• Affiliated Faculty

    Heather BrownHeather Brown is an assistant professor of English with a specialization in Rhetoric and Composition Studies. She received her PhD in English from the University of Maryland, College Park in 2010. Her current book project investigates the rhetoric of contemporary anti-abortion movement discourse with a focus on arguments regarding women’s mental health. Dr. Brown teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on the rhetoric of social movements, women and literature, and feminist theory and criticism.


    Chad Dell is associate professor in the Department of Communication. He teaches courses in television and screen studies at the undergraduate and graduate levels, including classes in television production and analysis, film history, and media policy.

    Gender Studies students might be particularly interested in his TV Criticism class (CO 375), which introduces a number of schools of criticism useful in the analysis of television texts, including feminist, ideological, and cultural criticism.


    Dr. Heide EstesHeide Estes is an associate professor and Graduate Program Director in the Department of English. She received her BA from the University of Pennsylvania; and MA and Ph.D. from New York University. Dr. Estes' field of specialization is Old and Middle English language and literature.

    Her recently completed monograph investigates representations of Jews in Old English literary texts. Current projects include a book-length edition of the Old English Dialogues of Solomon and Saturn and an article on constructions of the East in Anglo-Saxon texts.


    Doris Hiatt was one of the co-founders and early coordinators of the Women’s Studies Program. She has been honored with the Distinguished Teaching Award and Kappa Delta Pi‘s Celebration of Teaching Award.

    She regularly teaches the Psychology of Women and Theories of Personality courses, and has also taught special topics courses on The Future of Mothering; Gender and Mental Health; and Psychology of Female Adolescence.

    Professor Hiatt’s current research focus is “Gender, Achievement and Compartmentalization of Self.”


    Andrea Hope  Andrea Hope is an Assistant Professor of Health Studies in the Marjorie K. Unterberg School of Nursing and Health Studies. She received her Ed.D in Health Education and Behavior Studies at Teachers College, Columbia University. Her dissertation focused on parent perceptions of childhood obesity. Prior to working in academia, she ran health and wellness programs for several companies including: Sony Music Entertainment, NBC, and The Army Materiel Command. She also participated in a large study with the Food Policy Institute on women and their food and health behaviors. She currently teaches undergraduate courses on Women’s Health and Lifelong Health and recently received the Grant-in Aid for Creativity at Monmouth University to promote awareness about body image dissatisfaction in a national awareness campaign called “Fat-Talk Free Week.”


    Laura Kelly  teaches nursing and health studies. She is currently working on two research projects. The first one is a qualitative study in collaboration with Dr. Carol Cleaveland that investigates the economic, symbolic, and social capital of Mexican day laborers living in Freehold. The second study also is a qualitative study utilizing feminist standpoint theory as a theoretical framework in investigating the relationship negotiation and sexual intimacy in partnered lesbians during the menopausal transition. According to Professor Kelly, "This study was 'born' from the work of my doctoral dissertation that examined body image perceptions in lesbians over 30."


    Nancy MezeyNancy J. Mezey associate professor of Sociology in the Department of Political Science and Sociology. She graduated from Michigan State University with a Ph.D. in Sociology. Her areas of specialization are family sociology, race-class-gender studies, gender studies, and the sociology of sexualities. At Monmouth University, Dr. Mezey is the coordinator of the Sociology Program and curriculum coordinator of the Gender Studies Program. She also is advisor for the Sociology Club, co-advisor for All Lifestyles Included (ALI), and co-organizer of the Stand Up and Be Counted initiative.

    Outside of Monmouth University, Dr. Mezey serves as chair of the Family Division of the Society for the Study of Social Problems (SSSP), and is a representative to the United Nations’ ECOSOC for the Sociologists for Women in Society (SWS). Dr. Mezey also is a returned Peace Corps volunteer who served in Mali, West Africa, from 1988-1990. Her current research focuses on the creation of new family forms, the lesbian baby boom, and the viability and legitimacy of marriage as a social institution.


    William Mitchell is professor of Anthropology and author of Voices from the Global Margin (University of Texas Press, 2006) in which he examines gender relationships and other issues, including wife beating and the gendered aspects of the Shining Path war, a war that devastated Peru from 1980 to 1992.

