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2014 English Studies Student Conference

The 2014 English Studies Student Conference will be held Saturday, April 5, 2014, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. All sessions will be held on the third floor of Coleman Hall, followed by the keynote speaker from 2:00-3:00 p.m. in the Lumpkin Hall Auditorium.

The event includes panel presentations by undergraduate and graduate students across the fields of English studies, alumni job talks, and a keynote presentation by Audrey Petty, the author of High Rise Stories: Voices from Chicago Public Housing.

Admission is free. Breakfast and lunch are provided.

Direct questions to Dr. Melissa Ames, Director of English Education, at mames@eiu.edu. Download the conference flyer here and the conference program here.


2014 Conference Schedule:

Morning and afternoon sessions will be held in the classrooms on the third floor of Coleman Hall. The keynote presentation will take place at 2 p.m. in the Lumpkin Hall Auditorium.

10:00 Sessions

Shakespeare’s “Words, Words, Words” (Moderated by Rebekah Simcox)

CH 3130

Ashley Samoska / "Blank" in Twelfth Night

Danielle Rogner / "Stale" in The Taming of the Shrew

Bradley Ellis / "Jade" in The Taming of the Shrew

This panel, made up of students enrolled in Dr. Christopher Wixson’s English 3892, endeavors to demonstrate the power of Shakespearean language in papers focused around a single word from some of Shakespeare’s more famous plays. Each presenter will argue how the word in question (replete with etymological baggage, connotative association, and multiple usages) helps to shape the thematic issues of the drama as a whole. They will each explore how the meaning of the word evolves, transforms, and ultimately gathers profound resonance by the play’s conclusion.

Shakespeare’s “Words, Words, Words” (Moderated by Scott May)

CH 3140

Helen Plevka / “Key” in A Midsummer Night's Dream

Katelyn Hartke / "Instant" in Macbeth

Bonnie Morton / "Fate" in Macbeth

This panel, made up of students enrolled in Dr. Christopher Wixson’s English 3892, endeavors to demonstrate the power of Shakespearean language in papers focused around a single word from some of Shakespeare’s more famous plays. Each presenter will argue how the word in question (replete with etymological baggage, connotative association, and multiple usages) helps to shape the thematic issues of the drama as a whole. They will each explore how the meaning of the word evolves, transforms, and ultimately gathers profound resonance by the play’s conclusion.

Literature, Fashion, and Metanarratives (Moderated by Tana Young)

CH 3150

Paige Bennett: “Reframing Literature and Fashion: The Worlds of Ballard and McQueen

Using the works of author J.G. Ballard and fashion designer Alexander McQueen, I will examine how each uses their medium to prove how the world is a dystopia.

Trevor Martinson: “De-Colonizing the Metanarrative in Thomas King’s Green Grass, Running Water

This paper will discuss Thomas King’s pastiche of metanarratives in Green Grass, Running Water and the end-result of such blank-parodying. King’s pastiche of metanarratives such as The Bible and American Creation Myths serves not only to satirize with incredulity, but also to question the authority of the texts which are held in reverence and perpetuate stereotypes.

11:00 Sessions

Creative Teaching in the High School Classroom (Moderated by Gabrielle Knock)

CH 3130

Madeline Nelson: “Publishing the Future”

This presentation will focus on the benefits of publishing student work in the classroom and presenting it to the school and/or the community. We will discuss different resources teachers can access and different media that can be published to build confidence and skills in students.

Rachel Sepich: “Teaching Film in the English Classroom”

This presentation will be about the uses of film in the classroom. It will cover both why film should be used to teach English and the best practices for teaching it.

Deacon Faulkner: “Creative Writing Pedagogy”

This presentation will explore the importance of implementing creative writing in the secondary English language arts classroom.

Shakespeare’s “Words, Words, Words” (Moderated by TJ Martinson)

CH 3140

Caitlin Danforth / "Strike" in The Taming of the Shrew

Taylor Yangas / "Slave" in The Taming of the Shrew

Alex Hill / "Saint" in The Taming of the Shrew

This panel, made up of students enrolled in Dr. Christopher Wixson’s English 3892, endeavors to demonstrate the power of Shakespearean language in papers focused around a single word from some of Shakespeare’s more famous plays. Each presenter will argue how the word in question (replete with etymological baggage, connotative association, and multiple usages) helps to shape the thematic issues of the drama as a whole. They will each explore how the meaning of the word evolves, transforms, and ultimately gathers profound resonance by the play’s conclusion.

Time & Genre:  Slave Narratives, Science Fiction, Dystopia, Video Games, & Young Adult Literature (PechaKucha Panel Presentations) (Moderated by Rebekah Simcox)

CH 3150

“Octavia Butler's Kindred as an Inverse Slave Narrative” - Derick Lederman

"Dystopian Societies: A Metaphoric Battleground for Exploring the Individual vs. Society Conflict within Various Literary Media” – Jessyca Walton

“Time without Clocks:  The Absence of Measured Time in Oryx and Crake” – Katherine Mueller

“The River of Time:  An Analysis of Destiny, Morality, and Storytelling in the Legend of Zelda – Ocarina of Time” – Kiley Davis

 “Escape from Psychosis:  Time and Temporality in Donnie Darko” – Kyle Workman

“Finding Her Voice:  Trauma and Recovery in Speak” – Sarah Mungai

This panel, made up of students from Dr. Melissa Ames’s Fall section of English 3704:  American Literature 1950-present, explores narrative temporality in contemporary literature and media.  Each presenter will analyze a text that has temporal play (time travel, non-linear narratives, etc.) and/or a major thematic focus on time.  These short (6 minute, 40 second), fast-paced, visual presentations will demonstrate how experimental time is being used in a variety of genres to exciting ends. 

