Sunday, August 30, 2009
This afternoon's celebration of New Issues Press united former and current WMU authors and students and faculty and community members at Bell's Eccentric Café. New Issues Press Editor Bill Olsen welcomed guests to the readings by poets and writers John Rybicki, Heather Sellers, David Dodd Lee, Diane Seuss, and Jamie D'Agostino. Bonnie Jo Campbell (supported by Managing Editor Marianne Swierenga), auctioned off a plethora of paintings, rarities, and hilarities, and Whiskey before Breakfast provided the musical background. Among the guests were President John Dunn, Provost Tim Greene, and Cynthia Running-Johnson.
Friday, August 28, 2009
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Salary: Competitive and commensurate with qualifications and experience, with an excellent benefits package.
Required Qualifications: MFA, Ph.D., or DFA in English required; a significant publication record, including at least one book of prose fiction; a proven record of excellence in undergraduate teaching; a strong promise for excellence in graduate teaching. Experience in any of the following is not required, but will be considered an asset: Editing; publishing; administration; publications in other areas of Creative Writing.
Western Michigan University (WMU), located in Southwest Michigan, is a vibrant, nationally recognized student-centered research institution with an enrollment of nearly 25,000. WMU delivers high-quality undergraduate instruction, has a strong graduate division, and fosters significant research activities. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching has placed WMU among the 76 public institutions in the nation designated as research universities with high research activities.
Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until position is filled. Applicants must visit http://www.wmich.edu/hr/careers-at-wmu.htm to apply and should include a letter of application, a vita, graduate transcripts, three letters of recommendation, a non-returnable writing sample and, if available, teaching evaluations to: Dr. Richard Utz, Chair, Department of English, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI 49008-5331. For information on the department, please visit: www.wmich.edu/english.
Western Michigan University is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer consistent with applicable federal and state law. All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply.
Seeking female with an educational degree or equivalent and experience working with middle school girls to run an after-school program for girls from 4th through 6th grades, four days a week, Monday through Thursday, from 3:00 to 6:30, starting in September, 2009.
This applicant must have excellent organizing and people skills. She must be able to work with and understand the issues involved in the lives of inner-city, middle school aged girls. The position would require developing and scheduling activities, seeking volunteers for each day, coordinating the planned activities, the people offering the activities, and the materials needed for those activities. The daily activities include, among others, life skills, a reading program, and homework help.
Interested women, please send resume to Dr. Patricia Ann Quattrin, Director, Benton Harbor Girls Association for Learning & Self-esteem, P.O. Box 840, Benton Harbor, MI 49023.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Come to New Issues's Summers End Celebration and Gala Fundraiser and make your bid! August 30th, 2-6 p.m., Bell's Eccentric Café.
For questions, please contact:
Study Abroad Fair Coordinator
Haenicke Institute for Global Education
Western Michigan University
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Comparative Drama Volume 43 • Summer 2009 • No. 2
This volume contains the following contributions:
From Great Women to Top Girls: Pageants of Sisterhood in British Feminist Theatre
Diamonds, Maidens, Widow Dido, and Cock-a-diddle-dow
Sermons, Exegesis, and Performance: The Laon Ordo Prophetarum and the Meaning of Advent
Robert C. Lagueux
Evicted In—and From—Toronto: Walker’s Beautiful City at Factory Theatre
J. Chris Westgate
Lay Performances of Work and Salvation in the York Cycle
The English Renaissance Stage: Geometry, Poetics, and the Practical Spatial Arts 1580-1630by Henry S. Turner
Reviewed by Jennifer Low
Contemporary Latina/o Theater: Writing Ethnicityby Jon D. Rossini
Reviewed by Brian Eugenio Herrera
The Cultural Uses of the Caesars on the English Renaissance Stageby Lisa Hopkins
Reviewed by Barbara L. Parker
Ancient Rome in Early Operaby Robert C. Ketterer
Reviewed by Michael Ewans
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Friday, August 21, 2009
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
October 30-31, 2009 Janet Heller will be at the International Reading Association's Great Lakes Regional Conference at the
Monday, August 10, 2009
1) The English Department Graduate Convocation, which is Tuesday, September 1, from 3-5 PM
2) The Graduate College's New Student Welcome Fair, which is Thursday, September 3, from 3-6 PM
Orientation sessions for:
August 31-September 4, from 9-4
3027 Brown Hall, with Cheryl Almeda
September 1-September 4
Will be contacted by Dr. Jonathan Bush
September 3, from 9-2
2037 Brown Hall, with Jil Larson
September 3, from 9:30-12:30
2045 Brown Hall, with Richard Katrovas
If you have any question, please email Dr. Todd Kuchta or Dr. Jana Schulman at
"In addition to the exhibits our student workers develop, we have worked with some classes in which students develop a one-case exhibition as an assignment, and we would be delighted to work with any interested faculty in English who would like to explore using this kind of assignment in their courses when it is feasible.
"We have also developed exhibitions for particular courses (in history, art, English, engineering and medieval studies) which support the pedagogical goals of the course, such as examples of different types of color reproduction methods (for art and
engineering) or a brief overview of the way a text was presented (printed, illustrated and edited) over time (in English or History). Sometimes these are formally mounted in cases, and sometimes, when class sizes allow, we set materials out and let students look through them during a class meeting time or as preparation for a
particular day's discussion.
"Our goal is to support the curriculum and help in any way we can with teaching and research at WMU, so please pass along any of this information that you find of use to anyone you like. We are always glad to have more people aware of our collections and services. Please let me know if you would like further details.
"Susan Steuer, Ph.D.
