Department of English Newsletter April 2017

Upcoming Department Events

12:00 pm
3:30 pm
5:15 pm
Barrymore's, 124 N 13th Street
7:00 pm
5:30 pm
6:00 pm
5:00 pm
Barrymore's, 124 N 13th Street
6:00 pm
Love Library South Room 221 (Peterson Room)
All day
7:00 pm
Nebraska Union Auditorium

Publications & Acceptances

April is National Poetry Month! The Creative Writing Program is celebrating with events throughout the month. See the full schedule, with poetry readings by alumni as well as current faculty and students, at

Spring 2017 Prairie Schooner coverThe new Spring 2017 issue of Prairie Schooner, 91.1, was released this week, marking our 91st year of continuous publication. The new issue contains E.M. Tran's essay "Miss Saigon," winner of our 2016 Creative Nonfiction Contest judged by Kiese Laymon along with new work from Terese Svoboda, Twyla Hansen, Anis Shivani, Leslie Adrienne Miller, and more. The issue features cover art by Toronto-based Sandra Brewster and includes a list of all our 2016 writing award recipients.

Screenshot of Dixon's workMarco Abel published "A Few Notes on German Cinema at the 67th Berlin Film Festival" in Senses of Cinema 82 (March 2017).

Photo of Orsamus Charles Dake, courtesy of Nebraska State Historical SocietyJust in time for the Nebraska Sesquicentennial, Steve Behrendt has published "Orsamus Charles Dake:  Nebraska's First Published Poet" in the Winter 2017 issue of Great Plains Quarterly. Not just Nebraska's first published poet (his first book-length collection, of two, appeared in 1871), Dake (1832-1875) was also the first Professor of English appointed to the University when it opened in 1871. Dake died unexpectedly of a cerebral hemorrhage in 1875. Although many of his poems are "old-fashioned," some of them -- especially his Nebraska-themed poems -- are remarkably interesting, as are his life and experiences after coming to Nebraska in 1862.

Wheeler Winston Dixon has published two new reviews, "Beyond Blaxploitation by Novotny Lawrence and Gerald R. Butters, Jr., eds.," and "Film Criticism and Digital Cultures: Journalism, Social Media and the Democratization of Opinion by Andrew McWhirter," both in the May 2017 issue of Choice.

Woman on Train from THE LADY AND THE DUKEDixon has also published an essay, "Scenes from a Revolution: Éric Rohmer’s L'Anglaise et le Duc (The Lady and The Duke)," in Senses of Cinema 82 (March, 2017).

Rhonda Garelick published a commissioned essay on fashion and art in the March issue of the Brooklyn Rail. She also published a short piece about famous writers' bars around the globe in the Wall Street Journal. She would like to add that it was her knowledge of literature not bars that led to this assignment.

Jaime Brunton's article "Whose (Meta)modernism?: Metamodernism, Race, and the Politics of Failure" was accepted for publication in Journal of Modern Literature.

Patrick T. Randolph published a featured article in the College ESL Quarterly called, Constructing a Neural-Web of Personal Connections: Introducing the Head-to-Toe Method of Associations for Vocabulary Acquisition. This is the first part of a series on his vocabulary pedagogy for English Language Teachers. In the article, he first looks at the daunting Ebbinghaus curse, which tells us that we will forget up to 90 % of what we learn within a mere 30 days. So, how can we break that age-old curse? He also shows the needs of English language learners (ELLs) in terms of how many lexical items they need to be successful at American institutions of higher education, and then explains the overall benefits of his method.

Kristi Carter has four poems in ROAR: Literature and Revolution by Feminist People.

Maureen Daniels has two poems, "The Last of Us," and "The Vegas Roadtrip" forthcoming in the May issue of Southern Florida Poetry Review.

Ryler Dustin's poem, "Portrait: Last Night in London," is forthcoming in the Autumn issue of The Southern Review. In June, he will begin the Margery Davis Boyden Wilderness Writing Residency, a ten-month residency in Oregon's Rogue River Valley.

Maria Nazos' poem and recording of "Bungee Jumping" appeared in Issue 151 of TriQuarterly. 

Cameron Steele's poetry-critical theory hybrid paper "Everything Broken To Disappear: Poetry, Landscape, and the Damaged Body" has been accepted to Twelfth Biennial Conference of the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment (ASLE), to be held June 20-24, 2017, at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan.

Conferences, Readings, Workshops & Presentations

Crystal Bock Thiessen, instructor in Programs in English as a Second Language (PIESL), gave two presentations at the Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) International Convention in Seattle, Washington, March 21-24. The first, entitled Supplementing Limited EFL Materials with Bloom's Taxonomy and Web 2.0 was a practiced-oriented session geared towards English as a foreign language (EFL) instructors working with limited or outdated English language textbooks or assessment tools. Participants learned about various free Web 2.0 platforms that correspond to each level of the taxonomy for maximum language retention, interaction, and engagement among their students.

The second presentation was Photography in ELT: Engage, Inspire, Create, Learn. This session introduced and demonstrated photography-based activities and lessons for building skills in vocabulary, oral expression, creative writing, and community engagement for all levels of English language learners and photographers. Bock Thiessen has both a bachelor's degree and background experience in photography, and enjoys incorporating the method into her language classrooms.

Jaime Brunton presented her paper "Narratives of Queer Criminality After Obergefel.: Todd Haynes’ Carol and Patricia Highsmith’s The Price of Salt at the Louisville Conference on Literature and Culture last month at the University of Louisville.

Wheeler Winston Dixon was interviewed on Dorothy Arzner’s film "Merrily We Go To Hell," as part of a retrospective of Arzner's work at the Melbourne Cinematheque, on the national radio program The Final Cut with Jason Di Rosso, for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on March 17, 2017.

