Etta MaddenAbout Etta Madden

Etta Madden is the author or editor of four books, which consider American women writers, Italy, and utopian literature and intentional communities: Engaging Italy: American Women’s Utopian Visions and Transnational Networks (SUNY Press), Eating in Eden: Food and American Utopias (U Nebraska Press), Selections from Eliza Leslie (U Nebraska Press), and Bodies of Life: Shaker Literature and Literacies (Greenwood).

The recipient of a Fulbright award, Etta has been a research fellow at the New York Public Library, an NEH Seminar participant at the American Academy in Rome, and a two-time recipient of a Mellon Fellowship from the Library Company of Philadelphia.

She teaches courses on American literature, women writers, and utopian visions as Clif & Gail Smart Professor of English at Missouri State University. On the faculty there since 1995, Etta has served in several capacities across campus.

Etta’s teaching, writing and speaking on these wide-ranging topics emerge from a longstanding interest in what it means to be an individual within communities—religious and spiritual communities, in particular; what it means to be a woman in a world where gender roles are in flux; and the roles of writing and reading for intellectual and emotional health.

While studying abroad as an undergraduate, Etta fell in love with Italy—the people, the culture, the language—and has returned as often as her career and family will allow.

Whether writing, teaching or speaking, Etta brings forward ideas from the past–still pressing today. She asks us to consider how people and communities of the past push us to consider contemporary concerns. Some of the topics of past and upcoming talks are listed on the Events page.

To learn more about Etta’s public talks and trips, sign up to follow her blog and newsletter, “All Things Italy.”

For more details about her work and how it may connect with your interests, contact Etta.