Welcome back from winter break! The spring semester begins today, 1/18. Be sure to check into your courses promptly to review the syllabus, get in view the course requirements and final book orders, and get going with your spring studies. Here’s to the new semester, and the new year. Cheers, everyone.
Category Archives: Faculty News
Zoom Holiday Social Hour Wrap-up
Just want take a moment here to say thank you to the students, alumni, and faculty (and the dog) who were able to attend the holiday social hour hosted by Dr. Kilpatrick this afternoon on zoom. It was a nice time, full of conversation, stories, and humor. We will have future zoom social hours in 2023, in addition to our annual symposium. Information about those events will be posted here on the blog, as they come into view.
Cheers and Happy Holidays to everyone in the graduate English community!
Zoom Holiday Social Hour, Friday 12/16 at 3pm eastern
This coming Friday 12/16, at 3pm eastern, Dr. Kilpatrick will be hosting a live-online holiday social hour for the graduate English community. So make a cup of coffee, or pour yourself your favorite holiday drink, and get online this Friday afternoon for some casual conversation and holiday cheer. Use the link below to attend:
Zoom Meeting ID: 929 6065 4436
Reminder: Dr. Dana Horton’s Zoom Event Is Today 12/8 at 2pm
Just a reminder here for our graduate community that Dr. Horton will be discussing her current book project, “‘Don’t You Fuck With My Energy’: The Occult, Intersectional Spirituality, and Religious Appropriation in Hip Hop Culture,” today (12/8) on zoom starting at 2pm.
Students and alumni are strongly encouraged to attend. In order to do so please complete the rsvp form linked here. And then at 2pm today click here to open the zoom link. In case you’re new to Zoom, know that you don’t have to actually be on camera, so you can watch the event with your camera and mic off if you prefer. Any questions contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Book Publication by Faculty Member Dr. Dana Horton, and Upcoming Speaking Event on Zoom
Dr. Dana Horton’s book Gender, Genre, and Race in Post-Neo-Slave Narratives is now in print. As well, Dr. Horton will be hosting an online-zoom talk regarding her next book project on Thursday December 8, at 2pm, as a part of Mercy College’s Research Salon Series. More information about both the book and the event are as follows:
Gender, Genre, and Race in Post-Neo-Slave Narratives provides an innovative conceptual framework for describing representations of slavery in twenty-first century American cultural productions. Covering a broad range of narrative forms ranging from novels like The Known World to films like 12 Years a Slave and the music of Missy Elliott, Dr. Dana Renee Horton engages with post-neo-slave narratives, a genre she defines as literary and visual texts that mesh conventions of postmodernity with the neo-slave narrative. Focusing on the characterization of black women in these texts, Dr. Horton argues that they are portrayed as commodities who commodify enslaved people, a fluid and complex characterization that is a foundational aspect of postmodern identity and emphasizes how postmodern identity restructures the conception of slave-owners.
Students and alumni are strongly encouraged to check out the book, and to attend Dr. Horton’s upcoming research discussion based on her next book project, and titled: “‘Don’t You Fuck With My Energy’: The Occult, Intersectional Spirituality, and Religious Appropriation in Hip Hop Culture.” The project uses a Black Feminist theoretical framework to analyze how rappers, such as Princess Nokia, Gangsta Boo, and La Chat, assemble a diverse array of spiritual, religious, and occult symbols to construct their rap personas. Dr. Horton argues that rappers engage in sampling, a common Hip Hop practice, as a way to construct an inclusive identity that challenges patriarchal structures; ironically, by participating in religious appropriation, these artists reinforce the structures that they are attempting to thwart. In addition to lyrical/visual analysis and rap music, Dr. Horton’s presentation will discuss what Hip Hop culture teaches us about our individual and collective spiritual practices.
The zoom event will run from 2:00 – 4:00pm on 12/8. To attend, please complete the rsvp form linked here. And then, to join the zoom meeting, click here to open the zoom link at the appropriate day and time. Any questions contact email@example.com.
