Andrew Hageman

Andrew Hageman portrait
Associate Professor of English
Director of the Center for Ethics and Public Engagement

Office: Olin 214

Phone: 563-387-1071



Education: Ph.D., English, University of California, Davis; M.A., English, Western Washington University; B.A., English, St. Olaf College

Andy Hageman teaches courses for the English department, Environmental Studies program, and Paideia first-year experience and capstones on ethics. His regular course offerings include Film, Film in Focus–Science Fiction, American Literary Traditions, and Writing for Media.

During J-Term (2022) Andy offered a first-year seminar called “Weird Readings,” which explored the surreal aesthetics and political economic relevance of Franz Kafka, Johanna Sinisalo, and many more creative makers.

He’s also co-teaches a course called Re-Imagining Race through Speculative Fiction with his friend & colleague, Novian Whitsitt. Together, they’re exploring antiracism critique and creativity through horror, science fiction, and other genres.

Andy researches the intersections of ecology, technology, and ideology. He publishes scholarly projects on subjects that range from ecology and infrastructure in science fiction from the U.S. & China to Twin Peaks, recent interviews with Sofia Samatar and Berit Ellingsen, and the poetry of Gary Snyder.

Andy frequently contributes critical analyses and review essays of books and films at the culture blog Horror Obsessive.

As a teacher, researcher, academic advisor, and community member, Andy promotes the rigorous imagining of how and why an interdisciplinary liberal arts education prepares students for a future of life, work, and civic engagement. He collaborates with students to shape their core competencies in creative analysis and design, ethical judgment, and the power of narrative. To put it another way: Andy wants people to graduate from Luther bristling with capacities that a smartphone can’t simply do in like 0.07 seconds.

He lives in Decorah with his partner and two daughters.

ENG 352 American Literature to 1860

American writers since the very beginnings have inscribed the natural landscape and crossed frontiers of the human heart and soul. We will explore these frontiers and the authors who transcend boundaries into uncharted space in stories of Spanish conquistadors and Native Americans; the narratives of English colonists, African-American slaves, and explorers Lewis and Clark; nature essays of Emerson and Thoreau, illustrated by the Hudson Valley School; poetry by Bradstreet, Wheatley, Whitman, and Dickinson; fiction by Hawthorne, Melville, and Beecher Stowe.

ENG 353 American Lit 1860 To Present

An invitation to explore currents and crosscurrents, traditions and individual talents, movements and masterpieces from the Civil War era to the present. Works will be chosen from a variety of genres, and course units may emphasize particular regions, periods, or themes, such as Southern voices (Faulkner, Hurston, Welty), the era of World War I (Hemingway, Cummings, Dos Passos), and feminist fiction and poetry (Kingston, Walker, Sexton).

ENG 185 A Eco-Media

Since the Lumière brothers conducted one of the earliest public film screenings in 1895, people have recognized cinema as a powerful medium for documenting moving images and for telling stories. Recently, people have turned to film to inspire people to think and act ecologically. This course explores how various cinematic media shape the ways we understand and represent ecological issues and potentially sustainable futures. We will move through documentaries, fiction features, and digital transmedia texts as well as the Decorah Eagle Cam. Students will acquire the ability to analyze various approaches to narrating ecological issues through discussion and in writing. They will also produce their own eco-media projects to post on the Internet.

ENG 211 A Writing for Media

A comprehensive course in news writing, reporting, and writing for media. Focus on the issues and skills central to journalism, and professional writing for various media. Readings and examples from newspapers, on-line and print magazines, and electronic journalism.

ENG 247 A Literature and Ecology

What kinds of stories help us confront, ignore, deny, or re-imagine the ecological challenges we face? How do we use narratives and poetry to perceive and imagine ecosystems? And why do we think things like mountains, wind turbines, fjords, limestone, bonobos, the influenza virus, or snow-globes are beautiful or ugly, natural or unnatural? This course explores how literature and other cultural texts shape the ways we think about and act in the biophysical world and the systems that comprise it. Readings will vary by may come from traditions of nature writing; explorations of place, space, and time; connections between religion and ecology; relationships linking literature and science; and intersections of ecology and social issues like ability, class, gender, and race.

