Gene A. Jarrett

Dean of the Faculty
William S. Tod Professor of English
Office Phone
10 Nassau Hall

Gene Andrew Jarrett began his appointment as dean of the faculty and as the William S. Tod Professor of English at Princeton University on Aug. 1, 2021. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in English from Princeton University and his Master of Arts and doctorate in English from Brown University.

Before Dean Jarrett’s current role at Princeton, he was the Seryl Kushner Dean of the College of Arts and Science and professor of English at New York University. Prior to that, he worked at Boston University, where he was a professor jointly appointed in the Department of English and the Program in African American studies; he also served as chair of the English department and associate dean of the faculty for the humanities. Before Boston University, he began his academic career as an assistant professor of English at the University of Maryland, College Park. In 2021, Dean Jarrett was appointed to the Association of American Universities’ Advisory Board for Racial Equity in Higher Education, which seeks to address issues of racial inequity on campus and examine structural barriers to academic access and success in higher education.

For Dean Jarrett’s scholarship, he has won awards from the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University and the American Council of Learned Societies. He is the author of three acclaimed books of African American literary studies, the most recent of which is “Paul Laurence Dunbar: The Life and Times of a Caged Bird,” a comprehensive biography of the legendary African American poet Paul Laurence Dunbar, published by Princeton University Press in 2022 and named a New Yorker Best Book of the Year, a Book Riot Best Biography of the Year, and a finalist for the Ohioana Book Award. He is also the editor of eight additional books of African American literature and literary criticism. He is the founding editor-in-chief of the Oxford Bibliographies module on African American studies and the founding senior editor of the Oxford Research Encyclopedia in African American Literature and Culture, both published by Oxford University Press.

For more information about Dean Jarrett’s background and work, please visit his webpage. For information about Dean Jarrett’s appointment as dean of the faculty, please read the Princeton University press release.