Elif Armbruster, PhD

Associate Professor, English

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  • PhD, Boston University
  • MA, University of Maine
  • BA, Haverford and Bryn Mawr Colleges (English and French)

Research Interests

  • American Realism (1870-1920)
  • American Domestic Architecture
  • Material Culture Studies
  • Women’s Literature
  • Ethnic Literature
  • American Autobiography and Biography



  • Domestic Biographies: Stowe, Howells, James, and Wharton at Home. New York: Peter Lang, 2011.

Essays and Book Chapters

  • Armbruster, Elif S. (2023) "The Racial Swamps of Reconstruction: Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Life in Post-Civil War Florida," Journal of International Women's Studies: V 25: 7, No 4.
  • Armbruster, E. (2021). Teaching the #MeToo Memoir: Creating Empathy In the First Year College Classroom. In Mary Holland and Heather Hewett (Ed.), #MeToo and Literary Studies: Reading, Teaching, and Writing about Sexual Violence and Rape Culture. London: Bloomsbury U.K.
  • Armbruster, E. (2021). "Reading in Three Dimensions: Using Material Culture to Teach The House of Mirth and The Age of Innocence". In Ferda Asya (Ed.), Teaching Edith Wharton's Major Novels and Short Fiction (pp. 15). New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Armbruster, E. (2020). "Ants Become Giants: The Pioneering Perspective of Laura Ingalls in the Little House Books". In Dewey Hall and Jillmarie Murphy (Eds.), Gendered Ecologies: New Materialist Interpretations of Women Writers in the Long Nineteenth Century (pp. 25). Clemson, South Carolina: Clemson University Press & Oxford University Press.
  • Armbruster, E. (2019). "A Wilder Approach: Recovering Laura Ingalls Wilder in 2017". Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers, Volume 36(No. 1 (2019)), 132-135. https://legacywomenwriters.org/current-issue/upcoming-issue/
  • Armbruster, E. (2019). "Dwelling in American Realism". In Keith Newlin (Ed.), The Oxford Handbook of American Literary Realism (pp. 25). New York: Oxford UP.
  • Armbruster, E. (2019). "'More Than Grassy Hills': Land, Perspective, and Female Identity in Willa Cather and Laura Ingalls Wilder". In Anne Phillips and Miranda Green-Barteet (Eds.), Reconsidering Laura Ingalls Wilder: Little House and Beyond (June 2019 ed., pp. 20). Jackson, MS: University Press of Mississippi in conjunction with the Children's Literature Association.
  • Armbruster, E. (2017). "'Like Patterns Stenciled on a Wall': Edith Wharton's Decoration of Fictional Houses". In Myrto Drizou (Ed.), Edith Wharton: Critical Insights (pp. 81-95). Ipswich MA: Salem Press.
  • Armbruster, E. (2017). "A Biography of Edith Wharton". In Myrto Drizou (Ed.), Edith Wharton: Critical Insights (pp. xxix-xxxvi). Ipswich, MA: Salem Press.

Introductions to Trade Edition Classics

  • "Introduction," "Chronology," "Notes," and "Based on the Book," in Harriet Beecher Stowe, Uncle Tom's Cabin (1852). Reprint; New York: Barnes & Noble Publishing, 2012.
  • "Introduction," in Edith Wharton, Summer (1917). Reprint; New York: Barnes & Noble Publishing, 2006.

Book Reviews

  • Review of Henry Goings', Rambles of a Runaway from Southern Slavery, ed. Calvin Schermerhorn, Michael Plunkett, and Edward Gaynor. Nineteenth Century Studies (December 2013).
  • Review of MOM: The Transformation of Motherhood in Modern America, Rebecca Jo Plant, Journal of Popular Culture, (March 2011).

Work in Progress

  • Sisters by Design: The Intertwined Lives of Edith Wharton, Minnie Jones, and Beatrix Farrand.
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Courses Taught

  • ENG-217 American Literature I
  • ENG-358 Women Writing the American West
  • SF-H1180 Honor Rebel Girls and Nasty Women
  • ENG-158 Nasty Women in American Literature
  • ENG-387 Writing Women
  • ENG-H158 Honor Nasty Women in American Literature
  • ENG-135 World Literature in English
  • ENG-218 American Literature II
  • ENG-H555 Senior Honors Thesis
  • WRI-H103 Advanced First Year Writing