Beth McCoy

Distinguished Teaching Professor of English
Welles 232A

Beth McCoy received her Ph.D. from the University of Delaware and became a member of the SUNY Geneseo faculty in 1997. Her research centers on afro-futurism, black speculative fiction, and race and the book as an object. She also thoroughly enjoys the work of artist Steve Prince. She frequently teaches Literature, Racism, and Medicine, as well as courses centered around the works of Octavia Butler. McCoy received the Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2002. She has published numerous essays, with forthcoming essays to be published in the collections African American Expression in Print and Digital Culture, Reckonings: Essays on American Revenge Narratives, and Cultivating Landscapes of Democracy.

Dr. Beth McCoy is Distinguished Teaching Professor in the Department of English and teaches courses on the housing crisis, African American migration narrative, and W.E.B. DuBois, to name just a few.  She began her work by studying the literature of the Harlem/New Negro Renaissance and has since shifted to the intersections of literary/cultural studies with race and theory.  Currently completing an essay on the vévé of vodoun and the New Orleans' FEMA search and rescue signs, McCoy also continues work on a book on race and the paratext, a word describing marginal parts of books such as titles, footnotes, covers, and dedications.

Photo of Beth McCoy

Curriculum Vitae


  • B.A., M.A., Ph.D., University of Delaware


  • ENGL 111: Lit: Expulsion&Housing Crisis

    The course uses literature and other cultural productions from the United States to engage directly with diversity, pluralism, and power. Texts include a diverse range of authors and artists, and the focus is on the various ways that these texts enable students to think critically and self-reflectively about diversity and systems of power in the United States. Guided discussion of these texts will enable students to consider the reasoning and impact of their personal beliefs and actions with respect to issues of diversity and power in the United States, and it will offer them a model for how to participate effectively in pluralistic contexts where it is necessary to communicate and collaborate across difference.

  • WRTG 105: Wrtg:Risks, Rewards & Rent-pay

    Writing Seminar lays the foundation for students to participate insightfully in both written and oral academic conversations. The course focuses on three modes of written and oral communication: communication as an ongoing persuasive dialogue with multiple audiences, communication with a reflective self, and communication with a dynamic evolving text. The course also introduces elements of information literacy and critical thinking needed to develop and evaluate academic conversation. Writing Seminar is typically taken by new students in their first two semesters, often as the introduction to general education, to our library, and to academic support services as sites of collaboration rather than remediation. As many new students' only seminar-style class, Writing Seminar can help lay the foundations of not only academic but also social success.