Faculty Profiles

Elizabeth Swanson

  • Professor
Academic Division: Arts & Humanities
781-239-4360

Bio

Professor Swanson teaches courses in African American literature and culture, international literatures, and human rights. She held the Mandell Family Term Chair (2007-2012), and was voted Professor of the Year by the graduating classes of 2007, 2008, and 2009. Dr. Swanson has received the Faculty Scholarship Award, 2012; the Martin Luther King, Jr. Leadership Award, 2012; the Lewis Institute for Social Innovation Changemaker Award, 2012; the Nan Langowitz Women Who Make a Difference Award, 2007; the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, 2006; and the Faculty Innovators Among Us award, 2004.

Author of Beyond Terror: Gender, Narrative, Human Rights (Rutgers University Press, 2007), Dr. Swanson has published articles in journals and edited collections in the areas of multicultural and international literature and pedagogies, gender studies, and human rights. She edited a special issue of the transnational journal Peace Review devoted to the subject of literature, film, and human rights (Spring 2008), and she is co-editor, with Alexandra Schultheis Moore, State University of New York, Binghamton, of Theoretical Perspectives on Literature and Human Rights (Routledge 2011), Teaching Human Rights in Literary and Cultural Studies (Modern Language Association Press, 2015), and Witnessing Torture: Perspectives from Torture Survivors and Human Rights Workers (Palgrave, 2018).

Dr. Swanson has worked extensively on the issue of modern slavery and human trafficking, serving as Board Chair for the NGO Made By Survivors (now Her Future Coalition) from 2008-2016 and working directly with survivors of both slavery and torture in India, Nepal, and the US. In July, 2018, Cambridge University Press published Slaveries Since Emancipation: The Past and the Challenge of Bondage in the New Millennium, which she co-edited with James Brewer Stewart. Dr, Swanson also served as a Commissioner for the Barnstable County Human Rights Commission from 2007-2009, and as Chair in 2010.

Academic Degrees

  • Ph D, Miami University of Ohio
  • MA, Northeastern University
  • BA, Northeastern University

Academic Interests

Literature and Human Rights; Postcolonial and Narrative Theories; African American Studies; Slavery Studies; Critical Theory; Film Studies

Awards & Honors

  • 2012 — Faculty Scholarship Award, Dean of Faculty
  • 2012 — Changemaker Award, Lewis Institute
  • 2012 — Martin Luther King Jr. Legacy Day Award, Council on Diversity and Inclusion
  • 2008 — Professor of the Year, Babson College
  • 2007 — Professor of the Year, Babson College
  • 2007 — Women Who Make a Difference Award, Babson College
  • 2006 — Dean's Award for Excellence in Teaching, Babson College
  • 2004 — Innovators Among Us Award, Babson College
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Courses