    As Professor Mitchell explains: "Gendered behavior always takes place in social contexts that modify its expression. In Andean Peru, for example, men are considered dominant, but a peasant man is clearly subordinate to an upper class woman, and he will remove his hat and speak deferentially to her. Although peasant women earn and control their own income and can even deny food to their husbands, they are still in a precarious position vis-à-vis both peasant and upper class men. Many women, for example, believe that their husbands have the right to beat them. As women hunted for disappeared sons and husbands during the war, however, and created women’s clubs and communal kitchens to feed their families, they developed a sense of power that led them to question the authority of men."

    Professor Mitchell also discuss such issues of gender in his course AN/HS 367, Civilizations of the Andes, which covers Andean history from pre-Columbian times to the present, including the changed gender relationships imposed by the Spanish after the conquest of the Inca in the sixteenth century.


    Eleanor NovekEleanor Novek is an associate professor of Communication at Monmouth University. She graduated from the Annenberg School at the University of Pennsylvania, where she earned a PhD in Communication. In most of her classes, which include journalism, communication ethics, gender, race and media, and research methods, she infuses theories and exercises on the impact of gender in society. A former newspaper journalist, Novek conducts research on journalism by incarcerated women, prison masculinities, social justice and nonviolence. She is a co-editor of Working for Justice: The PCARE Anthology of Prison Education and Activism, a forthcoming collection of essays by scholars and advocates who are using the arts, education, and activism to reduce crime and enhance citizenship for the currently and formerly incarcerated. Dr. Novek is state coordinator for the Alternatives to Violence Project, a nonprofit organization that offers workshops on nonviolent conflict resolution in prisons, schools, community centers, and conflict zones in 32 of the United States and around the world. She is currently developing a Perspectives class with the working title of, “Waging Peace,” based on the ethical pursuit of nonviolence through human communication. It will involve the study and practice of historic and contemporary strategies of peaceful social action and conflict resolution as practiced by individuals, groups and political movements.


    Katherine ParkinKatherine Parkin is an associate professor of History who teaches courses in Women’s History, the History of Sexuality, and Family History. Her new book, Food is Love: Advertising and Gender Roles in Modern America, published by the University of Pennsylvania Press (2006), explores the history of food advertising. As Professor Parkin explains: "I discovered that by asserting shopping and cooking as expressions of love, advertisers helped to establish and reinforce the belief that kitchen work was women's work, even as women's participation in the labor force dramatically increased."

    Current research on a new project concerns the spurious freedom of women. Using cultural phenomena like Sadie Hawkins Day and Leap Year, Professor Parkin will analyze how American culture offered safety valves for women to reinforce their adherence to prescribed gender roles.


    Michael Phillips-AndersonMichael Phillips-Anderson is an assistant professor of Communication focusing on rhetoric and political communication. He holds degrees from George Mason University, St. John's College (Annapolis) and the University of Maryland. Dr. Phillips-Anderson teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in political communication, social movements, and persuasion. His courses often examine how gender functions as an aspect of, and a perspective on, our public discourse. He is currently working on a critical edition and commentary on Sojourner Truth's 1851 address to the Women's Rights Convention and an examination of the use of humor as a rhetorical strategy by political figures such as Barbara Jordan, Ann Richards, Bill Clinton, and Abraham Lincoln.


    Karen SchmelzkopfKaren Schmelzkopf is an associate professor of Geography in the History and Anthropology Department at Monmouth University. She graduated from Pennsylvania State University, where she earned a Ph.D. in Geography. Her dissertation was on patriarchal thinking and geographic epistemology. Before moving into academia, she was an associate TV producer for Alan Landsberg Productions and PM Magazine. She focused on stories about women and power in the entertainment industry and was an active member of Women in Film. She taught at University of California, Riverside before moving east to the position at Monmouth University.

    Dr. Schmelzkopf was director of the Women’s Studies Program (later the Gender Studies Program) for several years, and was also co-director with Katie Parkin. In the late 1990’s, she, Dr. Kristin Bluemel, and Dr. Rekha Datta organized a conference on Gender Issues in the 21st Century at MU. Schmelzkopf makes sure that all her classes have a focus on women, including women in the city, women and tourism, and women and power.

