Val Rohy teaches and studies nineteenth- and twentieth-century American literature, queer theory, feminist theory, and psychoanalytic theory. She studied at Tufts University (Ph.D. 1997) and Rice University (B.A. 1988). Before arriving at UVM, she taught at Bowling Green State University in Ohio; she has been at UVM since 2002. She has published essays on James Weldon Johnson, Ernest Hemingway, María Cristina Mena, H.D., Edgar Allan Poe, James Baldwin, Alison Bechdel, Walt Whitman, and Pauline Hopkins. 



cover of Chances Are: Contingency, Queer Theory and American Literature by Val RohyChances Are: Contingency, Queer Theory and American LiteratureRoutledge, October 2019
Lost Causes: Narrative, Etiology, and Queer Theory (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015).
Anachronism and Its Others: Sexuality, Race, Temporality (Albany, NY: SUNY Press, 2009).
Impossible Women: Lesbian Figures and American Literature (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2000).
American Local Color Writing, 1880-1920, ed. with Elizabeth Ammons (New York: Penguin, 1998).

Selected Articles

"Freeman's Object Lessons," Legacy 37:1 (2020): 42-59.
"Absent-Minded Historicism"co-authored with Elizabeth Fenton, J19: The Journal of Nineteenth-Century Americanists 7:1 (2019).
“Queer (Narrative) Theory”The Cambridge Companion to Narrative Theory, ed. Matthew Garrett (New York, Cambridge University Press, 2018): 169-82.
"See It Now: Queer History and Archival Fantasy" Textual Practice 32:4 (2018)
"The Calculus of Probabilities: Contingency and The Mystery of Marie Rogêt"The Oxford Handbook of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. J. Gerald Kennedy and Scott Peeples (Oxford UP, 2018)
“The Cinema of the Impossible: Queer Theory and Narrative”The Edinburgh Companion to Narrative Theory, ed. Mark Currie, Zara Dinnen, and Robyn Warhol (Edinburgh University Press, 2018).


Awards and Recognition

2019 University Scholar Award, University of Vermont
2015 Tufts University Graduate Alumni Award: Outstanding Career Achievement
2012 Dean's Lecture Award, College of Arts and Sciences, University of Vermont
2012 Twentieth-Century Literature Andrew J. Kappel Prize for best essay of the year ("Hemingway, Literalism, and Transgender Reading")
2009 LGBTQA Faculty Leadership Award, University of Vermont
2006 Kroepsch-Maurice Excellence in Teaching Award, University of Vermont
2004 LGBTQA Faculty Leadership Award, University of Vermont
2003 Dean’s Fund for Faculty Development grant, University of Vermont
2003 Weinstock Service Award, University of Vermont
2003 Outstanding Program Advisor, Living/Learning Center, University of Vermont
2000 SCMLA Prize for best paper in Gender Studies ("The Long Arm and the Law")
1988-92 Graduate program fellowship, Tufts University

Areas of Expertise and/or Research

19th and 20th-century American literature, LGBT literature, critical theory, Feminist theory, Queer theory, psychoanalytic theory, and narrative.


  • Ph.D. Tufts University, 1997


Office Location:

433 Old Mill

Courses Taught


  • Nineteenth-Century American Fiction
  • Ameriican Literature Survey II
  • Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Stein
  • Literary Theory
  • Sexuality and Gender in Nineteenth-Century America
  • Feminist Theory
  • Sexual Dissidence and American Culture
  • Queer Literature and Criticism
  • Race and Sexuality in American Culture
  • A Queer Decade: Literature, Theory and Film since 2000
  • Women Writing Women


  • Introduction to Literary and Critical Theory
  • American Fiction’s Darker Past: Race and Sexuality
  • Queer Temporality and Literature
  • Queer American Literature