  • Degree Courses 2019

    • LVA 2010 AFRICAN AMERICAN LIT
  • Degree Courses 2018

    • LIT 4682 INTERDISC APPROACH TO HUMAN RIGHTS

Publications

Journal Articles

  • Swanson, E. (in press). Rape, Representation, and the Endurance of Hegemonic Masculinity. Sage Journals. link
  • Deets, S.G., Greenberg, D., Erzurumlu, S.S., Hunt, J.M., Manwaring, M.M., Rodgers, V.L., Swanson, E. (2017). Signing to Living PRME: Learning from a Journey Towards Responsible Management Education. The International Journal of Management Education. Vol: 15, Issue: 2, Page: 205-218.
  • Swanson, E. (2017). Freedom, Commerce, Bodies, Harm: The Case Against Backpage.com . Cogitatio.
  • Moore, A.S., Swanson, E. (2015). Victims, Perpetrators, and the Limits of Human Rights Discourse in Post-Palermo Fiction About Sex Trafficking. The International Journal of Human Rights. Vol: 19, Issue: 1, Page: 16-31. Routledge. link
  • Moore, A.S., Swanson, E. (2014). ‘Let Us Begin with a Smaller Gesture’: An Ethos of Human Rights and the Possibilities of Form in Chris Abani’s Song for Night and Becoming Abigail. ariel: A Review of International English Literature. Vol: 45, Issue: 4, Page: 59-87. The Johns Hopkins University Press.
  • Swanson, E., Moore, A.S., Mullins, G. (2013). Introduction: On Texts and Performances. College Literature. Vol: 40, Issue: 3, Page: 9-14. West Chester University. link
  • Swanson, E., Moore, A.S. (2013). Meditations on a Fractured Terrain: Human Rights and Literature. College Literature. Vol: 40, Issue: 3, Page: 15-37. West Chester University. link
  • Swanson, E., , A.S. (2011). Old Questions in New Boxes: Mia Kirschner's I Live Here and the Problem of Transnational Witnessing. Gender and Humanitarian Narrative. Humanity.
  • Swanson, E. (2010). Plotting, Finally, the Human: Unsettling the Manichean Allegory in Caryl Phillips. South Atlantic Review. Vol: 75, Issue: 2, Page: 135-154. South Atlantic Modern Language Association. link
  • Swanson, E., Greenberg, D. (2004). What's a Cultural Studies Curriculum Doing at a College Like This?. Liberal Education: Journal of the American Association of Colleges and Universities.
  • Swanson, E. (2003). Living the Legacy: Pain, Desire, and Narrative Time in Gayl Jones's Corregidora. Callaloo: A Journal of African Diaspora Arts and Letters. Vol: 26, Issue: 2, Page: 446-472. Johns Hopkins University Press.

Books

  • Swanson, E., Moore, A.S. (2018). Witnessing Torture: Perspectives from Torture Survivors and Human Rights Workers: Witnessing Torture: Perspectives from Torture Survivors and Human Rights Workers. Palgrave. link
  • Swanson, E., Stewart, J.B. (2018). Human Bondage and Abolition: New Histories of Past and Present Slaveries: Human Bondage and Abolition: New Histories of Past and Present Slaveries. Cambridge University Press. link
  • Swanson, E., Moore, A.S. (2015). Teaching Human Rights in Literary and Cultural Studies. Modern Language Association Press. link
  • Swanson, E., Moore, A.S. (2012). Epilogue: Theoretical Perspectives on Human Rights and Literature. Page: 261-264. Routledge.
  • Swanson, E. (2012). Introduction: Human Rights and Literature: The Development of an Interdiscipline: Theoretical Perspectives on Human Rights and Literature. Page: 3-18. Routledge.
  • Swanson, E., Moore, A.S. (2012). Theoretical Perspectives on Human Rights and Literature. Page: 302. Routledge.
  • Swanson, E. (2007). Beyond Terror: Gender, Narrative, Human Rights. Rutgers University Press.

Cases and Teaching Notes

  • Bhardwaj, G., Swanson, E. (2014). Made By Survivors: Business Solution for a Social Problem. Vol: BAB271C, Page: 22. Babson College.
  • Bhardwaj, G., Swanson, E. (2014). Made By Survivors: Business Solution for a Social Problem - Teaching Note. Vol: BAB271TN, Page: 25. Babson College.
  • Harris, B.N., Swanson, E. (2007). What Price Progress: The Sardar Sarovar Dam Project: Geneen Foundation Ethics Case Series. Babson College.