    Dr. Schmelzkopf’s research areas include social activism in community gardens, grassroots movements and the role of women’s organizations in the removal of the Naval Bombing site in Vieques, Puerto Rico, and she is currently researching the ways that race and gender are depicted in blogs.


    Deanna ShoemakerDeanna Shoemaker is an associate professor of Communication Studies with a specialization in Performance Studies in the Department of Communication at Monmouth University. She also serves as faculty advisor for CommWorks, a student group devoted to performance. She received her Ph.D. in Performance Studies with a Gender Studies portfolio from The University of Texas at Austin in 2004. Her dissertation examined “unruly femininities in women’s staged performances.” Her special interests include feminist performance and directing practices, performance art and social justice, resistant representations of gender, sexuality and race in popular culture, performance of multicultural literature, and performance ethnography as an embodied study of culture.

    Dr. Shoemaker is currently researching the new rise of women’s roller derby leagues around the country. She teaches performance-based courses, such as Performance and Social Activism, Performance Theory and Practice, Performance of Literature, Group Performance, and Voice and Diction, as well as core communication courses such as Public Speaking and Introduction to Communication. She has also taught Introduction to Gender Studies. Dr. Shoemaker is also a performer and theatre director who has worked professionally in Chicago and in Austin, Texas.


    Pasquale Simonelli Ph.D. Universita' “L’Orientale,” Napoli, Italy (Oriental Philosophies and Religions), Doctorate, Universita' “Federico II,” Napoli, Italy (Continental Philosophy). Philosopher.

    Based on the new viewpoints of family structures (Jacques Attali) and on the reality of many more than two genders (Sharyn Graham Davies), I am researching the perspectives that different world religions have on gender and their consequent social effects.


    Janice Stapley is an associate professor and Chair of the Department of Psychology. Her background is in Development and Social Psychology. Her areas of research interest include gender differences in emotion, particularly during adolescence and emerging adulthood, and the relationship between emotional functioning and overall psychosocial adjustment.

    Professor Stapley is currently working on several lines of research. One program of research is focused on emerging adults’ use of music to regulate their mood. Another program of research is based on an analysis of archival materials in our culture which subtly or not so subtly socialize males and females towards different types of emotional expression. She currently teaches a Lab course and a Thesis section on Gender Roles.

    In 2007-2008, Professor Stapley will be co-director of the Gender Studies program.


    Lisa M. Vetere is an Associate Professor of English who teaches courses in American literature, literary/cultural theory and criticism, and writing. She received her Ph.D. from Lehigh University in 2004, specializing in nineteenth-century American literature and culture. Her recent work examines the representation of the Salem witch trials in antebellum historiography and historical romances, tracing how both material historical forces and gender ideologies have shaped such narratives. She is also hard at work on a study of malevolent witchcraft in the television series, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, to be published later this year. With articles forthcoming in journals such as Clio: A Journal of LiteratureHistoryPhilosophy of History, and The Journal of Narrative Theory, Professor Vetere integrates such research into her teaching at all levels by offering courses on the gothic, vampires, witchcraft, and other magical narratives.


    Michele Van Volkom is a faculty member in the Department of Psychology. She regularly teaches courses in Introductory Psychology, Statistics, Research Methods, and Social Psychology. Her Ph.D. is in Social Psychology, and her dissertation focused on cigarette smoking among college students. She investigates gender differences in the rates of smoking as well as the different reasons why men and women smoke (e.g., many women use smoking as a weight control method).

    Dr. Van Volkom also studies the topic of tomboyism in childhood and its relationship to gender roles and self-esteem in adulthood. She has also studied the possible link between the presence of male siblings and tomboyish behaviors in children.


    Marina VujnovicMarina Vujnovic is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication. Primary fields of her research are participatory journalism and new media studies, media history and gender, critical political economy, and cultural studies. Her research interests focus on international communication and global flow of information, journalism studies; explorations of the historical, political-economic and cultural impact on media; gender, ethnicity, and media. She is an author ofForging the Bubikopf Nation: Journalism, Gender and Modernity in Interwar Yugoslavia, and co-author of Participatory Journalism: Guarding Open Gates at Online Newspapers.