This Week in English | September 24 – 30, 2018

Whether you’re reading Hamlet with Professor Bicks, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof with Professor Brucher, Sir Orfeo with Professor Harlan-Haughey, or History of Wolves with Professor Neiman, I hope this crisp fall weather finds you hitting your stride as we enter the fourth week of the semester.

Writing Center Hosts Musicians

On September 18th, the Writing Center hosted thirty-one music majors from Elizabeth Downing’s course, MUS 150. The Center’s new cohort of tutors-in-training, led by director Paige Mitchell, facilitated a writing workshop to help the performing arts students design their professional biographies. This was the second annual collaboration between the music majors and the Writing Center.

New Reviews by Deborah Rogers

This fall Professor Deborah Rogers is teaching American Short Fiction (Eng 245) and a graduate seminar on The Enlightenment (Eng 555). This summer she published two reviews of fine art exhibitions for the British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies’s online “Criticks” feature. The first is on Canova’s portrait of George Washington (Frick Collection, May 23-September 23, 1018) and the second on Korean art of the eighteenth century (Metropolitan Museum, February 23-May 20, 2018). Professor Rogers received the CLAS Award for Faculty Achievement in Research and Creative Activity in 2009.

Interdisciplinary Romp: Honors Talk on Tuesday

UMaine Honors Alumnus Isaac Record (class of 2003) will talk about “Life, the University and Everything: My Romp Across the Disciplines in Pursuit of Answers” in Hauck Auditorium on Tuesday, September 25, at 3:30pm. The event is co-sponsored by the McGillicuddy Humanities Center, which is directed by English Professor Margo Lukens. (See attached flyer.)

New Writing Series: Fiction Reading on Thursday

Eugene Lim kicks off the New Writing Series with a reading on Thursday at 4:30 in the Allen and Sally Fernald APPE Space (Stewart Commons 104). Hua Hsu characterized Lim’s style this way in a June 2017 piece for the New Yorker:

His writing is confident and tranquil; he has a knack for making everyday life seem strange—or, in the case of “Dear Cyborgs,” for making revolution seem like the most natural thing possible. His writing is transfixing from page to page, filled with digressive meditations on small talk and social protest, superheroes, terrorism, the art world, and the status of being marginal. A superhero shows up at a karaoke bar and launches into a four-page monologue about the co-optation of the avant-garde and the “immense, stealthy powers” of money. A supervillain spends an entire standoff talking about the Shanghainese meal she had after going down to Occupy Wall Street for the first time—“to be near a moment that would exist only briefly, so that we could embody the flicker of their protest, a protest that seemed dangerous, that seemed real.”

Lim’s reading is free and open to the public. It will be introduced by Gregory Howard and followed by a Q&A with the audience.

Notice of Date Change: English Department Meeting

To avoid a scheduling conflict, we’ve moved the first meeting of the full department to October 4 at 2pm (room TBA). Please direct agenda items to <> by end of day on September 27th.

Mark Your Calendar: Leigh Gilmore on #MeToo this October 30

Stephen E. King Chair of Literature Caroline Bicks has announced the next event in the Chair’s on-going series of public lectures. On October 30 at 4:30pm in the Minsky Recital Hall, Leigh Gilmore will present “Graphic Witness: Testimony, Confession, and the #MeToo Movement.”

Leigh Gilmore is Distinguished Visiting Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies at Wellesley College. She is the author of Tainted Witness: Why We Doubt What Women Say About Their Lives (Columbia UP 2017); The Limits of Autobiography: Trauma and Testimony (Cornell UP 2001); Autobiographics: A Feminist Theory of Women’s Self-Representation (Cornell UP 1994); and co-author with Elizabeth Marshall of Witnessing Girlhood: Life Writing, Trauma, and Childhood (Fordham UP, forthcoming). She writes for NPR’s The Conversation and Cognoscenti and has appeared widely as a guest analyst of the #MeToo movement.

Quick Links

  • National Voter Registration Day is Tuesday, September 25. UMaine’s Voter Activation Team is led by Rob Glover and is designed “to create an annual moment when the entire nation focuses on registering Americans to exercise their most basic right — the right to vote.”

  • Damon Williams will talk about his “inclusive excellence model” for postsecondary institutions on Wednesday, September 25, at 5pm in the Buchanan Alumni House.

  • First-year Academic Success is the focus of a forum hosted by the Division of Academic Affairs this Thursday, September 27, at 3pm in the Bangor Room.

Best wishes to all as we begin an eventful week—and if Ellen, Celeste, or I can be of help, don’t hesitate to ask!

Steve Evans

English Department Chair

This Week in English 31 was circulated to faculty, students, and friends of the department on Monday, September 24, 2018. If you would rather not receive these weekly bulletins, please reply with <unsubscribe> in your subject line. Earlier installments are archived on our website.

If you’d like to support the mission of the English Department, please consider a donation to the Annual Fund through this secure online portal.