Robert Penn Warren Distinguished Associate Professor
Ph.D., Tulane University
212-O Allen Hall
Michael Bibler earned his Ph.D. at Tulane University and taught at the University of Mary Washington, the University of Manchester (UK), and Northumbria University (UK) before joining LSU in 2013. His research focuses on queer readings of 19th and 20th century American literature and culture, with a special focus on the U.S. South and its wider, transnational connections. Bibler brings these interests into the classroom in a range of different courses: “Woke Southern Literature” explores the long tradition of progressive, activist literature in South, while “Southern Sexualities,” “Queer-of-Color Critique and Southern Studies,” and “Rethinking Southern Gothic” variously ask how reading “regional” texts, settings, and themes can complicate dominant, metronormative narratives of race, gender, class, and sexuality. He is author of Cotton's Queer Relations: Same-Sex Intimacy and the Literature of the Southern Plantation, 1936-1968 (2009), and co-editor of Just Below South: Intercultural Performance in the Caribbean and the U.S. South (2007) and the first scholarly reprint of Arna Bontemp's 1936 novel about the Haitian Revolution, Drums at Dusk (2009). He has also published in many journals and edited collections, including PMLA, Angelaki, south: a scholarly journal, MFS: Modern Fiction Studies, Philological Quarterly, Cambridge Companion to American Gay and Lesbian Literature, Oxford Handbook of the Literature of the U.S. South, and Keywords for Southern Studies. Inspired by his first book, he has been working on a very a long-term project about sexuality, race, and gender in black and white southern writing before the Civil War, entitled “Possessive Intimacy: Property, Sexuality, and the Literature of U.S. Slavery.” More immediately he is completing a book about queer literature, music, art, and film from the 1980s to the present, entitled “Silly Pleasures: Queer, Camp, Nonce, and the Art of Taking Things Very Literally.” This book intervenes in longstanding debates in Queer Studies about anti-normativity and utopianism by reading the aesthetics of literalism and silliness in John Waters, the B-52's, Truman Capote, RuPaul before Supermodel, three films about small-town Texas, and the "soundsuits" of artist Nick Cave.
Area(s) of Interest
U.S. southern studies, queer studies, American literature, African American studies, feminist studies