Department Staff and Faculty

Language and Literature


Josye Brookter

Assistant Professor of Language and Literature
(601) 318-6619

A William Carey University alumna, Brookter recently completed her dissertation on academic literacy and writing standards at the University of Southern Mississippi. In addition to composition theory and practice, her academic interests include African-American literature, race theory and writing standards, and writing assessment. Along with her graduate study, she earlier worked and taught at Southern Mississippi and Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, and her presentations include the Conference on College Composition and Communication. She is currently working on plans to develop a writing center at Carey, in the broad context of her interests in writing across the curriculum.

Allison Chestnut

Professor of Language and Literature
(601) 318-6135

Under the supervision of Lewis P. Simpson, Chestnut wrote a doctoral dissertation on Eudora Welty and Flannery O’Connor and the creation of the parable of the American South. Her scholarly interests include interdisciplinary studies in literature, religion and music, and she teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in comparative mythology, renaissance literature, drama, contemporary literature and creative writing. Her poetry and scholarly work has been published by and/or presented to the Conference on Christianity and Literature, the South Atlantic Modern Language Association, and the Mississippi Philological Association.

Rebecca Jordan

Professor of Language and Literature
(601) 318-6150

Dr. Jordan has served as department chair for twelve years during her career at Carey. She continues to teach a wide range of undergraduate and graduate courses from The Novel to Advanced Grammar and Linguistics to Theories and Methods of Teaching Literature; however, most of her research, conference presentations, and writing has been in the area of pedagogy, given her years of teaching experience in secondary education. She continues to coordinate the department’s successful work with NCATE accreditation, and she is currently planning a conference for high school teachers in 2013. Her research and writing in literature continues to be eclectic, ranging from Philip Larkin to John Keats and James Joyce.

Cheryl Maqueda

Assistant Professor of Spanish
(601) 318-6440

Maqueda’s undergraduate education at Mobile College included living in Seville, Spain, where she became fluent in Spanish. She continues to return to Seville in summer terms where she teaches and works in Carey’s Spanish exchange consortium with Texas Tech and other schools. She received her M.A.T.L. with a concentration in Spanish from the University of Southern Mississippi. At Carey, Ms. Maqueda teaches all levels of Spanish, including upper-level classes for Spanish minors. Her related activities include mission work in Mexico and Chile as well as translation for Forrest General Hospital, Hispanic residents, the Salvation Army, and the International Student Organization at Carey. She is an active presenter and officer at various foreign language teachers’ conferences, including the MFLA.

Marsha Newman

Associate Professor of English
(601) 318-6148

Marsha Newman holds a Ph.D. in Modern British Literature from U. C. Berkeley, and she taught for a number of years at St. Mary’s College in California where she directed an interdisciplinary program in Liberal and Civic Studies. Her research interests include British Romanticism, with a focus on the work of William Blake. Her recent research explores the response of Romantic poets to the science of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Newman teaches a broad range of courses including composition, World Literature, British Literature, Literary Theory and Criticism, and literature of the Romantic era.

Dolores O'Mary

Administrative Assistant in the Language and Literature Department on the Hattiesburg campus
(601) 318-6592

Thomas Richardson

Professor of Language and Literature and Chair, Department of Language and Literature
(601) 318-6593

Richardson’s academic interests include American literature, especially Mark Twain and his contemporaries, and southern literature and culture. He has written on Cable, Twain, Styron, Larry Brown, Tennessee Williams, William Alexander Percy, and Shirley Ann Grau, among others. His work in literary history includes articles on local color and humor for the History of Southern Literature, the Encyclopedia of Southern Culture, and the Companion to Southern Literature as well as a chapter on Mississippi writers for Mississippi: Portrait of An American State, a textbook for high school use. He has worked at Southern Mississippi, Alabama, Auburn and Vanderbilt, in addition to Carey, where he teaches a broad range of courses in writing and literature and has served as department chair since 2005.

Lorie Watkins

Associate Professor of Language and Literature
(601) 318-6430

Watkins is an Associate Professor of Language and Literature who teaches a variety of graduate and undergraduate classes. Her research interests include Southern literature, African American literature, literary tourism, and American modernism. She is the author of William Faulkner, Gavin Stevens, and the Cavalier Tradition (2011) and has published essays in The Faulkner Journal, The Hemingway Review, Southern Studies, African American Review, The Mississippi Quarterly, The Southern Literary Journal, and Modern Philology. She is currently at work on a history of Mississippi’s literature for the University Press of Mississippi’s Heritage Series and reads for a variety of journals and textbook companies.

Edison Williams

Instructor of Philosophy and Language and Literature
(601) 318-6445

Williams serves the university in both the Department of Language and Literature and the Department of Philosophy. His academic interests at LSU have focused on comparative literature, and he teaches courses at Carey in literary theory, world literature and the novel. His course in analysis of literature (320) is recommended for all students majoring in English and serves as an introduction to the major. He is writing a doctoral dissertation examining the cultural dialectic in the relationship of world literature to the shifting frame of hermeneutical perspective. Contexts for argument include the influence of Heidegger as well as post-colonial theory. He is the current sponsor for WCU’s chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the English honor society.


Mary Beth Breland

Assistant Professor of Language & Literature Tradition & Coordinator for Faculty Exchange/China
(228) 702-1869

Breland’s interests are primarily in composition theory and practice, young adult literature, history of the language, and contemporary literature. She coordinates programs for language and literature at the Tradition campus, along with her work in Hattiesburg. She taught for a number of years at Hannibal-LaGrange College in Missouri, where she also served as department chair. She also serves as coordinator of Carey’s exchange programs with the University of Linyi, China, where she has worked as a visiting scholar for spring-summer terms during the last three years. In addition, she serves as liaison for Linyi faculty and students who are in residence at Carey.