English Department News Letter and Calendar

Publisher: Susan Belasco


Matthew L. Jockers and David Mimno published "Significant Themes in 19th-Century Literature." Poetics. November 1, 2013.

Michelle Menting's chapbook, Myth of Solitude, was recently released from Imaginary Friend Press. Her essay, "On Mattresses," appears in Connotation Press: An Online Artifact. She also has poems forthcoming in Prairie Gold: An Anthology of the American Heartland, and her poem"Couch Surfing Upper Michigan after Lincoln, Nebraska," will appear in the next issue of Weave Magazine.

Marco Abel published "Yearning for Genre: The Films of Dominik Graf" in Generic Histories of German Cinema: Genre and Its Deviations (Camden House, 2013: 261-284). Marco also published, "The Agonistic Politics of the Dreileben Project," in German Studies Review 36.3 (October 2013): 607-616. His essay is part of a special "GSA Conference Snapshot" section, "The Berlin School (1): The DREILEBEN Experiment," which he has co-edited with Christina Gerhardt (U Hawaii). The Dreileben project consists of three interlocking feature films–made by the two Berlin School filmmakers Christian Petzold and Christoph Hochhäusler, as well as Dominik Graf—that share two key premises: the same setting (the fictional East German town of 'Dreileben”) and the core narrative event of the escape of an alleged murderer. The idea for this filmic experiment resulted from a debate between the three filmmakers about film aesthetics and contemporary German cinema.

Benjamin Vogt’s essay "Mnisota" will appear in Prairie Gold: An Anthology of the American Heartland. The piece reflects on growing up in Minnesota, the Sioux Uprising, and the largest mass execution in American history. Sarah A. Chavez's poem Looking on Marvin Coneâ's Painting Attic Door No. 2" will appear in the anthology In Gilded Frame: An Anthology of Ekphrastic Poetry. Her poem “Cheers to the Dead” is in the current issue of The Moon Magazine.

Ryan Oberhelman’s short story “Sheep of the Pasture” was accepted by The Florida Review and will be published in the Winter 2014 issue.

PhD student Daniel Boster’s poem, “In the Mugshot” will appear in the May 2014 issue of English Journal.

Grace Bauer’s poems “A Mind of Winter” and “Great Plains Prayer” appear in the anthology An Untidy Season: An Anthology of Nebraska Women Poets just published by The Backwaters Press. Her poems “Autumnal Prayer” and “The Nothing That Is” appear in the Fall/Winter issue of Atlanta Review. Grace has poems forthcoming in Concho River Review, Fairy Tale Review, Gargoyle, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Hobble Creek Review, Hotel Amerika and North American Review. Her review of Ai’s Collected Poems is also forthcoming in Prairie Schooner. Grace’s poems also appear in recent issues of Atlanta Review, Concho River Review and Hayden’s Ferry Review, which also features a post about her poem “Mellow Drama” on their blog. "

Wheeler Winston Dixon has published an article, “The Noir Vision of Max Ophüls, Romantic Fatalist,” in Film International, November 14, 2013, http://filmint.nu/?p=10043; an essay, “The Invisible Cinema of Marcel Hanoun,” in Film International November 24, 2013, http://filmint.nu/?p=10130; a revew, “Catching Fire Flames Out,” in Cinespect November 22, 2013, http://cinespect.com/2013/11/catching-fire-flames/; and a brief essay, “OffOn: The Film That Changed the Language of Cinema,” Cinespect November 25, 2013, http://cinespect.com/2013/11/offon-film-changed-language-cinema/ (among many other publications and appearances).

Raul Palma had two short stories accepted for publication: "Amaranthus," a reprint which appeared in Midwestern Gothic, and "Sloppy Joes" an excerpt from his novella Immaculate Mulch, which was published in Saw Palm: Florida Literature & Art. He also had two flash fiction stories accepted by NANO Fiction: "P E C F D" and "Espuma." Additionally, he had three poems accepted for publication: "Hendrixa" will appear in Calliope; "Small Feathersa" appeared in Dark Matter; and "Binding," appeared in The Lincoln Underground. His short story "Sweet Hash" which was published in Penduline, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. His essay "Jell-O" appeared in NEAT. Lastly, his essay "All that David Copperfield Kind of Crap: The Explicit and Non-Explicit Unreliable Narrator" will appear in The Criterion: An International Journal of English. Vol1, #5 (2014).

Wendy Oleson has a story forthcoming in The MacGuffin, and an essay (her first creative nonfiction pub! Thanks, Joy Castro!) forthcoming in The Journal.

Kwame Dawes‘ poem “In This Saying” has been accepted for publication by The Kenyon Review and his poem “Making a Deal” will appear on KROnline. Additionally, his poem “News from Harlem” has been nominated by Hayden’s Ferry Review for a Pushcart Prize.

