Senior Associate Dean
As senior associate dean, James F. Knapp’s responsibilities extend from initial hiring to the retirement of senior faculty. Much of his work has involved the effort to support faculty development by making the administration of faculty procedures as fair and efficient as possible and making those procedures transparent to faculty. He has been particularly concerned to understand and recognize the different kinds of work faculty do, including grant-supported research in laboratories, the intensive teaching of lecturers devoted entirely to the classroom, and that of tenure-stream faculty whose responsibilities include both teaching and research.
Knapp came to the University of Pittsburgh as an assistant professor of English in 1966, after earning his BA from Drew University and PhD from the University of Connecticut. He teaches and writes on literary history, Irish literature, and British and American modernism. He is the author of books Literary Modernism and the Transformation of Work and Ezra Pound, as well as many articles on topics such as primitivism in modern art, the Irish Literary Revival, modern British and American poetry, futurism, and the culture of modernity. He is currently working on the Arts and Crafts Movements in the United States and Ireland.
Knapp was an early explorer of the potential for integrating digital media into classroom instruction at the University of Pittsburgh, an interest which led to his authoring the Norton Poetry Workshop, a multimedia CD-ROM introduction to poetry, published in conjunction with the Norton Anthology of Poetry in 1996. In 2005, he turned his attention to the Web, as editor of the Norton Poetry Workshop Online. He is a past chair of the Modern Language Association’s Committee on Information Technology.