Summer 2009 Newsletter

News of Faculty


Richard Burt's “Border Skirmishes: Weaving Around the Bayeux Tapestry and Cinema in Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves and El Cid" appears in Medieval Film, eds. Anke Bernau and Bettina Bildhauer (Manchester UP, 2009), 158–81.

Andrew Gordon and Norman Holland organized the 26th annual International Conference on Literature and Psychology, held July 15 at the University of Viterbo, Italy. 55 papers were presented by conferees from the U.S., Portugal, Italy, Spain, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Hungary, Greece, Denmark, Finland, Japan, Malaysia, Hong Kong, South Africa, and Iran. Gordon spoke on “Oedipus as Time Traveler in the Back to the Future Trilogy.” The next International Conference on Literature and Psychology will be held June 23–27, 2010 at the University of Pecs, Hungary. For details, contact Gordon at <>.

Phil Wegner’s essay “Ken MacLeod’s Permanent Revolution: Utopian Possible Worlds, History, and the Augenblick in the ‘Fall Revolution’” has been published in Red Planets: Marxism and Science Fiction (Pluto Press/Wesleyan University Press), eds. Mark Bould and China Miéville.



Jill Ciment’s new novel, Heroic Measures, was chosen as a notable summer novel by The Wall Street Journal and O, The Oprah Magazine.

Andrew Gordon spoke on “Everything Is Illuminated: Novel and Film” and was respondent in a panel on the fiction of Saul Bellow at the American Literature Association Conference May 21 in Boston.

Kenneth Kidd presented a paper at the June meeting of the Children’s Literature Association, along with Anastasia Ulanowicz and 10 UF graduate students. More critically, Kenneth made his fictional debut in a story by Joseba Gabilondo in his book apokalipsia guztioi erakutsia (in Basque). Kenneth plays an evil librarian in the British Museum who protects a scandalous secret: that Shakespeare copied from a Basque author.

Mary Robison’s novel One DOA, One on the Way was listed on O, The Oprah Magazine’s 2009 Summer Reading List.

Jodi Schorb’s review of Thomas Foster’s Sex and the Eighteenth Century Man: Massachusetts and the History of Sexuality in America, “Masters of their Domain,” appears in GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 15.3 (Summer 2009).

Stephanie Smith presented “Three Journeys Back to the Future: SF and the 19th Century” at the Eaton Science Fiction Conference, April 30–May 3 at UC Riverside.

Phil Wegner’s essay “Learning to Live in History: Alternate Historicities and the 1990s in The Years of Rice and Salt” has been published in Kim Stanley Robinson Maps the Unimaginable: Critical Essays (McFarland), edited by the late William J. Burling. His book Life Between Two Deaths, 1989-2001: U.S. Culture in the Long Nineties has been published by Duke University Press.

“Secret Witness or, the Fantasy Structure of Republicanism,” co-authored by Ed White and Michael Drexler, appears in Early American Literature.



Richard Burt gave two invited talks at National Central University in Jung-Li, Taiwan: “Self-Storage as Self-Sabotage: Auto-Deconstructing Cinematic Archive Fevers in Nicolas Philibert’s Return to Normandy (2007)” and “Shakespeare Belongs to Us: D(e)riving the Play in the European Art Film Genre.” He gave a third invited talk at Taiwan National University in Taipei, Taiwan, “Drifting Around Renaissance Tragedy: The Revenger’s Tragedy in Jacques Rivette’s Noirot and The Duchess of Malfi in Mike Figgis’s Hotel.”

Terry Harpold presented “Professor Lidenbrock and the Mole Men: The Hollow Earth After Verne” at the 2009 Eaton Science Fiction Conference, “Extraordinary Voyages: Jules Verne and Beyond” (University of California, Riverside, April 30–May 3, 2009), where he also participated in two plenary roundtables, “The Two Vernes” and “Extraordinary Revision, Repetition, and Pastiche.” Harpold was a member of the conference’s Organizing Committee.


News of Current Students


Kristin Allukian presented “From Servant to CEO: Negotiating Spheres of Work in Harriet Wilson’s Our Nig” and Mauro Carassai presented “American Digital Studies: Problem and Perspectives in Envisioning a Culturally-Oriented New Media Sub-Field” at Re-Configurations of American Studies, the 2009 Futures of American Studies Institute at Dartmouth College.

Hanh Nguyen’s chapter “The Case of Nguyen Nguyet Cam’s Two Cakes Fit for a King: Female Appropriation of Autochthonous Mythology through Aesthetic Transmission to the Diaspora,” co-authored with R.C. Lutz, appears in From Word to Canvas: Appropriations of Myth in Women’s Aesthetic Production, eds. V. G. Julie Rajan and and Sanja Bahun-Radunovic (Cambridge Scholars Publishing). Also co-authored with Lutz, “A Bridge Between Two Worlds: Crossing to America in Monkey Bridge” appears in The Emergence of Buddhist American Literature, eds. John Whalen-Bridge and Gary Storhoff (SUNY Press).

Horacio Sierra’s review of Acts and Texts: Performance and Ritual in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, eds. Laurie Postlewate and Wim Hüsken, appears in The Sixteenth Century Journal, 40.2 (Summer 2009): 598–99.

John Tinnell’s review of Steven Mailloux’s Disciplinary Identities: Rhetorical Paths of English, Speech, and Composition appears in Composition Forum: A Journal of Pedagogical Theory in Rhetoric and Composition 20 (Summer 2009).



