Stefanie Dunning

Stefanie DunningAssociate Professor
Affiliate, Black World Studies
Affiliate, Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

378 Bachelor Hall, Oxford Campus


  • PhD, University of California, Riverside, 2001
  • MA, University of California, Riverside, 
  • BA, Spelman College, 

Teaching Interests

  • African American Literature
  • American Literature
  • Film and visual culture
  • Gay and lesbian studies/queer theory
  • Literary and Cultural Studies
  • Science fiction and Speculative Literature
  • Afrofuturism, Afrosurrealism, and Afropessismism

Research Interests

  • African American literature
  • Film and visual culture
  • Gay and lesbian studies/queer theory
  • Science Fiction, Afrofuturism, Speculative Literature
  • Nature Writing

Selected Publications

  • "Learn or Die: Survival and Anarchy in Octavia Butler's Parable of the Sower," Forthcoming in Human Contradictions in Octavia Butler's Work, Palgrave/MacMillian, 2020.
  • Review of "Work!: A Queer History of Modeling," Forthcoming in The Journal of African American History, 2020.
  • Review of "A Taste for Brown Bodies: Gay Modernity and Cosmopolitan Desire," and "Not Straight, Not White: Black Gay Men from the March on Washington to the AIDS Crisis," in American Literature (2018) 90 (3): 654-656.
  • "Introducing Multiple Readings of Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man in the Classroom," Teaching (Con)Texts: Frameworks for Engaging Culture and Craft in American Literatures, McFarland, 2014.
  • Review of four works on mixed-race literature, in Signs, 2014
  • Review of Island of a Thousand Mirrors, in South Asian Review, December 2012.
  • Queer in Black and White: Interraciality, Same Sex Desire, and Contemporary African American Culture. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2009.
  • The Wounded City: Ambiguous Subjectivity and the riotous metropolis in Samuel Delany’s Dhalgren,” The Idea of the City (anthology) 2009.
  • “Ironic Soil: Recuperative Rhythms and Negotiated Nationalism.” African American Review. 39: 1-2, 2005. This essay won the African American Review award at the 2006 MLA for Best 20th Century Literature essay of 2005.
  • "Brown Like Me: An Essay of Shifting Ideology." Mixing It Up. Eds. SanSan Kwan and Kenneth Spears. University of Texas Press, Fall 2004.
  • "Parallel Perversions: Interracial and Same Sexuality in James Baldwin’s Another Country.” MELUS 26:2 (Winter 2001). 95-115.
  • "Vegetarianism without Self-righteousness: The Politics of ‘Consciousness’ and Cultural Identity.” Black Renaissance/Renaissance Noire 2.3 (Winter 1999). 144-152.

Grants and Awards

Dr. Dunning was a Ford Postdoctoral Fellow.

Her essay “Ironic Soil: Recuperative Rhythms and Negotiated Nationalism” won the African American Review award at the 2006 MLA for Best 20th Century Literature essay of 2005.

Work in Progress

Dr. Dunning's book, Black to Nature: Pastoral Return, Abolition, and Interbeing is forthcoming in 2021 from the University Press of Mississippi.

Her essay "What is the Future? Weirdness and Black Time in Sorry to Bother You," is currently under the review at the journal Studies in the Fantastic.

Dr. Dunning is also at work on her third book project, Kissing The Sky: Infinity, Presence and Black Time, which explores Afrosurrealist texts in the context of temporality.