Prof. Boeschenstein

Nell Boeschenstein
Assistant Professor of Creative Writing
Interim Director, Creative Writing Program
B.A., Dartmouth College
M.F.A., Columbia University
[email protected]

Nell Boeschenstein’s work has appeared in The Guardian, Newsweek, The Morning News, The Rumpus, The MillionsGuernica, and elsewhere. She is a former staff member at Fresh Air with Terry Gross and BackStory with the American History Guys

Prof. CaldwellEric Caldwell
Assistant Professor of English
Director of the Blue Ridge Summer Institute for Young Artists (BLUR)
B.A., University of Iowa
M.A., University of Illinois, Chicago
Ph.D., University of Virginia
[email protected]

Professor Caldwell teaches Romantic and Victorian British literature, with a particular emphasis upon the lyric and the novel. His dissertation, The Poetics of Renaissance Subjectivity, explores the ways in which Renaissance writers conceive of subjectivity as a distinctly erotic and specular phenomenon. He is presently completing two articles — one that explores the erotic underpinnings of Richard III's rather disastrous tragedy, and another that examines Augustine's conception of scripture as a specular instrument that redeems the gazer by offering him two very different images: an image of who he is, and one of who he ought to be.

Prof. HillLindsay Stuart Hill
Assistant Professor of Creative Writing
B.A., Goucher College
M.F.A., University of Virginia
[email protected] 

Lindsay Stuart Hill’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in Ploughshares, The Southern Review, Five Points, Barrow Street, Salamander, and North American Review. Her chapbook, One Life, was published by Finishing Line Press. She was the recipient of the Academy of American Poets Prize at the University of Virginia.


Prof. Lilly / photo credit Meridith De Avila Khan / Sweet Briar CollegeTony Lilly
Associate Professor of English
Director, Honors Summer Research Program
A.A., B.A., Simon's Rock College
M.A., Ph.D., Tufts University 
[email protected]

Professor Lilly teaches 16th- and 17th-century British literature, including Shakespeare, as well as courses in poetry, sexual diversity in literature, and literary theory. His most recent article examines the rhetorical strategies of the 16th-century Protestant martyr Anne Askew. His current work examines the way psychoanalytical diagnostic categories help us understand different uses of language in early modern drama. Another research project, also based in contemporary psychoanalytic theory, investigates the role of imagination and affect in pedagogy. Prof. Lilly teaches in the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program and in the Gender Studies Program, is the Sweet Briar liaison to the Virginia Program at Oxford, and is the advisor for the student organization GLOW (Gay, Lesbian, or Whomever).

Prof. MaresCheryl Mares
Sara Shallenberger Brown Professor of English
Chair of the Department
B.A., University of Colorado at Boulder
M.A., Ph.D., Princeton University
[email protected]

Professor Mares teaches modern and contemporary fiction and poetry, including post-colonial literature. Her research interests involve connections between literature, history and politics in contemporary fiction and in works by modernist writers, especially Virginia Woolf and Marcel Proust, on whom she has published a number of articles. 

Jeff Martin

Jeff Martin
Assistant Professor of Creative Writing
B.A., Duke University
M.Ed., University of Virginia
M.F.A., University of North Carolina-Greensboro

Jeff Martin’s stories have appeared in Mississippi ReviewSou’westerstorySouth, and The Greensboro Review, among others, He splits his time between Sweet Briar and Charlottesville, where he is the Associate Director of the University of Virginia’s Young Writers Workshop. 

Prof. RobertsonMarcia Robertson
Associate Professor of English
B.A., Augustana College
M.A., Ph.D, Washington University
[email protected]

Professor Robertson teaches American literature, including African-American and Native American writers. She also teaches courses in autobiography, nature writing and, most recently, speculative fiction. Her research interests are in regional literature, especially the literature of the South. She writes extensively for Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries


Library Liaison to the English Department

Prof. LeonLiz Kent León
Research Services and Instruction Librarian
Head of Digital Initiatives and Outreach
B.A., East Carolina University
M.L.S., University of North Carolina at Greensboro
[email protected]

Prof. León is an electronic resources / reference librarian and archivist. Her areas of instruction are information and technological literacy. She also administers digital projects, grows Sweet Briar’s Wikipedia presence, and plans and manages library events. As the personal librarian for English and English/Creative Writing majors, she provides customized one-on-one information literacy sessions to declared majors, and to anyone working on research papers for English.