Book Chapters

  • Swanson, E., Stewart, J.B. (2018). Defending Slavery, Denying Slavery: Human Bondage and Abolition: New Histories of Past and Present Slaveries. Cambridge University Press. link
  • Swanson, E., Moore, A.S. (2018). Editors' Introduction: On the Social Contexts of Witnessing: Expanding the Frame of Life Writing About Torture: Witnessing Torture: Perspectives from Torture Survivors and Human Rights Workers. Palgrave. link
  • Swanson, E. (2018). Prologue: Rhetorics of Torture in the Public Sphere: Witnessing Torture: Perspectives from Torture Survivors and Human Rights Workers. Palgrave. link
  • Swanson, E., Stewart, J.B. (2018). Introduction: Getting Beyond Plantation Slavery": Human Bondage and Abolition: New Histories of Past and Present Slaveries. Cambridge University Press. link
  • Swanson, E. (in press). Victims, Witnesses, and Perpetrators: The Subjects of Human Rights: Cambridge Companion to Human Rights and Literature . Cambridge University Press.
  • Swanson, E., Moore, A.S. (2015). Beyond the Post/Colonial and the West: Teaching Human Rights in Literary and Cultural Studies. Page: 53-67. Modern Language Association Press. link
  • Swanson, E. (2015). Gendering Human Rights and Their Violation: A Reading of Chris Cleave's Little Bee: Routledge Companion to Literature and Human Rights . Page: 60-68. Routledge. link
  • Swanson, E. (2014). Human Rights: Critical Terms for the Study of Gender. Page: 139-155. University of Chicago Press.
  • Swanson, E. (2012). Intimations of What Was to Come: Edwidge Danticat's The Farming of Bones and the Indivisibility of Human Rights: Theoretical Perspectives on Human Rights and Literature. Page: 103-119. Routledge.
  • Swanson, E. (2012). "Accorded a Place in the Design": Torture in Post-Apartheid Cinema: Screening Torture: Media Representations of State Terror and Political Domination. Page: 167-190. Columbia University Press.
  • Dubey, M., Swanson, E. (2011). New frontiers, cross-currents and convergences: emerging cultural paradigms: The Cambridge History of African American Literature. Page: 566-620. Cambridge University Press.
  • Swanson, E., Dubey, M. (2009). Cross-Currents and Convergencies: Emerging Paradigms: The Cambridge History of African American Literature. Cambridge University Press.
  • Swanson, E. (2006). War Film during the War on Terror: Displacement and Indirection: Kulturausausch.
  • Swanson, E. (2005). Who was Afraid of Patrice Lumumba? Terror and the Ethical Imagination : Lumumba: La Mort du Prophet. Rutgers University Press.
  • Swanson, E. (2000). Splitting Difference: Global Identity Politics and the Representation of Torture in the Counter-Historical Dramatic Film. Page: 245-270. Routledge. link
  • Swanson, E. (1997). The Way We Do the Things We Do: Enunciation and Effect in teh Multicultural Classroom. Page: 151-177. Routledge.

Book Reviews

  • Swanson, E. (2016). Review: Mark Bracher, "Literature and Social Justice: Protest Novels, Cognitive Politics, & Schema Criticism": American Literary History . Vol: Series VII. Oxford University. link
  • Swanson, E. (2012). Review: African Diasporas: Ancestors, Migrations, and Boundaries: Journal of the African Literature Association. Vol: 7, Issue: 1. African Literature Association.
  • Swanson, E. (2012). Review of "African Diasporas: Ancestors, Migrations and Boundaries" by Robert Cancel and Winifred Woodhull: Journal of the African Literature Association. Vol: 7, Issue: 1. African Literature Association. link

Other

  • Swanson, E. (2014). On Happy Endings: End Slavery Now. National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. link

