Cristina Stanciu

Cristina Stanciu, Ph.D.


Director, Humanities Research Center (December 2020-present)

(804) 827-8425

Hibbs Hall, 900 Park Ave., Room 414


  • Ph.D., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2011
  • M.A. in English, Emporia State University, 2002
  • M.A. in American Cultural Studies, "Al. I. Cuza" University, 1999
  • B.A. in English, "Al. I. Cuza" University, 1998

Research Interests

Cristina Stanciu is an immigrant scholar of Indigenous and Multiethnic Literatures of the United States. Her career so far has been driven by a desire to recover and recirculate Indigenous histories, understand multi-ethnic voices, texts, and archives across time and space, and to think deeply about institutions of knowledge production and dissemination (archives, print culture, spaces of education, and the academy, more broadly).

Her scholarly and teaching expertise is in Native American and Indigenous Studies (NAIS), Multiethnic Literatures of the U.S., Progressive Era literature and visual culture (especially silent film), and critical theory. Dr. Stanciu brings her areas of expertise together in four books (two monographs, one scholarly edition, and one edited collection), three edited journal special issues, over a dozen peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, and other contributions that illuminate the extensive histories of Indigenous and immigrant literatures, and provide new ways to read comparatively across several fields.

Dr. Stanciu also contributes to several fields through her national service—current editorial board member of PMLA and NAIS, and book review editor of MELUS, 2020-2023. Since December 2020, Dr. Stanciu has been the director of the Humanities Research Center which, under her leadership, became a university-wide center in July 2022. Dr. Stanciu serves on many departmental, college, and university committees at VCU, including the Research Strategic Priorities Advisory Council. In April 2023, the College of Humanities and Sciences awarded her the Distinguished Service Award.

Select Publications


  • The Makings and Unmakings of Americans: Indians and Immigrants in American Literature and Culture, 1879-1924. Yale University Press, January 2023. 380 pages. (Monograph, single author)
  • Laura Cornelius Kellogg: Our Democracy and the American Indian and Other Writings. (scholarly edition) Co-edited with Kristina Ackley. Syracuse University Press, 2015. Paperback, 2021. Reviewed in Choice, NAIS: Native American and Indigenous Studies, Native Scholar, Iroquoia, Transmotion, MELUS, Hungarian Journal of English and American Studies, and Legacy. 330 pages. 
  • Race in the Multiethnic Literature Classroom. (Edited Collection) Co-edited with Gary Totten. In press and forthcoming, Summer 2024, University of Illinois Press. Approx. 430 ms. pages. 
  • Indigenous Education and the Literature of the Boarding Schools in the U.S. and Canada. Under contract and in preparation, University of Nebraska Press, New Visions in Native American and Indigenous Studies Series. (monograph, single author)

Selected Single-Authored Published Essays (Peer-Reviewed)

  • "Making Americans: Spectacular Nationalism, Americanization, and Silent Film." JAS: Journal of American Studies 56. 1 (February 2022): 1-37. DOI: 
  • “’Americanism for Indians:’ Carlos Montezuma’s ‘Immigrant Problem:’ Wassaja, and the Limits of Native Activism.” Studies in American Indian Literatures 33. 1&2 (Spring-Summer 2021): 125-157.
  • “‘I Tell Heem It not Hees Beesness. I Tell Heem Nothing!’: Americanization, Immigrant Education, and Ethnic Identity at the Turn into the Twentieth Century.” The Italian American Review. 11.1 (2021): 27-50.
  • “Americanization and the Immigrant Novel, Redux: Abraham Cahan’s The Rise of David Levinsky.Linguaculture 12. 1 (June 2021): 13-33. Fulbright 2019-2020 Project.
  • “Native Acts, Immigrant Acts: Citizenship, Naturalization, and the Performance of Civic Identity during the Progressive Era.” JGAPE: Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, Cambridge UP. 20 (April 2021): 252-76. DOI:
  • “The Recovery of the People is Tied to the Recovery of Food”: Food Sovereignty and Winona LaDuke’s Last Standing Woman.“ East-West Cultural Passage 12.2 (December 2019): 121-139. 
  • “Americanization on Native Terms: The Society of American Indians, Citizenship Debates, and Tropes of ‘Racial Difference.’” NAIS: Native American and Indigenous Studies 6.1 (2019): 111-148. DOI: 10.5749/natiindistudj.6.1.0111  
  • “Marcus E. Ravage’s An American in the Making, Americanization, and New Immigrant Representation.” MELUS: Multi-Ethnic Literatures of the United States 40.2 (Summer 2015): 5-29.
  • “Strangers in America: Yiddish Poetry at the Turn of the Twentieth Century and the Demands of Americanization.” College English 76.1 (September 2013): 59-83. 
  • “An Indian Woman of Many Hats: Laura Cornelius Kellogg’s Embattled Search for an Indigenous Voice.” Special issue on the Society of American Indians, American Indian Quarterly 37:3/SAIL, Studies in American Indian Literatures 25:2 (Summer 2013): 87-115.
  • “‘That Is Why I Sent You to Carlisle’: Indian Poetry and the Demands of Americanization Poetics and Politics.” American Indian Quarterly 37.2 (Spring 2013): 34-76.