In July, Rhonda Garelick will be the keynote speaker at the London College of Fashion/University of the Arts, for a conference on Fashion and Politics. Her talk is entitled, "Blow Up: Fashion in the Age of Terrorism," and is to be published afterward in a volume under contract to Oxford University Press.

Patrick Randolph at TESOL ConventionPatrick T. Randolph of PIESL gave three presentations at this year’s TESOL International Convention and English Language Expo in Seattle, Washington. His first presentation was Using Creative Writing to Help English Language Learners Enhance Their Academic Writing. This talk was part of a panel presentation called, Developing an Appropriate Pedagogy: Writing and Multilingual University Student. Randolph’s second talk, Breaking the Unwanted Stepchild Curse: Elevating the Image of ES, was a multi-speaker workshop that looked at how professionals in the field can make their discipline more respected and accepted in both the primary and secondary public schools and institutions of higher education across the country. His third talk, ELL Read-a-thons: Feeling the Language and Performing the Written Word, was a practice-oriented presentation that introduced drama-based poetry read-a-thons as a solution to help English language learners feel, understand, and use the English language at a deeper level of clarity, confidence, and control.

Takako Smith (PIESL) presented a paper titled "Using Visual Mnemonics to Differentiate Commonly Confused Words" at the 2017 TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) International Convention in Seattle.

Kristi Carter, Raul Palma, and Alan Blair gave a panel titled "Transregional Aesthetics: Creative Writing in the Midwest" at Creighton University's "'You Are Here': An Interdisciplinary Conference on Place, Space, and Embodiment" on March 24, 2017. Kristi's presentation was titled "Feminist Poetics, Contemporary Politics, and the Midwest: Poems," and featured poems that wield an intersectional lens to grapple with the implications of regressive politics for women and LGBTQ individuals. Raul's presentation "Displacing Narrative Exceptionalism" featured fiction from his collection of stories In These Cities of Ultraviolet Light.

Katie McWain received a Joy Currie Graduate Student Travel Fellowship to attend the 2017 Conference on College Composition and Communication in Portland, Oregon. She presented a paper entitled "A Foot in Both Worlds: Toward a Teacher Development Framework for Dual-Enrollment Composition."

Nicole Green, Katie McWain, and Darin Jensen presented as part of a panel entitled "Breaking New Ground: Cultivating Teacher/Scholar/Activist Development Across Institutional Contexts" at the 2017 Conference on College Composition and Communication in Portland, Oregon. Dr. Christie Toth of the University of Utah served as panel respondent.

Katie McWain, Rachel Azima, and Nicole GreenRachel Azima, Nicole Green, and Katie McWain facilitated a roundtable workshop entitled "Ways of Being and Knowing: Using Staff Development to Foster Greater Individual and Sociocultural Awareness Among Consultants" at the 2017 International Writing Centers Association Collaborative in Portland, Oregon.

Poster for Word in the HaymarketMaria Nazos will be attending the Colrain Manuscript Conference in late April. She will be reading with Raul Palma, Àngel Garcìa, and several other talented artists and musicians at Word in the Haymarket at the Starlite Lounge on Friday, April 7th from 7-9pm.

At the end of March, Lydia Presley presented "Writing Survivance in the Great Plains: Stories from the Genoa U.S. Indian School" at the You are Here: Interdisciplinary Conference on Place, Space, and Embodiment at Creighton University.

On March 25, Cory Willard presented "'Saving Fly Over Country: The Meaning of Ecology, Experience, and Aesthetics on the Great Plains"' at the You are Here: Interdisciplinary Conference on Place, Space, and Embodiment at Creighton University.

On March 31, Cory Willard presented "'Finding the Platte'" at the 2017 Great Plains Symposium "Flat Places, Deep Identities: Mapping Nebraska and the Great Plains" in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Jeannette Schollaert will present her paper, "Ecotourism in Red Cloud, Nebraska: Literary Prairie Preservation in Catherland," in the Travel & Tourism area of the National Popular Culture/American Culture Association Conference in San Diego on April 12th.

Activities, Accolades, & Grants

Grace Bauer has received the Dean's Award for Excellence in Graduate Education. She wishes to thank Julia Schleck and the Graduate Committee for nominating her for this award.

In conjunction with Georgetown University and the U.S. Department of State's English Language Programs, Crystal Bock Thiessen presented her webinar, Photography in ELT: Engage, Inspire, Create, Learn live on the American English Webinars site on March 29. With a strong background and degree in photography, Bock Thiessen introduced and demonstrated photography-based activities and lessons for building skills in vocabulary, oral expression, creative writing, and community engagement for all levels of English language learners and photographers. The webinar is archived on the American English Webinar site and may be accessed at any time.

Patrick T. Randolph has helped set up the first National Poetry Month celebration with the faculty at Love Library. On April 19th at 7:00 p.m., he and his international students will read poems on the theme, "A sense of place."

Kristi Carter has been nominated for Bettering American Poetry 2016 and and Best New Poets 2017 for her poems appearing in Nimrod and Naugatuck River Review.

Maria Nazos is the grateful recipient of a 2017 Mayor's Arts Award for Emerging Writer, which includes a stipend from the Lincoln Arts Council and a residency from the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts. She also received an Honorable Mention for the The Outstanding Graduate Research and Creative Activities Award.

Raul Palma was awarded a pre-doctoral diversity fellowship at Ithaca College where he will complete his dissertation using resources at both Ithaca College and Cornell University. Additionally, he was chosen to be the Nebraska Literary Heritage Association's Honorary Author elect.

Have news or noteworthy happenings to share?

The Department of English encourages our faculty and current students to submit stories about their activities and publications of note by filling out the Department Newsletter Submission Form.