Dr. Bill R. Scalia

Lecturer in English

Academic Resource Specialist

bscalia [at] stmarys.edu
Office: 410/864-3603

Curriculum vitae

Dr. Bill Scalia has taught writing, rhetoric, and literature at St. Mary’s since 2007. He is the co-founder and co-administrator of St. Mary’s School of Theology Writing Center. Dr. Scalia also works with individual students to support writing, reading comprehension, and study skills. In addition, he facilitates ongoing student creative writing projects, including poetry workshops and readings, and he is the editor of Indwelling, St. Mary’s creative writing journal.

Dr. Scalia earned his Ph.D. in American Literature from Louisiana State University. While he writes widely on spirituality, literature, and film, his specific research interests include Herman Melville, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Walker Percy, poetry and poetics, and poetics of film.

Selected Courses Taught

  • Writing for Philosophy and Theology
  • Communication for Pastors/Classical Rhetoric
  • Catholic Intellectual Tradition in Literature and the Arts
  • Narratives of Conversion and Character
  • Independent Studies in Literature and Film

Selected Publications

Edited Volume

  • Contemporary Critical Views: Emerson (Facts on File / Chelsea House, 2007). Volume editor/introductions to individual selections

Chapters in Critical Anthologies

  • “Naught Beyond: A Phenomenology of Ahab’s ‘Madness Maddened,’” in Performativity and Evil in American Literature (Palgrave Macmillan; forthcoming, 2021)
  • “Bergman’s Trilogy of Faith and Persona: Faith and Visual Narrative,” in Faith and Spirituality in Masters of World Cinema (Cambridge Scholars Press, 2008)

Refereed Journal Articles

  • “The Icon Machine: Expenditure and Third Meaning in Camera Lucida,” Mosaic (forthcoming, Spring 2021)
  • “The Mysterious Stranger: A Religious Allegory for a Post-Christian Age,” Mark Twain Annual 14:1 (Fall 2016)
  • “Toward a Semiotics of Poetry and Film: Meaning-Making and Extra-Linguistic Signification,” Literature/Film Quarterly 40:1 (January 2012)
  • “Sampson Reed: A Swedenborgian at Harvard and Early Emerson Colleague,” Emerson Society Papers 18:1 (Spring 2007)
  • “Contrasting Visions of a Saint: Carl Dreyer’s The Passion of Joan of Arc and Luc Besson’s The Messenger,Literature/Film Quarterly 32:3 (July 2004)
  • “Re-Figuring Jesus: Christ and Christ-Figures in Jesus of Montréal,” Religion and Literature 33:1 (Spring 2001)

Recommended Reading

  • The Habit of Being: The Letters of Flannery O’Connor
  • Herman Melville, Moby-Dick
  • Dante Alighieri, Commedia
  • Virgil, Aeneid
  • Alfred Kazin, God and the American Writer

A Favorite Quotation

Faith makes us, and not we it; and faith makes its own forms. – Ralph Waldo Emerson