Event of Interest, 10/28, On Zoom Or In Person: Dr. Boria Sax Speaks on “Top Secrets: Trauma, Boasting, Guilt, Fear, Anger, and the Residue of Truth”
On Friday October 28, at 2:30pm eastern, Dr. Sax will be giving a talk on “the challenges, satisfactions, and limitations of family history. ” Graduate English students and alumni are encouraged to attend whether on zoom or on campus. To attend on zoom go to https://tinyurl.com/mr4xh34a (pass is 319727, meeting ID is 986 7047 1930).
Author Event with Patricia Engel, Hosted by Dr. Celia Reissig-Vasile, Wed. 9/28
On Wednesday, September 28, Dr. Celia Reissig-Vasile of the Mercy College English Program will be hosting a discussion with author Patricia Engel, regarding her book Infinite Country. Mercy College MA students are strongly encouraged to attend this event; you can attend on zoom, or can join a larger viewing party in the Mercy Hall Rotunda on the Dobbs Ferry campus. Click here to register for the zoom webinar. Or click here if you plan to attend the viewing party in the Rotunda.
Dr. Boria Sax wins NCIS Eisenstein Award for Best Essay of the Year
I am thrilled to share with our graduate community that Dr. Boria Sax has been awarded the Eisenstein Award for Best Essay of the Year by the National Coalition of Independent Scholars (NCIS). The Eisenstein prize is awarded annually for the best academic journal article or book chapter published by a member of the NCIS. The essay must have been published in a peer reviewed journal or edited academic book to qualify. Dr. Sax’s essay is “When Adam and Eve Were Monkeys: Anthropomorphism, Zoomorphism and Other Ways of Looking at Animals,” published in The Routledge Companion to Animal-Human History, edited by Hilda Kean and Philip Howell (London, 2019). For the record, this is the second time that Dr. Sax’s writing has been so recognized by the NCIS and he is the only person to have been awarded this distinction twice.
Recent Faculty Publications and Activity
Your MA faculty are constantly engaged in all sorts of scholarly activities. Such recent scholarship includes presentations, such as Dr. Dugan’s “An Interdisciplinary Bridge to Improved Reading Comprehension and Academic Success,” given at the 2018 convention for the College English Association; and “Perchance to Dream” delivered at the Southeast MLA conference in 2017. Notable recent publications by MA faculty include:
Working Women in American Literature, 1865-1950, edited and with an introduction by Dr. Miriam Gogol, and The State of the Field: Ideologies, Identities and Initiatives, edited and with an introduction by Dr. David Kilpatrick.
Working Women in American Literature, 1865–1950 examines how the American working woman has been presented, misrepresented, and underrepresented in American realistic and naturalistic literature (1865–1930), and by later authors influenced by realism and naturalism. Points explored include: the historical vocational realities of working women (e.g., factory workers, seamstresses, maids, teachers, writers, prostitutes, etc.); the distortions in literary representations of female work; the ways in which these representations still inform the lives of working women today; and new perspectives from queer theory, feminist theory, immigrant studies, and race and class analyses.
The State of the Field: Ideologies, Identities and Initiatives provides a comprehensive view of the emerging field of the study of association football. The diversity of approaches in this collection range from theory to pedagogy to historical and sociological engagements with the game at all levels, from the grassroots to the grand spectacle of the World Cup; while the collection’s international roster of authors is testimony to the game’s global reach. The State of the Field altogether offers a view of current critical inquiry into the field of soccer studies as well as a road map for further exploration.
Dr. Kilpatrick as well saw a paper of his published in translation: “El Arsenal de Nietzsche,” translated by Juliana Solórzano y Viviana Casablanco, El Malpensante, 197, Junio 2018. And his article “The Messianic Manager in Novels by David Peace” was published in The Aesthetics, Poetics, and Rhetoric of Soccer, edited by Ridvan Askin, Catherine Diederich, and Aline Bieri.
The always prolific Dr. Sax has been up to a number of things. His book Lizard will be published this October, in just a few days. This book demonstrates how the story of lizards is interwoven with the history of the human imagination. In the book Dr. Sax describes the diversity of lizards and traces their representation in many cultures, including those of pre-conquest Australia, the Quiché Maya, Mughal India, China, Central Africa, Europe and America.
