Alyssa MacLean

Assistant Professor

University College 4429
519-661-2111 ext. 87416

Office Hours:


My scholarly work focuses on the literary relationship between Canada and the United States prior to the U.S. Civil War. My book project, entitled America’s Canada: Hemispheric Literary Relations and the Construction of U.S. Citizenship, 1830-1865, offers a reassessment of the American Renaissance by examining how U.S. authors developed ideas about U.S. citizenship, racial identity, and national belonging through their literary representations of Canada. My other research publications share a similar focus on Canada-U.S. interactions in both historical and contemporary contexts.

In addition to these projects, I am also the co-Principal Investigator (with Miranda Green-Barteet) of the Black Londoners Digital Archive, an open-access digital humanities project that provides a historical and literary examination of the lives of the Black inhabitants of London, Ontario in the nineteenth century. Drawing from oral accounts provided by sixteen Black Londoners in Benjamin Drew’s abolitionist collection The Refugee, the project recovers the histories of Black Londoners, collects pertinent archival materials on London’s Black history, digitizes these materials, and makes them accessible to the public. This project is funded by a Western Strategic Priorities Fund grant; I have also held a SSHRC Explore grant.

I teach in English, American Studies, and Writing Studies. My teaching interests focus broadly on North American literature and culture, political countercultures, transnational studies, and race and ethnic studies.