Kimberly Sasser

Assistant Professor of English
On Faculty since 2013

Office: BLA 311
Phone: (630)752-5784
Fax: (630)752-5555


Ph.D., English Literature, University of Edinburgh, 2011

M.A., English, University of Texas at Arlington, 2006

B.A., English, Summa Cum Laude, Lamar University, 2003
Minor: Spanish

About Kimberly Sasser

In general, my work tends to focus on contemporary literary fiction written by/about people whose lives cross borders of nation-state, culture, language, race, and other ostensibly circumscribed categories. I have studied these topics through the angles of form (magical realism, the [neo]baroque, and other formal migrations); ethically-driven discourses (cosmopolitanism, postcolonial theory, and humanism); methodology (comparative and transnational); and thematics (belonging, solidarity, and self/other).

I am a sucker for a challenge. I feel most alive when I am engaged in an intellectual problem; when I am inhabiting my many family roles as mommy, wife, sister, and daughter; when I am pursuing/responding to God; and when I am pushing my body to the limits in a workout. On the other end of the spectrum, I relish respite from work. I’ll enjoy an ice cream or a latte anytime, anywhere.

Postdoctoral Work

The Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities Postdoctoral Fellowship

The University of Edinburgh, Spring and Summer 2013

The Institute for World Literature

Peking University in Beijing, China, Summer 2011 - Director David Damrosch


“Nigeria, The Long-Armed Woman: Gender as Diasporic Anxiety in Oyeyemi’s The Icarus Girl” The Annual Africa Conference, Austin, TX, April 2014

“Magical Realism, Corporeal Take-Overs, and Uncanny Subjectivity: Belonging in Oyeyemi’s The Icarus Girl” Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities, Edinburgh, UK, June 2013

“Cosmopolitanism and Literary Theory?: A Case for Interdisciplinarity” South Central Modern Language Association, San Antonio, TX, October 2012

“Fitzgerald and Carpentier: Embedding the Neobaroque in Double Time Helices” Southern Comparative Literature Association, Baton Rouge, LA, October 2010

“Rushdie’s Universalist Turn in The Enchantress of Florence” Postcolonial Translocations: GNEL/ASNEL, Münster, Germany, May 2009

The Jaguar Smile: Cosmopolitan Solidarity or Appropriation?” Art and Power: An Interdisciplinary Graduate Conference at The University of Leeds, Leeds, England, September 2008

“On the Verge of Transcendence: The Sublime in Okri’s The Famished Road” American Comparative Literature Association, Puebla, Mexico, April 2007

“Romanticism and Carpentier: The Marvelous Sublimity of Nature” South Central Modern Language Association, Dallas, TX, October 2006


Co-authored with Sarah Rogers, “Magical Realism in a Global Context,” Latin America and the World, eds. Antonia Garcia-Rodriguez and Dan Greenberg, M.E. Sharpe, forthcoming 2015.

“Proliferation: Oyeyemi’s The Icarus Girl and the Case for Magical Realisms,” Critical Insights: Magical Realism, ed. Ignacio López-Calvo, Salem P, forthcoming 2014.

Magical Realism and Cosmopolitanism: Cartographies of Belonging, Palgrave Macmillan, forthcoming 2014.

Book Review: Christopher Warnes’ Magical Realism and the Postcolonial Novel: Between Faith and Irreverence, Interventions 12.3 (2010): 484-86.

“The Magical Realist Case for ‘Benjamin Button,’” The F. Scott Fitzgerald Review 8.1 (2010):

“Solidarity through Difference: Rushdie’s Anti-Example in The Jaguar Smile,” Symbiosis: A Journal of Anglo-American Literary Relations 13.1 (2009): 61-80.

Selected Teaching

Assistant Professor (Spring 2013-)
Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois, courses taught include Magical Realism, West African Literature, Modern Global Literature, and Research and Composition

Volunteer Work

Life Church, college home group and children's church volunteer, 2013 - Present

The Oaks Christian Fellowship, Fall 2003 – Spring 2013 

Journeyman, Inc. (youth arts program), Fall 2005 – Spring 2013 

New Life Opportunities and Haven of Love (drug addiction and prostitution intervention programs), Fall 2010 – Fall 2011 

Edinburgh Christian Postgraduate Fellowship, Fall 2009 - Fall 2010

Media Center