Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Students collect funds in support of clean water projects

Students in Allen Webb's "African Literature" class, after becoming aware through their readings and discussions about the desperate shortage of clean water in Africa, rose to the challenge and decided to start the WESTERN 4 WATER project to support Clean Water for the World. This organization provides inexpensive, dependable, and safe drinking water systems at no charge to communities that do not have access to clean water. The system costs $700, and provides 5 gallons of clean, pure water per minute. Clean Water For The World has delivered and installed these drinking water systems in El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Haiti, Ghana, Kenya, and Ecuador. In order to collect funds, the students are selling all kinds of goods, including special T-Shirts they have created (see your friendly department chair pointing to one of the shirts in Chaucerian manner). If you are interested in supporting the project, please check out our students' website. You can purchase T-shirts in Pam's office on the 6th floor of Sprau Tower.

Celebrating Jaimy's NBA

Dear friends of the English Department,

Western Michigan University will be celebrating Jaimy Gordon's National Book Award in style with a reading on Monday, December 13, from 3:30-5:30 p.m. in the Richmond Center, Room 2008 (followed by a reception in the lobby). All English Department faculty, staff, students, alumni/ae, and emeriti/ae are invited to attend.

See you all there,


Monday, November 29, 2010

Fiction Writer Christine Sneed Reads Her Work: Fall 2010 Gwen Frostic Reading Series

We welcome you to join us for our fourth reading of the Fall 2010 Gwen Frostic Reading Series. We’re honored to have fiction writer Christine Sneed read her work this Wednesday, Dec. 1st, at the WMU Bernhard Center, in room 105-107, starting at 8:00 PM. We look forward to seeing you there.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

New MLA Shakespeare Teaching Anthology

MLA has accepted Meg Dupuis' and Grace Tiffany's collection of essays on teaching The Taming of the Shrew, and will publish it as a volume in its world literature teaching series. The collection brings together contributions from twenty-seven college and university instructors in English and theater departments throughout the country.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Rypma publishes Chapbook

Wardrop Wins NEA Fellowship

It is my great pleasure to announce that Daneen Wardrop is the recipient of a coveted Creative Writing Fellowship in poetry, awarded by the National Endowment of the Arts.  Selected through an anonymous review process, the fellowships encourage the production of new works of literature by allowing writers the time and means to write. The Creative Writing Fellowships alternate annually between poetry and prose. This year, the NEA received 1,063 eligible applications; the 42 poets recommended will each receive a fellowship of $25,000. Please join me in congratulating Daneen on this wonderful success. rju

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Gordon Wins National Book Award

Dear friends of the English Department,

This is to let you know that Jaimy Gordon is this year's recipient of the National Book Award in the "Fiction" category for her 2010 novel Lord of Misrule. To contextualize the significance of her success, please consider this: In 1950, publishers, editors, writers, and critics decided to celebrate the first annual National Book Awards, an award given to writers by their own peers. The American Book Publisher’s Council, The Book Manufacturers’ Institute, and The American Booksellers’ Association jointly sponsored the Awards, bringing together the American literary community for the first time to honor the year’s outstanding achievements in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. In later years, Science, Philosophy and Religion, History and Biography, Arts and Letters, Translation, Contemporary Thought, Autobiography, First Novel, Original Paperback, and Children’s Book were added as categories. Over the years, recipients in "Fiction" have included the likes of William Faulkner, Saul Bellow, John Cheever, Philip Roth, Bernard Malamud, Thornton Wilder, Joyce Carol Oates, Flannery O'Connor, Thomas Pynchon, Don DeLillo, Susan Sontag, and Peter Mathiessen, to name but a few. For the National Book Foundation's page on Jaimy's award and novel, please see HERE.

Please join me in congratulating Jaimy who, by winning this prestigious award, brings attention to our excellent Creative Writing Program, department, college, and university. Jaimy's award comes after last year's nomination of alumna Bonnie Jo Campbell for the same high honor.

With collegial regards and congrats to Jaimy,

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Sigma Tau Delta English Studies Conference Nov. 20 in Brown Hall

Faculty, staff, students, and the public are invited to the Fall 2010 Sigma Tau Delta English Studies Conference (ESC) on Saturday, November 20. The ESC will get underway at noon in 3025 Brown Hall, with parallel sessions to run until 5 p.m. in 3002, 3003, 3017, and 3048 Brown.

Held every fall and spring semester, the ESC is the signature campus event of the Alpha Nu Pi chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the international English honor society. The ESC features the best original scholarly and creative work of WMU students and invites submissions from students campus-wide. Membership in Sigma Tau Delta is not required for participation.

27 students will present their work on Saturday, so please join us as we celebrate these fine students and their creative and scholarly achievements!


