Our Faculty

Sarah Blackwood

Associate Professor

Dyson College of Arts and Sciences

English - NYC

  • @New York City
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Sarah Blackwood researches and teaches American literature, culture, and art with a particular focus on nineteenth-century visual culture, African American literature, and the history of inner life. She is currently working on a monograph about nineteenth-century portraiture and the invention of inner life, is co-founder and co-editor of the web magazine Avidly, and co-editor of the book series (NYU Press) Avidly Reads. She writes literary and cultural criticism regularly for national outlets.

Dr. Blackwood teaches courses on nineteenth-century American literature and art, African American literature, American Studies, gender studies, popular and young adult fiction, high/low culture, and writing cultural criticism for the web.


PhD, Northwestern University, 2009

MA, University of Illinois, 2001

BA, University of Virginia, 1998


Blackwood, S. (2014, July (3rd Quarter/Summer)). "Making Good Use of Our Eyes”: Nineteenth-Century African Americans Write Visual Culture. MELUS: Multiethnic Literature of the United States. Vol 39 (Issue 2) , pages 42-65. http://melus.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2014/04/17/melus.mlu014.short?rss=1

Blackwood, S. (2013). "Seeing Black". Vol 65 (Issue 4) , pages 927-936.

Blackwood, S. (2013). "So Difficult to Instruct": Re-envisioning Abraham and Tad Lincoln. Common-Place. Vol 13 (Issue 4) http://www.common-place.org/vol-13/no-04/notes/

Blackwood, S. (2010). "Isabel Archer's Body". Henry James Review. Vol 31 (Issue 3) , pages 271-279.

Blackwood, S. (2010, September). "Psychology". David McWhirter (Eds.), in Henry James in Context, ed David McWhirter, Cambridge University Press. Cambridge, Mass, USA: Cambridge University Press. , pages 271-280. http://www.cambridge.org/gb/knowledge/isbn/item2707952/?site_locale=en_GB

Blackwood, S. (2009). "Fugitive Obscura: Runaway Slave Portraiture and Early Photographic Technology". American Literature. Vol 81 (Issue 1) , pages 93-126.

Grants, Sponsored Research and Contracts

Summer Institute, "The Visual Culture of the Civil War"
Blackwood, S. July 2012 - July 2012. National Endowment for the Humanities , Federal . Funded.


Monthly Column: Parenting by the Books [Internet], 2017
On parenting and classic literary texts

Men Like Him [Internet], December 28 2017
On the Lawrence Seldens of today

"Room" is the "Crash" of Feminism [Internet], November 4 2015

The Woman Wild [Internet], October 16 2014
Review of Marilynne Robinson's novel "Lila"

Editing as Carework: On the Gendered Labor of Public Intellectuals [Internet], June 6 2014

Dance Dance Revelation [Internet], September 18 2012
An essay on the narrative conventions of reality television and theories of bodily emotion. Republished on Salon.com

Avidly.org [Internet], June 2012
Co-founder and co-editor.

"Our Bella, Ourselves" [Internet], November 16 2011
An essay on the Twilight saga, feminism, and traditions of female heroism in American literature since the 18th century.

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