A little bit about myself: first things first, I’m a queer/bisexual, exvangelical, radically soft, fat, happy human living in a small mill town of Shelby, North Carolina (yes, we did have the Hunger Games “I volunteer!” mill scene filmed right here). I grew up in the midlands of South Carolina in a rural railroad town called St. Matthews, where, alongside a LOT of casual racism, blatant sexism, and problematic religious ideals, my upbringing also emphasized the importance of community, empathy, and supporting your folkx. I am hoping my scholarship will help me grow that latter ethic into real-world, helpful impact in the community I live in now to dismantle the former that I still see in rural Southern towns. I further am so excited to be a part of my local grassroots organizations (see Community for more details), which give me immediate opportunities to work alongside those who want to see positive change and affirmative visibility for marginalized folks in the Bible Belt, especially the queer community.
I’m currently a PhD candidate in English at Old Dominion University, with concentrations in Literary and Cultural Studies and Rhetoric, Writing, and Discourse Studies. My primary area of scholarship is Queer Feminisms, late 19th century occultism, contemporary occultism, and social justice praxis. It’s been a delightful, eye-opening journey, and I’m currently writing my dissertation on white women’s positionality and complicitness in replicating harmful, heteronormative structures in the occult and how we (yep, recognizing my place in my research) must do better by listening, stepping back, and amplifying alternative pathways that many of our queer, siblings of color are (and have been) teaching us.
I’m also a full-time Instructor of English at Gardner-Webb University in Boiling Springs, North Carolina. Within my awesome department, I teach composition courses such as Critical Literacy, Composition I and II, as well as British Literature I and Introduction to English Studies. I’ve also picked up our Senior English Studies Capstone Courses, where majors spend two semesters researching a topic of their choices and creating an undergraduate Senior Presentation and Thesis. I’m further tackling University 111 this upcoming fall, where I’ll work with freshman beginning their undergraduate career. Students give me hope – with them, I feel our future is going to be all right. I’m glad I get to share their journey for the time being.
I hope you enjoy browsing my materials. Thanks for visiting, and hope we can grab some sweet tea and chat f2f soon!