Friday, April 26, 2013

Postcolonial Environments/Transnational Aesthetics at Notre Dame (5/3/13)

An Academic Panel
on the Scholarly Work of National Endowment for the Humanities/Notre Dame Fellow
Malcolm Sen

"Postcolonial Environments and Transnational Aesthetics: Contemporary Narratives from India and Ireland"

Friday, May 3
3:00 PM
424 Flanner Hall

With a panel of scholars
Elizabeth Deloughrey, UCLA; Gauri Viswanathan, Columbia; and John Sitter, University of Notre Dame

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Happy Shakespeare's Birthday

Dr. Grace Tiffany posted a nice piece on her blog ( celebrating William Shakespeare's birthday and some local connections to the Shakespeare name. Be sure to make a toast as you pull out your Shakespeare fishing pole to prepare for summer or drink a beer in Shakespeare's Pub -- both have long histories in Kalamazoo.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Comparative Drama is pleased to announce the publication of our Spring 2013 issue, volume 47.1.  This issue includes the following contributions:


Lurana Donnels O’Malley: Staging the Color Line: Alice Dunbar Nelson’s Imagined Hawai’i as African-American Allegory

Robert Vork: Silencing Violence: Repetition and Revolution in Mother Courage and Her Children

Peter Ramey: The Audience-Interactive Games of the Middle English Religious Drama

Emma Katherine Atwood: Fashionably Late: Queer Temporality and the Restoration Fop


Aurélie C. Capron: Molière and Paradox: Skepticism and Theater in the Early Modern Age, by James F. Gaines

Max Harris: A King Travels: Festive Traditions in Late Medieval and Early Modern Spain, by Teofilo F. Ruiz

Sofie Kluge: Spectacle, Rhetoric and Power: The Triumphal Entry of Prince Philip of Spain into Antwerp, by Stijn Bussels

William Storm: Urban Drama: The Metropolis in Contemporary North American Plays, by J. Chris Westgate

Anette Pankratz: Heritage, Nostalgia and Modern British Theatre: Staging the Victorians, by Benjamin Poore

Robert Connick: Cruelty and Desire in the Modern Theater: Antonin Artaud, Sarah Kane, and Samuel Beckett, by Laurens De Vos

Baylee Brits: Samuel Beckett: Laughing Matters, Comic Timing, by Laura Salisbury

Francesca Royster- Passing Strange: Shakespeare, Race, and Contemporary America, by Ayanna Thompson

Peter Kirwan: Europe’s Languages on England’s Stages, 1590–1620, by Marianne Montgomery 

Friday, April 19, 2013

Nagle essay on queer temporality published

Chris Nagle's essay on queer temporality and the work of 18th-century poet Ann Batten Cristall is part of a new book edited by Chris Mounsey, Developments in the Histories of Sexualities: In Search of the Normal, 1600-1800, the newest volume in Bucknell University Press's series Transits: Literature, Thought & Culture, 1650-1850.

The collection explores the oppositions created by the official exclusion of banned sexual practices and the resistance to that exclusion through widespread acceptance of those outlawed practices at an interpersonal level. At different times and in different places, state legislation sets up—or tries to set up—a “normal” by rejecting a particular practice or group of practices. Yet this “normal” is derogated by popular practice, since the banned acts themselves are thought at the grassroots level to be “normal.” Among the events discussed in these essays are the Woods-Pirie trial, the “Ladies of Llangollen,” the popular acceptance of fops and mollies, and the press reaction to the discovery that James Allen was a woman who had lived successfully as a man and Lavinia Edwards was a man who had made her living as a female prostitute. Developments in the History of Sexualities analyzes both the state language of bans and fiats about sexuality, and the grassroots language which marks the acceptance of multiplicity in sexual practice. Contributors benefit from the accumulation of new evidence of attitudes towards sexual practice, and they engage with a wide range of texts, including Ned Ward’s History of the Clubs, Tobias Smollett’s Roderick Random, Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew and The Tempest, Dryden’s All for Love, Ann Batten Cristall’s Poetical Sketches, Isaac de Benserade’s Iphis et Iante, and Alessandro Verri’s Le Avventure di Saffo.