ENG 354 American Novel

A study of major American novelists from the mid-19th century to the present, such as Melville, Stowe, Twain, Cather, Faulkner, and Morrison. Some attention is given to theoretical approaches to American literature.

PAI 450 Archaeologies of the Future

We cannot change the past. We can try to live in the present. But it is only into the future that we can project our hopes for and fears of change. The future is a time and place that remains open. To be sure, the shape of things to come is influenced by the shapes of things that already exist, and yet, the future is not entirely predictable. This course explores a range of fictional and non-fictional imagined futures from various places and times with a particular focus on three main areas: Social Structures, Technology, and Environment. We will excavate past and contemporary visions of the future in order to learn how predictions, and the ethical positions from which they are built, are subject to the ideas of their times and places and to examine which factors influence the success or failure of these visions. The future, after all, is the site and the stakes of our ethical imagination and action in the present.

  • Ph.D., English, Designated Emphasis: Critical Theory, University of California, Davis, 2005-2011
    Dissertation: “The Hour of the Machine”
  • M.A., English, Western Washington University, 2003-2005
    Thesis: “Moving Mountains: Han Shan’s Poetic Body Crossing Oceans, Lands, and Time”
  • B.A., English, St. Olaf College, 1992-1996
    Phi Beta Kappa

I research techno-cultural history, intersections of ecology and literature, film, and other media, and speculative fiction. Most recently, I co-edited an issue of the journal Paradoxa with the theme “Global Weirding” that features some excellent scholarly essays and riveting interviews that paired China Miéville with Mark Bould and Jeff VanderMeer with Timothy Morton. Currently I’m working on a book that explores the roles of infrastructure in speculative fiction with a particular focus on how economic and ecological ideologies are made concrete and therefore visible in things like bridges, border walls, telecom networks, oil rigs, and roads.

I love to involve Luther students in my research when possible. This summer, Katie Patyk, an English and History double major, and I completed a student-faculty collaborative research project that involved combing a special collection archive of letters that Theodore Sturgeon exchanged with other writers like Ray Bradbury, Octavia Butler, and John Campbell.

In recent years, students have been my research assistants on projects concerning representations of science stations in fiction and in the non-fiction world, on science fiction writers’ responses to the launch of Sputnik, and on the allegorical function of pie and coffee in Twin Peaks.

I’m always on the lookout for students who are intellectually curious and diligent to join me in doing research.


