Wesleyan portrait of Rachel  Ellis Neyra

Rachel Ellis Neyra

Assistant Professor of English

Downey House, 294 High Street, 217

Assistant Professor, African American Studies


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BA Freed Hardeman College
PHD SUNY at Stony Brook

Rachel Ellis Neyra

Professor Ellis Neyra is a poetic theorist working in the fields of Latina/o/x, Black, and Caribbean Studies. Their writing and teaching in these fields prioritize: Poetics; the relationships between Poetry, Music, and Performance; Aesthetics; Contemporary Puerto Rican and Cuban Art; Third Cinema; Literary, Queer, Postcolonial, and Translation Theories. 

Ellis Neyra is currently completing Cry Bomba: Brown Poetic Listening, their first academic book manuscript. Cry Bomba probes the historical demand of poetics in the field of Latina/o/x Studies as a performative practice of listening closely for unruly sounds made by what we otherwise quarter off as the visual, textual, and narrative. Engaging Salsa and Indie music, live and multimedia performance, poetry, theater, legal transcripts, and short experimental films, the book’s audio-visual and multi-sensorial archive deliberately listens to sites of sonic nonsense, upheaval, hyper-participation, sex, refusal, and disobedience in Puerto Rican, Nuyorican, Chicana/o/x, and black aesthetics. The book imagines Latinx as a riotous movement.

Ellis Neyra writes academic, peer-reviewed essays, as well as art and performance reviews, and poetry. Read their writing in: Artforum; BOMB magazine; Terremoto: Contemporary Art in the Americas; Women & Performance: a journal of feminist theoryLa Gaceta de Cuba; Sargasso: A Journal of Caribbean Literature, Language and Culture; Obsidian: Literature and Arts in the African Diaspora; La Habana Elegante; Comparative Literature and Culture, and other venues. Ellis Neyra recently published a book of poetry, Meteor Shower/ Días Sin Shower (2017), and a co-edited, collaborative volume, Caribbean Cautionary Tales (2017), with La Impresora, San Juan, Puerto Rico. New work is forthcoming in the Journal of Popular Music StudiesASAP/Journal, and elsewhere.

Academic Affiliations

Office Hours


Office hours will resume in the fall semester 2018.


Fall 2018
ENGL 201R - 01
Ways of Reading: Sound Sense

ENGL 279 - 01
Intro to Latina/o/x Lit & Art

Spring 2019
ENGL 141F - 01
Revolutionary Rupture (FYS)

ENGL 274 - 01
Caribbean Poetry and Cinema