Jake McGinnis

Jake Mcginnis

Email:  jmcginn5@nd.edu

Areas of Interest
19th Century American, Ecocriticism, New Materialist philosophy

B.A. Writing, minors in English and environmental studies, Northland College
M.A. English, literature focus, University of Idaho

Jake McGinnis is a doctoral student in English at the University of Notre Dame and the managing editor of ISLE: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment.  He specializes in United States literature and environmental thought before 1865. 

McGinnis’s research is motivated by a deep belief in the continuing significance of historical literature to new and emerging forms of environmentalism. He is currently working on the creative, intellectual, and particularly the affective development of Thoreau’s ecological thinking after 1850, especially as it was influenced by his excursions to Maine, Cape Cod, and Canada and his reading in non-English histories of the North American continent. 


In addition to his scholarly work, McGinnis is interested in creative nonfiction and the public environmental humanities. 


McGinnis was previously a lecturer in English at the University of Idaho, where he taught courses on writing, rhetoric, and professional communication.



“‘A smack of wildness’: Affect and Enchantment in Thoreau’s First Taste of the Maine Woods.”  Concord Saunterer, forthcoming.



Recent conference presentations:

“The Limits of Eco-materialism: Affect and Environment in Jonathan Edwards,” American Literature in the World, Yale University, 6 April 2018.


“‘That wholly visionary dreamland’: Thoreau’s Early Natural History Writing,” C19: Society for Nineteenth-Century Americanists, “Climate,” Albuquerque, 21-25 March 2018. 


“‘A Smack of Wildness’: Affect and Enchantment in Thoreau’s First Taste of the Maine Woods,” Thoreau Society Annual Gathering and Bicentennial Celebration of Thoreau’s Life, Works, and Legacy, Concord, 12-16 July 2017.


“Thoreau’s Affects: On Forest Succession, Wildness, and the Anthropocene,” Association for the Study of Literature and Environment Biennial Conference, “Rust/Resistance,” Wayne State University, 20-24 June 2017.