The focus of my scholarly work is primarily to develop innovative theories and practices for teaching reading and writing on the college level, focusing particularly on collaborative learning.

Even when I’m writing about Italian American literature or Irish literature, most frequently my emphasis is on how students might read and write about these texts in rich and compelling ways.


Academic Writing & Awards

Selected Books and Articles on Writing and Reading

  • “Pedagogical Possibilities: Working at Teaching-Oriented Institutions.” Profession (2003): 120-131.

  • “On a topic of your own choosing and with a clear personal position, use at least seven unbiased, accurate, and authoritative sources to write a balanced and objective paper that gives a complete picture of the subject you are investigating.” Writing and Critical Theory. Ed. John Clifford and John Schilb. Modern Language Association, 1994: 33-52.

  • “Teaching, Studying, and Theorizing the Production and Reception of Literary Texts.” CollegeLiterature 19 (1992): 4-18.

  • Reading Texts. Co-authored with Gary Waller and Linda Flower. D.C. Heath, 1987.

Selected Books and Articles on Italian American Literature, Film, and Popular Culture

Selected Italian American Reviews

  • Paola Corso. Giovanna’s 86 Circles and Other Stories. Italian Americana 27.1 (2009), pp. 117-118.

  • Louise DeSalvo. Crazy in the Kitchen: Food, Feuds, and Forgiveness in an Italian American Family. Italian Americana 25.1 (2007), pp. 115-117.

  • Mary Saracino. Voices of the Soft-Bellied Warrior: A Memoir. Italian Americana 22.1 (2004), pp. 103-104.

Selected Books and Articles on James Joyce

  • “Here Comes Everybody: An Epistemic Approach to Teaching Ulysses in a Small College.” Co-authored with Melissa Shofner (student and peer mentor). Pedagogy 10.2 (2010): 363-88.

  • Ulysses, ‘Wandering Rocks,’ and the Reader: Multiple Pleasures in Reading. Edwin Mellen, 1991

  • “‘Just a Flash Like That’: The Pleasure of ‘Cruising’ the Interpolations in ‘Wandering Rocks’.” James Joyce Quarterly 24.3 (1987): 275-90.

 Selected Presentations

  • Panelist: Book Launch for Hard Candy by Annie Lanzillotto. NYU/Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò, March 22, 2018.

  • “Writing Satire, Anecdotal, and Hyperbolic Humor.” Florida Literary Arts Coalition 2016 Other Words Conference, St. Augustine, FL, Nov. 5, 2016.

  • Keynote Speaker: “In Other People’s Mouths”: Nested Peer Mentoring for Collaboration in First-Year Writing Classes and Beyond.” University of Florida Writing Program Conference, Jan 31, 2015.

  • Panelist: A Roundtable Discussion of Mary Bucci Bush’s Sweet Hope. Italian American Studies Association, New York, NY, Dec, 2012.

  • “‘An Odor of Corruption’: A Trilogy of Lectures on James Joyce’s Dubliners.” Purchase, NY. Feb. – April, 2012.

  • Plenary Speaker: “Code Switching in the Classroom: Using Cultural Studies and Epistemic Pedagogy.” The First International Conference “Polycode Communication: Linguistic, Cultural and Didactic Aspects.” St. Petersburg, Russia. May, 2011.

  • Teaching Italian American Literature, Film, and Popular Culture—book release panel discussion. John D. Calandra Italian American Institute, CUNY, May, 2010; NYU/Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò, October, 2010.

  • Keynote Speaker: “Changing Our Pedagogies to Meet a New Student Population: Creating Public and Purposeful Writing Assignments.” International Conference on Reading and Writing. Malmö, Sweden. November, 2009.

Selected Honors and Distinctions

  • Elena Lucrezia Cornaro Award, named for the first woman in history to receive a Ph.D. and awarded annually by the Sons and Daughters of Italy’s New York State Grand Lodge Foundation to recognize an outstanding Italian-American scholar for significant contributions to their profession and their communities. June 8, 2019. 

  • SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, September 2014.

  • Purchase College Guiding Light Award, September 2013.

  • Purchase College First Annual Student Engagement Award, April 2008.

  • Purchase College Vice President for Student Affairs Award for Outstanding Faculty Contribution to the Quality of Student Life. Purchase College, April, 2004.