Dawes teaches American literature. His latest book, That the World May Know -
Bearing Witness to Atrocity, tells the powerful and moving story of the successes and
failures of the modern human rights movement. Drawing on firsthand accounts from
fieldworkers around the world, the book gives a painfully clear picture of the human cost
of confronting inhumanity in our day. 

An earlier book, The Language of War, explores U.S. literature and culture from the Civil
War through World War II, examining how the violence of war affects literary, legal and
philosophical representations and how those representations affect violence. 

Dawes has also published articles on a variety of subjects including human rights law,
literature and medical studies, Shakespeare, gender and sexuality. 

EDUCATION: B.A., University of Pennsylvania M.Phil, University of Cambridge, Kings
College, England M.A., Ph.D., Harvard University Jr. Fellow, Society of Fellows, Harvard

Dawes has been teaching at Macalester since 2001. 

Journal Articles


On Narrative and Human Rights (with Samantha Gupta), Humanity: An Interdisciplinary Journal or Human Rights (2014)


The Gulf Wars and the US Peace Movement, American Literary History (2009)


Human Rights in Literary Studies, Human Rights Quarterly (2009)


Atrocity and Interrogation, Critical Inquiry (2004)



Evil Men (2013)

Contributions to Books


Abolition and Activism: The Present Uses of Literary Criticism, The Oxford Handbook of Nineteenth-Century American Literature (2012)

Humanitarianism (with Rebecca Sheff), The Encyclopedia of Global Studies (2012)


Limits to Violence, A New Literary History of America (2009)


The American War Novel, The Cambridge Companion to the Literature of the Second World War (2009)


War Writing, American History through Literature 1870-1920 (2006)

Book Reviews

Racism and Violence in US Literary Criticism, American Literature (2013)

The Future of Human Rights, Journal of Human Rights (2010)