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Lydia R . Cooper, MA, PhD


Lydia Cooper


College of Arts and Sciences
CRHL - Creighton Hall/Administration Building

Lydia R . Cooper, MA, PhD


Lydia R. Cooper is an associate professor of 20th and 21st century American literature. Her specializations include Native American literature, Western, and southwestern literature, and gender studies. Her most recent book is Masculinities in Literature of the American West, part of the Global Masculinities series by Palgrave Macmillan (2016). She has also written a book on Cormac McCarthy, No More Heroes: Narrative Perspective and Morality in the Novels, and her work on McCarthy and on other modern and contemporary American and Native American writers has appeared in numerous academic journals such as Studies in the Novel, Studies in American Indian Literature, and Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and the Environment. She teaches courses ranging from a first-year course, "The Literary Autobiography," which asks students to write about social justice issues they have contended with in their own lives, to upper-level courses in Native American literature, Cormac McCarthy, and others. She loves bloody, troubling, fascinating books and rousing discussions with her amazing students. 
A more complete listing of her research and teaching can be found on her Curriculum Vitae .

Teaching Interests

  • 20th and 21st-century American literature; Native American literature; Western literature; gender and queer theory

Research Focus

20th and 21st-century American literature; Native American literature; Western literature; gender and queer theory






  • Palgrave Macmillan
    Masculinities in Literature of the American West
    Global Masculinities series. , p. 197 pp. 2016
  • The Cambridge Companion to Cormac McCarthy
    “Cormac McCarthy, Tennessee, and the Southern Gothic.”, p. 41-53 2013
  • Tyrus Books
    My Second Death 2013
  • Louisiana State University Press
    No More Heroes: Narrative Perspective and Morality in Cormac McCarthy.
    Southern Literary Studies series. , p. 200 pp. 2011


  • “Straight Talk: Two-Spirit Erasure as the Price of Sovereignty in James Welch’s _The Heartsong of Charging Elk_.” 2016
  • “Straight Talk: Two-Spirit Erasure as the Price of Sovereignty in James Welch’s The Heartsong of Charging Elk.” Listening to Trauma: Second Washington Conference on Trauma. Washington, D.C. Oct. 21-23, 2016. 2016
  • “The Road and the Ango-Irish Gothic Tradition.” Crossroads and Transgressions: Cormac McCarthy Between Worlds. Annual International Cormac McCarthy Symposium. July 7-9, 2016. 2016
  • Keynote talk, “Outlaw Geography: Place and Masculinity in Ron Hansen’s Westerns.” You are Here: An Interdiscipinary Conference on Place, Space, and Embodiment. Creighton University. Omaha, NE. Undergraduate/Graduate conference put on by Creighton University MA in English program. 2016
  • “The Death of a Cross-Dressing Bear: Gender, Sex, and Violence on the Western Frontier in Blood Meridian.” Cormac McCarthy: Borders and Landscapes. University of Western Sydney. Sydney, Australia. July 23-25, 2014. Annual International Conference of the Cormac McCarthy Society. 2014
  • Faculty development participation as assistant director of the Honors Program at Creighton University. 9th Annual AJCU Honors Conference. Canisius College. Buffalo, NY. Feb. 14-15, 2014. Annual national conference of the AJCU Honors Programs. 2014
  • “Inside La Periquera: Prisons and Power in All the Pretty Horses.” Cormac McCarthy Society 20th Anniversary Conference. Berea, KY. Mar. 5-8, 2013. Annual national conference of the Cormac McCarthy Society. 2013
  • “The Un-Punishing of Anton Chigurh: Failures of Justice in McCarthy’s No Country for Old Men.” “Ernest Hemingway, Cormac McCarthy, and Their Traditions.” American Literature Association Symposium. New Orleans, LA. Oct. 4-6, 2012. Special meeting of the national American Literature Association. 2012
  • “Rethinking the National Catastrophe Narrative: Betrayal and Reconciliation in Alexie’s Flight.” Presentation at the Northeast Modern Language Association. Rochester, NY. March 15-18, 2012. Annual regional meeting of the Modern Language Association. 2012
  • “Sadistic Love: The Critique of Redemptive Violence in David Treuer’s The Hiawatha.” Presented at the College English Association Conference. San Antonio, TX. March 25-27, 2010. Annual national conference of the College English Association. 2010
  • “‘Woman Chasing Her God’: Ritual, Renewal, and Violence in Linda Hogan’s Power.” Presented at the Southern American Studies Association Conference. George Mason University. Feb. 12-15, 2009. Annual regional conference of the American Studies Association. 2009
  • ? “A Strange Beauty”: Heroism and Prophetic Narrative in Cormac McCarthy’s The Road.” Presented at “In Search of the Peaceable Kingdom: Studies in the Literature of Conflict, Struggle and Hope.” The South Central Conference on Christianity and Literature. LeTourneau University. Feb. 21-22, 2008. Annual regional conference of the Christianity and Literature association. 2008
  • “The Evolution of the Trickster and Native Identity in Louise Erdrich’s Novels.” Presented at “The 7th Native American Symposium,” Southeastern Oklahoma State University. Nov. 1-3, 2007. Annual symposium. 2007
  • “Revealing Souls: Ethical Philosophy in Ishiguro’s Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go.” Presented at “Ishiguro and the International Novel” at Liverpool Hope University, U.K. June 1-2, 2007. Special international symposium. 2007
  • “The Graduate Student Association at Baylor University.” Panel presentation at The National Association of Graduate-Professional Students. South-Central Regional Conference at Columbia, University of Missouri. March 2-4, 2007. Regional professional conference. 2007
  • “Blood Redemption: A Linguistic Analysis of Subjectivity in Cormac McCarthy’s All the Pretty Horses.” Presented at The Poetics and Linguistics Association Conference. New York University. July 25-28, 2004. Annual international conference. 2004
  • “Tricksters: Native Identity in Louise Erdrich’s Tracks.” Presented at the Conference of Community of College Teachers of English. University of Houston. March 6-8, 2004. Annual national conference. 2004


  • Charles G Cornelia Smith Award for Academic Excellence
  • Winner of the Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor Award
  • Who's Who Among Students in American Universities & Colleges


  • CCAS Summer Faculty Research Fellowship