Novian Whitsitt is a professor of Africana Studies and English at Luther College, particularly interested in gender analysis of African, Caribbean, and African-American literature. Some of his course topics include African American Literature, North American Slave Narrative, and Literature of the African Peoples.
Novian regularly offers a study abroad course to Ghana during the January semester, entitled "Christianity, Slavery, and Their Depiction in Ghanaian Literature." The course looks at the historical connections between slavery and Christianity during the Trans-Atlantic slave trade while visiting numerous Ghanaian historical sites related to the West African slave commerce. Most recently, his research has focused on African-American slave narratives, more specifically the use of the black cultural expression of "masking" in Harriet Jacobs's Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl.