Kelsey L. Bennett

Kelsey L. Bennett

Honors Program Director
Taylor Hall Honors Center 110A


Ph.D., University of Denver
B.A., Saint John's College, Santa Fe,


In my teaching and research, I am interested in the transatlantic intersections of art and ideas as they manifest themselves in literature. My book “Principle & Propensity” (2014) provides a critical reassessment of the bildungsroman, beginning with its largely overlooked theological premises: bildung as formation of the self in the image of God. Further, it examines the dynamic differences, tensions and possibilities that arise as interest in spiritual growth, or self-formation, collides with the democratic and quasi-democratic culture in the 19th-century British and American bildungsroman.

I have received a two-year Enduring Questions grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities that supports the development and teaching of a new undergraduate seminar, designed primarily for Honors students, to explore the purpose of art. My essays, articles and reviews appear in New England Review, The Hopkins Review, The New Criterion, Brontë Studies, The Colorado Review, Notes on Contemporary Literature, Gunnison Valley Journal and elsewhere. My ongoing work includes a novel project, regular contributions to Ploughshares literary blog, and research into the literary history of midwifery.

Selected Publications

Courses Taught

  • Word & Image: Writers on Art (Honors)
  • Shakespeare’s Outcasts and Dreamers
  • Tolstoy and the Ethics of Fiction
  • Literary Culture of the American West
  • Women and Literature
  • Introduction to Literature
  • Introduction to the Great Conversation (Honors)
  • The Gateway (Honors)
  • Honors Forum
  • Oxford Tutorial (Honors)

Teaching Experience

2016-present: Honors Program Director

2011-present: Lecturer in English, Western Colorado University

2003-2010: Adjunct Lecturer in English, University of Denver