James S. Leonard is Professor and Chair of the Department of English at The Citadel. He is the editor of Making Mark Twain Work in the Classroom (Duke University Press, 1999), coeditor of Author'ity and Textuality: Current Views of Collaborative Writing (Locust Hill Press, 1994) and Satire or Evasion? Black Perspectives on Huckleberry Finn (Duke University Press, 1992), coauthor of The Fluent Mundo: Wallace Stevens and the Structure of Reality (University of Georgia Press, 1988), editor of the Mark Twain Circular (since 1987), managing editor of The Mark Twain Annual (since 2004), and a major contributor to The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Poets and Poetry (Greenwood Press, 2006) and American History Through Literature (Charles Scribner’s Sons, 2005).
Shelley Fisher Fishkin is Professor of English and Director of American Studies at Stanford University. She is the author, editor, or co-editor of forty books, including the award-winning Was Huck Black? Mark Twain and African American Voices (1993) and From Fact to Fiction: Journalism and Imaginative Writing in America (1988), as well as Lighting Out for the Territory (1997), The Oxford Mark Twain (1996), the Historical Guide to Mark Twain (2002), Is He Dead? A Comedy in Three Acts by Mark Twain (2004), People of the Book: Thirty Scholars Reflect on Their Jewish Identity (with Jeffrey Rubin-Dorsky) (1996), Listening toSilences: New Essays in Feminist Criticism (1994) (with Elaine Hedges), and Sport of the Gods and Other Essential Writings by Paul Laurence Dunbar (with David Bradley) (2005). She has also published over eighty articles essays or reviews in publications including American Quarterly, American Literature, Journal of American History, American Literary History, and the New York Times Book Review, and has lectured on American literature in Belgium, Canada, Chile, China, France, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, the Netherlands, Portugal, Russia, Taiwan, Turkey, the U.K. and throughout the U.S.
A member of the first class of women to graduate from Yale College, she stayed on at Yale to earn her MA in English and her PhD in American Studies. Before her arrival at Stanford, she directed the Poynter Fellowship in Journalism at Yale and taught American Studies and English at the University of Texas at Austin, where she chaired the American Studies Department. She co-founded the Charlotte Perkins Gilman Society, and is a past-president of the Mark Twain Circle of America and the American Studies Association.
David Bradley earned a BA in Creative Writing at the University of Pennsylvania in 1972 and a MA in United States Studies at the University of London in 1974. A Professor of English at Temple University from 1976 to 1997, Bradley has been a visiting professor at the San Diego State University, the University of California—San Diego, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Colgate University, the College of William & Mary, the City College of the City University of New York and the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas, Austin. He is currently an Associate Professor of Fiction in the Creative Writing Program at the University of Oregon
Bradley has read and lectured extensively in the United States and also in Japan, Korea, Pakistan, the United Kingdom, South Africa and Australia. He is the author of two novels, South Street (1975) and The Chaneysville Incident (1981)which was awarded the 1982 PEN/Faulkner Award and an Academy Award from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. His non-fiction has appeared in Esquire, Redbook, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times and The New Yorker. A recipient of fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts His most recent publication is semi-scholarly: The Essential Writings of Paul Laurence Dunbar, which he co-edited with Shelley Fisher Fishkin. His current works in-progress include a creative non-fiction book, The Bondage Hypothesis: Meditations on Race, History and America, a novel-in-stories, Raystown, and an essay collection: Lunch Bucket Pieces: New and Selected Creative Nonfiction
Dana D. Nelson (Ph.D.MichiganState) is the Gertrude Conaway Vanderbilt Professor of English and American Studies at Vanderbilt University. She is author of The Word in Black and White: Reading ‘Race’ in American Literature, 1638-1867 (Oxford UP, 1992) and National Manhood: Capitalist Citizenship and the Imagined Fraternity of White Men (Duke UP, 1998) as well as editor of several reprint editions of nineteenth-century American women writers (including Rebecca Rush, Lydia Maria Child, Fanny Kemble and Frances Butler Leigh). Her teaching interests include comparative American colonial literatures, developing democracy in the eighteenth and nineteenth-centuries, ethnic and minority literatures, women’s literature, and in frontier representations and literature.
She has served or is serving on numerous editorial boards, including American Literature, Early American Literature, American Literary History, Arizona Quarterly, and American Quarterly. She is an active member of the Modern Language Association and the American Studies Association. She is currently working on two books: the first argues that presidentialism is bad for US democracy, and the second studies developing practices and representations of democracy in the late British colonies and early United States.
Joseph Csicsila is Associate Professor of English Language and Literature at Eastern Michigan University. He is author of Canons by Consensus: Critical Trends and American Literature Anthologies (2004), the first systematic study of American literature textbooks used by college instructors in the last century. A specialist in nineteenth- and early twentieth-century American literature and culture, Csicsila’s essays on Mark Twain, Mary Wilkins Freeman, William Faulkner, and other American literary figures have appeared in numerous journals. Currently he serves as Executive Coordinator of the Mark Twain Circle of America.