Monmouth / Academics / Faculty Profile

Craig Watson

Academic Biography:
Saul Bellow once spoke of Chicago (and by implication American society) as frictionally disposed "between the thing of the book and the thing of the street." That feels right. A two-year Humanities pilot program at Carleton College pointed me to English and Religious Studies, my adopted major and minor respectively as an undergraduate, with a B.A.from Illinois, then an M.F.A in Creative Writing, and eventualy a doctorate from Ann Arbor. But construction labor, house painting, truck driving, an all-night factory shift, and almost five years commodities trading in Chicago have made as much sense.

And Monmouth College has always seemed to me a place roughly (rightly) ranged among those contesting and sometimes coordinate principalities: the thing of the book and the thing of the street: a historic liberal arts college with an ambitious and distinctive approach to Integrated Studies . . . a college whose largest majors are Business and Education and whose mission is to educate students who are often first-generation collegians from working class families.

Research Interests:


Literary Ambiguity and Ethics

Sustainable Agriculture and Organic Farming

Selected Research and/or Creative Work:
Empathy and Tragic Consciousness

Liberal Arts and Integrated Studies

E.P.A. Grant for a Monmouth College Educational Garden

Courses Taught:
English 347 African American Autobigraphy and Fiction
English 349 Hawthorne and Melville
English 225 American Literature Survey II
Honors I Trials, Wonders, Ideas
English 347 Modern American Drama
INTG 414 Land, Food and Sustainable Agriculture
English 347 Contemporary American Novel

Contact Info:
Office: Rm 211 Mellinger Learning Ctr
Email: craigw@monmouthcollege.edu