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Michele Lise Tarter



Michele Lise Tarter

Phone: (609) 771-3115


Office: Bliss Hall 222


Michele Lise Tarter received her B.A. from Roanoke College and her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Colorado/Boulder. She teaches courses on Early American Literature, The Witch in Literature, Literature of the Prison, and Women’s Autobiographies, Diaries, and Letters. She has established a memoir-writing program in New Jersey’s only maximum-security prison for women, working with TCNJ students in co-teaching an inmates’ 10-week writing workshop each spring semester. Dr. Tarter has also created two summer study-abroad courses in England:  in “Literary Landscapes,” students live in a castle, read British texts, and travel to numerous literary sites and bring the literature to life; in “The Magic of Archival Research,” students conduct archival research in Cornwall’s famous Museum of Witchcraft. She also enjoys taking students to Salem, Massachusetts during Maymester, when students meet historians, museum curators, and local witches, while immersing themselves in the literature and popular culture of “Salem 1692.”  Professor Tarter’s research interests include transatlantic Quaker women’s prophesying and writing, the body and cultural studies in early American literature, and women’s prison literature.

Selected Publications

  • Buried Lives: Incarcerated in Early America. Co-edited with Richard Bell. Athens: University of Georgia Press, 2012.
  • A Centre of Wonders: The Body in Early America. Co-edited with Janet Moore Lindman. Ithaca : Cornell UP, 2001.
  • “‘Varied Trials, Dippings, and Strippings’: Quaker Women’s Irresistible Call to the Early South.” Feminist Interventions in Early American Studies. Ed. Mary Carruth. University of Alabama Press, 2006. 80-93.
  • “Reading A Quakers’ Book!: Elizabeth Ashbridge’s Testimony of Quaker Literary Theory.” Quaker Studies, 9:2 (2005): 176-190.
  • “‘Go North!’ : The Journey towards First Generation Friends and their Prophecy of Celestial Flesh.” The Creation of Quaker Theory. Ed. B.P. Dandelion. London: Ashgate Press, 2004. 83-98.
  • “Bringing Forth Life from Body to Text: The Reclamation of Childbirth in Women’s Literature.” “This Giving Birth”: Pregnancy and Childbirth in American Women’s Writing. Eds. Julie Tharp and Susan MacCallum Whitcomb. Bowling Green State University Popular Press, 2000. 19-37.
  • “The Autobiography of Jane Fenn Hoskens, Travelling Friend.” Dictionary of Literary Biography: American Women Prose Writers to 1820.Eds. Carla Mulford with Angela Vietto and Amy Winans. Columbia, SC : Bruccoli Clark Layman, Inc., 1998. 187-194.
  • “Shakedown: Reflections on Teaching in a Maximum Security Women’s Prison.” The Best of Friends. Ed. Chuck Fager. Bellefonte, PA : Kimo Press, 1998. 154-161.
  • “Master-pieces and Mistress-pieces: Performative Expansion of the American Literary Canon.” The Canon in the Classroom. Ed. John Alberti. NY: Garland Publishing, 1995. 209-220.



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