Kelly Wisecup

 I am an associate professor of English at Northwestern University, where I teach courses in Native American literature and early American literature and culture and am affiliated with the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research.

My scholarship focuses on pre-1900 Native American literatures, science and medicine in early America, the history of the book, and early Caribbean literatures.  My current book project, Assembled Relations: Compilation, Collection, and Native American Writing, investigates Native Americans’ literary interventions into colonial sciences of collecting.  The book examines compilations, non-narrative genres like lists, catalogs, and scrapbooks, to which Native writers turned to describe Native peoples’ ancient pasts and map their futures against colonial narratives anticipating Indigenous disappearance.

 I am co-editing (with Alyssa Mt. Pleasant and Caroline Wigginton) a joint forum on the relations between early American studies and Native American and Indigenous Studies, forthcoming in 2018 in the journals Early American Literature and the William and Mary Quarterly.

My first book, Medical Encounters: Knowledge and Identity in Early American Literatures, was published in 2013 by the University of Massachusetts Press, in the Native Americans in the Northeast series.  My scholarly edition of Edward Winslow’s Good News from New England (1624) was published in 2014, also by the University of Massachusetts Press.

I have been designated as an AT&T Research Fellow at Northwestern University for 2017-2019. In 2018, I am collaborating with the American Indian Center of Chicago on a National Endowment for the Humanities Common Heritage grant project titled “The American Indian Center of Chicago and Urban Native American Histories” and launching a multi-year collaboration with faculty at five universities on “Indigenous Art and Activism in Changing Climates” funded by a Humanities without Walls grant.  My research has also been supported by fellowships from the American Antiquarian Society, the American Philosophical Society, the John Carter Brown Library, the Newberry Library, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.


In May 2018, I am chairing a panel on “Alluvial Texts: The Mississippi River Valley and Native American Materials and Media to 1900, Part I: Place ” at the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association conference.  This panel is the first of two panels on the Mississippi River Valley; my co-organizer Caroline Wigginton is chairing the second, on “Flow.”