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Alumni News

In the fall semester of 2015, Dr. Marlene Allen (MA 1996, PhD 2005) became Assistant Professor of English Literature at United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) in Al Ain, Abu Dhabi Emirate, United Arab Emirates, where she teaches courses in American and English literature. She recently submitted an essay, “The Black Male Body in Early African American Science Fiction: The Experimental Case of Sutton Griggs’s Imperium in Imperio,” for publication in the collection The Male Body in Medicine and Literature, which is forthcoming from Liverpool University Press. She also presented papers at the 2015 Biannual Collegium for African American Research (CAAR) conference held in Liverpool, UK, and at the 2016 College Language Association Conference held in Houston, TX. Additionally, in the summer of 2015, she taught a course on Multicultural American Literature for the International Summer Session at Chonnam National University in Gwangju, South Korea.


Aggie Ebrahimi Bazaz (MA 2007) was recently awarded a prestigious National MediaMaker Fellowship, a highly competitive NEH-supported fellowship administered through the Bay Area Video Coalition (BAVC). The fellowship will support the development of Aggie's feature-length documentary-in-progress which follows farm-working families in California's Great Central Valley. The fellowship underwrites five immersive gatherings with fellow filmmakers, including attendance at two national documentary film festivals and also provides ongoing support and mentorship to fuel the film's growth. Aggie was also awarded a Skidmore College MDOCS Storytellers Institute artist's residency for June, which will provide time to work on two doc-fiction hybrid screenplays in development.


Eleanor J. Blount (PhD 2008) received tenure and promotion to associate professor at Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, Alabama.  Blount joined the Tuskegee English faculty in 2010.


Jon Falsarella Dawson (PhD 2013) published an essay, “‘I Pray the Lord My Work’s All Right’: Economic Themes in Jack London’s ‘The Apostate,’” in Excavatio, and his “Solidarity Forever: The Historical Background of John Steinbeck’s In Dubious Battle” was published in the Steinbeck Review. Dr. Dawson has also been named to the editorial board of the Steinbeck Review and has received a William B. Wisdom Grant to conduct research at Harvard. 


Jessie LaFrance Dunbar (MA 2007) is assistant professor of African American Literature and African American Studies at The University of Alabama at Birmingham. She has been awarded a number of grants and fellowships for the 2016-17 academic year. The Woodrow Wilson Foundation awarded Dunbar a six-month Career Enhancement Fellowship to provide her time to complete two chapters for her book project, Democracy, Diaspora, and Disillusionment: Black Itinerancy and the Propaganda Wars. She has also been accepted to and secured a partial grant for Columbia University’s Summer Teachers and Scholars Institute (STSI) in African-American Studies, an institute whose focus is Black New York. STSI will permit her access to materials that will help her develop a course on Hip Hop and the Black Arts Movement as well as an article exploring the impact of Manhattan’s Lower East Side on Leroi Jones and other Black Arts Movement writers.  Dunbar has also received a $3,000 dean’s award for faculty development from The University of Alabama at Birmingham.


Elizabeth Fields (MFA 2009) is currently working as a lecturer at the University of North Georgia. This past year Fields was published in Wicked Alice and The Georgia Anthology: Stone, River, Sky; she also served as the guest advisor for the Chestatee Review, UNG's award winning student-run literary journal. Fields was also accepted for the UNG faculty exchange program through the Center for Global Engagement and taught in China at Liaocheng University during Maymester.


Jürgen E. Grandt (PhD 2000), Associate Professor of English, University of North Georgia, has published a book chapter, “Welcome to Atlanta where the Bluesman Plays: Touring the Dirty South with Blind Willie McTell,” in America and the Musical Unconscious (Atropos Press), and his review of Barbara McCaskill’s Love, Liberation, and Escaping Slavery: William and Ellen Craft in Cultural Memory is forthcoming in the CLA Journal. He also chaired the panel “Black Poetry through the Ages” at the 76th annual convention of the College Language Association (CLA) in Houston, Texas. He serves as Representative of Region V (South) in the MLA Delegate Assembly, continues work on his new monograph-in-progress, Gettin’ Around: Jazz, Text, and Transnationalism, and occupies the second tenor saxophone chair in the UNG Big Band.


Robert W. Haynes (PhD 1991), Professor of English at Texas A&M International University, edited a volume entitled Critical Insights: Horton Foote (Ipswich, MA: Salem Press, 2016).


Angie Crea O’Neal (BA 1993) was recently named the inaugural Joan Alden Speidel Chair in English at Shorter University in Rome, Georgia. More information can be found at this site.

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