Graduate Research Assistant

Sidonia Serafini is a doctoral student and research assistant. Her research focuses on post-Reconstruction and early twentieth-century African American literature and print culture and multicultural American women’s writing.

Currently, Sidonia is collaborating with Prof. Barbara McCaskill to reconstruct and understand Rev. Peter Thomas Stanford’s (c. 1860-1909) life and writings. Her Master's thesis and ongoing research focuses on the Southern Workman (1872-1939) stories of the early African American writer and educator, Alice Dunbar-Nelson (1875-1935), with an emphasis on how these works articulate themes of exile and belonging as well as cultural citizenship and prefigure Dunbar-Nelson’s involvement in civil rights activism and education reform. Sidonia recently presented her analysis of Dunbar-Nelson’s “The Pearl in the Oyster” at the October ALA symposium of the Society of the Study of the American Short Story and Penn State’s Celebrating African American Literature and Language (CAALL) Conference on Race and Resistance. Sidonia is also working to recover the life and work of a once well-known African American figure, J. A. Arneaux (1855-unknown), a Shakespearean actor, the manager and founder of an all-black theatrical troupe, a social reformer, and a newspaper editor. In 2016, Sidonia received a Certificate of Merit from the Institute for African American Studies in recognition of her scholarship on nineteenth-century black print productions.

In addition to academic activities, Sidonia's university leadership has included service as an MA Graduate Representative in the Department of English and as a mentor with the Pathway to Graduate School Program hosted by the Office of Graduate Recruitment & Diversity Initiatives.


M.A. in English, University of Georgia, 2017

B.A. in English, Flagler College, 2014

Major professor(s):

My Research Areas and Approaches