Reading Group and in our small but intense dissertation reading group. I was lucky to attend the stellar "Cultural Studies Now and in the Future" conference at UIUC in 1990.

Current Position: I have been a faculty member at the University of Texas at Arlington since 1994, where I teach undergraduate and graduate courses in multicultural literatures of the U.S; critical theory; feminist theory; cultural studies; environmental literature, film, and theory; animal studies, posthumanism, and science studies. I also direct the work of many graduate students.

I served as the academic co-chair of the University's Sustainability Committee from 2009-2011, where I worked on everything from academic programs to landscaping and dining services, communicating with students, faculty, staff, and community members. I continute to work with the Sustainability Committee's group for Curriculum, Research, and Community Engagement, which has created several other new programs, events, awards, and means of support to promote teaching, research, and community involvement in environmental and sustainability studies. I am currently serving as the Coordinator for the interdisciplinary minor in Environmental and Sustainability Studies, a minor that I helped create.

Teaching Awards:


My first book, Undomesticated Ground: Recasting Nature as Feminist Space (Cornell 2000); investigates how North American women writers, theorists, and activists from the early 19th century to the late 20th century transformed the troublesome conceptions of nature for feminist, and sometimes environmentalist, ends.

The collection Material Feminisms, edited with Susan J. Hekman, (Indiana 2008); brings together an exciting range of new materialist theories. My new book, Bodily Natures: Science, Environment, and the Material Self (Indiana 2010), argues that "trans-corporeality "is crucial for environmental theories, ethics, and politcal movements. Bodily Natures was awarded the ASLE Award for Ecocrticism, 2011.

Currently, I am writing a book entitled Sea Creatures and the Limits of Animal Studies: Science, Aesthetics, Ethics. [For descriptions of the books, and for essays, articles, interviews, and other scholarship please click on my Research page or on my c.v.]

My research interests include 19th and 20th century American literatures; critical theory; feminist theory; cultural studies, green cultural studies; science studies; environmentalism and feminism; environmental health, environmental justice, environmental ethics; emerging theories of materiality in environmental feminism, corporeal feminism, and science studies; animal studies; posthumanism; science, literature, and art of sea creatures; ocean conservation.

I have given many invited talks and plenary talks--for academic audiences across many different disciplines, and for wide, not- necessarily-academic audiences as well. I have been honored to speak in Sweden, Austria, Denmark, Germany, Canada, and the U.S. on such topics as gender and climate change, environmentalism and architecture, bodily natures and "trans-corporeality," new materialism, and the science, politics, and aesthetics of sea creatures.


I currently live with two children, two dogs, and a cat, in Oak Cliff, Texas. I like to make my small city yard attractive and sustaining for urban wildlife such as birds, insects, and lizards. I love outdoor adventure travel, especially scuba diving, snorkeling/free diving, kayaking, biking, and hiking. I also love walking through cities with my fabulous and brilliant travel companion, enjoying architecture, landscapes, and art. My yoga practice, Ashtanga and Iyengar, is essential. Regrets include, not diving enough, not running off to join the Sea Shepherds. . .