This Week in English | April 26 – May 2, 2021

Naminata Diabate Presents in Rosalie Purvis Class Today at 2pm

Dr. Naminata Diabate will present at talk to Dr. Rosalie Purvis’s Performance Studies class this afternoon at 2pm via Zoom (open to the community but registration required). Her topic is “Menstrual Cloths in Paris: Globalization and Its Elucubrations.” Dr. Diabate’s book Naked Agency is currently available to the University of Maine community in electronic form via the Fogler Library. Of Naked Agency, Moradewun Adejunmobi, coeditor of Routledge Handbook of African Literature, says:

This is an expansive but nuanced and thought-provoking study of female nakedness as political intervention around Africa. Naked Agency offers a rich analysis of the many potential meanings of defiant disrobing as a signifying shorthand in relation to questions of agency within, but also potentially outside of an African context. 

Dr. Diabate’s talk, which focuses on a long tradition of protests in Paris against political instability in Côte d’Ivoire, suggests that “although presently visible, modified women’s cursing rituals, the most violent gesture women could unleash, are caught in a paradoxical dynamic of globalization.” 

Two Creative Writing Events  on Thursday

On Thursday, April 29th at 7:00pm, Gregory Howard and Hollie Adams will host a virtual event celebrating the creative theses (and Wicks Fellowship project) of this year’s outgoing MA/Wick’s students. Victoria Hood, Kelby Mace, Eric Arnold, Lydia Balestra, and Bill Koenig will read from their creative projects. The event is free to attend and open to the public. The Zoom link is here. Questions about the event can be directed to Hollie Adams or Greg Howard.

Two of Dr. Adams’s creative writing classes, ENG 308: Writing Poetry and ENG 407: Advanced Fiction Writing, will host virtual public readings during their last class meetings. 

Fourteen students from ENG 308 will read their poetry on Thursday, April 29th, 2:00pm-3:15pm via Zoom  

Nine students from ENG 407 will read their fiction (several of whom will be reading from their Capstone Projects) on Thursday, April 29th, 3:30 4:45pm via Zoom

Both events are free and open to the public.

English students and faculty are especially encouraged to attend. 

Brian Jansen Reviews New Book by Merve Emre

Brian Jansen’s review of Merve Emre’s Paraliterary: The Making of Bad Readers in Postwar America (2017) is included in the latest issue of the American literature journal Orbit. “What is perhaps most exciting about Paraliterary,” Jansen writes, are “the possibilities it suggests for future research, many of which Emre herself seems to recognize in her closing call for expanding our sense of literature and what it can do—a call that both registers and gropes for a way to counter the pressing dangers of precarity, insularity, and methodological infighting to English departments today.” 

Katie Swacha to Speak in Health and Medical Communication Series at Louisiana Tech University

Katie Swacha will deliver a talk entitled “The Coping with COVID Project: Everyday Stories and Negotiations of Public Health,” on Monday May 10th at 4:30 EST as part of Louisiana Tech University’s Health and Medical Communication Series. The talk will discuss initial findings from her ongoing research, The Coping with COVID Project, which explores people’s everyday negotiations of COVID-related public health guidelines. More info, including details on how to register for this free event, can be found here

EGSA Symposium Recording Available Now

A recording of last Thursday’s ESGA Symposium is now available online via Zoom.

Forthcoming Volume of Essays by Jennifer Moxley

Jennifer Moxley’s new collection of essays, For the Good of All, Do Not Destroy the Birds, is set for publication on September 1 from Flood Editions 

A blend of literary criticism and memoir, Jennifer Moxley’s For the Good of All, Do Not Destroy the Birds recounts a life spent in the company of birds and poems, intimately attuned to the mysteries of singing. These essays trace the poet’s calling to sources in birdsong and sacrifice, asking, “Must a woman be sentenced to endless night for a poet to be born?” From the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice to the death of the poet’s mother, Moxley explores the losses that underlie poetry, and in turn, poetry’s use as a measure for living.

For the Good of All, Do Not Destroy the Birds opens a magical place of clean-lined prose, scholarly knowledge, and inspiration. The writing is deep and lucid, it cuts to the bone and yet respects the mystery of things. It works by a literary transfiguration. The poet shines with bright rays of thought and skill as she stands on a mount of experience created by the songs of poets and birds—from Sappho and Ovid to Robert Duncan and Anne Carson, from nightingales to lyrebirds—until they appear next to her and converse with her as she writes. — Robert Adamson

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This Week in English 103 was sent to students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends of the department on Monday, April 26, 2021. 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’re on Facebook, please consider joining the newly formed English Department Group.

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