Sophia A. McClennen
Ph.D., Duke University
M.A., Duke University
A.B., Harvard University, cum laude
Dr. McClennen directs Penn State's Center for Global Studies as well as its Latin American Studies program and has ties to the departments of Comparative Literature, Spanish, and Women's Studies. She has published seven books and has three in process. Her latest single-authored volume is Colbert's America: Satire and Democracy (2012), which studies the role of Stephen Colbert in shaping political discourse after 9/11. She is currently finishing a related project, Is Satire Saving our Nation? Mockery and American Politics (under contract with Palgrave), which she is co-writing with PSU communications undergraduate Remy Maisel, a collaboration that is making Penn State history. Her next book will be a co-edited volume on Human Rights and Literature to be published by Routledge in 2014. And her next major media studies project is Globalization and Latin American Cinema, which focuses on the ways that a number of films from Latin America reflect national and international cultural policies, shifts in production and consumption of cinema, and changing identity constructions.
In addition to her books she has edited a number of journal special issues and published over 50 essays on a range of topics all of which coalesce around the question of how culture, politics, and society intersect. Her work often analyzes the links between political events and their media representations, which has led her to critique the relationship between mainstream culture, political praxis, stereotypes, and social injustice. She also publishes on cultural responses to social conflict such as those associated with war, imperialism, state formation, immigration and exile, dictatorship, patriarchy, and globalization.
She has also conducted research on education and international area studies, with particular attention to how multidisciplinary approaches enhance understanding of global issues. She teaches courses in cultures of globalization, cross-cultural conflict resolution, human rights culture, global media, the cultures of displaced peoples, cultural trade policy, and theories of globalization.
In 2006 she was the Fulbright Research Chair in Globalization and Cultural Studies at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada and she has also held a Fulbright faculty award in Peru. She has taught in Chile, Canada, Germany, and Peru, and has conducted research in those countries as well as in Argentina, Bolivia, Mexico, Spain, Guatemala, Uruguay, and Costa Rica.
She serves on the editorial boards of eight journals and regularly peer reviews for journals and government agencies in the United States and abroad. She has received grant funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Social Science Research Council, Fulbright, the Department of Education, the Tinker Foundation, and the World University Network. She serves on the boards of the American Comparative Literature Association and the International American Studies Association and she is on an executive committee of the Modern Language Association dedicated to academic freedom and professional rights and responsibilities.
She regularly writes for Huffington Post and has had pieces in Alternet, Truthout, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and Counterpunch. She has appeared on Huffington Post Live as well as the Wall Street Journal Live and has done numerous interviews in print and radio.
Phone: (814) 865-2333
Principal Office: University Park
With Remy Maisel. Is Satire Saving Our Nation? Mockery and American Politics. New York: Palgrave 2013. Under contract.
America According to Colbert: Satire as Public Pedagogy. New York: Palgrave, 2011.
The Dialectics of Exile: Nation, Time, Language, and Space in Hispanic Literatures. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue UP, 2004.
With Alexandra Schulteis Moore. The Routledge Companion to Human Rights and Literature. New York: Routledge. (forthcoming)
With Brantley Nicholson, eds. The Generation of '72: Latin America's Forced Global Citizens. Editorial A contracorriente. Raleigh, NC, 2013.
With Henry James Morello, eds. Representing Humanity in an Age of Terror. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue UP, 2010.
With Earl E. Fitz, eds. Comparative Cultural Studies and Latin America. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue UP, 2004.
Edited Journal Issues
“Remediation.” Special ACLA forum for Comparative Literature (Winter 2014).
With Jeffrey Di Leo, eds. “Violence.” Special issue of symploke. 20.1-2. (Fall 2012).
With Brantley Nicholson, eds. The Generation of '72. Special issue of A contracorriente. 10.1 (Fall 2012.)
With Joseph R. Slaughter, eds. “Human Rights and Literary Forms.” Thematic Issue of Comparative Literature Studies 46.1 (2009). Includes an introduction by the co-editors.
With Ron Strickland, eds. (Dis)Locations of Culture: Chilean Culture after Pinochet. Special issue of Mediations 22 (Spring 1999). Includes an article by Sophia A. McClennen as noted below.