Emily Bernard is the Julian Lindsay Green & Gold Professor of English. She holds a B. A. and a Ph. D. in American Studies from Yale University. Bernard has received fellowships from the Alphonse A. Fletcher Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the MacDowell Colony, the Vermont Arts Council, and the W. E. B. DuBois Institute at Harvard University. She was the inaugural James Weldon Johnson Senior Research Fellow in African American Studies at Yale University. Her published works include: Remember Me to Harlem: The Letters of Langston Hughes and Carl Van Vechten, which was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year; Some of My Best Friends: Writers on Interracial Friendship, which was chosen by the New York Public Library as a Book for the Teen Age; and Michelle Obama: The First Lady in Photographs, which received a 2010 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work. Carl Van Vechten and the Harlem Renaissance: A Portrait in Black and White, was published by Yale University Press in 2012. Bernard’s essays have been reprinted in Best American Essays, Best African American Essays and Best of Creative Nonfiction. Her most recent book, Black is the Body: Stories from My Grandmother’s Time, My Mother’s Time, and Mine, was published by Alfred A. Knopf in the spring of 2019. Black is the Body won the Christopher Isherwood Prize for autobiographical prose in the Los Angeles Times 2020 Book Prizes competition. A native of Nashville, Tennessee, Emily Bernard has been a faculty member at UVM since 2001.
Julian Lindsay Green & Gold Professor, Carnegie Fellow
|Black is the Body, Knopf, 2019.|
|Introduction to Passing by Nella Larsen. Penguin Classics: New York, 2018.|
|Carl Van Vechten and the Harlem Renaissance: A Portrait in Black and White. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2012.|
|Michelle Obama: The First Lady in Photographs (with Deborah Willis). New York:W. W. Norton, 2009.|
|Some of My Best Friends: Writings on Interracial Friendship. (Editor) New York:Amistad/HarperCollins, August 2004.|
|Remember Me to Harlem: The Letters of Langston Hughes and Carl Van Vechten (1925-1964). (Editor) New York: Knopf, Inc., 2001.|
Awards and Recognition
Recipient, Julian Lindsay Green and Gold Professorship in English, January 2018.
Nominee, National Magazine Award for “Interstates,” November 2017.
Fellow, MacDowell Colony, June 2015.
Notable Essay, Best American Essays 2015, for “Black is the Body.”
Notable Essay, Best American Essays 2014, for “Mother on Earth.”
2014-2015 Creation Grant, Vermont Arts Council.
Outstanding Service and Leadership Award, ALANA (Asian Latino African Native
American) Community of the University of Vermont, May 2014.
First Runner-Up, 2014 Neil Shepard Prize in Creative Nonfiction for “Mother on Earth,”
Green Mountains Review.
First Runner-Up for “Black is the Body,” Spring 2015 contest, Creative Nonfiction.
UVM Dean’s Lecture Award, 2013.
Notable Essay, Best American Essays 2012, for “The Refuge of the Classroom.”
Winner, 2010 NAACP Image Award for Michelle Obama: The First Lady in
Photographs (with Deborah Willis), New York: Norton, 2009
Alphonse Fletcher Sr. Fellow, 2009-2010
James Weldon Johnson Senior Research Fellow in African American Studies, Beinecke
Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Yale University, 2008-09
Best African American Essays (2009) for “Fired”
Best of Creative Non-Fiction (2008) for “Figurines”
Kroepsch-Maurice Excellence in Teaching Award, 2007
Outstanding Faculty Woman Award, 2007
Best American Essays 2006, for “Teaching the N Word”
Bernard, Vitae 2
Nominee, Pushcart Prize XXXI: Best of the Small Presses, for “Teaching the N Word”
Nominee, National Magazine Award for “Teaching the N Word”
Some of My Best Friends selected for Books for the Teen Age, The New York Public
Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow, 2005-2006
Award for Outstanding ALANA Faculty Member, 2005
Recognition as Outstanding Professor by the Interfraternity Council and the Panhellenic
Recognition by the Class of 2003 for Valuable Contributions to the Students of the
University of Vermont
W. E. B. Du Bois Non-Resident Fellow, Harvard University, 2000- present
W. E. B. Du Bois Resident Fellow, Harvard University, 1999-2000
National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, 1999-2000
Grants from Committee on Faculty Compensation and Development, Smith College, Fall 1997;
Spring 1998; Fall 1998; Spring 1999
Nominee, Prize Teaching Fellowship, 1995
Beinecke Summer Research Fellowship, 1994
Dorothy Danforth Compton Fellowship, 1990-1996
Ford Foundation Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, 1990-1993
Norman Holmes Pearson Prize for Best American Studies Senior Essay, 1989
Areas of Expertise and/or Research
African-American and 20th-Century American literature, critical theory, race and ethnicity in literature, Women's studies
- Ph.D. Yale University, 1998
- (802) 656-3423
436 Old Mill
- African-American Literature
- Race & Ethnicity in Literary Studies
- African-American Autobiography
- Race and Representation in American Culture
- African-American Women's Writing
- Harlem Renaissance
- Toni Morrison: Her Work and Vision