Presentations

  • Through the Door, Onto the Train: Mechanisms of Escape in Colson Whitehead’s Underground Railroad and Mohsin Hamid’s Exit West Swanson, E. Recognition, Reparation, Reconciliation: The Light and Shadow of Historical Trauma, Stellenbosch, South Africa (2018)
  • Subordinated, Hegemonic, and Toxic Masculinities in the Global Political Economy: A Reading of Emmanuel Dongala's Johnny Mad Dog Swanson, E. American Comparative Literature Association Annual Meeting, University of California, Los Angeles (2018)
  • Traumatic and Historical Temporalities in Mohamedou Slahi’s Guantanamo Diary Swanson, E. Association for the Study of Arts of the Present Annual Meeting, Oakland, CA (2017)
  • Denial and Indifference in Historical Proslavery and Contemporary Sex Worker Rights Rhetoric Swanson, E. Historians Against Slavery Biannual Meeting, International Slavery Museum, Liverpool, England (2017)
  • Dangerous Echoes: The Rhetorics of 21st Century Sex Worker Rights Advocates and Antebellum Proslavery Ideologues.” Human Rights and Literature: Historiography and Historical Literacy Swanson, E. American Comparative Literature Association Annual Meeting, University of Utrecht, Netherlands (2017)
  • Defending Slavery, Denying Slavery: The Problem of Indifference in Historical Perspective Swanson, E. American Comparative Literature Association Annual Meeting, Utrecht, Netherlands (2017)
  • Structured Absence: The Place of Revolution in Human Rights Oriented Literary Criticism Swanson, E. Crisis and Beyond, Upsalla, Sweden (2017)
  • The Rape Capitol of the World: Ambivalent Witnessing and the Crisis in Congo Swanson, E. International Cultural Responses to Wartime Rape, Dublin, Ireland (2017)
  • Antislavery Leadership and Undergraduate Activism Swanson, E. Tougaloo College Anti-Slavery Institute Founding Workshop, Tougaloo College, Jackson, MI (2017)
  • Exceptional Space, Everyday Time: The Problematic of Carceral Space-Time in Mohamedou Ould Slahi’s Guantanamo Diary Swanson, E. Moore, A. Modern Language Association Annual Convention, Philadelphia, PA (2017)
  • Restorations: Rebuilding Lives After Slavery and Exploitation Swanson, E. Slavery Past, Present, and Future 2nd Global Meeting, Prague, Czech Republic (2016)
  • "Structured Absence: Revolution in Human-Rights Oriented Literary Criticism Swanson, E. Human Rights and Literature: Critical Reflections and New Directions, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA (2016)
  • Open Secrets: How Literature and Activism Contribute to Public Awareness of Guantanamo Swanson, E. American Society for Arts of the Present, Greensville, SC (2015)
  • Business and Commerce, Slavery and Abolition, Then and Now Swanson, E. Bi-Annual Meeting, National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, Cincinnati, OH (2015)
  • Beyond the Law: The Power of Human Connection in the Fight Against Slavery Swanson, E. Northeast Regional Conference, International School of Boston (2015)
  • "The Power of Partnership: Business Innovations in the Fight Against Slavery Swanson, E. Slavery Then, Today, and Tomorrow, Sioux Falls, South Dakota (2015)
  • Vulnerability and Precarity, Innocence and Guilt: The Camp Delta Story Swanson, E. Annual Meeting of the American Comparative Literature Association, Seattle, WA (2015)
  • State of the Field: Fighting Human Trafficking, 2014 Swanson, E. World Boston: A World Affairs Council , Boston, MA (2014)
  • The Body and the Word: Toward a Genealogy of Postcolonialism and Human Rights Moore, A. Swanson, E. Annual Meeting of the American Comparative Literature Association, New York, NY (2014)
  • Business Solutions to Human Trafficking Swanson, E. Guest Lecture, Seminar in Business and Human Rights, Boston, MA (2014)
  • Are Men Human? Representations of the Perpetrator in James Levine's The Blue Notebook Swanson, E. Negotiating Human Rights: Cultural, Legal and Political Framings, Aarhus, Denmark (2014)
