B.A., Williams College

M.A., (Cantab) Emmanuel College

Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University

Research Interests

Nineteenth-Century American Literature; Poetry and Poetics; History of the Book, Literature and New Media; Law and Literature

Biographical Notes

Meredith L. McGill is Associate Professor of English and Director of the Center for Cultural Analysis. She is the author of American Literature and the Culture of Reprinting, 1834-1853 (2003), a study of nineteenth-century American resistance to tightening control over intellectual property. This book charts the effect of a decentralized mass-market for print on the development of a national literature, with particular focus on the writing and careers of Charles Dickens, Edgar Allan Poe, and Nathaniel Hawthorne. She recently edited a collection of essays, The Traffic in Poems: Nineteenth-Century Poetry and Transatlantic Exchange, in which a variety of scholars seek to model ways of understanding nineteenth-century poetry within a transatlantic frame. She is currently working on a study of the circulation of poetry in the antebellum United States. Her research interests include the history of the book in American culture, American poetry and poetics, law and literature, literary theory, new media and the history of media shift.

Awards, Fellowships, and Grants

  • Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship, American Antiquarian Society, 2003-2004
  • NEH/Newberry Library Fellowship, 1995-1996
  • Kate B. and Hall J. Peterson Fellowship, American Antiquarian Society, 1995

Selected Publications


American Literature and the Culture of Reprinting, 1834-1853
University of Pennsylvania Press, 2003


 The Traffic in Poems: Nineteenth-Century Poetry and Transatlantic Exchange
Rutgers University Press, 2008


Other Selected Publications:

  • “Remediating Whitman” PMLA, 2007
  • “Common Places: Poetry, Illocality, and Temporal Dislocation in Thoreau’s A Week on the Concord and Merrimack RiversALH: American Literary History, March 2007
  • “Reading Poe, Reading Capitalism” American Quarterly 53.1, March 2001
  • “The Matter of the Text: Commerce, Print Culture, and the Authority of the State in American Copyright Law” ALH: American Literary History, 1997

Courses Offered


  • American Literature
  • Literary Properties
  • Literary Theory


  • Principles of Literary Study
  • American Literature
  • Literary Theory
  • Nineteenth-century Women's Writing

Professional Memberships and Affiliations

  • Board of Supervisors, The English Institute, 2008-2011
  • General Editor, ACLS e-book series, Selected Essays from the English Institute
  • Advisory Board, C19, 2008-Current