Dr. Leah Abuan Milne is Associate Professor of Multicultural American Literature at the University of Indianapolis (UIndy). Her work focuses on contemporary ethnic American literature, especially African American and Asian American literature. She also studies postcolonial theory and women’s & gender studies.
Her book, entitled Novel Subjects: Authorship as Radical Self-Care in Multiethnic American Narratives (University of Iowa Press), won the 2021 Midwest Modern Language Association Book Award. Novel Subjects examines self-care, ethnic identity, and acts of authorship in post-1989 multicultural American novels. The study shows how novelists such as Toni Morrison, Gina Apostol, Carmen Maria Machado, Percival Everett, and Ruth Ozeki mobilize self-conscious fiction (or metafiction) to underscore the limitations of existing multicultural frameworks. In doing so, they provide an alternative foundation for self-care. Using circular storytelling, writers as characters, revisions, and other self-referential techniques, these authors present a dynamic understanding of ethnicity that is simultaneously more global and intimate, encompassing intertwined histories and customs and drawing attention to ways of being that are often left out of the multicultural framework.
Courses she has taught include American Literature, multicultural literature, African American literature, postcolonial literature. Her teaching is interdisciplinary, and includes a course on intertextuality and identity in Beyonce’s Lemonade. Additionally, she and her colleagues enjoy geeking out about books, discuss issues of race and identity, or, when the opportunity allows, chat in more formal circumstances.
To see a video of her speaking with some awesome people at Purdue University about Black Panther, Afrofuturism, and more, click below or go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bnwJp2LOLNc
She received her doctorate in American literature from the University of North Carolina in Greensboro, NC.
Leah gave an interview about her book, now entitled Novel Subjects, on the Signal Boosting podcast mini-series from Ideas on Fire, the Association of Asian American Studies, and the Smithsonian Asian American Pacific Center. To hear the interview, click the image below or go to https://ideasonfire.net/podcast/36-leah-milne/