Olabode Ibironke
Assistant Professor of English
(848) 932-6683


African-American & Diaspora, Postcolonial

Diasporic African literature, postcolonial book history, World Anglophone literature.

"I conceive the classroom as a social space instrumental to the development of vocational, institutional/corporate and, more important, intellectual objectives. I negotiate these objectives through improvisational, practical educational tactics and self-reflexive questioning. My goal is always to balance the competing functions of university education: first, to ensure that my class helps in preparing students to take their place in civil society and in a democracy, that they are empowered and equipped to participate in a global culture. Second, I am fully aware that students may come to my class with expectations dictated by their own professional and vocational needs. And third, I try to make central and enjoyable, the very processes of an intellectual discipline as if it were an end in itself. Our entire class activities are deployed in such a way as to embody these objectives, but also to open them up, always hoping for the possibility of their redefinition."

Office / Office Hours

Murray Hall, Room 033, College Ave Campus


Most recent:
"Du Bois, the African Union, and the Anthropological Discourse of Modernity" Social Identities. Pal Ahluwalia, and Toby Miller, eds.

In progress:
•    “Richard Wright, Maya Angelou, and Henry Louis Gates Jr. : The Ontology of Black Travel Literature”.
•    “Editing Chinua Achebe’s Arrow of God”.

Courses Taught

  • Seminar: Topics in Colonial and Postcolonial Literature
  • Introduction to World Literatures in English
  • Introduction to Black Literature

Awards and Affiliations

  • Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship 2009—2011, Department of English, Johns Hopkins University.
  • The Big Ten Universities Committee on Institutional Cooperation Postdoctoral Fellowship 2008-09, Department of English, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.
  • Dissertation completion fellowship 2008, College of Arts and Letters, Michigan State University.
  • The John A. Yunck Award for Excellence 2005-06, Department of English, Michigan State University.
  • Varg-Sullivan Award for Outstanding Achievement in Arts and Letters 2005-06, College of Arts and Letters, Michigan State University.
  • Mellon Predissertation Fellowship, Institute of Historical Research, The University of London 2004.
  • Special College Research Abroad Money, Michigan State University, 2004.
  • African Literature Association.    
  • African Studies Association. 
  • Modern Language Association.
  • International Association for Languages and Intercultural Communication


Ph.D, English, Michigan State University 
MA, Comparative literature, Michigan State University
BA, Literature in English, Obafemi Awolowo University Ile-Ife.