Ashley Kniss Ph.D.

Coordinator First-Year Writing & Assistant Professor
English | School of Humanities and Social Sciences


  • Ph.D. The Catholic University of America, 2017
  • M.A. The Catholic University of America, 2010
  • B.A. Eastern Mennonite University, 2006

Professional Experience

  • Lecturer, Stevenson University, 2015-
  • Teaching Fellow, The Catholic University of America, 2011-2015
  • Adjunct Instructor, The United States Naval Academy, 2011-2015
  • Adjunct Instructor, Prince George’s Community College, 2013
  • Writing Center Tutor, The Catholic University of America, 2010-2012
  • Adjunct Instructor, Trinity University, 2011
  • Adjunct Instructor, The Catholic University of America Intensive English Program, 2009-2010


My primary area of interest is American literature of the nineteenth century. My dissertation, “The Last Things and the Gothic in Nineteenth-Century American Literature: Blended Frameworks in the Works of Poe, Hawthorne, and Dickinson,” explores how authors of the mid-nineteenth century appropriated Gothic conventions to articulate growing anxiety about theology regarding death, the Intermediate State, resurrection, the Second Coming, and Apocalypse. I argue that these representative authors contradict mainstream narratives in religious rhetoric of the period through their use of the Gothic mode. The larger implication of this study suggests a need to expand the definition of American Gothic to include the subject of Apocalypse as it applies to American history and national identity.


  • ENG151: Composition & Writing from Sources
  • ENG152: Writing About Literature
  • ENG281: American Horror Story
  • ENG381: American Monsters

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