As befits our liberal arts setting, the Department of English at Defiance College is intimate and intensive, allowing for very close interaction between students and faculty. Students work closely with one another, with Dr. Todd Comer in literature and theory studies, with Dr. Mary Catherine Harper in writing and literature.

Mary Catherine (MC) Harper
Ph.D., Bowling Green State University


Mary Catherine Harper is a professor and the endowed McCann Chair in the Humanities at Defiance College in Ohio, where she teaches literature and creative writing and directs the Composition Program. She received her Ph.D. in literary theory and creative writing at Bowling Green State University and her undergraduate degree at Montana State University. Her creative projects include both poetry and website design, and she explores ways in which poetry intersects the visual arts and cultural representation.

She has worked in Cambodia on a language arts/ethnography project, is co-organizer of the retreat for artists and writers,SwampFire, and has had the poetic reader’s theater piece “A Quarrel of Voices” performed at the Interdisciplinary International Women’s Studies Conference. Her poetry has appeared in The Comstock Review, Cold Mountain Review, Pudding MagazineThe New England Review, and other literary magazines, and she was awarded the 2013 Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Prize.

92Harper cover front
Harper’s 2016 book of poetry

Professor Harper has also published articles on women’s science fiction in Science Fiction Studies, Extrapolation, FemSpec, and The New York Review of Science Fiction. She writes on a range of postmodern literary texts, including the article “Figuring the Midwestern Grotesque in Louise Erdrich’s Novels”, which appeared in a 2012 issue of Studies in American Indian Literatures. Her most recent publications are chapters on Neil Gaiman’s Sandman graphic novel in Critical Insights: The Graphic Novel, edited by Gary Hoppenstand, and Fabricating the Body: Effects of Obligation and Exchange in Contemporary Discourses, edited by Sarah Burcon.

She is the advisor for Progeny, the student-edited literary and photography magazine of Defiance College. Click here to view Progeny.

See more at her website. and a sample of her creative web work at the SwampFire Retreat site.

email: mcharper_at_defiance.edu

Todd A. Comer
Ph.D., Michigan State University

2018-02-22 07.13.30
Picture from a talk on Wall-E, February, 2018.

Prof Todd completed his MA and PhD in American literature and film at Michigan State University.


Todd has co-edited Terror and the Cinematic Sublime: Essays on Violence and the Unpresentable in Post-9/11 Film and Sexual Ideology in the Works of Alan Moore.

Todd’s most recent published work (2016) is a chapter on “The Hidden Architecture of Meaning in Chris Ware’s Building Stories” found in Disability in Comic Books and Graphic Narratives (Palgrave-Macmillan).  Todd has also published on Joel and Ethan Coen’s The Big Lebowski, Samuel R. Delany’s Dhalgren, Flann O’Brien’s At-Swim-Two-Birds, and Doctor Who.

Todd’s next book, a monograph under contract with Bloomsbury, will involve an ecological analysis of the films of Peter Weir. Additional information may be found on his website.

email: tcomer_at_defiance.edu

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