Jennifer Wagner-Lawlor

Jennifer Wagner-Lawlor

Professor of Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and English
339 Willard Building
(814) 867-0367
Jennifer Wagner-Lawlor

Professional Bio

Jennifer Wagner Lawlor specializes in utopian and speculative literature – with a focus on feminist utopianism. Her publications deal primarily with contemporary women’s literature—though she began her career teaching and writing about nineteenth-century British literature.  Her most recent book, Postmodern Utopias and Feminist Fictions, appeared in August 2013 from Cambridge University Press.

Her current research looks at the intersection of literature, philosophy and the environment, particularly the literature of climate change. She is also working on a project on the concept of plasticity, in the context of contemporary studies of cognition, and in the more literal context of plastics in our environment.

Recent publications include:

Postmodern Utopias and Feminist Fictions (Cambridge 2013)

The Scandal of Susan Sontag, co-edited with Barbara Ching. (Columbia, 2009)

Forthcoming. “The School for Scandal: Humor and the Scandalized Narrative in Women’s Speculative Fiction.”. In Raffaela Baccolini and Delia Chiaro (Eds.), Gender and Humor: Interdisciplinary and International Perspectives  (Routledge Research in Cultural and Media Studies) London: Routledge.

Forthcoming. "Creativity through translate-ability, sense-ability, response-ability," Wagner Lawlor, J. A. (Co-Author, 33%), Keifer-Boyd, K. T., & Trauth, E. (2014).. In F. Bastos, E. Zimmerman (Eds.), Connecting Creativity Research and Practice in Art Education: Foundations, Pedagogies, and Contemporary Issues (pp. 20). National Art Educators Assn

Wagner Lawlor, J. A. (2014). “The Way of the World ‘No More’: The Limits of the Female Bildungsroman.”. Other, 2(2), 14-30. http://ler.letras.up.pt/site/default.aspx?qry=id05id174id2640&sum=sim

Exhibit curation. (2012). “This Way to Utopia,” an exhibit at the Rare Books and Manuscripts Library at the Penn State University Libraries,  October 19, 2011-March 2012. Selected texts and wrote exhibit labels for two display cases, entitled “DARING TO DREAM”: Sex, Gender and Utopia (case 1); and “And in the End … ”: Gender, History, and the “Ends” of Feminist Speculation (case 2).

Wagner Lawlor, J. A. (2012). Something About the Way We Live Now: Utopia and Education. Utopian Studies Pennsylvania State University Press(23.2), 301-313.

Wagner Lawlor, J. A. (Editor) (2012). Guest editor for special issue on Utopia and Education, Utopian Studies 32; “Introduction”

Wagner Lawlor, J. A. (2011). “’Doomed by Hope’ Environmental Catastrophe and the Structured Ignorance of Risk in Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake.”. In Andrew Milner, Simon Sellars, Victoria Bergmann (Eds.), Changing the Climate: Utopia, Dystopia and Catastrophe. (35/36), pp. 173-95.

Wagner Lawlor, J. A. (2011). “‘A Particular Piece of Work’: Love’s Labors in Iris Murdoch’s The Bell.”. Utopian Studies 22, 2-18.

Wagner Lawlor, J. A. (2014). “The Way of the World ‘No More’: The Limits of the Female Bildungsroman.” Spaces of Utopia 2(2), 14-30. Invited. http://ler.letras.up.pt/site/default.aspx?qry=id05id174id2640&sum=sim

Wagner Lawlor, J. A. (2008). 'This Rude State': Enacting Utopia and the Utopic Sensibility in Sontag's In America. Women's Studies, 37, 1008-1029.