James F. Egan Professor of English

Professor Egan came to Brown in 1991 after receiving his PhD from the University of California, Santa Barbara. In 1999, he published, Authorizing Experience: Refigurations of the Body Politic in Seventeenth-Century New England Writing. In 2011, he published Oriental Shadows: The Presence of the East in Early American Literature.

Brown Affiliations

scholarly work

Oriental Shadows: The Presence of the East in Early American Literature (Columbus, OH: Ohio State UP, 2011 )

“The Emergence of a Southern Tradition,” in The Cambridge History of American Poetry,” ed. Alfred Bendixen and Stephen Burt (Cambridge:  Cambridge UP, forthcoming), 28 ms. pp.

“Creole Bradstreet:  Philip Sidney, Alexander the Great, and English Identities,” in Creole Subjects in the Colonial Americas: Empires, Texts, Identities, eds. Ralph Bauer  and José Antonio Mazzotti (Chapel Hill:  The Univ. of North Carolina Pr for the Omohundro Institute for the Study of Early American History and Culture, 2009), 219-240.

“The East in British-American Writing: English Identity, John Smith’s True Travels, and Severed Heads,” in Environment and Embodiment in Early Modern England, eds. Mary Floyd-Wilson and Garrett Sullivan (London:  Palgrave McMillan, 2007), 103-117.  

The "Long'd-for Aera" of An "Other Race": Climate, Identity, and James Grainger's The Sugar Cane," Early American Literature 38 (2003): 189-212.

"Turning Identity Upside Down: Benjamin Franklin's Antipodean Cosmopolitanism," in Messy Beginnings: Postcolonial Early American Studies, eds. Edward Watts and Malini Schueller, (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers UP, 2003), 203-222.

"'To Bring Mary-land into England': English Identities in Colonial American Writing," Finding Colonial America: Essays Honoring J.A. Leo Lemay, eds. Carla Mulford and David S. Shields (Newark: Univ. of Delaware Press, 2001), 125-136.

"The English Common Body as Commodity in Ebenezer Cooke'sThe Sot-Weed Factor," Criticism 41 (1999): 385-400.

Authorizing Experience: Refigurations of the Body Politic in Seventeenth-Century New England Writing (Princeton University Press, 1999)

"Analyzing the Apparatus: Teaching American Literature Anthologies as Texts," Early American Literature 32 (1997): 102-108.

"Hee that hath experience . . . to subject the Salvages": British Colonialism and the Construction of Modern Experiential Authority," Genre 28 (1995): 445-464.

research overview

Professor Egan has published Oriental Shadows: The Presence of the East in Early American Literature (2011) and Authorizing Experience: Refigurations of the Body Politic in Seventeenth-Century New England Writing (1999). His other publications include an essay exploring figures of the East in John Smith's travel narratives, as well as one examining the figure of Alexander the Great in Anne Bradstreet's poetry. In addition to these writings, Professor Egan has published on Ebenezer Cooke, 18th-century Transatlantic mercantile poetry, and Benjamin Franklin.

research statement

Professor Egan's work includes the following:
- 17th- and 18th-century British-American writing;
- the history of the book;
- the early modern Atlantic world;
- colonial British-American Orientalism; and
- early modern theories of identity.

funded research

N/A