Research Interests20th-21st Century American Literature, Queer Theory, Literary Celebrity, Camp, Mass Media & Communication
Matthew Helm is a PhD candidate in English studying 20th-21st century American literature. His primary research interest is in LGBT+ literature, with an emphasis on the relationship between queer people and mass media, communication, and the culture of celebrity. In 2020, he participated in the Telepoetics Conference, where he presented on Christopher Isherwood and the telephone. He also has an essay forthcoming in Religion & Literature about the theology of Carson McCullers. Before coming to the University of Iowa, he earned a BA in English and Communications (Summa Cum Laude) from Luther College.
Matthew is as passionate about pedagogy as he is research. He currently teaches in General Education Literature, where he offers courses on genre/gender bending in the Gothic, the literary journey, and self-discovery. Previously, he taught the reading, writing, and speaking skill-building course Rhetoric, for which he won the Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award in 2018. He has also worked in the Writing Center as a tutor and commenting mentor.
In the summer of 2020, Matthew was selected for an internship with the Humanities for the Public Good Initiative through the Obermann Center for Advanced Studies, where he worked with Iowa Valley Resource Conservation & Development to produce a book about food history and culture along the Iowa Valley Scenic Byway.