  • Culpability as Continuum: Identifying the Perpetrator in the Sex Trafficking Scenario Swanson, E. Historical Justice and Memory: Questions of Rights and Accountability in Contemporary Society, New York, NY (2013)
  • Business Solutions to Modern Day Trafficking Swanson, E. Bain, C. Good Business Fridays, Wellesley, MA (2013)
  • Concentric Circles: Keys to Cosmopolitan Engagement Swanson, E. Widows and Orphans Forum Annual Meeting, Boston, MA (2013)
  • Swanson, E. Guest Lecture, Seminar in Business and Human Rights, Boston, MA (2013)
  • Made By Survivors: Impact Assessment and the Prosperity Model Swanson, E. Better World By Design Conference, Providence, RI (2013)
  • More Radical Than Thou: Politics and Posturing in the Reception of Sex Trafficking Narratives Swanson, E. Historians Against Slavery Annual Meeting, Cincinnati, OH (2013)
  • Politics and Posturing in Reception of Sex Trafficking Narratives Swanson, E. Annual Meeting of the American Comparative Literature Association, Toronto, ON (2013)
  • K. Sello Duiker’s Thirteen Cents: An Investigation of Literature, Law, and the Human Rights Narrative Swanson, E. 39th Annual Conference of the African Literature Association, Charleston, SC (2013)
  • From Survival to Freedom: Evolving Strategies for Reintegration in the Aftermath of Sex Slavery Swanson, E. Boston Consortium for Gender, Security, and Human Rights, Boston, MA (2013)
  • Surviving Brothel Slavery: Reintegration in the Context of Changing Repatriation Law Swanson, E. Urban Morgan Institute for Human Rights, Cincinnati, OH (2013)
  • Harbor: Survivors Among Us Swanson, E. Mohamed, E. Art and Ideas Series: Peace and Conflict, Framingham, MA (2013)
  • Survivors Among Us: An Exploration of Voice, Genre, and Human Rights Swanson, E. Conversations About Human Rights Across the Disciplines, Wellesley, MA (2013)
  • Victims and Predators: Reflections On the Trafficking Narrative in James Levine’s The Blue Notebook Swanson, E. Moore, A. 128th Modern Language Association Annual Convention, Boston, MA (2013)
  • Pedagogies of Human Rights and Literature, Or, the Importance of Reading Literarily Swanson, E. International Conference on Human Rights Education , Krakow, Poland (2012)
  • Accorded a Place in the Design: Torture in Post-Apartheid Cinema Swanson, E. Annual Meeting of the American Studies Association, San Juan, PR (2012)
  • Teaching Literature and Human Rights Swanson, E. Moore, A. Research Program on Humanitarianism , University of Connecticut (2012)
  • Entrepreneurship and the Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts Classroom Swanson, E. , Hiram, OH (2012)
  • Meditations on a Fractured Terrain: Literature and Human Rights Swanson, E. Human Rights and the Humanities Conference, Beirut, Lebanon (2012)
  • Being, Becoming, and Haunting in Chris Abani's Becoming Abigail Swanson, E. 2012 Annual Meeting of the American Comparative Literature Association, Providence, RI (2012)
  • Camp Delta 2011: Testimonial, Literature, and the Possibility of Lament Swanson, E. 127th MLA Annual Convention, Seattle, WA (2012)
  • Going "All In": Multi-Sector Paartnerships to Fight Human Trafficking Swanson, E. The Projection Project Sixth Annual Symposium on Trafficking in Persons, Johns Hopkins University (2011)
  • Let Us Begin with a Smaller Gesture: Chris Abani and the Possibilities of Form Swanson, E. , A. American Comparative Literature Association, Vancouver, Canada (2011)
  • Facing BlackfacE: Learning from Racism on a College Campus Swanson, E. Pinard, M. Second international Converence on Hate Studies, Spokane, WA (2011)
  • Spectatorship and Abandonment in Mia Kirschner's I Live Here Swanson, E. Modern Language Association, Los Angeles, CA (2011)
  • Multimedia narrative and the Problematics of Transnational Witnessing Swanson, E. Schultheis, A. From Urgent Action to (Time Im0Memorial: Art and Literature of Human Rights in Changing Political Contexts, New Orleans, LA (2010)
  • ken Saro-Wiwa and the Global Struggle for Economic Human Rights Swanson, E. Human/Environmental Rights, and African literature, Tuscon, Arizona (2010)
