Marlon Ross

Professor; Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

304C Bryan Hall

Office Hours: 4:30-6:00 Tuesdays by zoom
Class Schedule: T/R 11:00-12:15, 2:00-3:15

African American Literature, Gender and Sexuality Studies, Romanticism


Ph.D. University of Chicago, 1983
M.A. University of Chicago, 1979
B.A. Southwestern University, 1978


Sissy Insurgencies, Duke University Press, 2022
Manning the Race, New York University Press, 2004
The Contours of Masculine Desire, Oxford University Press, 1989

Essays in Volumes

  • “Beyond the Closet as Raceless Paradigm.”  In Black Queer Studies: A Critical Anthology.  Ed. E. Patrick Johnson and Mae G. Henderson.  Duke University Press, 2005.  161-189.
  • “The New Negro Displayed: Self-Ownership, Proprietary Sites/Sights and the Bonds/Bounds of Race.”  In Claiming the Stones/Naming the Bones: Cultural Property and the Negotiation of National and Ethnic Identity.  Ed. Elazar Barkan and Ronald Bush.  Los Angeles: Getty Research Institute, 2002.  259-301.
  • “Race, Rape, Castration: Feminist Theories of Sexual Violence and Masculine Strategies of Black Protest.”  In Masculinity Studies and Feminist Theories: New Directions.  Ed. Judith Kegan Gardiner.  New York: Columbia University Press, 2002.  305-343.
  • “Trespassing the Colorline: Aggressive Mobility and Sexual Transgression in the Construction of New Negro Modernity.”  In Modernism, Inc.: Essays on American Modernity.  Edited by Jani Scandura and Michael Thurston.  New York: New York University Press, 2001.  48-67.
  • “Now Our Hemans.”  Foreword to Felicia Hemans: Reimagining Poetry in the Nineteenth Century.  Edited by Nanora Sweet and Julie Melnyk.  New York: Palgrave/St. Martin’s.  x-xxvi. 
  • “White Fantasies of Desire: Baldwin and the Racial Identities of Sexuality.”  In James Baldwin Now. Ed. Dwight A. McBride.  New York: New York University Press, 1999.  13-55.
  • “Reading Habits: Scenes of Romantic Miseducation and the Challenge of Eco-Literacy.” In The Lessons of Romanticism.  Edited by Robert F. Gleckner and Thomas Pfau.  Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1998.  126-156.

Journal Articles

  • "Trans-Atlantic Parochialism." Callaloo Volume 39.4 (2016).  887-897.
  • “Callaloo, Everyone?” Callaloo Volume 30.1 (Winter 2007). Special Issue: “Reading Callaloo / Eating Callaloo”: The First of Four Special 30th Anniversary Issues. Shona N. Jackson and Karina L. Céspedes, guest eds.  87-94.
  • “An Anatomy of the Straight Black Sissy.” FORECASST (Forum for European Contributions in African American Studies).Special issue on Blackness and Sexualities.  Michelle M. Wright and Antje Schuhmann, eds. Berlin: Lit Verlag, 2007
  • “Cross-Gendering the Racial Memory: The Gigantic Feminine as Double-Crossing American (Black) Nationalist History.” Transatlantica: révues d’études américaines, 2006:1, Beyond the New Deal, [En ligne]. Mis en ligne le 2 mai 2006, référence du 21 mars 2007. URL :
  • “Pleasuring Identity, or the Delicious Politics of Belonging.”  New Literary History.  Special issue on “Is There Life after Identity Politics.” 31.4 (Autumn 2000): 827-850.
  • “Camping the Dirty Dozens: The Queer Resources of Black Nationalist Invective.”  In Plum Nelly: New Essays in Black Queer Studies.  Ed. Dwight McBride and Jennifer Devere Brody.  Special issue of Callaloo 23.1 (Winter 2000): 290-312.
  • “Scandalous Reading: The Political Uses of Scandal In and Around Regency Britain.”  The Wordsworth Circle 27 (1996): 103-112.


  • “Contented Spinsters: Governessing and the Limits of Discursive Desire in the Fiction of I. Compton-Burnett.”  Twentieth Century Literature Criticism. Volume 180.  Ed. Tom Schoenberg.  Farmington Hills, MI: Thomson-Gale, 2006.
  • “Naturalizing Gender: Women’s Place in Wordsworth’s Ideological Landscape.”  Rpt. in Romanticism: Critical Concepts in Literary and Critical Studies.  Ed. Michael O’Neill and Mark Sandy.  London: Routledge, 2005. 94-110.
  • “Some Glances at the Black Fag: Race, Same-Sex Desire, and Cultural Belonging.” Reprinted in The Black Studies Reader. Edited by Jacqueline Bobo, Cynthia Hudley, and Claudine Michel.  New York: Routledge, 2004. 153-173.
  • “Some Glances at the Black Fag: Race, Same-Sex Desire, and Cultural Belonging.”  Reprinted in African American Literary Theory: A Reader.  Ed. Winston Napier.  New York: New York University Press, 2000.
  • “Authority and Authenticity.”  Reprinted in The Construction of Authorship: Textual Appropriation in Law and Literature.  Edited by Martha Woodmansee and Peter Jaszi.  Durham: Duke University Press, 1994.  231-257.

