About Philip Nel

Philip Nel. Photo by Michael Henry, Aug. 2016

I teach, read, write, and blog.  Despite the fact that formal education held little interest prior to college, I somehow managed to become a Professor of English. (Since I teach in a university system with, at best, an ambiguous relationship to academic freedom, I think it legally prudent to avoid naming my employer here.)  I’ve written and edited several books.  I’ve even appeared on National Public Radio and CBS Sunday Morning.  Surprised?  Believe me, I’m far more surprised than you are.  And yet, implausible though this all seems, it’s also true.

If you’ve an abundance of time on your hands or suffer from insomnia, you are welcome to visit my meandering website.  You could also follow me (philnel) on Twitter.  Or not.  You might take a nap.  Naps are nice, too.

Photo of Philip Nel by Michael Henry, Aug. 2016

Nel, Was the Cat in the Hat Black? (tiny thumbnail cover) Crockett Johnson, Barnaby Vol. Three (1946-1947), ed. Philip Nel & Eric Reynolds (Fantagraphics, 2016) Crockett Johnson's Barnaby, Volume Two: 1944-1945, co-edited by Philip Nel and Eric Reynolds Crockett Johnson's Barnaby, Volume One: 1942-1943, co-edited with Eric Reynolds Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss: How an Unlikely Couple Found Love, Dodged the FBI, and Transformed Children's Literature Keywords for Children's Literature, co-edited with Lissa Paul (2011) Tales for Little Rebels, co-edited with Julia Mickenberg (2008)
The Annotated Cat: Under the Hats of Seuss and His Cats (2007)
Crockett Johnson's Magic Beach (2005)
Dr. Seuss: American Icon (2004)
The Avant-Garde and American Postmodernity: Small Incisive Shocks (2002)
J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter Novels: A Reader's Guide (2001)


Books coming soon:

  • Keywords for Children’s Literature, Second Edition, co-edited with Lissa Paul and Nina Christensen (New York UP, 2019).
  • Two more volumes of Crockett Johnson’s Barnaby (both co-edited with Eric Reynolds): Volume Four: 1948-1949 (Fantagraphics, 2018), and Volume Five: 1950-1952 (Fantagraphics, 2019).

Complete list of publications on my CV. Almost-complete list on my Academia.Edu page (bonus: some have links to pdfs).