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Ron McFarland

Professor Emeritus

Mailing Address


Ron McFarland taught 17th-century British literature, modern British/American literature, global literature and poetry writing.

  • Ph.D., English, University of Illinois, 1970
  • M.A., English, Florida State University, 1965
  • B.A., English, Florida State University, 1963
  • A.A., Brevard Junior College, 1962

Ron McFarland teaches literature and creative writing at the University of Idaho. Although his doctoral dissertation dealt with minor 17th-century British poet Thomas Traherne, he teaches a broad array of courses ranging from 17th-century British poets like Donne and Milton to modern writers like Ernest Hemingway and contemporaries like Cormac McCarthy. He also teaches African writers and Shakespeare, even though he regards himself as an “outsider” in both areas. Pecan Grove Press published his fourth full-length collection of poems, "Subtle Thieves," in early 2012. His biography of Lieutenant Colonel Edward J. Steptoe (1815-1865), in whose honor the regional landmark known as Steptoe Butte is named, is presently under consideration for publication.

In addition, he is an adviser for creative writing track majors in English and serves on committees or directs MA and MFA theses. He helped establish the University of Idaho’s highly regarded literary magazine, "Fugue," more than 20 years ago.

Ron played soccer at UI for more than 20 years before blowing out his left knee. He occasionally shoots at game birds and frequently goes a-fishing. His current fascination is fantasy football, a pastime of which his wife Georgia does not much approve. His three remarkable children, Kimberley, Jennifer and Jonathan, have brought him five remarkable grandchildren: Sara and Vanessa, Mia, and Kaiden and Natalie.

  • Contemporary poets (e.g., David Wagoner, Tess Gallagher, B.H. Fairchild)
  • Northwest Writers (e.g., James Welch, Norman Maclean, Sherman Alexie)
  • Hemingway
  • Creative writing: nonfiction, poetry, fiction

  • Subtle Thieves (San Antonio: Pecan Grove Press, 2012)—poems
  • The Long Life of Evangeline: A History of the Longfellow Poem in Print, in Adaptation and in Popular Culture (Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Co., 2010)
  • The Rockies in First Person (Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Co., 2008)—a study of recent memoirs from the northern Rockies
  • Appropriating Hemingway: How Ernest Hemingway in Configured in Biographical Fiction (Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Co., 2014)
  • Biography of Lt. Col. Edward J. Steptoe (1815-1865) will be published later this year tentative title is "Gallant Officer: Colonel Steptoe's Indian Wars."

  • “The Woman Who Would Be a Poet”—novel
  • “Jack Sprat's Wife and Other Poems”—book of poems

  • Presenter - Idaho State Library’s "Let’s Talk About It" Program

  • Idaho State Writer-in-Residence, 1984-85
  • Burlington Northern Faculty Achievement Award, 1990
  • Alumni Award for Faculty Excellence, 1991
  • Distinguished Alumnus, Brevard Community College, 1995
  • Student Organization Advisor Award, 1998
  • University of Idaho Award for Excellence in Research and Creative Achievement , 2002
  • Victor J. Emmett Memorial Award for best essay in The Midwest Quarterly, 2013

M.F.A. Creative Writing

English Department

Physical Address:
200 Brink Hall

Mailing Address:
English Department
University of Idaho
875 Perimeter Drive MS 1102
Moscow, Idaho 83844-1102

Phone: 208-885-6156


Web: English

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