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Dr. Jolly K. Sharp
Professor of English

J. Sharp

Dr. Jolly Sharp, a native of Williamsburg, Kentucky, graduated from Cumberland College in 1974 with a BA in English.  In 1988, she earned an MA in English from Wright State University, and was invited to return to Cumberland as a member of the faculty in 1991.  In 2008, Dr. Sharp completed the requirements for her PhD in English from Middle Tennessee State University, where she specialized in the works of Flannery O’Connor.

Dr. Sharp has been frequently recognized for outstanding achievement in teaching.  The University of the Cumberlands Student Government Association has twice recognized her, designating her Honored Professor in 1996 and 2000.  She received the J. B. Fuqua Excellence in Teaching Award in 2001 and 2003.  In 2007, Dr. Sharp received the Excellence in Teaching Award from University of the Cumberlands.  In 2003, she was named Teacher Who Made a Difference Award.  University of Kentucky College of Education.

Dr. Sharp’s teaching and research interests include Renaissance literature, Christian literature, and works of John Milton, Jesse Stuart, Eudora Welty, and Flannery O’Connor.

Courses Taught

  • ENGL 131 English Composition I
  • ENGL 132 English Composition II
  • ENGL 334 American Literature through 1865
  • ENGL 335 American Literature since 1865
  • ENGL 332 English Literature 1660-1830
  • ENGL 333 English Literature since 1830
  • ENGL 437 British and American Authors: John Milton; Flannery O’Connor and Eudora Welty
  • INSIGHTS Freshman Orientation

Selected Publications and Presentations

“Eye Sight to Insight in Flannery O’Connor’s ‘Parker’s Back.’” SAMLA.  1995.

“Diabolic Power: McCarthy’s Judge and  Milton’s  Satan.”  ACA/PCA. 2004

Panel: “Developing Women’s Power in the Classroom”  and Paper: “Imagery of Angels and Women.”  Women and Power Conference.  MTSU.  2005

“Beveled Vision.”  O’Connor and Other Georgia Writers Conference.” GCSU.  2006

“Grace Lumpkin’s Crusty Bread: A Social Commentary.  PCA/ACA. 2006.

"Joy Hopewell and Flannery O'Connor: Duality Disposition"
PCAS/ACAS, Wilmington, NC - 2009

“A Beastly Non-Beauty: Flannery O’Connor’s Southern Belle”
PCAS/ACAS, Savannah, GA – 2010

Chaired session: “The South: Representations of Southern
Women” – PCAS/ACAS, Savannah, GA - 2010

Dr. Sharp's book "Between the House and the Chicken Yard:" The Masks of Flannery O’Connor was released by Mercer University Press October 2011.