Dean of the Faculty

Reed College Faculty Profiles

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Roger Porter

Professor of English and Humanities, Emeritus
English Department
Division of Literature and Languages

I taught at Reed for 54 years, beginning in 1961. I have a BA from Amherst and a Ph.D from Yale. My courses have included various versions of Autobiography and Memoir, Shakespeare and Renaissance Drama, Modern American Fiction, Modern and Contemporary Drama, and such non-fiction prose courses as Travel Writing. Most of my scholarly work has been in the field of Life Writing. I have co-authored The Voice Within: Reading and Writing Autobiography (Knopf), and written Self-Same Songs: Autobiographical Performances and Reflections (Nebraska), and Bureau of Missing Persons: Writing the Secret Lives of Fathers (Cornell). I have articles and reviews in such journals as Eighteenth-Century Studies, The Sewanee Review, The Journal of Narrative Technique, Contemporary Literature, The Massachusetts Review, The Hudson Review, The American Scholar, Biography, and A/b: Auto/Biography. I have had Fulbright lectureships at Aristotelian University in Greece, and The Chinese University of Hong Kong, and have taught at The American University of Paris and The University of Versailles in France. I have lectured in France, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, England, the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, China, India, Egypt, Thailand, the Netherlands, Canada, Spain, and Norway; and have presented papers at numerous MLA conferences as well as at Stanford, U.C. Irvine, Evergreen College, Penn State, Baylor, West Virginia, The University of Hawaii, Michigan State, and the University of Texas. I have also been a food writer and restaurant critic, receiving a James Beard Foundation nomination for Best Restaurant Writing in America, and have just published the co-edited (with Sandra Gilbert) Eating Words: The Norton Anthology of Food Writing. I started a theatre (Portland Conservatory Theatre), and have directed numerous plays, including works by Shakespeare, Ben Jonson, Becket, Aeschylus, and Arthur Miller. For many years I was on the Board and the Artistic Council of Artists Repertory Theatre in Portland.


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