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David LeBlanc

David LeBlanc

English Graduate Assistant

004 Burrowes Building
Mailroom: 430 Burrowes Building

State College , PA 16802

Office Hours:

  • Summer 2019:
  • Tuesday 11:00-12:30
  • Friday 11:00-12:30
  • or by appointment.


  1. B.A. Keene State College, 2008. English, Writing. Magna Cum Laude.
  2. M.F.A. University of Southern Maine, 2015. Creative Writing: Poetry.
  3. M.A. Pennsylvania State University, 2018. English.

Professional Bio


Theories of literary reception guide much of my current research as I investigate the histories and traditions of eighteenth and nineteenth century British poetics. I have written on the establishment of Beowulf as a proto-European “epic” by early nineteenth century scholars and the entangled network of indirect influence of Geoffrey Chaucer’s work among second generation Romantic authors and critics. Recently, I have explored British conceptions of Shakespeare's works as a distinctly printed corpus by examining a short 1830 publication titled “Byron and Shelley on the Character of Hamlet,” an account of a supposed conversation between the two young poets.

My long-term research goals are concerned with the poetry of the early Romantic Charlotte Turner Smith. Smith, better known for her novels, wrote a series of elegiac sonnets and two long poems, The Emigrants and Beachy Head. I am particularly interested in how the latter employs multiple genres—the pastoral, epic, chronicle, georgic, elegy, and others—and crafts a unique narrative space that scrutinizes and ultimately reconfigures Romantic perceptions of British identity and poetic convention.

Having earned my MFA in poetry from the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast program, I am deeply invested in New Formalist inquiries into the uses and effects of poetry’s formal qualities. Considerations of genre and prosody gird much of my research.


I enjoy teaching introductory rhetoric and composition courses that deal with the complex rhetorical situations one encounters when analyzing and producing purposeful language. I challenge my students to better understand the rhetorical landscapes they inhabit and find their own work and ideas often animates and informs my own. I encourage students to discover new and creative ways of using language effectively, and have taught several who have gone on to publish with Penn State’s university press.