Associate Professor of English Language and Literature
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Ambreen Hai earned her B.A. in English, Philosophy and Economics from Wellesley College and her Ph.D. in English Literature and Language from Yale University.
She teaches Postcolonial Literature in English from South Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean, Writing of the British Empire, 19th-20th century British literature, and Contemporary Literary Theory. She has also co-taught SWG 150, Introduction to the Study of Women and Gender. Her courses currently cross-listed in SWG include ENG 246, South Asian English Literatures, ENG 277, Postcolonial Women Writers, PRS 319 South Asians in Britain and America, and ENG 334, Servants in Literature and Film, which will examine intersectional relations of intimacy (sexual and otherwise) between employers and domestic servants in the context of the home, and negotiations across divisions of race, class and gender.
Her first book, Making Words Matter: The Agency of Colonial and Postcolonial Literature (Ohio University Press, 2009), focused on the work of Rudyard Kipling, E. M. Forster and Salman Rushdie, and examines how, in the context of colonization, an anxiety about their own agency shapes colonial and postcolonial narratives, and why that anxiety is manifested through the imagining of the text as a human body. She has also published various essays in scholarly journals such as English Literary History, Modern Fiction Studies, Literature Interpretation Theory, Twentieth-Century Literature and Meridians: Feminism, Race, Transnationalism, on women writers like writers like Jhumpa Lahiri and Bapsi Sidhwa. Works in progress include a book project on domestic servitude in contemporary postcolonial and transnational literature.