Professor Ryan's research focuses on the history and literature of imprisonment in the United States.Curriculum Vitae
Professor Katy Ryan teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in twentieth-century American literature, prison studies, and literary research. In 2004, she founded the Appalachian Prison Book Project (APBP), a nonprofit that mails free books to people imprisoned in six states, facilitates prison book clubs, and provides college tuition for incarcerated students. She has taught literature classes at a federal prison and a Pennsylvania state prison as part of the Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program. These classes bring on-campus undergraduates and incarcerated students together to learn in a dynamic educational space.
Ryan's research focuses on the history and literature of imprisonment
in the United States. She is the recipient of the Sigma Tau Delta
Award; the Neil S. Bucklew Award for Social Justice; the WVU Foundation
Outstanding Teaching Award; the Eberly College Outstanding Teaching
Award; and the James and Arthur Gabriel Brothers Faculty Award for
teaching and service.
- American studies
- Public humanities
- Prison studies
- Twentieth-century American literature
- “Where the Letters Lead: The Appalachian Prison Book Project.” The Discipline at Modernism/Modernity 29 Dec. 2020.
- “Reading and Writing between the Devil and the Deep Blue.” Forthcoming in Teaching Literature and Writing in Prison. Eds. Patrick Alexander and Sheila Smith McCoy. Modern Language Association.
“A Prison Nation and Freedom Dreams: 1980s Literature of Incarceration.” American Literature in Transition: 1980-1990. Ed. Quentin Miller. Cambridge University Press, 2017. 129-146.
- “'When Freedom Comes’: Maria Parker, the Women’s Department, and the West Virginia State Penitentiary.” West Virginia History 11.1 (Spring 2017): 1-27.
- With Yvonne Hammond, “Work & Hope and the West Virginia State Penitentiary.” West Virginia History 11.1 (Spring 2017): 29-43.
- “Prison, Time, Kairos in Langston Hughes’s Scottsboro, Limited.” Modern Drama 58.2 (June 2015): 171-193.
- Editor, Demands of the Dead: Executions, Storytelling, and Activism in the United States (Univ. of Iowa Press, 2012). http://www.uiowapress.org/books/2012-spring/demands-dead.htm
- “A View of The Brig: From the Cage to the Street.” Political and Protest Theatre after 9-11: Patriotic Dissent (Routledge, 2012).
- “State Killing, the Stage of Innocence, and The Exonerated.” American Literature 83.1 (March 2011).
- “Permeable Borders and American Prisons: Malcolm Braly’s On the Yard.” Texas Studies in Literature and Language 50.3 (Fall 2008).
- “Horizons of Grace: Marilynne Robinson and Simone Weil.” Philosophy and Literature 29.2 (Oct. 2005): 349-364.
- “Falling in Public: Larsen’s Passing, McCarthy’s The Group, and Baldwin’s Another Country.” Studies in the Novel 36.1 (Spring 2004): 95-119.
- “Assurance of God.” Short Story. Denver Quarterly (Winter 2001).
- “Revolutionary Suicide in Toni Morrison’s Novels.” African American Review (Fall 2000).
- “Documentary Films on U.S. Social Issues.” Humanities Collection 1.3 (1999).
- "'No Less Human’: Making History in Suzan-Lori Parks’s The American Play.” Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism 8.2 (Spring 1999).
- “A Body’s Mind Experience in Tim Miller’s Workshop.” Theatre Topics 7.2 (Sept. 1997).