Ren Heintz

Portrait Photo of Lauren Heintz
College of Arts and Letters
Department of English
Office Location: ET A616
Phone: 323-343-4171


Ren Heintz is an Assistant Professor in the English Department and is the Director of the Center for the Study of Genders and Sexualities at Cal State LA. Dr. Heintz received their Ph.D. in Literature from the University of California, San Diego (2015), and their MA in English from the University of Pennsylvania. Before joining the English Department, Dr. Heintz was a Visiting Assistant Professor at Pomona College and they held a two-year Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship at Tulane University. Dr. Heintz teaches and conducts research in multi-ethnic U.S. literature from the nineteenth-century to the present through the lens of queer, trans, gender, and critical race studies. They are currently working on a manuscript titled Racist Attachments: Queer Genealogies of Slavery and Settler Colonialism in Early America. Racist Attachments engages 19th-century sensational literature, visual satires, archival documents, legal records, science fiction, and contemporary African American art. Dr. Heintz's scholarship has appeared in American Quarterly, GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies, Studies in American Fiction, and Feminist Media Histories.

Dr. Heintz has taught courses such as “The American Gothic,” “Law and Literature,” “Passing Narratives,” and “LGBT Literature” amongst a range of other courses focusing on literary productions in the United States across race, class, gender, and sexual lines.


  • Manuscript in progress: Racist Attachments: Queer Genealogies of Slavery and Settler Colonialism in Early America
  • “Trans/itioning Queer Studies in Nineteenth-Century American Literature” in The New Nineteenth-Century American Literary Studies, eds. Russ Castronovo and Robert Levine (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2024). Forthcoming
  • “Queer Archival Auto-Ethnography in Ken Gonzales-Day’s Bone Grass BoyFeminist Media Histories 8.2 (2022).
  • "Fugitive Performance: Negotiating Biopower and the Law in US Chattel Slavery." American Quarterly 71.3 (2019).
  • “The Crisis of Kinship: Queer Affiliations in the Sexual Economy of Slavery,” GLQ: A Journal for Lesbian and Gay Studies, 23.2 (2017).
  • “ ‘[She] Passed Down Orleans Street, A Polished Dandy’: The Queer Race Romance of Ludwig von Reizenstein’s The Mysteries of New Orleans,” Studies in American Fiction, 43.1 (2016).
  • “Hoods Up, Hands Up: Against the White to Bear Arms,” The Feminist Wire (2014)


2022 Richard H. Brown/William Lloyd Barber Long-Term Fellow, Newberry Library, Chicago

2018-2019 Center for the Study of Genders and Sexualities, Faculty Fellow, CSULA

2015-2017 Andrew Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow, Tulane University, English Department

2014-2015 ACLS Mellon Dissertation Completion Fellowship

2014 Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Lapidus Fellowship for Research in Slavery and Print Culture