Sarah Fawn Montgomery’s essay, “An Unseen Figure in Matisse’s Le Bonheur de Vivre,” which appears in the current issue of Zone 3, was also awarded the magazine’s annual Nonfiction Award. You can read the essay here: http://www.apsu.edu/zone3/sarah-fawn-montgomery. In addition, her poems, “Murmuration” and “Seeing, Choices,” will appear in Canary, “The Astronaut Kisses Saturn,” will appear in Harpur Palate, and “Where the West Begins,” will appear in Fourth River.

Ian Rogers’s essay about the three leaked J.D. Salinger stories, “Why We Should Respect Salinger’s Wishes”, was published by The Millions magazine.

Casey Pycior has stories forthcoming in Pear Noir! and Beloit Fiction Journal this spring. Additionally, his short story collection, Bald Horizons, was one of five finalists for the 2014 Iowa / John Simmons Short Fiction Awards.

Tom Lynch’s nonfiction essay "Barefoot into Reality at Paruku,” about his visit to Paruku (Lake Gregory) in Australia’s Tanami Desert, and his participation in the interdisciplinary “Paruku Project,” has just been published in EarthLines 8. A digital copy of the magazine can be purchased for the low, low price of 3.99 euros.

Aubrey Streit Krug’s chapter “Reproducing Plant Bodies on the Great Plains” was published in the book Plants and Literature: Essays in Critical Plant Studies (Rodopi Press, 2013). She thanks Stacey Waite, Tom Lynch, and Fran Kaye for their help with this piece. In addition, Aubrey’s article “Thinking Like a Prairie: A Contemporary Land Ethic in Great Plains Literature” was recently published in the Ravenshaw Journal of Literary and Cultural Studies in a 2014 special issue on contemporary green studies edited by Scott Slovic.

Essays by Melissa Homestead, Guy Reynolds, and Kari Ronning all appeared in a special issue of Studies in the Novel devoted to “The Work of Willa Cather: Creation, Design, and Reception,” edited by Andrew JewellGrace Bauer’s newest collection of poems, Nowhere All At Once is just out from Stephen F. Austin State University Press.

In addition to publishing her novel, Cumberland, this April, Apprentice House will be publishing Megan Gannon’s full length collection of poetry, White Nightgown, in late 2014.

Marco Abel and Roland Végső are pleased to announce that the University of Nebraska Press has agreed to start a new book series. As co-editors of “Provocations,” Marco and Roland will seek to publish ambitious, polemical texts that exist outside the traditional formats of academic discourse (longer than an academic article and shorter than a standard monograph) and will concentrate on broad philosophical and theoretical subjects involving the humanities. Seeking to fill a hole in the field of the theoretical humanities, books in the series http://provocations.weebly.com will take a strong stand on a contemporary debate or issue with the humanities and propose a clearly formulated (even if controversial) intervention.

Claire Harlan Orsi’s review of new graphic novels by Ben Katchor and Chris Ware appears in the current issue of the Brooklyn Rail.

Gabriel Houck Short story, "Hero’s Theater”, won the Mid American Review’s Sherwood Anderson Fiction Prize. The story will be published in the Spring 2014 issue

The first book in the University of Nebraska Press’s Ted Kooser series of poetry collections, Jared Carter’s Darkened Rooms of Summer; New and Selected Poems, is ready for its March release. Ted has agreed to select and edit a collected poems every year or two, of a new and selected poems by a contemporary American poet who has not received the recognition his or her work deserves.The next one will be Connie Wanek’s Rival Gardens; New and Selected Poems, which will probably come out in late 2015. Ted, who has always loved publishing the work of poets he admires, is immensely thankful to Donna Shear and Derek Krissoff at the Press for getting behind this initiative.

Jaime Brunton has two poems in the latest issue of SPECS journal of art and culture .

Benjamin Vogt keeps writing weekly garden articles for Houzz and they keep publishing them. Topics include native plants, gardening for wildlife, replacing lawn with prairie, and environmental musing. Several pieces have reached 70,000 views.

Timothy Schaffert’s fifth novel, The Swan Gondola, was published on Feb 6. It was a recent Oprah.com/O magazine “Book of the Week,” and one of 10 best fiction e-books for the month of February at iTunes. It is currently in the top 10 of Kindle’s new releases/historical, and an Editor’s Pick from the Historical Novel Society. Schaffert and the book were the subjects of a two-page article in Publishers Weekly, and the book has been reviewed and/or featured in the Lincoln Journal Star, Omaha World Herald, Washington Post, Good Housekeeping, Miami Herald, Minneapolis Star Tribune, St Louis Post-Dispatch, Denver Post, Kansas City Star, and other publications. His fourth novel, The Coffins of Little Hope, was released as an audio book in December.

