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Ren Heintz

Portrait Photo of Lauren Heintz
College of Arts and Letters
Department of English
Office Location: ET A616
Phone: 323-343-4171


Ren Heintz is an Assistant Professor in the English Department and is the Director of the Center for the Study of Genders and Sexualities at CSULA. Dr. Heintz received their Ph.D. in Literature from the University of California, San Diego (2015), and their MA in English from the University of Pennsylvania. Before joining CSULA’s English Department as an Assistant Professor, Dr. Heintz was a Visiting Assistant Professor at Pomona College and they held a two-year Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship at Tulane University. Dr. Heintz teaches and conducts research in multi-ethnic U.S. literature from the nineteenth-century to the present through the lens of queer studies and gender studies. They are currently working on a manuscript titled Racist Attachments: Queer Genealogies of U.S. Slavery and Settler Colonialism. This book complicates dominant periodizations of the emergence of heterosexual and homosexual identities in the 19th-century by reassessing the genealogy of sexuality in light of the history of slavery and U.S. colonialism. Racist Attachments engages 19th-century sensational literature, visual satires, archival documents, legal records, science fiction, and contemporary African American art. Dr. Heintz's scholarship has appeared in American Quarterly,  GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies, Studies in American Fiction, and The Feminist Wire.

Dr. Heintz has taught courses such as “The American Gothic”, “19th-Century U.S. Women Writers”, “Law and Literature”, “Passing Narratives” and “LGBT Literature” amongst a range of other courses focusing on literary productions in the United States across race, class, gender, and sexual lines. For the 2018-2019 academic year, they will be teaching “Ethnic Literature in the U.S.”, “Readings in American Literature”, “The Body in Literature and Culture”, and “Crimes, Scenes, Interpretations: Literature and the Law”.



  • Manuscript in progress: Racist Crossings: Queer Genealogies of U.S. Slavery and Settler Colonialism
  • "Fugitive Performance: Negotiating Biopower and the Law in US Chattel Slavery." American Quarterly 71.3 (2019).
  • “The Crisis of Kinship: Queer Affiliations in the Sexual Economy of Slavery,” GLQ: A Journal for Lesbian and Gay Studies, 23.2 (2017).
  • “ ‘[She] Passed Down Orleans Street, A Polished Dandy’: The Queer Race Romance of Ludwig von Reizenstein’s The Mysteries of New Orleans,”Studies in American Fiction, 43.1 (2016).
  • “Hoods Up, Hands Up: Against the White to Bear Arms,” The Feminist Wire (2014)



2018-2019  Center for the Study of Genders and Sexualities, Faculty Fellow, CSULA

2015-2017  Andrew Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow, Tulane University, English Department

2014-2015  ACLS Mellon Dissertation Completion Fellowship

2014           Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Lapidus Fellowship for Research in Slavery and Print Culture