Kevin Grauke, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of English and American Studies
Academic and Research Interests:
My primary areas of interest are creative writing (particularly fiction), 19th-Century American literature (particularly of the latter half), and contemporary American fiction (particularly short fiction). In my creative writing courses, in addition to instructing my students about the essential elements of fiction (character, point of view, conflict, exposition, scene, dialogue, tone, etc.) and providing them with the appropriate lexicon with which they then can negotiate the trickiness of critiquing each other’s stories, I like to encourage my students to interrogate our culturally inherited assumptions about narrative. What expectations do we as readers bring to narrative form? What significance does narrative have in our culture? What are we doing when we write a story? Why do certain narratives satisfy us while others do not?
In my literature courses, I strive to provide a thorough analysis of the sociohistorical context from which a piece of writing emerges. Not to do so is to deny the inextricable relationship that exists between a cultural production and the world around it. I pay particular attention to the manner in which literary works reflect/inform a time period’s attitudes concerning issues of race, class, and gender.
Other Professional Activity:
As a fiction writer, I have been published (or will soon be published) in such literary journals as The Southern Review, Hayden's Ferry Review, Story Quarterly, Quarterly West, and Third Coast. As a scholar, I have published articles on Rebecca Harding Davis's Life in the Iron Mills, as well as on Charles Frazier's Cold Mountain and Michael Shaara's The Killer Angels. I am currently working on a novel-in-stories entitled Parrish.
B.A., University of Texas - Austin; M.F.A., Texas State University - San Marcos; Ph.D. SUNY Buffalo