  • Plotting the Human: Unsettling the Manichean Allegory in Caryl Phillips' Cambridge and A Distant Shore Swanson, E. The Nature of Intolerance: Caryl Philips and Human Rights, (2009)
  • Reading, "righting," and Recognition: Literature and Human Rights in the New Global Era Swanson, E. Scholars' Symposium, University of Tampa (2009)
  • Old Questions in New Boxes:Mia Kirschner's I Live Here and the Problematics of Transnational Witnessing Swanson, E. For Scholar's Symposium, University of Conneticut (2009)
  • Explosions in Black and White: Race, Gender, and Human Rights in Caryl Phillips' Cambridge and a Distant Shore Swanson, E. , University of Vermont (2009)
  • Exposions in Black and White: Race, Gender, and Human Rights in Caryl Phillips' Cambridge and A Distant Shore Swanson, E. , University of Vermont (2009)
  • Literature and Economic Human Rights: A Post-Marxist Reading of Aravind Adiga's The White Tiger Swanson, E. Human Rights Literary Culture Within/Against Globalization, Harvard University (2009)
  • The Case of Entrepreneurial Homicide: Aravind Adiga's 'The White Tiger' and Economic Human Rights Swanson, E. Seminar in Human Rights, Ann Arbor, MI (2009)
  • The Missing Frontier: Literature and Economic Rights Swanson, E. Series in Human Rights, University of North Carolina, Greensboro (2009)
  • Literature and Film After 9/11 Swanson, E. , Wellesley, MA (2008)
  • An Embrace of Praxis: Entrepreneurial Pedagogy in the Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts Classroom Swanson, E. , Hiram Ohio (2008)
  • An Embrace of Praxis: Entrepreneurial Pedagogy in the Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts Classroom Swanson, E. , Hiram, OH (2008)
  • Literature and FIlm in an Age of Terror Swanson, E. Understanding Our World Lecture Series, Needham, MA (2008)
  • Of Burrows and Being: Literature and Human Rights in an Age of Terror Swanson, E. Human Rights and/in Global Literary Production: Theoretical and Pedagogical Perspectives, Long Beach, CA (2008)
  • Human Rights and LIterature: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Scholarship and Pedagogy Swanson, E. , Davos, Switzerland (2008)
  • Of Manifestos and Manifesting: Professing Literature and Human Rights in an Age of Terror Swanson, E. Ropes Memorial Lecture Series: Humanities in a Post-9/11 Age, Cincinnati, OH (2008)
  • Human Rights and Literature: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Scholarship and Pedagogy Swanson, E. World Universities Forum, Davos, Switzerland (2008)
  • Literature and Human Rights: Notes Toward a Theory Swanson, E. , Memphis, TN (2007)
  • Invisible Lifelines: Social and Economic Human RIghts in Edwidge Danicat's 'The Farming of Bones' Swanson, E. , Puebla, Mexico (2007)
  • Plotting the Human: Black (African) Man and White (European) Woman in Caryl Phillips 'Cambridge and A Distant Shore' Swanson, E. , Morgantown, West Virginia (2007)
  • Living in the 'Awakened Dark': Racism and Genocide in Edwidge Danicat's 'The Farming of Bones' Swanson, E. American Studies Association Annual Meeting, Oakland, CA (2006)
  • Genocide/Witness Swanson, E. Beyond Terror: Gender, Narrative, Human Rights, Oxford, OH (2006)
  • Issues in the Profession Swanson, E. , Oxford, OH (2006)
  • Genocide/Witness Swanson, E. 31st Annual Conference on Film and Literature, (2006)
  • Harbingers of a New, Old Society: Rape, Consent, and Social Contract in J.M. Coetzee's Disgrace Swanson, E. , Boulder, CO (2005)
  • The Reliability of BIS Monitor on Rapid Awakening and Response in Adults Having Outpatient Colonoscopy Allen, I. Deal, E. Gratz, I. Lesser, G. Swanson, E. Annual Meeting of the American Society of Anesthesiologists, Honolulu, HI (2004)
  • Human Rights in Secondary Level Language Arts and Social Studies Curricula Swanson, E. Bridges to Scholarship Program, Boston, MA (2004)
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Professional Services

  • Reviewer, Book Ohio State University Press (2016 - 2016)

Professional Memberships

  • Modern Language Association (2000)