Ramona Caponegro presented “Trials and Their Tribulations: Performances of (In)Justice in Realistic Children’s Novels” at the 36th Annual Children’s Literature Association Conference. Her entries “Blind Man’s Bluff” and “Jump Rope” appear in the Encyclopedia of Play in Today’s Society, ed. Rodney P. Carlisle (SAGE Publications, 2009), and her entries “Richard Paul Evans” and “The Christmas Box” appear in the Encyclopedia of American Popular Fiction, ed. Geoff Hamilton and Brian Jones (Facts on File, 2009).

Claudia Hoffman presented both “Localizing the Transnational: The Negotiation of Immigrant Spaces in ‘Accented’ Nollywood Films” at Nollywood and Beyond: Transnational Dimensions of the African Video Industry in Mainz, Germany and “Watching the ‘Globalization of the Poor’: Cinematic Representations of Undocumented African Workers in Europe” at the Third Annual European Conference on African Studies (ECAS) in Leipzig, Germany.

Cari Keebaugh presented “‘Dragonology’: The History of Samaranth from the Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica Trilogy” at the 2009 Children’s Literature Association Conference, “The Best of Three,” in Charlotte, NC.

Ellen Joy Letostak presented “The Tragedy of Errors: Star Crossed and Transmediacy” during the Shakespeare Cinetextuality seminar at the Shakespeare Association of America 37th Annual Meeting, Washington DC, April 2009.



Wylie Lenz presented “Emancipatory Potential of a Hobo Education” at the 2009 Joint Conference of the National Popular Culture and American Culture Associations in New Orleans.

Jaimy Mann has received the 2009 Henry Darger Study Center Fellowship at the American Folk Art Museum in New York.

Amy Robinson’s essay “An ‘original and unlooked-for ending’?: Irony, the Marriage Plot, and the Antifeminism Debate in Oliphant’s Miss Marjoribanks,” appears in Antifeminism and the Victorian Novel: Rereading Nineteenth-Century Women Writers, ed. Tamara S. Wagner, (Cambria 2009). 159–76.

Matt Snyder presented “Torn Limb from Limen: Grendel at the Space Between” at the 44th International Conference on Medieval Studies held at Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo.

John Tinnell presented “Greenlisting as a Genre of Global Capitalism” at the 2009 Humanities and Sustainability Conference “Ecology in the Information Age” held at Florida Gulf Coast University.


News of Former Students


Sharmain van Blommestein (PhD, 2005) has been an Assistant Professor in the Department of English and Communication at SUNY Potsdam since Fall 2007 (tenure track) and was appointed, effective July 1st, 2009 as the Director of Graduate Studies.

Natasa Kovacevic’s (PhD, 2006) book Narrating Post/Communism: Colonial Discourse and Europe's Borderline Civilization is now in paperback (Routledge, 2009).

Maud (Rebecca) Newton (BA, 1993) appears on the cover of the Spring issue of Narrative magazine, which includes an except from her novel-in-progress. Her writing has recently appeared at Granta online and in Bookforum, and her essay “Conversations You Have at Twenty,” which won second prize in Narrative’s 2008 Love Story Contest, appears in Love is a Four-Letter Word, an anthology also featuring contributions from Kate Christensen, Junot Diaz, Gary Shteyngart, Lynda Barry, Said Sayrafiezadeh, Wendy McClure, Amanda Stern, and more. She has reviewed books for the New York Times Book Review and many other newspapers, and is a contributor to NPR's Books We Like. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, fellow English Department alum Max Clarke.

Mohanalakshmi Rajakumar’s (PhD, 2008) Haram in the Harem has been published by Peter Lang publishers. Her essay “Between Women and Their Bodies: Male Perspectives of Female Partition Experiences in the Writing of Khadija Mastur” appears in South Asian Review 29.1.

Since his lass newsletter submission (April 2007), Robert Walker (PhD, 1974) has continued to write about 18th-century and modern literature from my retirement in St. Petersburg, FL. In addition to five book reviews, in the past two years I have written three notes on Samuel Richardson (two in Notes & Queries and one in the Eighteenth-Century Intelligencer), an essay on Samuel Johnson in the Saint Austin Review, an essay on Curzio Malaparte for the Sewanee Review and an essay on James Boswell for English Studies.



Scott Balcerzak’s (PhD, 2008) coedited collection Cinephilia in the Age of Digital Reproduction: Film, Pleasure, and Digtial Culture' will be published by Wallflower Press. Balcerzak coauthors the introduction with coeditor Jason Sperb and contributes a chapter on motion capture and onscreen performance.

Eric Bliman’s (MFA, 2007) poem “Prometheus in Pittsburgh” was recently chosen as a winner in the 2009 AWP Intro Journals Project. The poem is forthcoming in Quarterly West.

Kenneth Chan’s (PhD, 1999) essay “ Diasporic Desires: Narrating Sexuality in the Memoirs of Shirley Geok-lin Lim and Li-Young Lee” appears in China Abroad: Travel, Subjects, Spaces (Hong Kong University Press, 2009).

Heather Milton’s (PhD, 2003) essay “The Female Confessor: Confession and Shifting Domains of Discourse in Margaret Oliphant’s Salem Chapel” appears in Antimfeminism and the Victorian Novel: Rereading Nineteenth-Century Women Writers, ed. Tamara S. Wagner, (Cambria 2009). 197–216.


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