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Erica Cavanagh is Associate Professor in the Department of English and Interdisciplinary Liberal Studies. She teaches courses in African American Literature, Food Studies, and Creative Nonfiction Writing. Her memoir-in-progress, set in Benin, West Africa, where she served for two years as a Peace Corps volunteer, explores the cultural pressures placed on females to cultivate silence and bear up under systems that oppress them, reflections of which she began to recognize as also operating in American culture, particularly when it comes to double standards, sexual shaming, and pressures to marry. Her current research examines the treatment of laborers in industrial farming and factories as well as cultivation practices on ecologically mindful, small-scale farms. For samples of her writing and photography, visit

For a complete account of Cavanagh’s teaching and a list of her creative writing, click here.

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