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Michael Germana


Curriculum Vitae

Michael Germana teaches courses in American Literature and American Studies in WVU’s Department of English. His research explores the intersections of critical race theory, popular cultural studies, theories of temporality, and economics in literature. He is the author of two books: Standards of Value: Money, Race, and Literature in America examines how popular cultural inflections of U.S. monetary policy debates frame the discussion of racial difference in American fiction from the 1850s-1950s, and Ralph Ellison, Temporal Technologist shows how Ellison’s philosophy of temporality is central to his understanding of and claims to social justice. His essays on money and American literature have been published in American Literary HistoryAmerican Periodicals, and Arizona Quarterly, and his book on Ralph Ellison was published by Oxford University Press in 2018. He is a founding and lifetime member of the Ralph Ellison Society.

  • American Studies
  • 19th and 20th Century American Literature
  • Critical Race Theory
  • Popular Culture
  • Ralph Ellison

Selected Publications:

  • Ralph Ellison, Temporal Technologist. Oxford University Press, 2018.
  • Standards of Value: Money, Race, and Literature in America. University of Iowa Press, 2009.
  • “The Economy of Race.” The Cambridge Companion to Literature and Economics. Ed. Paul Crosthwaite, Peter Knight, and Nicky Marsh. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2022. 133-147.
  • “The Golden Age, Revisited: Ellison’s Durational View of Bebop.” Ralph Ellison in Context. Ed. Paul Devlin. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Forthcoming.
  • Review of Approaches to Teaching the Works of Charles W. Chesnutt. Ed. Susanna Ashton and Bill Hardwire. Studies in the Novel. 51.2 (2019): 313-315.
  • “On Invisible Man: Past, Present, and Present-past.” Critical Insights: Invisible Man. Ed. Bob Evans. Ipswich: Salem Press, 2018. 219-230.
  • Review of The New Territory: Ralph Ellison and the Twenty-First Century. Ed. Marc C. Conner and Lucas E. Morel. African American Review. 51.2 (2018): 151-52.
  • “Rhopographic Photography and Atemporal Cinema: The Link Between Ralph Ellison’s Polaroids and Three Days Before the Shooting…” Iowa Journal of Cultural Studies. 17.1 (2017): 3-30.
  • Review of Richard Wright in a Post-Racial Imaginary. Ed. Alice Mikal Craven, William E. Dow, and Yoko Nakamura. American Literary History Online Review. Series VIII. 2016.
  • “The Balances of Deceit; or, What Does Silver Mean to Me?: Constance Fenimore Woolson’s ‘Castle Nowhere’ and the Money Question During Reconstruction.” Witness to Reconstruction: Constance Fenimore Woolson and the Postbellum South, 1873-1894. Ed. Kathleen Diffley. University of Mississippi Press, 2011. 17-33.
  • “Counterfeiters and Con Artists: Money, Literature, and Subjectivity.” American Literary History. 21.2 (2009): 296-305.