12:00 Sessions

Teacher Research: Literature in the Secondary Classroom (Moderated by Scott May)

CH 3130

Amber Wayt: “Young Adult Literature in the Classroom”

This presentation focuses on how young adult literature works inside the classroom. The presentation will highlight the benefits of teaching young adult literature and its connection to the Common Core Standards.

Kelly VanDerpluym: “To Kill a Mockingbird in the Classroom: Valuable or Overrated?”

This presentation focuses on the question of whether or not the popular classic novel To Kill a Mockingbird should still be taught in the secondary schools. The presentation addresses several concerns with teaching the novel as well as benefits of using it in the classroom.

Shakespeare’s “Words, Words, Words” (Moderated by Tana Young)

CH 3140

Megan Christenen / "Presume” in The Taming of the Shrew

Aubrey Edwards / "Puppet" in The Taming of the Shrew

Hannah Osborne / "Ashamed" in The Taming of the Shrew

This panel, made up of students enrolled in Dr. Christopher Wixson’s English 3892, endeavors to demonstrate the power of Shakespearean language in papers focused around a single word from some of Shakespeare’s more famous plays. Each presenter will argue how the word in question (replete with etymological baggage, connotative association, and multiple usages) helps to shape the thematic issues of the drama as a whole. They will each explore how the meaning of the word evolves, transforms, and ultimately gathers profound resonance by the play’s conclusion.

Intersectional Forces and Resistance in Early 20th Century African American Life (Moderated by Gabrielle Knock)

CH 3150

Alexis Sloan Lenoir Caston, “Depictions of Misogyny in Paul Laurence Dunbar’s The Sport of the Gods and Toni Morrison’s Sula

Mikale Ross, “The Effects of Race and Class on Female Sexuality in Toni Morrison’s Sula

Terry Halloran, “White Supremacy as a Pseudo-Naturalistic Force in William Attaway’s Blood on the Forge

By analyzing African American novels set in the early 20th century, each paper on this panel demonstrates that literary fiction can reveal not only the abusive machinations of de jure and de facto white supremacy; it can also shed light on how Black people at the time formulated their identities in the demanding terms of categories other than race that interact with white supremacy, especially gender and social class. Each presenter’s intersectional analytical approach reveals as well that while other forces, including the personalities of individual characters, can affect their identities and their relations with others, larger forces that few Americans could understand at the time also shaped and constrained their choices. While some African Americans became inevitable pawns of such forces, others forged ways to live on their own terms.

1:00 Lunch and Alumni Panels

English Alumni Panel I:  Graduate School, Internships, and Professional Careers

CH 3130

Grab your lunch and join us as we welcome back five of our alumni who will share their post-graduation success stories in graduate programs (ranging from New Media Studies to Library Science), internships, and new professional careers made possible from the skills gained in English Studies here at EIU.  These informal presentations will be followed by a Q & A session where attendees can ask questions concerning marketing oneself as an English major, navigating the job hunt, deciding on specialization, and so forth.

Panel Participants:
Mike Siemers
Mia Tapella
Keri Carroll
Liz Surbeck
Kim Galovich

English Alumni Panel II:  Student Teaching, First-Year Teaching, & Beyond

CH 3140

Grab your lunch and join us as we welcome former and current students to discuss their experiences as student teachers, substitute teachers, first year teachers, and as seasoned veterans.  Representing a range of post-graduation career paths and diverse regional areas, these presenters will share the successes and challenges they faced after their training in English Education.  Ample time will be provided for a Q & A session in which attendees can ask questions about classroom experiences, the job search, and more.

Participants:
Heather Gerrish
Rebekah Simcox
Miranda Buob
Stephanie Gribbin
Nico Canaday
Kristin Runyon

2:00 Keynote Address with Audrey Petty - A Reading from High Rise Stories: Voices from Chicago Public Housing 

Audrey Petty will read from her most recent work, High Rise Stories:  Voices from Chicago Public Housing, a creative ethnographic work that provides first-person accounts from former residents of the now-demolished, iconic high-rise housing projects of Chicago. These stories of community, displacement, and poverty in the wake of gentrification give voice to those who have long been ignored, but whose hopes and struggles exist firmly at the heart of our national identity.

Petty is an associate professor of English at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She writes fiction, poetry and creative nonfiction. Her stories have been published in such journals as African American Review, StoryQuarterly, Callaloo, and The Massachusetts Review. Her poetry has been featured in Crab Orchard Review and Cimarron Review, and her essays have appeared in Saveur, ColorLines, The Southern Review, Oxford American, Cornbread Nation 4, Gravy, and the Best Food Writing anthology.