Marianne Kunkel’s poem “Homeschooled,” which first appeared in Cimarron Review, was featured on Verse Daily on January 16. The poem was also nominated for a Pushcart Prize.


Matt Jockers offered a formal response for a panel titled “Seeing with Numbers: Sociological and Macroanalytic Approaches to Literary Exclusion” at the Modern Language Association National Meeting in Chicago, IL, January 9, 2014, gave an invited lecture (“Tracking Valence and Plot in 50,000 Narratives: A Macroanalysis.”) at Stanford (November 11th, 2013), and a set of two text analysis workshops at Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI. February 19-21, 2014.

Mike Page presented the paper “The Loudons and the Agricultural Imagination” at the International Conference in Romanticism on September 28 in Rochester, Michigan.

From 11/20 to 12/6, the Museum of Modern Art hosted a major exhibition of the films of the Berlin School. Parallel to the film exhibition at MoMA, the Deutsche Haus at NYU hosted a two-day symposium, “The State We’re In: The Films of the Berliner Schule.” The symposium consisted of 4 panels, featuring 6 Berlin School filmmakers, one of their regular cinematographers, and the “face” the Berlin School, actress Nina Hoss. Marco Abel was invited to moderate two of the four panels.

Sarah A. Chavez was the Multicultural Literature in the Classroom: Politics and Pedagogy area chair for the Midwest Modern Language Association Conference Nov. 7-11, 2013. The two panels: “African American Poetry, Cultural Identity and Contextualization” and “Ethnic American Poetry, Language and Advocacy” were surprisingly well attended. DeMisty Bellinger, Jason Hertz and Nima Najafi Kianfar were among the presenters.

Casey Pycior presented his short story, “Pinchbeck,” at the 2013 John R. Milton Writers' Conference in Vermilion, South Dakota on November 2. This story is also forthcoming in the journal Pear Noir!

Grace Bauer is featured on the latest episode of Air Schooner, where she is interviewed by host, Stacey Waite. Grace reads poems from her forthcoming book, Nowhere All At Once, and, along with poets Jamall May and Ross Gay, discusses writing the poetic series. She also read as part of a One Billion And Rising fundraising event (supporting organizations fighting domestic violence) at MoJava Café.

Last month, Wendy Oleson curated and read at an event for Lit Crawl Los Angeles.

Steve Buhler presented a paper, “The Duke Speaks Out: Integration and Appropriation in Ellington’s Such Sweet Thunder and My People,” at the University of Alabama Symposium on Shakespeare and American Integration in November. The symposium was part of a year-long celebration, “Through the Doors,” honoring the 50th anniversary of the university’s desegregation.

“Gazi University in Ankara, Turkey, was the site of a presentation “Online education: Course management, Blogs, Wikis, and MOOCS - What Will you Make of your Curriculum” given in June by Dr. Jane Hanson of the English Dept at UNL. The Northern Nebraska Reading Association sponsored a talk by Dr. Jane Hanson at the Seward Public Library in January, “ESL Needs and Your Curriculum: Basic Strategies and Tools You Can Employ for Improved Literacy.”

Jill McCabe Johnson served as guest faculty at the Whidbey Writers Workshop MFA in January.

In January, *Marco Abel* presented, "What Was ‘Left’€™ Filmmaking around 1968: The New Munich Group,” at the Modern Language Association Conference in Chicago.

Benjamin Vogt was one of four Nebraska authors (along with state laureate Twyla Hansen) facilitating the annual Writer Writes 8th grade workshop, sponsored by the Nebraska Literary Heritage Association, Lincoln Public Libraries, and Lincoln Public Schools. Over 50 young writers were chosen to participate from area schools for this one day event.

Raul Palma will be the keynote speaker at DePaul University’s 5th annual Peer Tutor and Mentor Summit, which will be held on October 31st.


Melissa Homestead guest-lectured on Death Comes for the Archbishop via Skype for Jon Smith’s undergraduate seminar on Willa Cather and William Faulkner at Simon Fraser University in Van Couver. In person, she traveled to Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa, to guest lecture in the American literature survey class of UNL English Ph.D. Amber Harris Leichner, discussing with students the original periodical publication of Susan Glaspell’s short story “A Jury of Her Peers,” which appears in Melissa’s digital edition of Every Week Magazine

Dr. Jane Hanson, of the English Department, has also been named a national trustee of the board of directors of the Mensa Education and Research Foundation. Founded in 1971, the Mensa Education & Research Foundation is a philanthropic, nonprofit 501©(3) organization committed to the pursuit of excellence in human intelligence. The mission and strategic focus are directed at scholarships, education and awards. Each year the Mensa Foundation gives away an average of $60,000 through a scholarship program run by 400 volunteers from coast to coast; presents national and international awards in recognition of research, education and practical achievement regarding giftedness, intelligence and creativity; and publishes the Mensa Research Journal. The Mensa Foundation also sponsors award-winning educational activities including the podcast series Conversations with Mensa and projects for gifted youth such as the Mensa For Kids Web site. Mensa Foundation siteJane teaches Linguistics & Society (ENGL322B) for the department, as well as ENGL187, 186, 150, and Intensive English Program classes. Last semester she taught TEAC311 - Reading Methods, a distance learning course (Indigenous Roots Program) for Native American teachers and educators in reservations across Nebraska, and has taught the online course TEAC413A/813A - ESL Acquisition.

