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Sophie R. Bell

Associate Professor
Institute for Core Studies
Ph.D., 2008, Tufts University, English
M.Ed. in Teaching of English, 1994, Harvard University Graduate School of Education
BA, 1991, Wesleyan University, History

Sophie Bell is an Associate Professor at St. John’s University’s Institute for Writing Studies. She teaches a first year writing course titled “Race, Language, and Writing.” She studies the intersections among American literature, education, race, and culture in nineteenth-century and contemporary contexts. Two of her essays explore antebellum literary representations of children's sentimental educations through a focus on race: “‘So Wicked': Revisiting Uncle Tom's Cabin's Sentimental Racism through the Lens of the Child," (published in the volume The Children’s Table: Childhood Studies and the Humanities, University of Georgia Press, 2013) and “Misreading The Scarlet Letter: Race, Sentimental Pedagogy, and Antebellum Indian Literacy” (Studies in American Fiction Spring 2015). Her essay, “‘Whiteboys’: Autoethnography, Internalized Racism, and Composition at the University’s Gateway" (forthcoming in the volume Anti-Racist Activism: Teaching Rhetoric and Writing, WAC Clearinghouse and Parlor Press) comes from her research into the racial dynamics of language in her university students' writing. Her current project looks at her students' use of writing to increase their cultural competence in diverse classrooms.