Tanya K. Zhelezcheva, Associate Professor

In 1997, I arrived in the United States to undertake graduate work at Missouri State University. After a brief period in the publishing world, I began my doctoral studies at Northeastern University where I studied early modern poetry and prose focusing on Thomas Traherne (ca.1638-1674). My interest range from early modern commonplace books and book history to the aesthetic of the unfinished and early modern passions. While at Northeastern, I also taught college writing and Advanced Writing in the Disciplines courses.
At QCC, I teach ENGL-101, ENGL-102, and ENGL-217.

In my teaching, I aim to allow students to uncover those questions that spark their curiosity and ignite their capacity to search for answers in group discussions and in individual activities. My goal is to maintain a balance between challenging and supporting students in developing life-long interests and fostering skills such as deep thinking and thoughtful writing. I also use global and diversity learning and service-learning high impact practices to help students make connections between their personal lives and the course readings.

To assist students in their success at QCC and in their professional and academic careers, I am also committed to the work of the Student Mentoring Committee, which I co-chair with Prof. Jan Ross. On this website, I maintain a calendar of conferences, scholarshipsgrants, and publication opportunities for community college students in the humanities.

Ph.D. Northeastern University, 2011
M.A. Missouri State University, 2000
B.A., M.A. St. Cyril and St. Methodius University, Veliko Tarnovo, 1997



“Writing Thesis Statements with Erasmus and Descartes: Two Assignments for the Composition and Literature Classrooms.” This Rough Magic June 2019. http://www.thisroughmagic.org/zhelezcheva%20article.html.  (peer-reviewed online journal)

“Another Source for Thomas Traherne’s ‘The Author to the Critical Peruser,” Notes and Queries 65.1 (2018): 210-212. https://doi.org/10.1093/notesj/gjy041.

“The Distance to the Stars: Thomas Traherne (ca. 1637-1674) Reading Samuel Richardson (fl. 1643-1658).” Notes and Queries 66.1 (2019): 81-83.

“The Genre of the Non-Finito: Thomas Traherne’s Ways of Centrifugal Writing,” Literature and Theology 30.3 (2016): 309-329.

“Transparent Problem-Based Learning Across the Disciplines in the Community College Context: Issues and Impacts” co-authored with Andrea Salis, Franca Ferrari-Bridgers, Simran Kaur, Kostas Stroumbakis, and Amy Traver. NERA Conference Proceedings (2015). Paper 9. http://digitalcommons.uconn.edu/nera-2015

“Advancing Student Success through Faculty Intentionality in Problem-Centered Learning at Queensborough Community College, CUNY,” Peer Review 18 (2016). Co-authored with Franca Ferrari-Bridgers, Andrea Salis, Kostas Stroumbakis, and Amy Traver.


Northeast Modern Language Association, “From Early Modern to Standard American English: Collocations for Community College Writers,” March 2019

Renaissance Society of America, “Enter the Printer: The Shape of Braces in Thomas Traherne’s Thanksgivings (1699), March 2019

Modern Language Association, “Of Braces, Pricks, and Dots: Thomas Traherne Punctuating Emotion,” January 2018

Modern Language Association, “Visualizing Thought, Summoning Emotion: Uses of Braces in Featley, Andrewes, Herbert, and Traherne,” January 2018

Rocky Mountain Modern Language Association, “Subverting Binaries: Poets, Teachers, and Divines and the Mechanization of Punctuation,” October 2017

Renaissance Society of America, Panel. "Transcultural Shakespeare II" (linked session), Panel Chair, March 2017

Renaissance Society of America, Panel: The Early Modern Book as Visual Enterprise, 1500-1650. Paper accepted: “Drawing on the Printed Page: Early Modern Uses of {Braces} in Herbert, Andrewes, Featly, and Traherne,” March 2017

New York College English Association, Teaching of Writing Festival, Suffolk County Community College, “Early Modern Punctuation: Public Writers and Musicians,” October 2016.

American Comparative Literature Association, “Authentic Disclosure and the Use of Punctuation in Thomas Traherne's Poetry,” March 2016

Modern Language Association, Panel: “Style Is Anywhere: Some Literary Applications of Punctuation.” Paper presented: "The Limits of Non-finito: Thomas Traherne and His Uses of Punctuation,” January 2016

Northeastern Educational Research Association (NERA), 46th Annual Conference, “Higher Education,” collaborative presentation with faculty participating in AACY problem-based transparency teaching, October 2015

Modern Language Association, “The Praise of Things Felicitous: Thomas Traherne’s Commentaries of Heaven and the Reinvention of Early Modern Encyclopedia,” January 2015

American Comparative Literature Association, Things Theory: Accumulation and Amassment. New York “‘When Things Are Ours’: Social Awareness and Hoarding in Thomas Traherne’s Poetry and Prose,” March 2014

Sourcing Emotions in the Medieval and Early Modern World, University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia.  “The Ascesis of Happiness in the Works of Thomas Traherne,” June 2013

The Unfinished Work of Art in the Renaissance, Renaissance Society of America, Annual Conference, San Diego, CA. “The Poetics of the Incomplete in the Works of Thomas Traherne,” April 2013

Fifteen Years after a New Traherne: Future Directions for Thomas Traherne Studies, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom. “The Poetics of the Incomplete in the Works of Thomas Traherne,” December 2012.

Grants and Awards

Professional Staff Congress-City University of New York Grant, 2020
Professional Staff Congress-City University of New York Grant, 2019
Professional Staff Congress-City University of New York Grant, 2018
Professional Staff Congress-City University of New York Grant, 2017
Faculty Fellowship Publication Program, City University of New York, 2016
Professional Staff Congress-City University of New York Grant, 2016
William Stewart Travel Award, 2015
Professional Staff Congress-City University of New York Grant, 2015
Professional Staff Congress-City University of New York Grant, 2014
William Stewart Travel Award, 2012

Select Journals for Undergraduate Research

Apollon: Undergraduate Journal
Purdue Jounal of Service-Learning and International Engagement
Young Scholars in Writing
Undergraduate Journal of Service Learning and Community-Based Research
The Oswald Review

Office: H456
Office Phone: 718-631-6226

Campus Cultural Centers

Kupferberg Holocaust Center exterior lit up at nightOpens in a new window
Kupferberg Holocaust Center Opens in a new window

The KHC uses the lessons of the Holocaust to educate current and future generations about the ramifications of unbridled prejudice, racism and stereotyping.

Russian Ballet performing at the Queensborough Performing Arts CenterOpens in a new window
QPAC: Performing Arts CenterOpens in a new window

QPAC is an invaluable entertainment company in this region with a growing national reputation. The arts at QPAC continues to play a vital role in transforming lives and building stronger communities.

Queensborough Art Gallery exterior in the afternoonOpens in a new window
QCC Art Gallery

The QCC Art Gallery of the City University of New York is a vital educational and cultural resource for Queensborough Community College, the Borough of Queens and the surrounding communities.