Bryan B Rasmussen

Bryan B Rasmussen, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of English and Department Chair
Humanities 211


Dr. Rasmussen (Ph.D., Indiana University, 2008) specializes in the literature and history of natural history. Ongoing research projects include examinations of nineteenth-century inquiry into the psychology of invertebrates and twentieth-century California scientific explorations of Baja. He is currently organizing a "re-expedition" of the San Pedro Martir mountains in northern Baja, with scientists and students from multiple fields and institutions, based on museum archives of expeditions in the 1920s and 1930s.

He is a former Charlotte W. Newcombe Fellow in Religion and Ethics (Woodrow Wilson Foundation) and has served as Managing Editor of the journal Victorian Studies. In addition to teaching literature and writing in the English Department, Dr. Rasmussen helps coordinate the SEEd Project (Sustainable Edible Education) on campus, a project in sustainability education, food ethics, and native habitat. SEEd maintains a demonstration garden and apiary. 

Dr. Rasmussen's teaching interests include science and literature, environmental literature, critical reading and writing, and research methodologies. He strives to bring interdisciplinary perspectives to bear on the study of literature and writing. He and colleagues in the sciences have team-taught courses for the Honors Program on the history, philosophy, and practice of natural history.

Recent Courses taught:

Honors 130: Natural Sciences Seminar

English 301: Academic Research & Writing

English 216: Environmental Literature

English 217: Science and Literature (on evolution and narrative)

English 456: Major British Authors: Darwin's Literary Legacy

English 111: Critical Reading & Writing. This first-year writing course, entitled "Walking, Mapping, Thinking," explores theories, arts, and cultures in the natural and built environments of Southern California.


Ph.D. Indiana University, Bloomington


Literature and environment; nineteenth-century British literary and cultural history; Charles Darwin; science and literature; history and philosophy of science


Article: "Pokémon Go, an Unnatural History: Reflections on race, privilege, and access to augmented nature." Boom: A Journal of California. Web. June 22, 2017. URL:

Article: "Invertebrate Psychology before and after Darwin." BRANCH: Britain, Representation and Nineteenth-Century History. Ed. Dino Franco Felluga. Extension of Romanticism and Victorianism on the Net. Web. 2017. URL:

Media: "Inside the Minds of Animals." TED-Ed. July 2015. URL:

Book Review: Darwin and Theories of Aesthetics and Cultural History. Ed. Barbara Larson and Sabine Flach. Surrey: Ashgate, 2013. Victorian Studies 57.3 (Spring 2015): 535-37.

Book Review: Anne Isba, The Excellent Mrs. Fry: Unlikely Heroine. Continuum, 2010.  Victorian Studies  54.1 (Autumn 2011): 153-55.

Article: "From God's Work to Fieldwork: Charlotte Tonna's Evangelical Autoethnography." ELH 77.1 (Spring 2010): 159-94. (Available here with CLU login through Project Muse:

Book Review: Anna Maria Jones, Problem Novels: Victorian Fiction Theorizes the Sensational Self. The Ohio State University Press, 2007. Romanticism and Victorianism on the Net 53 (Feb. 2009). URL:


Grant Funding

2013. Faculty Research & Creative Works Grant. $4000.

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