Assistant Professor of Literature
Ph.D., The University of Chicago
M.A., Howard University
Office: Griffin 252
Teaching and Research Areas
Post-45 African American Letters; Critical University Studies; Neoliberal Multiculturalism; Theater and Performance Studies; Black Postmodern Fiction
Joel’s work centers on African American letters after 1945. Primary research interests of his feature generative overlaps between literary production and the manufacture of racial knowledge in the academic disciplines. Joel is heavily interested in how theories of aesthetic autonomy come under scrutiny and revision in the work of figures such as James Baldwin, August Wilson, Toni Morrison, and Percival Everett. It’s among these writers that Joel sees modernist notions of autonomy pushed past the limits of late liberalism or the commodity form. He won the Marshall Scholarship in 2015, and his public-facing work has appeared in The Drift, The Point, and the Los Angeles Review of Books.