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Matty Hemming


Fisher-Bennett Hall 319

I am a PhD candidate in the department of English at Penn. I am currently working on a dissertation which proposes that literary depictions of marginalized mothers offer understudied analytics to Anglo-US sexuality studies. The project considers how the authors Nella Larsen, Jean Rhys, Adrienne Rich, and Toni Morrison intervene in debates about about birth control, abortion, midwifery, obstetrics, and motherhood circulating during their moment of writing. By asserting the centrality of reproductive practices and politics to twentieth-century projects of racial, gender and sexual regulation and liberation, these authors, I suggest, demand from their critical (and especially queer theoretical) readers a renewed questioning of what we think of when we read the phrase “the history of sexuality.”


I hold graduate certificates from the Program in Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies and Penn's Center for Teaching and Learning. I was a coordinator for the Gender and Sexuality Studies reading group (2020-2021) as well as President of the Graduate English Association (2020-2021). For the AY 2022-23 I am the Graduate Associate for the Program in Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies. My writing has appeared or is forthcoming in the James Baldwin Review, QED: A Journal of Queer WorldmakingCriticism, and the Routledge Companion to Queer Literary Studies.


I received a BA in English Literature from Goldsmiths, University of London (2014) and an rMA in Cultural Analysis from the University of Amsterdam (2017). I grew up in Mousehole (pronounced mow-zoll), Cornwall.

Courses Taught

summer 2023

ENGL 0050.910 Sex and Power in the US  

fall 2022

ENGL 2303.401 Intro to Queer Studies  

spring 2022

fall 2021

GSWS 002.203 Gender and Society  
ENGL 002.204 Gender and Society  

fall 2019