"Head, Department of Special Collections and Assistant Professor
"Western Michigan University
507 Edgehill Drive
Oxford, OH 45056
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Swan, who teaches at the University of Northern Iowa, is coeditor, with Richard Utz, of Studies in Medievalism XVI: Postmodern Medievalisms, Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 2005, and of The Year's Work in Medievalism 2002, Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock, 2003. He spoke to the seminar and guests (Drs. Beth Bradburn and Grace Tiffany) about "Medievalism, the Book, and Post-Counter-Reformation Anglo-Catholicism, Or, Another Way To Appreciate Elizabeth Cary."
Monday, August 3, 2009
Western Michigan University's literary press, New Issues Poetry And Prose, is happy to announce the Summer's End Celebration & Gala Fundraiser. Please join us at Bell's Eccentric Café, 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave. on Sunday, August 30, from 2 to 6 p.m. A $5 donation is requested at the door, and food and refreshments will be available.
New Issues poets and Michigan writers John Rybicki, Heather Sellers, David Dodd Lee, Diane Seuss, and Jamie D'Agostio will read briefly from their poetry. The inimitable Bonnie Jo Campbell will serve as auctioneer for a variety of excellent paintings, rarities, and hilarities. Whiskey Before Breakfast will perform traditional dance music.
New Issues Poetry And Prose, a non-profit literary press, was established in 1996 by poet and Editor Herbert S. Scott. New Issues publishes eight to twelve new titles each year with a focus on contemporary poetry. New Issues enjoys support from WMU, the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, and the generous donations of a supportive arts community. For more information about the press and this upcoming community event, call Marianne Swierenga at (269) 387-8185 or visit the press's Web Site at www.wmich.edu/newissues.
'American Salvage' delves into lonely, modern working-class small-town Michigan life
Bonnie Jo Campbell creates stories that somehow dig deep while also soaring
- By Alan Cheuse |Special to Tribune Newspapers
- July 25, 2009
Well, it looks as though Illinois writer Jean Thompson, with her recent collection "Do Not Deny Me," has middle-class Midwestern life pretty well covered for the year. Now here's Bonnie Jo Campbell in "American Salvage" taking on the question of life among Michigan working-class folks, and making stories that dig deep and somehow soar at the same time.
She sets most of her stories in a small Michigan town that has been saturated with methamphetamine, a place suffering the torpors of a declining Rust Belt economy and all of the usual small-town modern times pains -- loss of love, splintered families, despair about the future -- as well. Even the happy families, such as that of Jerry and his wife, Natalie, must fight off assaults from invading nature, from ermine to bees to snakes. Jerry can't sleep because of a hole in the baseboard of their bedroom, fearing that anything "could move into that empty space and lurk there, a bat or a squirrel or bugs or some awful art of himself, maybe."
That worry turns out to be in many of the other stories, except it's people from town, the neighbors, who assault one another. In the story "King Cole's American Salvage," from which Campbell takes the title for the collection, an ex-con named William Slocum Jr. robs an auto salvage yard owner, beating him nearly to death, all so he can buy his beloved girlfriend Wanda some methamphetamine "to keep herself going since she had lost her job" and help her pay her mortgage. He beats the salvage yard man so badly with a length of galvanized pipe that the victim's blood spills over the money Slocum finds in his pockets.
In one of the most chilling passages in recent fiction -- all the more so because of the matter-of-fact way the writer presents it -- Slocum presents his girl with the cash. " 'Here's your house payment, babe.' 'Look at you,' she said, but she was looking at the money. With two fingers she lifted a 50-dollar bill from the stack and held it away from herself. 'Willie, this money's covered with blood.' 'Sorry about that.' Slocum looked at his hands, which were also covered with blood. 'We can wash it in the sink,' Wanda said."
Alas, what these people do to one another can't be washed away or erased. Even the children suffer from a deadening of expectations, as we hear when a schoolgirl, run over by a man racing along the road on a foggy morning, lies waiting for help, considers the miseries of what may come in her life. "What if the future were camouflage and gray and sour, phlegm and dirty snow, wounds and scars and boys killing helpless pond creatures?"
Humor is a toothless meth addict, joking with her earnest ex-husband that she has committed incest with her former stepson. And though the future envisioned by the most level-headed adults, as in the mind of Doug, the victim of an accident, takes on a certain lyrical force, it remains bleak nonetheless: "The universe seemed darker than he'd realized, and larger, which made each thing in it, including him, smaller. Years ago, smart-aleck schoolboys like him ... should have learned more than their grammar and arithmetic. Why hadn't they learned the way bodies could break and how slow and difficult it was to heal?"
In these stories about cold, lonely, meth-drenched, working-class Michigan life, there's a certain beauty reaching something like the sublimity of a D.H. Lawrence story. Few of the stories have endings that seem resolved. Because of their despairing feel, and their shape and form, they seem quite lifelike.
Alan Cheuse is an author, a writing teacher at George Mason University and a book commentator for NPR's "All Things Considered."
--Taken fro the Chicago Tribune
By Bonnie Jo Campbell
Wayne State University Press, $18.95, 171 pages
AMERICAN SALVAGE, Bonnie Jo Campbell's (1998 MFA) third book of fiction,
which has just gone into a third printing. Cheuse says many all good
things, compares Campbell to D.H. Lawrence, and refers to a particular
scene in the title story as "one of the most chilling passages in recent
fiction." AMERICAN SALVAGE was published by Wayne State University
Press as part of the Made in Michigan series.
One of the stories in the collection, "The Inventor, 1972,"
has won the 2009 Eudora Welty Prize from /Southern Review./
Campbell teaches at the Pacific University low residency MFA program in
Oregon, and currently she is is running around promoting AMERICAN
SALVAGE, so if you want her to come to her town, just contact her on
facebook or at her website: www.bonniejocampbell.com