Department of English, College of LAS, University of Illinois

Melissa Littlefield

Associate Professor of English

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Contact Information

  • Address: 102d English Building<br />608 South Wright St<br />Urbana, IL 61802
  • Telephone: 217-244-6926
  • Email:

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Ph.D. English and Women's Studies, Penn State University, 2005

Teaching Interests

literature and science, science fiction, body studies, feminist/science studies


Engl 120: Science Fiction, Engl 300: Writing about Literature (Margaret Atwood), Engl 475:Literature and the Forensic Sciences, Engl 582: Topics--Writing Bodies of Knowledge, Kines 249: Sport and Modern Society , Kines 442: Body, Culture, Society, Kines 594: Representing Bodies

Research Interests

literature and science, science & technology studies, critical neuroscience, forensic science, science fiction, disciplinarity

Selected Publications


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Book Contributions

  • Littlefield, Melissa M. "From Handwriting to 'Brain' Writing: Graphology and the Neuroscientific Turn." Writing Posthuman Writing. Anderson: Parlor Press, 2014.
  • Littlefield, Melissa M., and Michael Black. "Critical Reception: Reading Technology and Literature in the Twentieth Century." Critical Insights: Technology and Humanity. EBSCO , 2012.
  • Littlefield, Melissa M. "Matter for Thought: The Psychon in Neurology, Psychology and American Culture, 1927-1943." Neurology and Modernity. Ed. Laura Salisbury and Andrew Shail. New York: Palgrave, 2010. 267-286.
  • Squier, Susan M., and Melissa M. Littlefield. "Feminist Science Studies ." Routledge Companion to Literature and Science. New York/London: Routledge, 2010. 312-322.

Edited Books

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Journal Articles

  • Littlefield, Melissa M., Des Fitzgerald, Kasper Knudsen, James Tonks, and Martin Dietz. "Contextualizing Neuro-Collaborations:Reflections on a Transdisciplinary fMRI Lie Detection Experiment." Frontiers in Human Neuroscience (2014):
  • Fitzgerald, Des, Melissa M. Littlefield, Kasper Knudsen, James Tonks, and Martin Dietz. "Doing a transdisciplinary neuroscience: Ambivalence, equivocation, and the politics of experimental knowledge." Social Studies of Science (2014):
  • Littlefield, Melissa M. "Historicizing the CSI Effect(s): The Real and the Representational in American Scientific Detective Fiction and Print News Media, 1902-1935." Crime, Media, Culture 7.2 (2011): 133-148.
  • Johnson, Jenell, and Melissa M. Littlefield. "Lost and Found in Translation: Popular Neuroscience and the Emergent Neurodisciplines." Sociological Reflections on Neuroscience 13 (2011): 279-297.
  • Littlefield, Melissa M. "Response to Susan Scott Parrish." American Literary History 22.2 (2010):
  • Littlefield, Melissa M. "Constructing the Organ of Deceit: The Rhetoric of fMRI and Brain Fingerprinting in Post-9/11 America." Science, Technology &Human Values 34 (2009): 365-392.
  • Littlefield, Melissa M., and Susan M. Squier. "Introduction: Feminist Theory and/of Science." Feminist Theory 5.2 (2004): 123-126.

Encyclopedia Entries

  • Littlefield, Melissa M. "Technology and Representation." Science, Technology, and Society: An Encyclopedia. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.


  • Littlefield, Melissa M. Rev. of Book review: Haia Shpayer-Makov, The Ascent of the Detective: Police Sleuths in Victorian and Edwardian England Crime, Media, Culture 9.3 (2013): 324-326.
  • Littlefield, Melissa M., and Anne Pollock. "“Troubling with ‘The Ethics of the Thing’ in Culturing Life: How Cells Became Technologies and The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks’." Rev. of Hannah Landecker's Culturing Life: How Cells Became Technologies and Rebecca Skloot's The Immortal Life of Henrietta LacksSocial Studies of Science 41.4 (2011): 609-618.