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Faculty News Winter 2023

Jeff Fallis is a new instructor in the English department but a familiar face around Athens, where he has lived for most of the past 25 years. Fallis was named the first-ever Poet Laureate of Athens by the Athens Cultural Affairs Commission in 2021, a position he will serve in until 2023. 

Professor Emerita Elizabeth Kraft published an essay, "Annotation and Editorial Practice: Twenty-Five Years (and Counting)," in Notes on Footnotes: Annotating Eighteenth-Century Literature, eds. Melvyn New and Anthony W. Lee (Penn State Press, 2022). In October 2022, she presented a paper, "She-Tragedy, Affect, and Prose Fiction" at the annual conference of CSECS (the Canadian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies). Her essay "Everyday Aesthetics and Eighteenth-Century Fiction: Defoe's _Robinson Crusoe_ and Richardson's _Sir Charles Grandison_" is forthcoming in _Lumen_, the annual journal of CSECS.

Professor Emerita Elissa R. Henken was honored this year by the International Society for Contemporary Legend Research with the Linda Dégh Lifetime Achievement Award for Legend Scholarship. Recognizing both her scholarship and her service to the field, the award citation remarks that her “work is constantly crossing boundaries…spanning time and space” (medieval Wales to present-day America). “She has expanded scholarly understandings of legends as they relate to sexuality, as highlighted in her book Did You Hear about the Girl Who…? (co-authored with Mariamne H. Whatley)…an excellent example of applied folklore” and a “model of how two seemingly unrelated fields [folklore and health education] can connect and inform each other.” The citation concludes by noting that “her service to the field of legend studies is unequivocal, highlighted by the many roles she has played” in ISCLR and in organizing, editing, and “constantly bring[ing] attention to the importance of legend studies.”

LeAnne Howe's work has been widely recognized and celebrated. She and James Fortier (co-producers and filmmakers) were awarded a Telly Award for Searching for Sequoyah. The Telly Awards, founded in 1979, honor excellence in local, regional and cable television commercials with non-broadcast video and television programming. Searching for Sequoyah aired nationally on PBS stations in 2022.  It's a 56-minute documentary, centering on the life and disappearance of Sequoyah, creator of the Cherokee syllabary. This summer, LeAnne Howe and Padraig Kirwan received the 2022 Special Award of the Jury from Gourmand World Cookbook Award in Umea Sweden for their book, Famine Pots: The Choctaw-Irish Gift Exchange, 1847-Present. In addition, Professor Howe won the Richard Beale Davis Award for Distinguished Lifetime Service to Southern Letters by the Society for the Study of Southern Literature for her work as a scholar and writer. 

In September, at the annual meeting of the American Literature Association in Santa Fe, David Ingle presented a paper on William Faulkner and Blaise Cendrars titled “Uncovering the French Architect: Faulkner, Cendrars, and Absalom, Absalom!.”

Sujata Iyengar published an afterword, "Characterizing Christy Desmet,” in a festschrift dedicated to our late colleague, Performing Shakespearean Appropriations, edited by three of Christy's former graduate students. She gave invited talks at the Huntington Library and the Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference, both in October. In December she will present new work on Petrarch's Neo-Latin epic Africa in the panel "Race in Petrarch's work" that she organized for the Renaissance Society of America Virtual Conference. She continues to serve as President of the Shakespeare Forum for the Modern Language Association of America. Her newest book, Shakespeare and Adaptation Theory, was published this December by Bloomsbury as part of The Arden Shakespeare series. 

Christine Lasek-White’s novelette "Mothers and Daughters" was accepted for publication by failbetter journal of literature and art. Her essay, "Two Dreams about David Bowie," was accepted for publication in a forthcoming David Bowie-centered anthology.

