Dr. John Su

John Su
Dr. John SuMarquette University

Marquette Hall, 221

MilwaukeeWI53201United States of America
(414) 288-3476

Vice Provost for Academic Affairs


While I teach a variety of courses in twentieth- and twenty-first-century literature, I have a particular interest in what is called postcolonial literature. Postcolonial literature refers to the literary texts produced by authors from former colonies of Great Britain as well as those produced by immigrant authors currently living in Britain itself.

Some of the most powerful fictional works written in English at the moment come from authors born in India, Sri Lanka, Nigeria, Jamaica, and elsewhere. These authors challenge us to view the world in unfamiliar ways, to perceive the political policies of Great Britain and the United States from the perspectives of those who are often victims and not beneficiaries.

By reading postcolonial literature, I believe we can increase our understanding of diverse cultures and experiences and to learn more about our own society and its struggles to become a truly multicultural nation.

Courses Taught

  • Post-Colonial Literature
  • Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Anglophone Literature
  • Graphic Narratives and Film

Research Interests

  • Postcolonial Literature


  • "Beauty and the Beastly Prime Minister." ELH. 81.3 (2014): 1083-1110.
  • "The Beloved Republic: Nostalgia and the Political Aesthetic of E. M. Forster."  Modernism and Nostalgia: Bodies, Locations, Aesthetics.  Edited by Tammy Clewell.  New York: Palgrave Macmillan (2013). 198-215.

  • Imagination and the Contemporary Novel (Cambridge University Press, 2011).
  • “Amitav Ghosh and the Aesthetic Turn in Postcolonial Studies.” Journal of Modern Literature 34.3 (2011): 65-86.
  • “Ghosts of Essentialism: Racial Memory as Epistemological Claim.” American Literature81.2 (2009): 361-86
  • Ethics and Nostalgia in the Contemporary Novel. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005.
  • “Fantasies of (Re)collection: Collecting and Imagination in A. S. Byatt’s Possession: A Romance.” Contemporary Literature 45.4 (2004): 684-712. Reprinted in Contemporary Literary Criticism. Vol. 223. Detroit: Thomson Gale, 2006. 139-51.
  • “Refiguring National Character: The Remains of the British Estate Novel.” Modern Fiction Studies 48.3 (2002): 552-80.
  • “Epic of Failure: Disappointment as Utopian Fantasy in Salman Rushdie’s
    Midnight’s Children.” Twentieth-Century Literature 47.4 (2001): 545-68.
  • “Haunted by Place: Moral Obligation and the Postmodern Novel.” Centennial Review42.3 (1998): 589-616.

Honors and Awards

  • Teaching Excellence Award, 2014
  • Faculty Excellence Award, National Residence Hall Honorary, Marquette University, 2006
  • Helen Way Klingler Junior Sabbatical Award, Marquette University, 2005
  • Summer Faculty Fellowship, Marquette University, 2004
  • Curriculum Enhancement Grant, Marquette University, 2002
  • Summer Faculty Fellowship, Marquette University, 2001
  • Editorial advisory board, Modern Fiction Studies
  • Executive committee, summer institute of the Future of Minority Studies National Research Project

Faculty & Staff Directory


Department of English
Marquette Hall, 115
1217 W. Wisconsin Ave.
Milwaukee, WI 53233
(414) 288-7179

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