Michigan State University
Michigan State University
Department of English
Edward Watts
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Early American Studies l 19th Century American Literature

Office: C609 Wells Hall 
Phone: (517) 432-0905
Email: wattse@msu.edu

Generally, Edward Watts works in American literature and studies before 1900, in the intersections of postcolonial theory, settler nationalism, border and frontier studies, and historical narrative. His books include Writing and Postcolonialism in the Early Republic (University of Virginia Press), An American Colony: Regionalism and the Roots of Midwestern Culture (Ohio University Press), and In This Remote Country: French Colonial Culture in the Anglo-American Imagination, 1780–1860 (University of North Carolina Press). Watts has co-edited The First West: Writings from the American Frontier, 1780–1860 (Oxford University Press), Messy Beginnings: Postcoloniality and Early American Studies (Rutgers University Press) and Headlong Enterprise: New Essays on John Neal and Nineteenth-Century American Culture

(Bucknell UP), and he has edited The Indian Hater and Other Stories by James Hall (Kent State University Press). He has also published articles and reviews in various collections and journals.

Currently, Watts is engaging book projects on race, violence, and madness on the frontier, as well as a comparative study of historical fiction and settler nationalism in the United States, the Confederacy, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia before 1914. In April 2008, he co-hosted the Prophetstown Revisited Conference in West Lafayette, Indiana. 

Watts came to MSU in 1993, and, in 2004, he joined the English Department after serving in the Department of American Thought and Language. His undergraduate and graduate courses in the department generally reflect his research interests. At present, he also teaches an integrated arts and humanities course in humor and history. He is active in various environment- and disabilities-based community groups and volunteers in the local schools.


ENG210: Introduction to the Study of English
ENG211H: Honors Foundation in Literary Studies
ENG314: Readings in American literature
ENG320B: Methods in Literary History
ENG441: Seminar in American Literature to 1820
ENG442: Seminar in American Literature 1820–1865
ENG492: Special Topics: Australian and Pacific Literature
ENG820: Traveling and Travel Writing
IAH207: Literature, Cultures, and Identities