Guest Editor, Journal Special Issues (Peer-Reviewed)

  • “Indigenous Periodicals.” Special issue of American Periodicals, 33.2. Co-edited with Oliver Scheiding and Jill Doerfler. In press and forthcoming, October 2023. 
  • Representations of Indigeneity: History, Literature, and Anthropology.” Special issue of the journal ACTA IASSYENSIA COMPARATIONIS” 27.2 (Fall 2021). 
  • “Pedagogy in Anxious Times.” MELUS: Multi-Ethnic Literatures of the United States, 42.4 (Winter 2017). Co-edited with Anastasia Lin. 


  • Editorial Board Member, PMLA, 2022-2024
  • Editorial Board Member, NAIS, 2021-2025
  • Book Review Editor, MELUS: Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States, 2020–2023
  • Membership and Media Chair, MELUS (The Society for the Study of Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States), 2015–2021


  • ENGL 358: Native American and Indigenous Literatures (Undergraduate)
  • ENGL 381: Multiethnic Literatures of the United States (Undergraduate)
  • ENGL 311: Introduction to Literary and Cultural Theory (Undergraduate)
  • ENGL 661: Indigenous Literature and Visual Culture (Graduate) English
  • ENGL 624: Critical Race Theory (Graduate)

Representative External Fellowships

  • Fulbright Canada Research Chair in Justice and Reconciliation, Canada, 2023-2024
  • Obama Institute Fellowship, Johannes Gutenberg University, Germany, 2020
  • Fulbright Scholar Award, Romania, 2019-2020
  • The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Summer Award, 2017
  • The AAUW American Postdoctoral Research Leave Fellowship, 12 months, 2015–2016
  • The Reese Fellowship in American Bibliography and the History of the Book in the Americas, Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Yale University, 2014–2015
  • The Monticello College Foundation Fellowship, The Newberry Library, Chicago IL, 2013–2014
  • Pre-Doctoral Fellowship in American Indian Studies, Michigan State University, 2008–2009
  • Balch Institute for Ethnic Studies Fellowship, Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 2006–2007

International Collaborations

Erasmus+ Teaching Mobility, “Al. I. Cuza” University, Iasi, Romania, 2018.


September faculty and staff features 2015, VCU News, 9/1/2015.

Faculty and Staff Features for March 2017, VCU News, 3/31/2017.

English professor receives Fulbright award to teach, conduct research in Romania, VCU News, 3/7/2019.

'A painful chapter in our nations' history': New class to shed light on Indigenous boarding schools, VCU News, 8/3/21.

VCU professor Cristina Stanciu on her new book, 'The Makings and Unmakings of Americans', VCU News, 1/26/2023. 

King’s is pleased to welcome Dr. Cristina Stanciu as first Fulbright Canada Research Chair in Justice and Reconciliation for the 2024 Winter term, King's College at Western University, London, Ontario, 11/13/2023.