Dr. Venetria K. Patton is Director of African
American Studies and Research Center and Professor
of English. Prior to her appointment at Purdue, Dr.
Patton was an Associate Professor of English and
African American Studies at the University of
Nebraska-Lincoln, where she served in a number of
administrative capacities including a term as
Coordinator of African American and African Studies.
She earned her B.A. in English from the University of
La Verne and her M.A. and Ph.D. in English from the
University of California-Riverside. Dr. Patton's teaching and research focus
on African American and Diasporic Women's Literature. In 2003, she won
two teaching awards: the Annis Chaiken Sorensen Distinguished Teaching
Award in the Arts and Humanities and the College of Arts and Sciences
Distinguished Teaching Award from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Dr. Patton is the author of Women in Chains: The Legacy of Slavery in Black
Women's Fiction (SUNY, 2000), the Co-editor of Double-Take: A
Revisionist Harlem Renaissance Anthology (Rutgers, 2001) and editor of
Background Readings for Teachers of American Literature (Bedford/St.
Martin's, 2006). She recently published The Grasp That Reaches Beyond the
Grave: the Ancestral Call in Black Women's Texts (SUNY, 2013) and
edited a second edition of Background Readings for Teachers of American
Literature. Her essays have appeared in Black Studies and Women's Studies
journals as well as the essay collections, Postcolonial Perspectives on
Women Writers From Africa, the Caribbean, and the US (Africa World
Press, 2003), White Scholars/African American Texts (Rutgers UP, 2005),
and Imagining the Black Female Body: Reconciling Image in Print and
Visual Culture (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010). She is also the editor of the fall
2011 issue of Black Women, Gender, and Families and co-editor of the
spring 2004 issue of The Black Scholar. Dr. Patton is a former Chair of the
Purdue Black Caucus of Faculty and Staff and a current board member of the
Hanna Community Center.