The collection also includes work by George Haggerty, David Orvis, Marianne Legault, Clorinda Donato, Chris Roulston, Sally O'Driscoll, Katharine Kittredge, Thomas Alan King, and Caroline Gonda.

Monday, April 15, 2013

MFA/PhD Festival: WMU Creative Writing Program

We'd like to invite you to WMU's annual MFA/PhD Festival. The Festival will feature readings from this year's graduating MFAs and PhDs from the WMU Creative Writing Program. The readings will take place this week on Friday, April 19th, and Saturday, April 20th, both starting at 7:00 PM.

The reading on Friday will take place at the WMU Bernhard Center, room 105-107, and will feature: Dustin M. Hoffman
Andrea England
J. Rice
Bill Zorn
Justin Gibson

The reading on Saturday will take place at the WMU Bernhard Center, room 105-107, and will feature:
Tricia Phillips
Andy Wickenden
Andrew Weissenborn
Elissa Cahn
Vanni Taing

We hope you'll join us in celebrating the accomplishments and writing of our graduating students.

Friday, April 12, 2013

"Tony's Tigers": Please Support the Relay for Life Team in Honor of Dr. Anthony Ellis

Though I know that some of you are already aware of the Relay for Life event that Tony’s friend Sarah Warner has organized on his behalf, I am writing to enlist your help in spreading the word about this event and about the life-saving work that is being done by the American Cancer Society to help patients like Tony win their battles with this devastating disease. 

Sarah’s Relay for Life event is scheduled to take place the weekend of June 22nd and 23rd at the Berrien County Fairgrounds.  In honor of her friendship with Tony, she is calling her team “Tony’s Tigers” and has created a personal event page on the ACS website that provides additional information about the event as well as opportunities, for those who wish to support Tony, to make a donation in his name, to offer words of encouragement to her and her team as they prepare to walk on his behalf, and to become directly involved in the event as walkers themselves if they are interested.

While a number of your colleagues and graduate students within the department have already made donations to Sarah’s event via the posts that have been circulating on Facebook this past week, I am writing to ask if you would each be willing, through your various roles within the department and the university, to help publicize this event further—through emails to your colleagues and the graduate and undergraduate students whom you supervise, through posts on the department blogs and webpages that you oversee, as well as by word of mouth.  Our hope is that, in addition to showing  Tony just how much he is missed and how much we are all rooting for him, we will also be able to make a significant financial contribution in his honor to the American Cancer Society by the time that Sarah’s event takes place. 

I am attaching a link to Sarah’s event page here, which you are welcome to share with everyone you think might be interested (, and encourage you to contact her at if you have any questions about the donation process or about getting involved yourself.

I spoke with Tony yesterday to make sure that Sarah and I had his blessing before we contacted anyone on campus, and he was very touched and encouraged us to publicize the event as much as we were able, since it is for such a worthy cause.  So Sarah and I would be tremendously grateful if you would help us to do this in any of the ways that I am suggesting here.  And we would also be delighted to hear whatever suggestions you might have about ways that we could publicize Sarah's event further, since we really want to generate as much good press for the American Cancer Society as we are able, as well as to encourage the biggest donation possible in support of our friend Tony!

With many thanks and all best wishes,

Chris Triezenberg

Dr. Gwen Tarbox named to "Top 25 Women Professors in Michigan" List

"Michigan is so ripe with highly effective educators that they seem to outnumber the students. The women below represent Michigan’s slice of an elite class of female educators, those who consistently out-perform their peers and who put the needs of their students first. Obviously, these aren’t the only women doing great work in the state, but we believe they merit special recognition.

Dr. Gwen Tarbox, who teaches Gender and Women Studies in the WMU’s English department, has been awarded the 2012-2013 College of Arts and Sciences Faculty Achievement Award for Teaching. Her research focuses on the effects of childrens literature on the lives of readers, with an emphasis on females."

