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About Ellen Bayer

My professional research and teaching interests center on Environmental Literature and Pedagogy, and my personal passion is to help empower others to access and engage with the natural world. Broadly, my work approaches the arts and humanities through an ecocritical lens and examines the role of natural and built environments in the range of texts I study. More specifically, my scholarship explores the ways in which human desires and aesthetic preferences impact the natural world and considers the environmental consequences of our personal preferences. With the aim of reaching a broader audience, I share my work in a variety of formats, from academic and literary journals, to interdisciplinary sustainability workshops, to podcasts and live storytelling events. In terms of teaching, helping students connect with the natural world is the core of my pedagogy. From writing grants to fund excursions to Mount Rainier National Park, to developing a gear lending library and spending my free time out on the trails with students, I view helping students develop the skills and confidence to venture into the natural world as the cornerstone of my job. As my observations reveal, not only can this be a transformative experience for students personally, but having first-hand experience in the natural world also fosters new engagement with issues of sustainability and the global environmental crisis.


Present Assistant Professor, University of Washington Tacoma School of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences

Curriculum Vitae

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  • TCORE 124: Introduction to the Humanities
  • TLIT 476: American Women’s Literature (The Regionalists
  • TLIT 437: Nature and Environment in American Literature
  • TLIT 311: Themes in American Literature (A Sense of Place)
  • TLIT 306: Studies in Selected American Writers (Moby-Dick and the Arts)
  • TLIT 305: American Literary Movements, Genres, and Historical Periods (American Literary Realism)
  • TLIT 210: Studies in American Literature
  • TLIT 200: Understanding Literature
  • TLIT 101: Understanding Literature
  • TLIT 237: Introduction to Literature and Environment
  • TLIT 437: Topics in Literature and Environment


2010 Ph.D, Purdue University ‐ American Literature
2004 M.A., Purdue University ‐ Literature
2002 B.A., Northern Kentucky University ‐ English

Book (1)

Articles (5)

Book Chapters (1)

Book Reviews (4)

Podcasts (6)