Robin Brooks

  • Assistant Professor of Africana Studies


4158 Wesley W. Posvar Hall

Curriculum Vitae



  • BA, Florida State University
  • MA, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • PhD, University of Florida

Dr. Robin Brooks is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Africana Studies.  Her research and teaching interests include 20th and 21st century literature, particularly African-American, Caribbean, and American multiethnic literatures, as well as feminist theories and postcolonial studies.  Currently, she is working on her book manuscript tentatively entitled Class Interruptions: Inequality and Division in African Diasporic Women's Fiction, which examines how writers use literary portrayals of class to critique inequalities and divisions in the U.S. and Anglophone Caribbean.  She spent a fellowship year abroad in Jamaica performing research for the study.  Additionally, Dr. Brooks is a proud native of Miami, Florida.  After receiving the International Baccalaureate Diploma from North Miami Senior High School, she attended Florida State University on a Florida Bright Futures Scholarship where she graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa a year early.  Before joining the University of Pittsburgh, she was a Diversity Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of San Diego and a Provost's Postdoctoral Scholar at the University of South Florida.

Professional Affiliations/Activities

  • Modern Language Association (MLA)
  • College Language Association (CLA)
  • The Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States (MELUS)
  • Working Class Studies Association
  • National Council for Black Studies

Representative Publications

  • "Manifestations of Ogun Symbolism in Paule Marshall's Praisesong for the Widow." Journal of Africana Religions 2.2 (2014): 161-183.
  • "Uptown and Downtown: A Conversation on Class Stratification with Diana McCaulay." Jamaica Journal  35. 1-2 (2014): 94-99.
  • "New Dance Steps to a Jamaican Beat: A Conversation with Olive Senior." Caribbean Women: Riding the Waves of Resistance. Spec. issue of ProudFlesh: New Afrikan Journal of Culture, Politics & Consciousness 8 (2013):61-68.
  • Review of Liberating Language: Sites of Rhetorical Education in Nineteenth-Century Black America by Shirley Wilson Logan. JAC: A Journal of Composition Theory 31.1-2 (2011): 390-394.

Digital Humanities Publications

  • "Teaching Folk Culture: Images of the Nine Night Traditional Ritual in Zee Edgell's Beka Lamb and Michelle Cliff's Abeng." Digital Library of the Caribbean. October 2010. 
  • "Teaching Merle Hodge's Crick Crack, Monkey: A Lesson Plan." Digital Library of the Caribbean. October 2010. 

Recent Conference Presentations

  • March 2016 - "True Life Stories: (Un) Performing Destructive Family Legacies." The Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States (MELUS). Charleston, SC.
  • May 2015 - "Portrayals of Working Class Life in Toni Morrison's Literary Works." Fighting Inequality - Joint Conference of the Labor and Working-Class Studies Association.  Georgetown University, Washington, D.C. 
  • April 2015 - "Tavis Smiley, Iyania Vanzant: Slave Narrative Traditions and Contemporary Memoirs." College Language Association (CLA) Conference, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, TX.
  • November 2014 - "Globalization and Changing Class Positions in Contemporary Literature. "South Atlantic Modern Language Association (SAMLA) Conference. Atlanta, GA.
  • June 2014 - "Nature versus Nurture: Class Factors in Parenting Styles and Childhood Socialization." How Class Works Conference.  Working Class Studies Association, Stony Brook, NY.
  • November 2013 - "The Wrong and Right Sides of the Tracks: Mapping Intraracial Class Dynamics in African American Literature." South Atlantic Modern Language Association Conference, Atlanta, GA.
  • June 2012 - "Class and Literary Culture: Examining Working-Class Portrayals in Caribbean Literature." How Class Works Conference. Working Class Studies Association, Stony Brook, NY.
  • March 2012 - "Marxist Insights in Caribbean Literary Works." University of Florida Marxist Reading Group Conference, Gainesville, FL.
  • February 2012 - "Class Ideology in Merle Hodge's Crick Crack, Monkey." Florida Education Fund Mid-Year Research and Writing Conference.  Abstract published in conference proceedings, Tampa, FL.
  • April 2011 - "Vestiges of West African Cosmology:  The Ogun Trope in Paule Marshall's Praisesong for the Widow." The Society for the study of the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States (MELUS). Florida, Atlanta University, Boca Raton, FL.
  • February 2011 - "African American Intellectual Discourse: Examining Texts on the Outskirts of the Canon." University of Florida Graduate Student Council Interdisciplinary Conference.  Abstract published in conference proceedings, Gainesville, FL.
  • February 2010 - "Paule Marshall: African Traditions in Her Literary Work." UF Graduate Student Council Interdisciplinary Conference.  Abstract published in conference proceedings, Gainesville, FL.