Laura Fisher

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Associate Professor Faculty of Arts Department of English Toronto, Ontario laura.fisher@ryerson.ca Office: (416) 979-5000 ext. 552149

Bio/Research

Dr. Fisher is an associate professor in the Department of English at Ryerson University, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in American Literature and the literature and culture of cities. Her research in nineteenth- and twentieth-century U.S. literature explores questions of ra...

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Bio/Research

Dr. Fisher is an associate professor in the Department of English at Ryerson University, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in American Literature and the literature and culture of cities. Her research in nineteenth- and twentieth-century U.S. literature explores questions of race, class, gender, and self-making within and across multiple sites of urban modernity.

Fisher’s first book, Reading for Reform: The Social Work of Literature in the Progressive Era (University of Minnesota Press, 2019) offers a literary history of social reform institutions in the United States. A new book, funded by a SSHRC Insight Development Grant, examines the largely forgotten genre of sociological fiction in U.S. literary history—a genre alternately named the “economic novel,” the “social novel,” and the “research novel.” Her research has been published in American Literature, Journal of Modern Literature, MELUS, and Modern Language Quarterly.

In addition to her scholarly writing, Fisher writes cultural criticism on such topics as riot grrrl, popular music and culture, and contemporary literature for publications such as The Guardian, The New Inquiry, Avidly—Los Angeles Review of Books, and Public Books. She has also produced a digital and public humanities project entitled City of Words, which she uses as a tool for teaching urban literatures in Toronto and beyond.


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