I write and teach courses on American literature from 1880 to the present. My dissertation in progress engages the art and material cultures of US company towns, with a focus on dynamic contemporary works that animate ecologies of corporate power and recollect lively traditions of dissent. Other interests include Appalachian and Southern literature, global environmental justice, genre fiction (noir, gothic), the Anthropocene, climate and migration, nature writing, immigrant, ethnic, and proletarian art, and the relationship between toxicity, whiteness, and literary form.
Ph.D. University of Virginia. D. Vance Smith is a medievalist who grew up in Africa, learning isiNdebele along with English as a member of the Khumalo clan of the amaNdebele. Attending an all-African high school in Kenya, he also spoke Kiswahili and early Sheng (the Kenyan street vernacular). Before graduate school, he wrote two ethnographies on groups of people living in what is now the South Sudan.
Anne Anlin Cheng is Professor of English, and affiliated faculty in the Program in American Studies, the Program in Gender and Sexuality Studies, and the Committee on Film Studies.