In May, John Wharton Lowe, Methvin Professor, attended the bi-annual conference of the Society for the Study of the Multi-ethnic Cultures of Europe and the Americas (MESEA) in Lamarca, Cyprus, where he presented a paper, “Here in Berlin: Transatlantic Convergence in the Work of Cristina Garcia and Werner Sollors.” At the bi-annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Southern Literature in June in Atlanta, John presented a paper, “How One Woman Epitomized a Famous Textile Strike: The Legend of Ella May Wiggins in  Wiley Cash’s The Last Ballad.” In July he traveled to the University of Munich where he gave an invited lecture, “The Ruins of Postwar Germany: Displacement, Recovery, and Popular Culture in the Work of Cristina Garcia and Werner Sollors.”  His talks on post-war Germany were part of his ongoing UGA/Munich sponsored partnership with Dr. Amy Mohr of the University of Munich. Lowe sponsored Mohr’s talk on these issues at UGA in September. In August, John was a featured speaker on a Zoom panel devoted to Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying, sponsored by the National Association of Scholars. On October 12th, Lowe sponsored the 10th Annual Barbara Methvin Lecture and a reception that followed. The speaker was Professor William Boelhower, Adams Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Louisiana State University and guest Professor at Ca’ Foscari, Venice. His topic was “‘Live or Die’  A Reappraisal of the Slave Narrative.” John’s new edited book, Black Hibiscus: African Americans and the Florida Imaginary is now in production with the University Press of Mississippi, and will appear in Autumn 2023.

Barbara McCaskill has received a Georgia Humanities grant to fund a webinar panel and discussion among several national scholars about representations of the poet Phillis Wheatley Peters in contemporary children’s literature. This panel, free and open to the public, is scheduled for October 17, 2023, and is cosponsored with Athens-Clarke County Public Library and other units at UGA and TCU. It will also include a free book giveaway. It is part of “The Genius of Phillis Wheatley Peters: A Poet and Her Legacies,” a series of in person and online events in 2023.

Ed Pavlic recently published a featured essay in the new James Baldwin Review. This essay contains a great deal of newly discovered material, such as a previously unknown interview and a photograph of Baldwin speaking. In addition, Ed Pavlic's new book of poetry, Call It in the Air, has just been published by Milkweed Editions. 

Adam Parkes has been elected President of the South Atlantic Modern Language Association (SAMLA) for 2023. He will also continue his involvement with the D.H. Lawrence Society of America as its Past President for 2023-24. His new monograph, Modernism and the Aristocracy: Monsters of English Privilege, will be published by Oxford University Press next summer.

Jed Rasula’s new book, What the Thunder Said: How The Waste Land Made Poetry Modern, will be published soon by Princeton University Press. 

Susan Rosenbaum received a Faculty Research grant from the Willson Center in Fall 2022 to research an exhibition of Elizabeth Bishop's Picture Postcards and Postcard-related poetry and visual art, with an accompanying catalog, digital exhibit, and related book, which she is curating with Dr. Jonathan Ellis at Sheffield University and Dr. Ron Patkus, Director of the Special Collections Library at Vassar College (which holds Bishop's archive). The exhibit will open in Fall 2023 at Vassar, with plans for its travel to the E. Bishop House/Key West Literary Seminar and to Halifax, Nova Scotia in 2023 and 2024. The digital scholarly platform Mina Loy: Navigating the Avant-Garde received the 2022 MLA Prize for Collaborative, Bibliographical, or Archival Scholarship, awarded at the MLA Annual Convention. The print companion to this digital platform, a co-authored monograph titled Travels with Mina Loy: Navigating the Avant-Garde is forthcoming with Lever Press. She continues to co-direct the Interdisciplinary Modernisms Workshop with Nell Andrew (Art History) and Rielle Navitski (Film/Theater), which has an exciting calendar of events planned for this spring.

Jim Wilson recently delivered a major lecture at his former institution, Seminole State College in Seminole, Oklahoma. In addition, he continues to work on the Homeland Returns Native American Studies Project, a program that he and Ervan Garrison initiated in late 2020.

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