Jeffrey Melton

Associate Professor

  • Distinguished Teaching Fellow, 2016-2019

Faculty Hours

Spring 2019: 9:45 – 10:45 a.m. MWF; 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. M, and by appointment

Faculty Education

Clemson University (B.A.)

University of South Carolina (M.A., Ph.D.)

Faculty Research

19th- and 20th-century American literature; road culture and tourism theory; Mark Twain; American humor and satire


Faculty Teaching

Popular humor; satire; road and car cultures; tourism; and landscape imagination

Faculty Publications


Mark Twain, Travel Books, and Tourism: The Tide of a Great Popular Movement. Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 2002, rpt. 2009.

Edited Book:

Mark Twain on the Move: A Travel Reader. Co-edited with Alan Gribben. Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 2009.


“When the Candle Goes Out: The Complexity of Simple Jokes and the Limits of Satire.” Studies in American Humor 4.2 (2018): 152-59.

“Romancing the American Dream: The Coen Brothers’ Raising Arizona.” Studies in American Humor 3.1 (2017): 1-21.

“’Immediate Consciousness’ and the American Open Road: Robert Pirsig’s Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.” Studies in Travel Writing 17.4 (2013): 398-410.

“Mark Twain and the Middle Landscape in Paint and Print.” Mark Twain Journal 48.1-2 (2010 [2013]): 14-28.

“Keeping the Faith in Mark Twain’s The Innocents Abroad.” South Atlantic Review 64.2 (1999): 58-80.

“The Tourist as Art Critic: Mark Twain and the Old Masters.” Studies in American Culture 22.2 (1999): 61-69.

“The Trouble with Tourists: Authenticity and the Failure of Tourism.” Popular Culture Review 10.2 (1999): 9-19.

“Touring Decay: Nineteenth-Century American Travel Writers in Europe.” Papers on Language and Literature 35.2 (1999): 206-22.

Book Chapters:

“Travel Writing.” Mark Twain in Context. Edited by John Bird. New York: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming in 2019.

“Tourism and Landscape in The Awakening.” Critical Insights: The Awakening by Kate Chopin. Edited by Robert C. Evans. Ipswich, MA: Salem Press/Grey House Publishing, 2014. 162-75.

“The Subversion of Happy Endings in Terry Gilliam’s Brazil.” The Cinema of Terry Gilliam: It’s a Mad World . Edited by Jeff Birkenstein, Anna Froula, and Karen Randell. New York: Wallflower Press/Columbia UP, 2013. 66-78. –co-written with Eric Sterling.

“Seeing the River: Mark Twain’s Landscape Imagination.” Mark Twain’s Geographical Imagination. Ed. Joseph A. Alvarez. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2009. 101-15.

“Mark Twain and Travel Writing.” A Companion to Mark Twain. Ed. Louis Budd and Peter Messent. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2005. 338-53.