Dissertation Advisor(s): Amy Kaplan
"The Human Animal: Tangles in Science and Literature , 1870-1920"
Visiting Assistant Professor in English, Skidmore College; Visiting Assistant Professor of English, University of Pennsylvania
Rachael Nichols received her PhD in English from the University of Pennsylvania, where she specialized in American literature of the turn of the century. She completed her dissertation, “The Human Animal: Tangles in Science and Literature, 1870-1920” under the direction of Amy Kaplan, Nancy Bentley and Max Cavitch. Her work explores how evolutionary theory’s contention that humans and animals share common descent inspired new ways of thinking about human identity at the turn of the century. Research and teaching interests include 19th- and early 20th-century literature, American studies, the history of science, science fiction broadly conceived, and Animal Studies. In 2009-2010, she was the Mellon Graduate Research Fellow at the Penn Humanities Forum. Nichols has a BA from Brown University, and an MPhil from the University of Waikato, New Zealand, where she studied as a Fulbright scholar.