Kelly Wisecup

  I am an associate professor of English at Northwestern University, where I teach courses in Native American literature, early         American literature and culture, and medicine and literature.

  My scholarship focuses on science and medicine in early America, Native American literatures, the history of race in America,   and colonial literatures of the Caribbean. My current book project, Assembled Relations: Compilation, Collection, and Native  American Writing, investigates how Native American writers, diplomats, ministers, and tribal leaders adapted forms of compilation—herbals, vocabulary lists, museum inventories, catalogs, and commonplace books—to restore and remake environmental, epistemological, and interpersonal relations disrupted by colonialism.  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 for 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. 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.

At Northwestern, I co-chaired the Indigenous Studies Research Initiative in 2016-2017, and I am an affiliate of the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research.


In November 2017, I am participating in a roundtable on “Proximities of Dissent: Native American and Indigenous Protest Across Time and Place” at the American Studies Association conference.

At the Modern Language Association conference in January 2018, I am speaking about Simon Pokagon’s “object lessons” in a roundtable on “Eyewitnessing and Early American Literature” and participating in a colloquy on Robert Gunn’s Ethnology and Empire: Languages, Literatures, and the Making of the North American Borderlands

In March 2018, I am chairing a panel series on Native American religion and politics at the Society of Early Americanists conference.