Kenton Butcher is an assistant professor of English at Bucknell University. He specializes in African American and South African literature and holds a Ph.D. in English and certificates in Africana studies and film studies from the University of Pennsylvania.
Kenton is currently revising his dissertation, "Ain't No Shame: Racial Passing in African American and South African Literature," which uses the literary theme of passing as a comparative analytic to explore the relationship between neoliberalism and racial ideology. In addition to his comparative project, Kenton studies Black Appalachian literature (specifically the work of the Affrilachian collective), and his work investigates the historical link between mainstream cultural representations of Appalachia and American racial formations. His work has appeared in LIT: Literature, Interpretation, Theory, Safundi: The Journal of South African and American Studies, and Contemporaries. He is currently revising an essay for a forthcoming collection from Ohio University Press.
- Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
- M.A., Kent State University
- B.A., Miami University
Teaching and Research Interests
- African American literature
- South African literature
- Life writing and autobiography
- Black Appalachian studies
"If These Hills Could Talk: African American Life Writing in Appalachian Ohio." Black Life in the Ohio Valley, edited by Nikki Taylor. Ohio University Press, 2024, forthcoming.
"Gaining Currency: Confession, Comedy, and the Economics of Ambiguity in Trevor Noah's Born a Crime." Safundi, vol. 22 no. 3 (2021): 225-244.
"From Superhero to Tragic Hero: Rethinking Genre and Character in Ryan Coogler's Black Panther." LIT: Literature Interpretation Theory, vol. 32 no. 4 (2021): 268-281.