In October, Jane Hanson, PhD served as a national judge for the Fulbright - Germany panel in Denver."

We have recently confirmed that the Nineteenth-Century Studies Association [NCSA] will be holding its annual conference in Lincoln in April, 2016. Laura White will be the Local Arrangements Director, and the Departments of English, MLL, History, Art and Art History, as well as the Institute of Ethnic Studies, the Nineteenth-Century Studies Program, the Center for Digital Research in the Humanities, and the College of Arts and Sciences have all signed on as co-sponsors. We hope to involve many of the nineteenth-century faculty members and graduate students of this department and others in the planning for the program and other aspects of the conference’s planning.

Erica Rogers was awarded her second UNL Parents' Association Certificate of Recognition for Contributions to Students on February 7, 2014. According to the comment sheet provided by the association, a parent nominated Erica for the award for opening “…my daughter’s eyes to multiple ways of thinking, and has given her inspiration in ways of teaching as she pursues a career as a teacher.”

A book signing for Grace Bauer’s new collection Nowhere All At Once will be held at Indigo Bridge Books on Sunday, March 16th, from 4:00-5:30.

On March 9 at 3:00 in the Sheldon Gallery, Julia Schleck will be performing in a special concert event featuring a collaboration of Glenn Korff School of Music student musicians, dancers, professional musicians, and community organizations. It will involve the UNL Chamber Singers, NOVA, a group of professional singers, the Skyros graduate string quartet, the NAOVA children’s choir, the i2 choir, and dancers from our UNL dance department. Among other pieces, it will feature Tarik O'Regan’s beautiful work “THE ECSTASIES ABOVE” for Chamber Choir, soloists and string quartet, and Eric Whitacre’s sweetly moving “FIVE HEBREW LOVE SONGS”. “The Ecstasies Above” is based on a poem by Edgar Allen Poe, which was itself based on a verse from the Koran. “Five Hebrew Love Songs” has special significance for Julia, since Gerry Shapiro coached her through the Hebrew in preparation for her first performance of this moving piece.

The Lost Diary of David Livingstone, a documentary that spotlights the work of Adrian Wisnicki on the Livingstone Spectral Imaging Project, will be shown on PBS on March 26.


“Humanities on the Edge” is proud to bring three speakers to campus this semester. After Deirdre McCloskey’s visit in late February, the second and third speakers are Christina Rodriguez (Thursday, March 13th) and Imre Szeman (Thursday, April 10th).

Cristina Rodriguez (Professor of Law, Yale Law School) will give a lecture entitled, “Immigration Reform and the Political Value of Manufactured Crisis.” Professor Rodriguez clerked under Supreme Court Judge Sandra Day O'Connor and worked in the Obama administrations Office of Legal Council in the Department of Justice. For more on Professor Rodriguez see http://www.law.yale.edu/faculty/CRodriguez.htm.

Imre Szeman (Canada Research Chair in Cultural Studies and Professor of English, Film Studies, and Sociology at the University of Alberta) will give a lecture entitled, “On Empty: The Cultural Politics of Oil.” For more on Professor Szeman see http://www.crcculturalstudies.ca.

All lectures will take place at the Sheldon Museum of Art’s auditorium. We hope to see many of you at one or more of these events; please consider encouraging your students to attend as well.


The 2014 Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities will be held at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln on April 10-11, 2014. A public lecture on April 10, “Teaching, Writing, and Researching in the Digital Age,” will open the Forum at 3:30 p.m. at the Great Plains Art Museum at 1155 Q Street. Keynote speakers for the public lecture are Matthew Jockers (University of Nebraska-Lincoln), T. Mills Kelly (George Mason University), and Ruth Mostern (University of California, Merced). On Friday, invited scholars will share their current research and lead discussion around the Forum’s central theme, “Digital Histories and Digital Authorship.” Friday’s speakers include Vanessa Holden (Michigan State University), Kyle Roberts (Loyola University Chicago), Ben Schmidt (Northeastern University), and Amanda Visconti (University of Maryland). Friday’s sessions will be held in the Gaughan Multicultural Center on the UNL City Campus beginning at 8:30 a.m. More information will be available soon at http://cdrh.unl.edu/opportunities/nebraskaforum.php