Dictionary and Encyclopedia Entries

  • “Queering the African American Essay.”  Review essay of Robert Reid-Pharr’s Black Gay Man and Phillip Brian Harper’s Private AffairsGLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 11.2 (2005): 301-307.
  • Review of Tim Fulford. Romanticism and Masculinity: Gender, Politics and Poetics in the Writings of Burke, Coleridge, Cobbett, Wordsworth, DeQuincey and Hazlitt.  New York: Macmillan/St. Martin’s, 1999. Studies in Romanticism 42.2 (Summer 2003): 281-86.
  • Review of Race Men by Hazel Carby.  Modernism/Modernity. 7.2 (April 2000): 313-315.
  • “In Search of Black Men’s Masculinities.” Review Essay on Don Belton’s Speak My Name: Black Men on Masculinity and the American Dream; Phillip Brian Harper’s Are We Not Men? Masculine Anxiety and the Problem of African-American Identity; Marcellus Blount and George P. Cunningham’s Representing Black MenFeminist Studies 24.3(Fall 1998): 599-626.

Selected Papers

  • “Hysteria and the Racial Economy of Domestic Labor in Wright’s Native Son,” Richard Wright at 100, Woodson Institute symposium, Charlottesville, VA, 11 Arpil 2008.
  • “What Race Theory and Queer Theory Should Teach Us about the Future of Literary Studies,” State of the Profession Colloquium, Department of English, The University of Colorado, Boulder, CO, 8 November 2007.
  • Callaloo Thirtieth Anniversary Conference, Closing Keynote Panel: The Future Direction of Black Literary Studies, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, 27 October 2007.
  • “Cross-Gendering the Racial Memory: The Gigantic Feminine as Double-Crossing American (Black) Nationalist History,” Ernest Gaines symposium, Colloque International, Ecole doctorale de Paris 7, Institut d’Etudes anglophones Charles V, 20 Paris, France, 20 January 2006.
  • Chair and respondent, “Outside/Inside/Beyond Jim Crow: The Strange Choreographies of Racial Segregation,” American Studies Association annual conference, Washington, D.C., 4 November 2005.
  • “The Race of/in Romanticism: Notes Toward a Critical Race Theory,” opening keynote for “Black Romanticism” symposium.  Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA, 23 September 2005.
  • “Razing the Dead: Internment and the American Politics of Space at Jefferson’s Monticello,” with K. Ian Grandison, British Association of American Studies 50th Anniversary Conference, Robinson College, Cambridge, 17 April 2005.
  • “An Anatomy of the Straight Black Sissy as Theoretical Intervention,” Collegium for African-American Research, Universite François-Rabelais, Tours, France, 23 April 2005;special session “Reframing Black Masculinity in Theoretical Perspective,” MLA Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, 29 December 2004; University of Virginia Department of Anthropology Speaker Series, 28 January 2005.
  • “Beyond the Closet as Raceless Paradigm,” University of Virginia English Department faculty series, 2 April 2004.
  • Invited Speaker, Gender Talk panel: response to Johnnetta Cole and Beverly Guy-Sheftall, authors of Gender Talk: The Struggle for Women’s Equality in African American Communities.  New York: Ballantine Books, 2003.  Princeton University, 17 November 2003.
  • Respondent, “Willard Motley Reconsidered.” American Studies Association annual conference. Hartford, CT, 16 October 2003.
  • “Callaloo, Everyone?”  Paper delivered at special session: “Callaloo and 25 Years of Writing in the African Diaspora.”  Modern Language Association Annual Convention.  New Orleans, LA, 29 December 2001.
  • “Men in Feminism Revisited: A Roundtable Discussion.”  Program arranged by the Society for Critical Exchange.  Modern Language Association Annual Convention.  New Orleans, 27 December 2001.
  • “‘A Negro is raping me’: Thoughts on Race, Rape, and Castration.”  Davis Humanities Institute Distinguished Lecture Series.  University of California, Davis, 17 May 2001.
  • “The Black Man Problem: Manly Tactics of Racial Trespassing in Jim Crow America.”  Claud Howard Visiting Scholar Lecture, Southwestern University.  Georgetown, Texas, 29 March 2001.
  • “Doing Great Violence: The Power Politics of Dueling in Genteel Regency Britain.” Dartmouth University Department of English lecture series.  Hanover, New Hampshire, 27 February 2001.
  • “Black Manhood and Racial Trespassing in Early 20th Century America.”  Symposium on African American Manhood: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives.  University of Detroit.  Detroit, Michigan, 17 October 2000.
  • “Civilization and Its Dislocations: Racial Scattering, Sexual Decency, and the Missionary Impulse.”  Multiethnic Literatures of the U.S.- Europe Conference.  Université d’Orléans, Orléans, France, 22-25 June 2000.
  • “A Negro is raping me”: Further Thoughts on Race, Rape, Castration.”  Yale University African American Studies Program Works in Progress Seminar. 19 April 2000.
  • “Beyond the Closet as Raceless Paradigm.” Black Queer Studies in the Millennium conference.  Chapel Hill, North Carolina, 7-9 April 2000.
  • “Disarming the Black Champ: Post-Industrialism, Postmodernism, and the Post-Civil Rights Legacy of Joe Louis.”  University of Massachusetts, 28 March 2000.
  • “The New Negro Displayed: Self-Ownership, Proprietary Sites/Sights, and the Bonds/Bounds of Race.” Cultural Property Conference.  St. John’s College, University of Oxford. Oxford, England, 21 April 1998.


  • John H. D'Arms Faculty Award fo Distinguished Graduate Mentoring int he Humanities, University of Michigan, 1999
  • Michigan Humanities Fellowship, University of Michigan, 1998
  • Excellence in Education Award, College of Literature, Science & the Arts, The University of Michigan, 1997
  • Excellence in Research Award, College of Literature, Science & the Arts, The University of Michigan, 1995
  • John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, 1992-1993
  • Office of the Vice President for Research Grant, University of Michigan, 1992-1993
  • Rackham Faculty Recognition Award, The University of Michigan, 1992-1993
  • Lilly Endowment Undergraduate Teaching Fellowship, 1987-1988