I'm a scholar of American poetry, and my research focuses on the cultural histories of poetic forms and genres. I'm especially drawn to poems with political lives--poems of protest, war, nationhood, and public policy--and I try to understand how their rhymes and rhythms filter through our past and shape our future.
My current book project, Against Prose: The Fear of Decline in American Poetry Since Reconstruction, uncovers the sociopolitical history of the poetry-prose dichotomy to explain a century of anxiety over poetry’s flagging cultural status. I'm also at work on a second project exploring recent anti-racist poetic forms, tentatively entitled Radical Rule-Makers.
I am a Marion L. Brittain Postdoctoral Fellow in the School of Literature Media and Communication at Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, Georgia. I've also held the NEH Postdoctoral Fellowship at Emory University's Fox Center for Humanistic Research, and I've taught English at the University of Oregon in Eugene and Willamette University in Salem, Oregon.
Born in a small logging community in rural Oregon, I grew up in the Portland area, and I left to study English and Music at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California. I returned to Oregon, moving to Eugene to pursue a PhD in English at the University of Oregon, which I completed in 2017. These days, I'm lucky to call both Eugene and Atlanta my home. Follow me on Instagram (@lizzylerud) or contact me directly via e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.