Spring 2008

Faculty Updates

Edwidge Danticat, who is teaching a graduate creative writing seminar as Stanford Distinguished Professor this semester, was awarded the 2008 National Book Critics Circle Award in the autobiography category for her memoir, Brother, I’m Dying.

Ranen Omer-Sherman has been awarded an American Philosophical Society sabbatical award for his project on Levantine identities in memoir and fiction. In addition, he will spend his sabbatical researching a book on late developments in the Kibbutz movement. During the fall of 2008, he will be a Visiting Scholar at the University of Haifa, Israel. The Jewish Graphic Novel: Critical Approaches, which he coedited with Samantha Baskind, was published this spring by Rutgers University Press.

David Luis-Brown will be a Visiting Scholar in the English department at Harvard University this fall, and will be a residential research fellow at the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Studies at Harvard for spring 2009. While a fellow, he will continue work on his second book, Blazing at Midnight: Slave Rebellion and Social Identity in U.S. and Cuban Culture. At the conference on nineteenth-century American literature at the University of Notre Dame in April, he gave a paper, “Traveling Theories of Race.”   

As the first faculty member in the College of Arts and Sciences to hold a full joint appointment, John Paul Russo has been appointed Professor of English and Classics. This spring, he gave a lecture at Elon University, on “The Machine in the Classroom”; his lecture was hosted by a Ph.D. graduate, Prudence Layne, Assistant Professor of English, as part of Elon’s application to establish a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa.  

Patricia J. Saunders’s Alien-Nation and Repatriation: Translating Identity in Anglophone Caribbean Literature was published this spring by Lexington Books (Rowman and Littlefield) in their Caribbean Studies Series. Her collection of essays, Music, Memory, Resistance: Calypso & the Caribbean Literary Imagination, coedited with Sandra Paquet and Stephen Stuempfle, was published late last year by Ian Randle Publishers.

Margaret Marshall’s Composing Inquiry: Projects, Methods and Readings for Investigation and Writing was recently published by Pearson/Prentice-Hall, 2009. She contributed “Teaching Circles, Instructional Leadership and the Work of Supporting Adjunct Careers” to a special edition of Pedagogy on Professional Development (8.1 [Fall 2008]), for which she served as co-editor. She has also organized and participated in four regional meetings of the Reinvention Center and a meeting of the University Vice Presidents/Provosts’ Network. 

Frank Palmeri published “Conjectural History and the Origin of Sociology” in Studies in Eighteenth Century Culture 47 (2008). He presented “Satire and Utopia in A Vindication of the Rights of Brutes” at the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS) in March, and will present “Conjectural History and Victorian Culture” as a Taft speaker for the University of Cincinnati History Department in May.

Also at ASECS, Tassie Gwilliam presented “Bad Acting” in a roundtable on “Staging the Body: A Roundtable on Physical Performance in the Long Eighteenth Century.”

At the Renaissance Society of America meetings, Mihoko Suzuki presented “Margaret Cavendish’s Life of the Duke as a History of the English Civil Wars” and at ASECS, “Recognizing Drama as Political Writing: Wiseman, Pix, and Trotter.” In May she will give a talk on “Gender, Legal Discourse, and Political Writing in England, 1642-1689” as an invited speaker at the UCLA Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies Annual Symposium, Processing Gender in Law and Other Literatures.

Jeffrey Shoulson recently published "Milton and Enthusiasm:  Radical Religion and the Poetics of Paradise Regained," Milton Studies 47 (2008). His "Man and Thinker:  Saurat and the Old New Milton Criticism," is forthcoming in The New Milton Criticism, edited by Peter C. Herman and Elizabeth Sauer. Recent invited talks include: “‘Thy People Shall be My People’:  The Limits of Conversion in Early Modern England,” at the University of Colorado-Boulder; “‘The Meaning Not the Name’:  Converting the Bible and Homer in Jacobean England,” at Loyola College (MD); and “Joseph in Egypt, Jews in the Academy,” Hillel Rogoff Lecture, Stern College (NYC).

Graduate Students and Alumni

Ann Marie Alfonso-Forero and Kara Jacobi organized the second annual English Graduate Symposium, April 10-11, with panels on “Nation-Building in American and Postcolonial Literature,” “Caribbean Literature and Culture,” “Early Modern Literature,” “British and Irish Modernisms,” and “Gender and Sexuality in Literature and Culture.”

Richard Fantina, who defended his dissertation, “Charles Reade’s Sensational Realism,” last September, has accepted a position as Professor of Graduate Studies at Union Institute and University, Montpelier, VT.

Sheri-Marie Harrison will be tenure-track assistant professor of English in African diaspora studies at the University of Missouri, Columbia. In June, she will defend her dissertation, “‘Boom Tune a Blow Dem Mind’: Jamaican Literature and Musical Aesthetics.”

Kate Pilhuj defended her dissertation, “Mirror for the World: Gender, Geography, and Identity in Early Modern English Drama” in April, and will begin teaching this fall as tenure-track assistant professor in early modern English drama at the Citadel.

Amanda Tucker defended her dissertation, “At Home in the World: Globalism in Modern Irish Writing,” in December, and will be a tenure-track assistant professor in modern British literature at the University of Wisconsin, Platteville. At the American Conference for Irish Studies (ACIS) in April, she presented “Transnational Irish Literature: Rethinking Irish Literary History.”

At the ACIS, two other students presented papers: Chu He on “Hybridity in [Brian Friel’s] Translations” and Jennifer Slivka on “A ‘Distant Music’: Locating a Feminine Discourse in James Joyce’s ‘The Dead.’”

At the Renaissance Society of America in Chicago, Tom Lolis gave a paper, “Discordant Harmoniae: Ficino’s Planetary Magic and its Fluddean Extension.”

Katrina Smith presented “This too, is Resistance: Women and Rebellion in Caribbean and U.S. Slavery” at the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies conference in Portland, OR.

Terra Caputo gave two papers in February: “Women’s Scandalous Fiction, Pornography, and Construction of the Ideal Woman” at the SE American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, and “Neglected Identities: Father Figures and the Female Ideal in Eliza Haywood’s The City Jilt and Penelope Aubin’s The Strange Adventures of Count de Vinevil” at the South Central Society for  Eighteenth-Century Studies.

Lucas Harriman gave a paper on “Negotiable Identity in G.K. Chesterton’s The Man Who was Thursday” at the International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts in Orlando. His edited volume, Lilith in a New Light: Essays on the George MacDonald Fantasy Novel, will appear later this spring from Macfarland.

At the “Caribbean Without Borders” Graduate Student Conference held at the University of Puerto Rico, Josie Urbistondo and Catalina Ramirez presented papers: Josie on “Turning into the Role of Music in The Dragon Can’t Dance” and Catalina on “Revenge and Tribute through the Multiple Manifestations of Mimicry and Myth in Pauline Melville’s The Ventriloquist’s Tale.” Next fall, Catalina will be a Ph.D. candidate and McKnight Fellow in Latin American Literature in the Modern Languages and Literatures department.

Nadia Johnson presented “Sexuality and Gendered Citizenship in Sylvia Wynter’s The Hills of Hebron” at the 27th Conference on West Indian Literature held in Barbados.

At the Southwest/Texas Popular Culture and American Culture Association Conference, Brandi Kellettpresented “Discourse of the Patio: The Vanishing Performance of Patriarchy in the Borderlands of Caballero.”