Felicia Mitchell is a poet and writer whose interests in textual and multicultural intersections inform her classroom dynamic. In the classroom, she challenges students to think creatively, work collaboratively, and write papers and poems they will be proud of for years to come. This work with students includes courses in writing, linguistics, poetry, creative writing, and literature. Along with teaching, Mitchell coordinates the services of the writing center and works with writing proficiency across the curriculum. Along with advising students interested in the English major, Mitchell also loves to help students design individualized areas of concentration (self-designed majors).
Mitchell has published her poems widely since arriving to teach at Emory & Henry College in 1987. Her most recent book of poems is Waltzing with Horses (Press 53, 2014). Along with publishing poetry, Mitchell has published articles based in explorations of poetry, pedagogy, and women’s studies. She edited the scholarly book Her Words: Diverse Voices in Contemporary Appalachian Women’s Poetry for the University of Tennessee Press (2002). Her interest in Appalachian literature is also reflected in “Startling Morals: Teaching Ecofiction with Barbara Kingsolver’s Prodigal Summer,” which appears in Appalachia in the Classroom: Teaching the Region (edited by Theresa Burriss and Patricia Gantt, Athens: Ohio University Press, 2013).
In recognition of her service to students and the college, she has received a McConnell Award, a Sears Roebuck Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence and Professional Leadership, and the William Carrington Finch Award for Faculty Excellence. Grants include fellowships for residencies at the Virginia Center for Creative Arts and the Salzburg Seminar as well Mellon research grants, Berger Foundation travel grants, and Virginia Foundation of Independent Colleges Technology grant.
The University of Texas, Austin, TX
Ph.D., Curriculum & Instruction, English/Language Arts (1987)
University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
M.A., English (1980)
B.A., English (1977), General Honors Diploma (Honors Program)
Booker T. Washington High School, Columbia, SC, 1973
- basic writing
- advanced expository writing
- writing about literature
- creative writing (poetry, fiction, nonfiction)
- teaching of writing
- women’s studies
- middle eastern cultures through literature
- introduction to poetry
- contemporary poetry
- the haiku tradition
Senior Seminar Topics
- The Underground Railroad
- The Sonnet Tradition
- Holocaust as Narrative
- Love as Social Metaphor in International Fiction
Selected Student-Initiated Courses
- contemporary world literature
- multicultural children’s literature
- sports literature
- psychology and poetry
Selected Student Projects
- Stacy Sivinski. “If the Slipper Fits: An Examination of Clothing as a Source of Identity and Social Mobility in the Fairytales of the Brothers Grimm.” Honors Project in English, 2014. Finalist for the E&H Research Award, 2014
- Mary Ruth Pruitt, The Rodentiad (graphic project combining art, poetry, and the classics), Honors project in English and Art, 2014
- Morgan Richards. “What I Am Trying to Say: Poems,” Honors Project in English, 2005
- Sally Smith. “Definitions: Poems,” Senior Project in English, 2009
“Startling Morals: Teaching Ecofiction with Barbara Kingsolver’s Prodigal Summer.” Appalachia in the Classroom: Teaching the Region. Ed. Theresa Burriss and Patricia Gantt. Athens: Ohio University Press, 2013. 169-188.
“The Poetry in Action Project at Emory & Henry College: Connecting the Academic Classroom and Community Service.” Interdisciplinary Humanities 29.3 (Fall 2012): 134-146.
“Frances Driscoll and The Rape Poems.” Poets & Writers, May/June 2001, 43-46.
“The Asynchronous Classroom and Professional Identity: Am I Teaching Yet?” UltiBase (September 1999). Internet: ultibase.rmit.edu.au/
“Internet Use and Gender at Emory & Henry College: A Survey of Student Users.” College and Undergraduate Libraries 5.2 (1998): 1-10.
“Remedial English at Emory & Henry College: Experiences in ‘Distance Learning.’” Virginia English Bulletin 48.1 (Winter 1998): 25-30.
“Keeping it All in the Family: Sexual Harassment Policies and Informal Resolution in Small Colleges.” NWSA Journal 9.2 (1997): 118-125.
“Getting to Know the Internet in Rural Appalachia: Women’s Ways of Knowing and Cultural Stereotypes.” Alca-Lines 5.1 (1997): 8-11.
“The Thin Line: Sexism, Sexual Harassment, and the Student Complaint.” Feminist Teacher 9.3 (Fall/Winter 1995): 125-128.
“Is There a Text in this Grade? The Implicit Messages of Comments on Student Writing.” Issues in Writing 6.2 (1994): 187-195.
“Pronoun Reference and Student Writing.” Women & Language 17.2 (Fall 1994): 2-5.
“College English Handbooks and Pronominal Usage Guidelines: Mixed Reactions to Nonsexist Language.” Women & Language 16.2 (Fall 1992): 38-42.
“Balancing Individual Projects and Collaborative Learning in an Advanced Writing Class.” College Composition and Communication 43.3 (October 1992): 393-400.
“Exploring the Aesthetics of Rape: Leda and the Swan in Selected Poems by Women.” Phoebe: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Feminist Research, Theory, and Aesthetics 3.2 (Fall 1991): 64-72.
“From Object to Equal: Modern Love Poems by Women.” Mid-American Review 11.1 (1991): 187-194.
“Marge Piercy’s The Moon is Always Female: Feminist Text/Great Books Context.” Virginia English Bulletin 42.2 (1990): 34-45.
“Fear and Loathing and a Little Zeal in Denton, Texas: A Canon-Basher’s Report from the National Debate on the Core and the Canon.” Virginia English Bulletin 42.2 (1990): 46-50.
“Including Women at Emory & Henry College: The Evolution of an Inclusive Language Policy.” Women’s Studies Quarterly 1&2 (1990): 222-230.
Emory & Henry College (1987-present)
Professor of English (1999- present)
The University of Texas at Austin (1986-1987)
Teaching Assistant (Assisting)
- Multicultural Education
Non-credit Poetry Workshop Teacher (Teaching)
- Division of Continuing Education
The University of South Carolina (1977-1979)
Teaching Assistant (Teaching)
- English 101 and 102