Loyola University Chicago

Department of English

Badia Ahad

Professor, Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs

  • Office Location: Burrowes Hall 203
  • Phone Number: 773.508.2792
  • E-mail: bahad@luc.edu


My research interests include contemporary African American literature, cultural studies and memory studies. I am particularly interested in questions concerning black interiority (feeling, emotion, affect).

My first book, Freud Upside Down: African American Literature and Psychoanalytic Culture (University of Illinois Press, 2010) examines the relationship between major 20th century African American writers and intellectuals and the psychoanalytic movement emerging in the United States over the course of the 20th century arguing that major black writers and scholars held more than merely a curious fascination with the growing “science,” but conceived it as a way to fundamentally shape and change race relations in the United States. My second book considers the ways 21st century African American writers and artists evoke the concept of nostalgia through the creation of romantic recollections of the black historical past. Currently, I am working on a third project about black temporality and the mundane. My research reflects my investment in broadening the scope of academic scholarship to consider affective sentiments that are generally overlooked with respect to the inner lives of black people.


  • BA, University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign
  • MA, University of Notre Dame
  • PhD, University of Notre Dame

Research Interests

  • Contemporary African American Literature
  • Cultural Studies
  • Psychoanalytic Studies
  • Memory Studies

Selected Publications


  • Feeling Good: Black Nostalgia and the Art of Memory (forthcoming from University of Illinois Press, New Black Studies Series).
  • Difficult Subjects: Strategies for Teaching Race, Sexuality, and Gender, edited collection with Oiyan Poon, Ph.D. (Stylus Press, May 2018).
  • Freud Upside Down: African American Literature and Psychoanalytic Culture (Urbana: U of Illinois P, 2010).


  • Post-Blackness and Culinary Nostalgia in Marcus Samuelsson’s Yes, ChefAmerican Studies v. 54:4 (Spring 2016).
  • Imagining Communities in Dave Chappelle’s Block Party, Journal of Popular Culture v. 48:6 (December 2015).
  • The New Normal: Black Psychic Subjectivity in Antwone FisherCR: The New Centennial Review v. 13.3 (Winter 2013).