Brittany L. Balyeat

Ali Billedeaux

Jessica Bixel

Peter Cullen Bryan

Tim Buchanan

Anthony Cerullo

William Cope

Danielle Favorite

Analiese Grohalski

Christopher Hart

Sarah Hercula

Ian Hollenbaugh

Kenny Jakubas

Bruce Lack

Lauren Lilly

Katie O’Brien

Courtney Ochab

Peter Owens

Kara Anne Pauley

Sean Pickett

Gena Reist

Sean Rodeman

Jacob Smallegan

Valerie Smolarkiewicz

Sara Stratton

Michelle Szeibach

Drew Wolford

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

English Department honored for support of Russian Festival

Last week, Kalamazoo's 15th Russian Festival took place, this year bringing to town Dr. Vycheslav Vladimirovich Moshkalo, Cultural Attaché at the Embassy of the Russian Federation in the USA in Washington, DC, and Robert Alexander, author of the New York Times bestseller, The Kitchen Boy, a historical novel of revolutionary Russia. As part of the many events, which included the Russian Studies Conference at WMU, the English Department was honored for its continuous co-sponsorship over the last 13 years. Professor Judi Rypma, Conference Director, also recognized the Haenicke Institute for Global Education and the Lee Honors College for their support of the annual event.

Submission deadline for The Laureate coming up

The editors at The Laureate would like you to know that our deadline for submissions is coming up, and we need your help in promoting this wonderful publishing opportunity.
The Laureate is Western Michigan University's only undergraduate literary journal, sponsored by Lee Honors College. Students do not have to be English majors or honors college students to submit. We accept all genres-- short fiction, poetry, playwriting, nonfiction, drawing and photography. However, we need of more short fiction, nonfiction, and playwriting submissions. Attached is a flyer that we hope you will pass on to your students.
Please note: our deadline for submissions was recently changed to December 15th. Students may submit as many works as they want and all entries may be submitted to thelaureatecollection@gmail.com. We accept longer works as well. If you or your students have any questions, they can email us at the address listed above or visit our website at thelaureate.tumblr.com.

Monday, November 15, 2010

CFP: Computers & Writing

Dear Colleagues,
The deadline to submit proposals for Computers and Writing 2011 has been extended to Monday, November 22. Please help us get the word out by forwarding this message to your colleagues and other lists you subscribe to.
The conference, hosted by the Sweetland Center for Writing at the University of Michigan, will take place in Ann Arbor, MI from May 19-22. Visit http://sweetlandcandw2011.com to submit your proposal.
Thanks, and we look forward to seeing you in Ann Arbor!
The Conference Organizing Committee

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Tonight at the KBAC: Jake Adam York and Traci Brimhall

Poets In Print
November 13, 2010
7pm (doors open at 6:30)

Jake Adam York and Traci Brimhall with broadsides by Kip Deeds and Michelle Webster.

Traci Brimhall is the author of Rookery (Southern Illinois University Press), winner of the 2009 Crab Orchard Series in Poetry First Book Award. Her poems have appeared in New England Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, Slate, The Missouri Review, Kenyon Review Online, FIELD, Indiana Review and Southern Review. She is a former Jay C. and Ruth Halls Poetry Fellow at the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing and a former Tennessee Williams Scholar at the Sewanee Writers' Conference.

Jake Adam York is the author of three books of poems-Murder Ballads (2005), winner of the 2005 Elixir Press Prize in Poetry, A Murmuration of Starlings (2008), selected by Cathy Song for the Crab Orchard Series in Poetry and winner of the 2008 Colorado Book Award in Poetry, and Persons Unknown (2010), forthcoming from Southern Illinois University Press/Crab Orchard in October 2010. York's poems have appeared in Anti-, Blackbird, The Cincinnati Review, DIAGRAM, Diode, Greensboro Review, New South, Northwest Review, Shenandoah, The Southern Review, Southern Spaces, Third Coast, and other journals.

The Kalamazoo Book Arts Center
Suite 103A, Park Trades Center
326 W. Kalamazoo Avenue
Kalamazoo, MI 49007

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Comparative Drama's Fall Issue

Comparative Drama's fall issue, volume 44.3, arrived last week. This issue contains the following contributions:

“Are we turned Turks”: English Pageants and the Stuart Courtview abstract
David M. Bergeron

Celebrating Idleness: Antony and Cleopatra and Play Theoryview abstract
Abigail Scherer

Katherine Philips as Political Playwright: “The Songs Between the Acts” in Pompeyview abstract
Anne Russell

Music and Religious Compromise in John Bale’s Playsview abstract
Katherine Steele Brokaw

REED: Lincolnshire, ed. James Stokes
reviewed by Victor I. Scherb

The English Clown Tradition from the Middle Ages to Shakespeare, by Robert Hornback
reviewed by Peter Cockett

Mummings and Entertainments, by John Lydgate, edited by Claire Sponsler
reviewed by Roger A. Ladd

