Lisa Marcus

Professor of English

Lisa Marcus

Office Location: Hauge Administration Building - 227-E

Status:On Sabbatical

  • Professional
  • Biography

Additional Titles/Roles

  • Director of Holocaust and Genocide Studies Program


  • Ph.D., Rutgers University, 1995
  • M.A., Rutgers University, 1989
  • B.A., University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1986

Areas of Emphasis or Expertise

  • Sex, Gender, and the Holocaust
  • The Holocaust in the American Literary Imagination
  • Comparative Holocaust and Genocide Studies
  • Feminist, Queer, and Cultural Studies
  • Twentieth Century American Literary and Cultural Studies
  • Censorship and Banned Books


  • Fellow, 2021 Jack and Anita Hess Faculty Seminar on LGBTQ+ Histories of the Holocaust at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • Fellow for the 19th Annual Summer Institute on the Holocaust and Jewish Civilization, The Holocaust Educational Foundation of Northwestern University, 2014
  • NWSA Fellow, Civic Engagement in the Women’s and Gender Studies Classroom, 2010-11
  • Faculty Excellence Award for Teaching, 2009-10
  • Teaching Excellence Award, PLU Center for Teaching and Learning, 2001
  • Graves Award in the Humanities, 1998


Lisa Marcus joined the English department after completing a PhD in English at Rutgers University in 1995.  She has been active in campus-wide diversity education and advocacy; she chaired the Gender, Sexuality, and Race Studies program for many years, and is a founding member of PLU’s Holocaust and Genocide Studies Program.  She is deeply committed to first year education and regularly teaches a popular writing seminar on Banned Books for the First Year Experience Program.  Her constellation of courses in the English department include:  The Holocaust in the American Literary Imagination; American Literature 1914-45: Race, Sex, and War; Anne Frank as a Holocaust Icon; a senior seminar on History & Memory in US Slavery and Holocaust texts; an English Studies course on Gendered Literacy; Feminist Approaches to Literature; Women Writers and the Body Politic; and a first-year seminar on Holocaust Literature developed with Professor Rona Kaufman.  Lisa also regularly teaches courses in the Holocaust and Genocide Studies and Gender, Sexuality, and Race Studies Programs.

Her current research project is Snapshots of a Daughter:  A Feminist Genealogy, a critical exploration of letters between Marcus’s mother and the poet Adrienne Rich, 1979-82.

You can read a poem she published about visiting Auschwitz here.