Professor and Chair, English
African American literature and culture; Afrofuturism; the digital humanities; The Harlem Renaissance; history of the novel; literature and legal studies; literature and medicine; race and visual culture; apocalyptic literature; detective fiction.

Old Main, 201
Telephone: 651-696-6583

She is currently at work on a “post-monograph,” a purely digital, book-length project on Afrofuturism. Her second book, Each Hour Redeem: Time and Justice in African American Literature, was published in March 2013 by the University of Minnesota Press. () Her first book, Unnatural Selections: Eugenics in American Modernism and the Harlem Renaissance, was published in 2004. Before she joined Macalester's faculty in 2003, she taught African American Literature at Bowie State University, one of the oldest historically black colleges in the nation. Prior to entering graduate school, she worked in the public health field.

Areas of Study

  • African American literature and culture
  • Philosophies of time in African American literature
  • The Harlem Renaissance
  • American modernism
  • History of the novel
  • Literature and legal studies
  • Race and visual culture
  • Detective fiction

2016-2017 Courses

  • American Voices (105), Fall 
  • American Voices (105), Spring
  • African American Literature to 1900 (275), Spring 

Selected Publications

“Afrofuturism.” In Oxford Bibliographies in Literary and Critical Theory. Ed. Eugene O’Brien. New York: Oxford University Press, forthcoming.

 “Eugenics.” In Oxford Bibliographies in African American Studies. Ed. Gene Jarrett. New York: Oxford  University Press, June 28, 2016.

Review of Inside a Silver Box, by Walter Mosley. In Public Books,  1 September, 2015. 

English, Daylanne K. and Alvin Kim. “Now We Want Our Funk Cut: Janelle Monáe’s Neo-Afrofuturism.” American Studies 52.4 (2013): 217-30. 

Each Hour Redeem: Time and Justice in African American Literature (University of Minnesota Press, March 2013).

Being Black There: Racial Subjectivity and Temporality in Walter Mosley's Detective Novels. NOVEL 42.3 (Fall 2009): 361-365.

“The Modern in the Postmodern: Walter Mosley, Barbara Neely, and the Politics of Contemporary African American Detective Fiction.“ American Literary History 18 (Winter 2006).

Unnatural Selections: Eugenics in American Modernism and the Harlem Renaissance (University of North Carolina Press, 2004).

“W. E. B. Du Bois's Family Crisis.” American Literature. (June 2000).

“Selecting the Harlem Renaissance.” Critical Inquiry. (Summer 1999).

“Somebody Else's Foremother: David Haynes and Zora Neale Hurston.” African American Review. (Summer 1999).

Selected Awards and Honors

  • Mellon Digital Humanities Grant, Summer 2013
  • Choice Outstanding Academic Title for 2004 by the American Library Association (for Unnatural Selections)
  • University System of Maryland Women's Forum Faculty Research Award, 2001
  • MLA's Foerster Prize, 2000


BA: Oberlin College

MA and PhD: University of Virginia