Storytelling and Drama: Exploring Narrative Episodes in Plays, by Hugo Bowles
reviewed by Mustafa Kemal Mirzeler

Renaissance Earwitnesses: Rumor and Early Modern Masculinity, by Keith M. Botelho
reviewed by Jennifer C. Vaught

English PhD in Hong Kong

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Poet Dennis Hinrichsen, Poet David James, and Fiction Writer Adam Schuitema Read Their Work: Alumni Reading, Fall 2010 Gwen Frostic Reading Series

We welcome you to join us for our third reading of the Fall 2010 Gwen Frostic Reading Series. We’re very honored to have three alumni authors: poet Dennis Hinrichsen, poet David James, and fiction writer Adam Schuitema. They will read their work this Thursday, Nov. 11th, at the WMU Bernhard Center, in room 157-158, starting at 8:00 PM. We look forward to seeing you there.

Stony Brook $1000 Short Fiction Prize

The 2011 Stony Brook $1000 Short Fiction Prize, now in its 20th year, welcomes undergraduate students from all over the United States and Canada to submit original fiction of 7,500 words or fewer. The judges are looking for lively storytelling and unique voices.

Only undergraduates enrolled full time in United States and Canadian universities and colleges for the academic year 2010-11 are eligible.

Submissions of no more than 7,500 words. All entries must be accompanied by proof of current undergraduate enrollment. No fax or electronic submissions. Submission assumes Stony Brook's right to publish winning stories on its Web site. For complete submission guidelines, visit www.stonybrook.edu/fictionprize

March 1, 2011. All applications postmarked after the deadline will be returned unopened.

Mail Submissions To:
John Westermann
Director, The Stony Brook $1,000 Short Fiction Prize
Stony Brook Southampton
MFA program in Writing and Literature
239 Montauk Highway
Southampton, NY 11968

Friday, November 5, 2010

Joslin to "read dress" at UM-Flint

UM-Flint will welcome Dr. Katherine Joslin from Western Michigan University as a leading scholar speaking about her work on Edith Wharton. She’ll present “Reading Dress: The Fiction of Edith Wharton,” which "Intimate Apparel" Director and UM-Flint Theatre Professor Carolyn Gillespie says makes a fascinating intersection in exploring the role of material culture in women’s lives.
The connection rings even deeper as “Intimate Apparel” is set in 1905, the same year Wharton’s blockbuster novel “The House of Mirth” was published.
Joslin's most recent new book, Edith Wharton and the Making of Fashion (UPNE, 2009), places Wharton's fiction and non-fiction in the context of fashion design, labor history, and women's dress reform from the corseted and bustled silhouettes of the late nineteenth century to the flowing angles of the twentieth. Joslin will speak at 4 p.m. Nov. 11 in Room 164 of French Hall at UM-Flint. The public is welcome to attend.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Obama Phenomena


You always wanted to get a better picture of what the field of English Studies is all about? You always wanted to know about internships, jobs after graduation, skill sets and kinds of knowledge that your degree in English might provide you with?  

Well, then sign up for INTRODUCTION TO ENGLISH STUDIES, Spring 2011.

For more info, check out these three video clips, written and produced by Dr. Gwen Tarbox:

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Sigma Tau Delta to Induct Largest Class in Chapter History on November 7

Please join the Alpha Nu Pi chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the international English honor society, as we welcome our Fall 2010 inductees on Sunday, November 7, at 3 p.m. The induction ceremony and reception will be held in 3025 Brown.

And as always, there will be cake.

As of this writing, 50 undergraduate and graduate students have qualified for membership and will be inducted on Sunday, comprising the largest induction class in our chapter's history.

Please see below for the list of inductees.

Thanks to institutional support from the College of Arts and Sciences and the Department of English, as well as generous donations from faculty, all 50 inductees are able join Sigma Tau Delta free of charge.

The Alpha Nu Pi chapter extends its deepest thanks to all who have contributed to the membership fund. Sigma Tau Delta membership changes lives, and free membership makes it possible now for all students who meet the academic standards to join.
So please join us on Sunday to accept our thanks in person, to cheer on these wonderful students, and to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the granting of our charter.

