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Stephen Bell

Professor of English

(434) 592-3714


  • Ph.D. in Literature and Criticism, Indiana University of Pennsylvania
  • M.A. in English, University of Virginia
  • B.A. in English, Wheaton College





Stephen Bell served as an officer in the Army for four years after college and taught literature at Azusa Pacific University for five years before coming to Liberty, where he splits his time between the College of General Studies and the Department of English.

His research and teaching interests include World Literature, Theory (particularly Postcolonial and Postmodern), Film Studies, and Classics of the Western canon.  His dissertation, “‘The Past is a Country from which we have all Emigrated’: Salman Rushdie’s Postcolonial and Postmodern Embrace of Memory,” a study of the ways that memory and identity intersect in the works of the contemporary novelist, won the 2014 Outstanding Graduate Student Research Award at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  His forthcoming book, Global Migrancy and Diasporic Memory in the work of Salman Rushdie, will be published by Lexington Books in August 2020

Courses Taught

  • ENGL 656: South Asian Diasporic Fiction
  • ENGL 462: Religious Issues in Dramatic Literature (Integrative)
  • ENGL 415: Advanced Studies in World Literature
  • ENGL 306: South Asian Writers (Diversity)
  • ENGL 303: English Romanticism
  • ENGL 302: Modern Literary History
  • ENGL 301: Ancient Literary History
  • ENGL 222: World Literature II
  • ENGL 221: World Literature I
  • ENGL 102: Composition and Literature
  • ENGL 100: Basic Composition

Selected Presentations

  • “To name the unnamable, to point at frauds, to take sides, start arguments, shape the world and stop it from going to sleep”: Vocation and Controversy in the Satanic Verses affair. Public Address for Banned Books Week at the Timbrook Library, Lynchburg, VA (September 2016).
  • “‘Making a Killing’: Arthur Miller’s critique of Franklinian business practice in All My Sons,” American Literature Association Symposium, San Antonio, TX (February 2015).
  • “A Christian Critique of Romanticism,” Faith Learning Integration Roundtable Discussion Series, Liberty University, Lynchburg, VA (April 2013).
  • “‘We may be through with the past, but the past ain’t through with us’: Salman Rushdie and the Moral Prerogative of Memory,” South Atlantic Modern Language Association Conference, Durham, NC (November 2012).
  • “‘Getting Out of the Garden’: A Pedagogical-Critical Approach to the stories of Jhumpa Lahiri,” Zeta Tau Literary Conference, Liberty University, Lynchburg, VA (March 2012).
  • “Fictions are Lies that Tell the Truth: Toward a Christian Practice of Story-telling,” Sigma Tau Delta Induction Ceremony Address, Lynchburg, VA (February 2012).
  • In the Bedroom: Ambivalent Visions of Family and Justice,” Southeast Conference on Christianity and Literature, Montreat College, Montreat, NC (April 2010).
  • “Resisting Ideological Control: Freedom and Feminism in Ibsen’s A Doll House,” Liberty University’s Public Lecture, Lynchburg, VA (March 2009).
  • “The Truth is God’s, it isn’t man’s…who can judge of it – who can say?: James and Moral Imperatives of Ambiguity,” Pennsylvania College Association Conference (PCEA), State College, PA (April 2008).
  • “The Communion of Saints: Community and Sanctified Memory in novel and recent film.” Southeast Conference on Christianity and Literature, Milligan College, Milligan, TN (March 2020).
  • “‘We changed course and lost our way to England’: Ambivalence and rhetorical de-stabilization in Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea.” South Atlantic Modern Language Association (SAMLA) Conference, Atlanta, GA (November 2019).
  • “‘All history was a palimpsest scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary’: Salman Rushdie and the Politics of the Palimpsest.” South Atlantic Modern Language Association (SAMLA) Conference, Birmingham, AL (November 2018).
  • “Of Feuding ‘Monsters’ and Dangerous Transgressive Women: ‘Beowulf’ and the Cultural Logic of Projection.” Virginia Social Science Association (VSSA) Conference, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA (April 2018).
  • “Rowdyism and Responsibility in an Age of Distortion,” English Graduate Organization Keynote address, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Indiana, PA (February 2018).

Institutional/Christian/Community Service

  • Graduate Faculty (Fall 2014-Present)
  • Syllabus Review Committee, College of General Studies (Fall 2011-Present)
  • Faculty Reader for Liberty University Quiz Bowl Team (Fall 2008-Spring 2009; Spring 2015-Present)
  • Elder, Redeemer Presbyterian Church, Lynchburg, VA (2015-Present)
  • Leader of mid-week small group Bible study (2014-Present)
  • Room Supervisor/proctor for MPRE, PRAXIS, LSAT exams, CASAS, Liberty University (2013-Present)
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