Colleen Lutz Clemens, Ph.D., professor of Non-Western Literatures and Director of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Kutztown University in Pennsylvania, earned her Ph.D. in Post-Colonial Literature with a certificate in Gender Studies at Lehigh University. Her dissertation focuses on issues of veiling in literature and studies the intersection of women’s issues in art and politics. (Full CV can be found here.)
Previously, she earned her M.Ed. in English Education at DeSales University (where she still teaches courses on South Africa and English Composition) while teaching twelfth grade English in the public system. She earned her undergraduate degrees in English and French Education from Penn State University where she was a Schreyer Scholar focusing on French drama.
Her academic work has been published in Feminist Formations , Journal of Postcolonial Writing, Routledge Companion to Pakistani Anglophone Writing, South Asian Review, and NCTE’s English Journal and online at World Literature Today. She serves as an academic consultant for the Contemporary Literary Criticism series, where she focuses on postcolonial writing by women, for the Norton Anthology of World Literature, and Oxford University Press’s Gender Studies department. She reviews novels by postcolonial authors for Mosaic Magazine and World Literature Today and scholarly texts about world issues and American culture for The Journal of American Culture.
Her interests in teaching, world literature, and social justice issues come together in her blogging for Teaching Tolerance, a publication she has admired since her undergraduate days. She enjoys working with fellow teachers and is a frequent contributor to Teaching Tolerance, with her articles on masculinity having some of the highest unique visits for the entire blog site. She has worked with both those working in classrooms and in corporations to facilitate discussions about privilege, equity, and inclusion. Her entire 25 years of teaching have been dedicated to ensuring all students are heard and valued.
Among her creative endeavors, she is the editor of several books of non-fiction including Philadelphia Reflections: Stories from the Delaware to the Schuylkill and has published short essays in various collections including Click: When We Knew We Were Feminists. Her work on miscarriage and infertility has been published in many outlets including here at TRIVIA, in the collection Three Minus One, and in Chatter House Press’s Biting the Bullet collection, where she won honorable mention for her essay “Breath by Breath.”
On the web, she is a former staff writer for bitchflicks where she wrote about issues of gender in popular films. She has published pieces on Scary Mommy, Literary Mama, and feministing. She also served as an educational expert for noodle.com where she wrote about diversity in literature and writing.
Colleen has been invited to several venues to talk about the depictions of Islamic veiling in literature and culture and is available for talks and publication invitations. She was the 2016 Chair for the Lehigh Valley Association of Independent Schools’ Women’s and Gender Studies Conference held at DeSales University in April 2016 and at Muhlenberg College in 2017. She is also the Kutztown delegate and membership chair for the PASSHE Women’s Consortium and chaired its 2016 conference at KU.
In the Lehigh Valley, she is active in the community and is eager to participate in dialogues on important issues. She is a regular contributor to WFMZ’s Business Matters.