Dr. Sax’s earlier publication The Mythical Zoo was recently translated and published in Chinese (his third Book in Chinese translation). And his book Dinomania: Why We Love, Fear and Are Utterly Enchanted by Dinosaurs will be coming out later this October. Additionally, you can still read his guest blog for the Oxford University Press titled “Not Finding Bigfoot: Cryptids and Big Nostalgia.”
Finally, Dr. Kristen Keckler invested a tremendous amount of time and energy over the past year to make real her vision of a Mercy College journal showcasing the creative efforts of Mercy College students. As creator and senior editor of the Red Hyacinth journal, Dr. Keckler took responsibility for all aspects of the process. As a result of her dedication a number of our college’s students, including some graduate students from our MA program, were able to see their works published.
Some of you reading this may remember the call for submissions for the journal advertised here on the program blog last fall. The Red Hyacinth journal is once again accepting submissions for the 2017-18 edition. I will be making another blog post soon dedicated just to this call for submissions, but if you’re interested in sending in a creative work for consideration you should look into the journal’s FAQ and submission guidelines here on the journal’s website.
Recent Student and Faculty Achievements
I’d like to take a moment to recognize some recent achievements of current MA program students and alumni, as well as a recent faculty publication. In no particular order:
♦ Professor Emeritus Donald Morales recently published “An Afropolitan 2017 Update” in the Journal of the African American Literature Association. (https://doi.org/10.1080/21674736.2017.1375659)
♦ Active MA student Lynne Leibowitz-Whitehead has been awarded a Schiff Travel Grant to present a paper on John Updike’s Couples at the Fifth Biennial John Updike Society Conference at the University of Belgrade in Serbia this summer. Lynne has also been accepted to present a paper at the International Hemingway Conference in Paris this summer.
♦ Recent alum Gloria Buckley has been busy as well. She will be continuing her education in the Masters in Gaelic Literature program at University Cork College of Ireland. In the meantime she’s published two papers in the Journal of English Language and Literature: “Merlin the Political, Spiritual and Romantic Shape-Shifter in Robert de Boron’s Joseph of Arimathea, Merlin, Perceval and Edmund Spenser’s The Faerie Queene”; and “Edgar Allan Poe’s ‘The Fall of the House of Usher’: A Symbol of the Crumbling Borders of American and Psychic Consciousness and the Birth of Gothic Transcendence.” She also has a study of Virginia Woolf’s Orlando published here on the Virginia Woolf Blog.
♦ Alum Nicholas Cialini has been accepted into the PhD English program at Temple University. He will also be presenting at the International Hemingway Conference in Paris this summer.
♦ Alum Patricia Turner has been accepted into the Master of Fine Arts (MFA) program at the University of Denver.
♦ Alum Wayne Catan is aiming to present his scholarly paper “A Comparison of Dreiser’s ‘Free’ and Hemingway’s ‘Mr. and Mrs. Elliot’” at the American Literature Association (ALA) and is working with faculty member Dr. Miriam Gogol on it.
Congratulations to everyone. If I have neglected to include news recently shared with me about our students’ or graduates’ activity please let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org. And please, now or at any point in the future, keep me informed of any activity you’ve been up to, including conference presentations, publications, acceptances into doctoral or other subsequent programs, work activity, and the like. It’s important for us here in the MA program to maintain a view of how our students and graduates are faring beyond the program, and to celebrate your achievements.
On a semi-related note, in the next week or so I will be making the announcement here on the blog about the date for this year’s Graduate English Symposium. It will fall around the 5/16 commencement, most likely on the Saturday before or perhaps that Monday or Tuesday. I’m working out the scheduling details now but if anyone hopes to attend and has a preference for one of these days, please email me immediately at email@example.com and let me know. I will make a more specific call for papers, to get a sense of who and how many people will be attending and presenting, along with the forthcoming symposium announcement. Stay tuned.