My name is Lauren Hoffer, and I am Chair of the Department of English, the Arts, & Interdisciplinary Studies and Associate Professor of English at USCB. My primary areas of specialization are Victorian Literature and Culture, the British Novel, and narrative as well as gender studies. Whether working on my own scholarship, discussing a text in class, or chatting with students and colleagues in the hallway, I am always invested in the ways form, content, and context work together in a piece of literature to create meaning.
One of my favorite parts of being a member of the USCB community is the opportunity to teach across my fields, as in my courses on 18th century literature, Romanticism, the Victorian Period, Modern British Literature, Development of the Novel, Women Writers, and Literary Theory. I love that I get to offer courses that engage my other interests as well, such as genre classes in Fantasy, Gothic and Dystopian literature, and First-Year English.
In my scholarship as in my teaching, I am particularly fascinated by representations of interpersonal relationships and the ways literature often blurs distinctions between different kinds of bonds, complicating conventions both formal and social. For example, much of my research has focused on the literary and cultural significance of lady's companions' relationships to their mistresses to demonstrate how nineteenth-century British authors used an employment bond that masquerades as friendship as a means of articulating anxieties about manipulative, self-serving forms of sympathy. In my current book project, I explore remarriage in the Victorian novel as a means of revising how we think about social, ideological, and narratological structures, both within Victorian literature and in the field.
PhD in English. Vanderbilt University 2009
MA in English. Vanderbilt University 2005
BA in English with Minors in Creative Writing and Classics. University of Alabama 2004
- ENGL B101 - Composition & Rhetoric
- ENGL B102 - Composition and Literature
- ENGL B411 - British Romantic Literature
- Victorian Literature
- Victorian Culture
- The British Novel