Dr. Donna Decker

Professor of English
Director Honors Program
Women in Leadership Program

Ph.D. Northeastern University
M.A. English Salem State College
B.A. English and Psychology, State University of New York at Albany

Donna Decker was selected as a Ms. Feminist Scholar in 2010 which gave her an opportunity to do public scholarship and social justice work at once. Ms, the foremost feminist magazine in North America, with 100,000 subscribers, hosts a unique, competitive initiative designed to engage feminist scholars in writing for both Ms. Magazine and blog. Decker was one of twenty-five to be selected from among 150 applicants to be a Ms. Magazine Feminist Scholar based on the quality of her writing sample and the compelling nature (and marketability) of her project about the 1989 Montreal Massacre of fourteen women engineering students by a 25-year-old man. The goal of the three-day Ms. Writing workshop she attended in Washington, DC in May 2010 was to teach scholars to “translate” their academic writing into writing for a broader audience, the readers of the magazine and blog. While such readers are, by and large, educated and sophisticated, they are not interested in reading academic/theoretical jargon, so Ms. Feminist Scholars spent time in DC altering their writing styles to reach a wider audience.

Courses Taught
Women’s Literature
Banned Books 
Introduction to American Literature
Introduction to Literary Studies
Somewhere Over the Rainbow: Queer Studies
American Short Story
Theories of Fiction
Introduction to Creative Nonfiction 
Fiction Workshop
Advanced Fiction Workshop
Introduction to Women’s Studies 
Women in Leadership Seminar
Ancient and Medieval Worlds
College Writing I and II
Law and Literature
World Literature
Intentional Venom: Making Meaning of School Shootings

Research Interests & Areas of Expertise
Montreal Massacre (December 6, 1989); gender and popular culture; women writers; 19th century new women fiction; feminism; contemporary literature and trends in contemporary literature; feminism; school shootings; gender and sexuality in literature; creative writing, including fiction, memoir, creative nonfiction, blogs, newspaper columns. 

Publications and Presentations

Any good books I should be reading?

"One Minute to Pitch a Dream." Berkshire Eagle. 31 March 2012

"Treasures Buried in the Nest." Berkshire Eagle. 23 January 2012

Ms. Magazine blogs:  http://msmagazine.com/blog/author/donnadecker/

- "A Literary Canon of Dudes" 27 March, 2013

- "Dear Judge Hurley: Date Night Won't Cure Spousal Abuse" 9 February 2012

- "A Rich Legacy: Adrienne's Words Call Us to Action" 16 April 2012

- “Bunion Blues” 4 January 2011

- “Haiti One Year Later: Edwidge Danticat Wants Us to Create Dangerously” 11 January 2011

- “Remembering the Montreal Massacre” 6 December 2010

- “What Are You Thinking, Oprah?” 20 September 2010

- “Women We’ll Be Reading 200 Years From Now” 1 September 2010

Decker, Donna. “It’s Always Hard Times for the Whistlblowers.” Northern New England Review. Spring 2010.

Review of Janet Beer's edited collection, The Cambridge Companion to Kate Chopin (2009). LEGACY: A Journal of American Women Writers. Volume 27, Number 1, 2010.

Decker, Donna. “Reading Books and Body: New Woman and Authority.” New Woman Writers, Authority and the Body. Edited by Melissa Purdue and Stacey Floyd. Newcastle upon Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2009.

“Shoes.” Fiddlestix Review. Literary Journal of Franklin Pierce University. Spring 2009.

Grants Received 
2012   FPU Research Grant to travel to Canada to research Montreal Massacre
2011   FPU Research Grant to travel to Canada to research Montreal Massacre
2010   FPU Research Grant to travel in Toronto and research for novel on the Montreal Massacre
2009   Whiting Grant to travel in Montreal and research the Montreal Massacre.
2009   FPU Research Grant to travel in Montreal and research the Montreal Massacre.
Teaching Interests: Women Writers, Gender and Sexuality in Literature, Creative Writing, trends in contemporary literature

Donna Decker