Fall 2010 Sigma Tau Delta Inductees:
  • Brenna Alholm
  • Hassan Al-Momani
  • Michelle Andrus
  • Kyle Blasco
  • Sara Bower
  • Nayt Boyt
  • Kylie Cheevers
  • Gretchen Colman
  • William Cope
  • Eric Cron
  • Abby Dame
  • Adam Dietz
  • Lauren Dixon
  • Dana Hall
  • Ashley Harper
  • Elizabyth Hiscox
  • Sarah Jones
  • Elyse Jozlin
  • Jeanine Kemmer
  • Amanda Kissman
  • Angela Kramer
  • John Kreider
  • Chandel Lawrence
  • Erika LaFerier
  • Jacob Lewis
  • Megan Lipp
  • Hannah Lucero
  • William D. Martin
  • Maureen Mead
  • Cody Mejeur
  • Megan Miller
  • Ambrosia Neldon
  • Rachel Neubauer
  • Melissa Nichols
  • Kelly O'Keefe
  • Elan Pavlinch
  • Katherine Peterson
  • Sean Pickett
  • Gena Reist
  • Justin Reynolds
  • Andrew Rhodes
  • Jessica Rungaitis
  • Jacob Smallegan
  • Valerie Smolarkiewicz
  • Nora Strehl
  • Cora Supenski
  • Jacob Swanson
  • Michael Venner
  • Kristine Voss
  • Andrew Wolford

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

CFP: new journal - "Authorship"


*Call for Contributions*

The peer-reviewed, open access e-journal *Authorship*, planned to go online
in the summer of 2011 and to appear twice a year, is seeking submissions for
its inaugural issue. The journal aims to offer a venue in which to describe
diverse historical and discursive settings of authorship, and to grapple
with the complex issues of authorial authority, independence or
interdependence, and self-fashioning. The Romantic or New Critical concept
of the solitary genius or auteur (if indeed such an entity ever existed at
all) has for decades now been the subject of intense critical scrutiny and
revision; as a result, what the general public might once have thought of as
authorial agency is now submerged in an elaborate tissue of critical
feedback, textual instability, editorial intervention, and accidents of
publishing, branding, and spin. And yet the Author persists, as a
nomenclature, as a catalogue entry, as a biographical entity, as a popular
icon, and as an assumed agent of creativity and innovation. In analyzing
cultural formations of 'authoriality' as they developed historically, over a
long period of time and in a variety of geographical locations, in relation
to cultural networks and social change, to transformations of the media, as
well as to changing perceptions of gender and personhood, *Authorship* hopes
to foster a more refined and precise theoretical and historical
understanding of the complex ideological, technological and social processes
that transform a writer into an author. We therefore welcome articles in
English on the cultural performance of authorship in any contemporary or
historical literary milieu.

Topics include, but are not limited to:

- Authorship across and within diverse languages, literatures, and
geographical locations: colonial, transatlantic, transnational, translated,

- Varieties of authors: dramatists, novelists, poets, journalists, sages,
critics, humorists; authors as entertainers, public intellectuals,

- Authenticity, authority, agency, attribution.

- Authorship and the canon.

- Gender and authorship: interrogating putative "feminine" and "masculine"
models of writing, self-fashioning, and getting published.

- Fame, infame, disfame, lack of fame; the self-creation, branding and
reception of authors.

- Anonymity, pseudonymity, and authorial personae.

- Authors and collaboration; single and multiple authors. Authors and
cultural networks.

- The quotidian activities of writers as they relate to the public image of

- Translation, editing, redacting, and reviewing considered as kinds of
authorial performances.

- Authorship and the marketplace; authors and patrons; authorship and
intellectual property.

- The textual re-creation of authors by editors, publishers, and printers.

- Authorship and/in the material book; authorship & new technologies (film,
digital media, the internet).

Submissions may be sent to the editors (mailto: authorship@ugent.be). The
recommended length for articles is about 5,000 words, and the deadline to be
considered for inclusion in the first issue is 1 May, 2011. See the website
of *Authorship *at http://www.authorship.ugent.be/ for more information and to sign up for email notification of future issues.

This journal is an initiative of the Research project on Authorship as
Performance (RAP). For further information, visit http://www.rap.ugent.be/

Dr. Sören C. Hammerschmidt

Postdoctoral Research Fellow/Postdoctoraal onderzoeker
Research on Authorship as Performance (www.rap.ugent.be)
English Department/Vakgroep Engels
Ghent University/Universiteit Gent
Room 130.033
Blandijnberg 2
9000 Gent



Monday, November 1, 2010

Poet Beckian Fritz Goldberg Reads Her Work: Fall 2010 Gwen Frostic Reading Series

We welcome you to join us for our second reading of the Fall 2010 Gwen Frostic Reading Series, cosponsored by New Issues Poetry & Prose. We’re very honored to have poet Beckian Fritz Goldberg read her work this Thursday, Nov. 4th. The reading will take place at the WMU Bernhard Center, in room 105-107, starting at 8:00 PM. We look forward to seeing you there.

Intro to English Studies: The Movie

This spring, Drs. Meg Dupuis and Jil Larson will be teaching ENGL 2980-15372: Introduction to English studies on Wednesdays from noon to 1:50 pm. The course is ideal for English majors, English minors, or students who are interested in English Studies. In order to publicize the course, we've made a video -- please consider playing it for your classes (especially 1000, 2000, and 3000 level courses) and posting on your blogs or websites.