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Please share the following with your students, subscribers and associates:

Voices story project

Are you a person of color who identifies as lesbian, gay, transgender, bisexual, asexual, pansexual, queer, etc. living in the Kalamazoo area? Do you have nonfiction or poetry about your experience(s) dealing with race, culture and sexual identity? Fire Historical and Cultural Arts Collaborative would like to share your story through Voices, a project highlighting the experiences of LGBTQ people in the Kalamazoo area. Selected pieces will be read at the Pulse: Allied Artist event (details to be announced via

Suggested donation: $1 (donation not required for submission but does help further the Voices project) can be made via

Submission details: Please submit no more than two pieces (poetry or nonfiction) for online publication. Poetry should be no more than three pages. Nonfiction submission should be no more than three pages, double spaced. Please include your name, age zip code and identifiers you find relevant to the piece (sexual, racial, cultural identity, etc.). Send all submissions as a word, google.doc or pdf file via email to

Deadline: 11:59 pm May 15, 2013

Awards: Selected entries will be published on the Voices webpage. Some of those selections will be read at the Pulse: Allied Artists music and words event hosted by Fire Historical and Cultural Arts Collaborative (details TBA). One poem and one story will be selected as Allied Art Winners and the author of each will receive $20.
Inquiries: Send all questions and comments to or visit

Voices overview:
Fire Historical and Cultural Arts Collaborative will highlight, share, record and generate dialogue about lesbian, gay, transgender, non-gender conforming and bisexual people through a four-leg project which includes (1) Staging Breadcrumbs: Journey to Authenticity; (2) hosting salons on issues relevant to the LGBT community; (3) reinstating Pulse - events highlighting LGBT and Ally artist; (4) and collecting the oral, written and audio/visual testimonies of LGBT people, especially transgender people who have experienced homelessness and making a portion available to the public.

Shawntai G. Brown
Writer, editor

Monday, April 8, 2013

WMU offers summer writing workshops for teachers, kids

 Registration is under way for summer sessions at Western Michigan University that offer teachers classroom-tested strategies to help teach writing as well as provide young writers with a popular summer camp opportunity.

The Third Coast Writing Project, part of the National Writing Project network, is offering the summer workshops for teachers beginning June 17, while a young writers' camp also begins June 17. Now entering its 20th year, Third Coast has been providing rigorous, research-based professional development for teachers since 1994. More than 350 teachers have completed its flagship program, the Invitation Summer Institute. Nearly 200 more have engaged in Third Coast's other summer programs, along with thousands who have been part of in-school professional development seminars.

This year, Third Coast will again offer an Invitational Summer Institute, a Teacher as Writer seminar and a seminar in Farmington Hills, Mich., with the Holocaust Education Network. Third Coast also will continue its popular Camp for Young Writers, serving children ages 8-14.

For more information click on the following link:

New Issues Reading: Jaswinder Bolina and Mandy Keifetz: Spring 2013 Gwen Frostic Reading Series

Join us for the final reading of the Spring 2013 Gwen Frostic Reading Series, co-sponsored by New Issues Poetry & Prose. We're honored to have two New Issues authors read their work: poet Jaswinder Bolina and fiction writer Mandy Keifetz. The reading will take place this Thursday, April 11th, at the WMU Bernhard Center room 208-209, starting at 8:00 PM. We look forward to seeing you there.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Jill M. Hebert publishes her first book, Morgan Le Fay, Shapeshifter by Palgrave Macmillan

Congratulations to Jill M. Hebert (PhD 2008) on the publication of her first book, Morgan Le Fay, Shapeshifter by Palgrave Macmillan.  As noted by the reviewer, “Hebert’s book will have widespread interest, especially for advanced undergraduates and graduate students majoring in literature and/or women’s studies, art history, and media studies. It will serve as a resource for Hebert’s analysis and judgments regarding various works and also as a model of one scholarly way to examine a magnetic character, Morgan Le Fay, over several centuries of primary works and through various historical, philological, and myth-centered approaches, as well as various genres.”