Elizabeth Simari ’08, crosses Saint Peter’s Square on the way to and from work, shops at the Vatican’s grocery store, and has even had the Pope drop by her office. “It’s an amazing experience,” says Simari, who majored in Italian and English at Notre Dame and now works for the weekly English edition of the Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano. “I feel blessed to have these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities.”
Renowned poet Robert Creeley (1926-2005) was a master bookshelf builder, driven by a need to keep his beloved books “safe, sorted and out of harm’s way,” says his widow, Penelope Creeley. Thanks to a Library Acquisition Grant from the University of Notre Dame’s Office of the Provost, some 200 volumes of the late poet’s works are now safely tucked away in the special collections section of Notre Dame’s Hesburgh Libraries, with hundreds more to follow.
Hip-hop and boxing are not just entertainment for Notre Dame’s two new Moreau Academic Diversity Postdoctoral Fellows, Brian Su-Jen Chung and Jesse Costantino; they’re fertile ground for academic research. Chung, in the American studies department, and Costantino, in English, joined the College of Arts and Letters in fall 2011 as part of a University effort to enhance cultural awareness and diversity within the campus community.
University of Notre Dame students were awarded 13 Fulbright grants for the 2011-12 academic year, placing the University among the top universities in the nation. Eleven of the 13 are from the College of Arts and Letters. The U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program, Fulbright recently announced the complete list of colleges and universities that produced the most 2011-2012 U.S. Fulbright students.
October brought with it the experience of a lifetime for Margaret Doody, the John and Barbara Glynn Family Professor of Literature and the first Director of the Ph.D. in Literature Program, who spent the better part of the month in Singapore and China delivering lectures about the novel, women novelists, and the Enlightenment. Her trip began with a week long visit at Nanyang Technical University in Singapore followed by two weeks in China where she lectured at Beihang University and Peking University in Beijing. Professor Doody is best known in China for her monograph The True Story of the Novel
Electronic music roars and pulsates throughout the theatre. On stage, a blind man paces, struggling to escape the ring of steel bars that confine him. Meanwhile, a stern figure in a sleek suit and sunglasses stands guard. When the lights dim and dialogue begins to flash above the stage from an overhead projector, one thing is clear: This production of John Milton’s Samson Agonistes is far from ordinary.
Lauren Rich, a Ph.D. candidate in Notre Dame’s Department of English, has been awarded a 2011–12 American Dissertation Fellowship from the American Association of University Women for her research on food in early 20th century British and colonial fiction. Fewer than 10 percent of the more than 900 applicants were given fellowships.
Shortly after co-editing a book titled Form, Power, and Person in Robert Creeley’s Life and Work, the English department’s Stephen Fredman has been awarded a $125,000 Library Acquisition Grant from the Office of the Provost to support the library’s purchase of the late poet Robert Creeley’s library. This grant will contribute to the $684,000 cost of the collection, $80,000 of which Creeley’s widow donated to aid the acquisition and restoration of Creeley’s library. …
Letras Latinas, the literary program of the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Latino Studies (ILS), is partnering with the Poetry Society of America (PSA) to present “Latino/a Poetry Now,” a national tour that will showcase 15 poets in a span of two-and-a-half years. The joint initiative will open Tuesday, November 8 at Harvard University and conclude at Notre Dame Oct. 29–30, 2013.
Is the Bard a fraud? Is someone other than William Shakespeare the true author of the some of the most revered works of English literature, as the upcoming movie “Anonymous” suggests?
“Absolutely not,” according to University of Notre Dame Shakespeare expert Peter Holland, the McMeel Family Chair in Shakespeare Studies and Associate Dean for the Arts.
The commencement of the 2011-2012 school year brought with it the joint appointment of world-leading scholar Declan Kiberd to the department of English and the Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies. Professor Kiberd, who will teach at Notre Dame during the fall semesters and in the Irish Institute’s Dublin center during the spring and summer, specializes in modern Irish literature and culture with an emphasis on postcolonial theory. He is known for his many books on the subject, including Inventing Ireland: Literature of the Modern Nation…
John Duffy, associate professor in the English department and the Francis O’Malley Director of the University Writing Program, has recently co-edited the latest issue of Disability Studies Quarterly with Melanie Yergeau of the University of Michigan. This special issue entitled “Disability and Rhetoric” promotes new methodological possibilities for applying rhetorical approaches to the burgeoning study of disability. The issue’s goal––to raise questions about the relationship between rhetoric and disability––emphasizes how our conceptions of disability emerge out of a culturally and socially constructed set of symbols and narratives.…
Susan Blackwell Ramsey, a 2008 graduate of the University of Notre Dame’s M.F.A. in Creative Writing Program, is the winner of the Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry for 2011. She will receive a $3,000 prize and publication of her manuscript, A Mind Like This, by the University of Nebraska Press.
Gerald L. Bruns, William P. & Hazel B. White Professor Emeritus of English, taught at Notre Dame from 1984 to 2008. In “retirement” he has recently published several studies, including, On Ceasing to Be Human (Stanford University Press, 2011), of which Professor Steve Tomasula writes:
The genius of Gerald L. Bruns has always been his ability to ask exactly right questions about exactly right subjects to reveal why people write literature, how we read, and what the literature of the past can tell us about the world outside the book at our contemporary moment. When the very idea of meaning was under question, Bruns gave us Inventions: Writing, Textuality, and Understanding in Literary History…
Campus Compact, a coalition of more than 1,100 college and university presidents, has named Stuart Greene, an Institute for Educational Initiatives fellow and director of the Education, Schooling, and Society (ESS) program at the University of Notre Dame, one of four finalists for the 2011 Thomas Ehrlich Civically Engaged Faculty Award.
Stephen Fredman had a year worth celebrating in 2010. He published two books: a cultural history of mid-twentieth century American poetry and the arts entitled Contextual Practice: Assemblage and the Erotic in Postwar Poetry and Art; and a collection on the poet Robert Creeley, Form, Power, and Person in Robert Creeley’s Life and Work, which he edited with Steve McCaffery.
Laura Dassow Walls, a distinguished scholar of 19th century American literature and culture, will join the Notre Dame faculty in fall 2011 as the William P. and Hazel B. White Professor of English. Her arrival, notes Professor John Sitter, chair of the Department of English, is the latest in a series of recent hires that have been critical to the growth of the department.
Declan Kiberd, one of Ireland’s most prominent intellectuals, has been appointed Donald and Marilyn Keough Professor of Irish Studies and professor of English at the University of Notre Dame.
You can find Notre Dame graduates with degrees in English almost everywhere—and not just working in the classroom as teachers or professors. Indeed, according to a survey of alumni, they are thriving in a broad range of professions. Consider, as just one example, the members of a virtual departmental dynasty: brothers Greg ’87, Jeff ’89, and Mark Miller ’05. All three received English degrees before moving into careers that include finance, medicine, publishing, and higher education.
Pride in his cultural heritage and a love of literature prompted senior English major Matthew Coyne to delve into the origins of the Appalachian literary journal Cold Mountain Review last summer—a research project he then expanded into a senior thesis on influential regional writers.