Jeff Birkenstein is an Associate Professor of English at Saint Martin's University in Lacey, Washington. Birkenstein's major interests lie in American Literature post-1865, American and world short story, the short story sequence, and cultural and food criticism. An edited collection of essays, Cultural Representation in the International Short Story Sequence (co-edited with Robert M. Luscher, University of Nebraska at Kearney) has just been accepted for publication. He has published several papers in academic journals as well as book reviews, commentaries, essays and a short story. He teaches a range of classes, from Freshman Seminar and Composition to African American Literature, The Short Story, Food & Fiction, and Narratives from the Aftermath of 9/11. Birkenstein received his Ph.D. from the University of Kentucky in 2003; he has a second MA in Teaching English as a Second/Other Language.