  • “Imagining Belts, Roads, & Walls: Infrastructure in Contemporary Chinese SF.” Mechademia, Minneapolis College of Art and Design, 22-24 September.
  • “Pipelines & Rigs, Pylons & Wires: The Strange Infrastructures of China Miéville.” WorldCon, Helsinki, 8-13 August.
  • “Speculating on Futures for the Common Good in China: ‘Folding Beijing’.” The Association for Core Texts and Courses (ACTC), Dallas, 20-23 April.
  • “Roundtable: Global Weirding.” SLSA: Creativity. Atlanta, GA, 3-6 November.
  • “Posthuman Bodies & Intelligences in Science Fiction.” Lecture given to First-Year Experience Students & Faculty at Trinity University, San Antonio, TX, 15 September 2016.
  • “Global Weirding: A Humanities Publishing Case Study.” Faculty Research Symposium. Luther College, October 8, 2016.
  • “Space-Alien Spaces: The Weird Ecologies of Michel Faber’s Under the Skin and Jonathan Glazer’s Cinematic Adaptation.” Defying Genre: Michel Faber. Inverness College UHI, July 21-22, 2016.
  • “A Robot Runs Through It: Bringing Karel Čapek’s R.U.R. into a Core Texts Course.” The Association for Core Texts and Courses (ACTC), Atlanta, April 14-17, 2016.
  • Red MarsRed Plenty: Literary Dialectics of Scientific Community Life” SLSA: After Biopolitics, Rice University, November 12-15, 2015
  • “Lamas in Space, Letters from Sturgeon: Two Tales from the Archives” Luther College Faculty Research Symposium, September 19, 2015
  • “Science Fiction, Media Archaeology, Ecocinema Pedagogy” ASLE “Notes from Underground: The Depths of Environmental Arts, Culture and Justice” University of Idaho, June 23-27, 2015
  • “Signals of Nature, Prestidigital Ecology” Luther College Faculty Research Symposium, October 14, 2014
  • “A Robot Runs Through It: Žižek and Mechanical Ecocriticism” Žižek Studies Conference 2014, University of Cincinnati, April 4-6, 2014
  • “When Cogs Narrate Machines” Marxist Reading Group Annual Conference, University of Florida, March 27-30, 2014
  • “Other from an Other Other: Science and Fiction in Human-Alien Encounters.” (Co-presented with Dr. Eric Baack) Paideia Texts & Issues Lecture Series at Luther College. February 18, 2014
  • “Astronauts, Radio-Waves, & Crypts: The Media Ecologies of Tom McCarthy’s C and Craig Baldwin’s Spectres of the Spectrum” SLSA “PostNatural” Notre Dame University, Oct. 3-6, 2013
  • “Weather Machines Involved and Involving” ASLE “Changing Nature: Migrations, Energies, Limits,” University of Kansas, Lawrence, May 28-June 1, 2013
  • Co-Chair and Discussion Panelist: “Topographies of Professionalization: Nearing the Market(s)” and “Topographies of Professionalization: Early Career Planning” ASLE “Changing Nature: Migrations, Energies, Limits,” University of Kansas, Lawrence, May 28-June 1, 2013
  • “Ezekiel, William Blake, Klaatu: ‘Wheels within Wheels’ as an Eco-SF Trope” Eaton Science Fiction/SFRA Conferece “Science Fiction Media,” UC Riverside, April 11-14, 2013
  • “Cogs vs. the Circuits of Neoliberal Capitalism” Society for Literature, Science and the Arts: SLSA Annual Conference, Milwaukee, WI, September 27-30, 2012
  • “How Does a Cog See itself from Inside the Machine?” Žižek Studies Conference 2012, SUNY Brockport, April 28-29, 2012
  • “EcoMedia & iPadeology” Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS) Annual Conference, Boston, March 21-25, 2012
  • Chaired “Ecocinema II” Panel, Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS) Annual Conference, Boston, March 21-25, 2012
  • “Google Books and the Prospects of Distant Reading” The Past, Present, and Future of the Book: ACM Conference, Cornell College, February 3-4, 2012
  • Invited Keynote: “Suzhou River and the Aesthetics of Ecological Trauma on Film” Pain and Trauma in East Asian Cinema, UC San Diego. May 14, 2011
  • “Ecology, Economy, Geopolitics, and the Posthuman: The Windup Girl as Novel of Myths and Contradictions” Science Fiction Research Association Annual Conference, Phoenix, AZ. June 24-27, 2010
  • Co-chair with Michael Ziser of “Ecological Media” Pre-Conference Seminar. ASLE: Association for the Study of Literature and Environment Biennial Conference, University of Victoria, Victoria, B.C., Canada. June 3-6, 2009
  • Presented “’The ____in the____’: Mediated Meetings of Plants and Machines” ASLE: Association for the Study of Literature and Environment Biennial Conference, University of Victoria, Victoria, B.C., Canada. June 3-6, 2009
  • Chair of Panel “Ecocriticism and Cinema: Reading Ecology in Popular Film”
  • Presented “Projecting Systems of Ecology: An Ecocritical Reading of Cybernetics in Popular Cinema”ASLE Biennial Conference, Wofford College, Spartanburg, SC. June 12-16, 2007
  • “From Fenyang to The World: Ecocriticism and Jia Zhangke’s Socio-Cinematic Landscapes Spaces of Conflict, SFSU: San Francisco, CA. November 2-3, 2006
  • “Herzog and Treadwell Lost in the Grizzly Gaze: Grizzly Man and Eco-Cinema” Film & History League Annual Conference, Dallas, TX. November 8-12, 2006
  • “Floating Consciousness: Suzhou River Overflowing the Transnational Shores of Fiction Film Narration” ACSS Biennial Conference, Shanghai University, Shanghai, P.R. China. June 6-10, 2005
  • “Patterns in American Re-Productions of Chinese Eremitic Poetry: Mapping Translations of Han Shan” Production/Reproduction: an inquiry into post-national imaginaries, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. 2004