John Hazlett was born in northern Iowa and received his B.A. from Coe College (Iowa) and his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Iowa. As an undergraduate he also studied at the Associated Colleges of the Midwest Newberry Library Humanities Program in Chicago, in Coe College's New York City Arts Program, and at Marlboro College in Vermont. His graduate work at the University of Iowa focused on American literature, American culture and culture criticism, and non-fiction prose studies.
He taught at Contra Costa College in San Pablo, California as an instructor from 1983-85, the Complutense University of Madrid (Spain), where he held a Fulbright Junior Fellowship from 1985-1987, the University of Salamanca (Spain), where he was a visiting professor in 1991-92, and the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey in Córdoba (Veracruz), Mexico, where he was a visiting professor in 1997-98. While living in the Bay Area from 1979-1985, Hazlett also worked as Editor in the Membrane Bioenergetics Group at the University of California, Berkeley and as theater reviewer for City Arts Monthly, a San Francisco arts publication. Hazlett’s research and teaching interests include American Literature, Autobiography, Non-Fiction Prose, Gender Studies, and Travel Writing. A sample of his publications include his book My Generation: Collective Autobiography and Identity Politics (1998); a travel essay, “The Thrill of Being Here: Letter from Fortín de las Flores, Mexico,” The Southern Review (2006); numerous essays on first-person narratives, including, "The Situation of American Autobiography: Generic Blurring in ‘Contemporary’ Historiography," Prose Studies: History, Theory, Criticism (1990); and essays on American literature, such as "Re-reading ‘Rappaccini’s Daughter’: Giovanni and the Seduction of the Transcendental Reader," ESQ: A Journal of the American Renaissance(1989). He has also written numerous book, theater, and film reviews.
Hazlett came to UNO in 1987 and is currently Professor of American Literature, but since 1998, he has worked to enhance the university’s international programs and opportunities. In that year, he was appointed Associate Dean for International Studies and helped develop the university’s international exchange programs. Presently, he serves as Academic Advisor for UNO’s International Student Exchanges, the Nepalese Student Association, the UNO Amnesty International Branch, and the UNO Model UN Club. He has also served as Academic Director for summer study abroad programs in Spain (2003), the Czech Republic (2006), Costa Rica (2009), and France (2010). In 2003, he became Director of the BA in International Studies Program and has served in that position ever since. Hazlett’s work with UNO’s international programs and his involvement in raising community awareness of international events was recognized in 2008, when he was appointed Janet Dupuy Colley Professor of International Studies, and in 2009, when he was elected President of the World Affairs Council of New Orleans.