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1.  Announcements

Tomorrow marks the end of the third week of instruction and the last day for students to drop or add on SOLAR, thus bringing to a welcome conclusion the weirdest semester beginning on record. Once again, we want to acknowledge the patience, resilience, and fortitude of all of those who found themselves on the front-line of chaos, from staff, to classroom instructors, to Jackie herself. Now that it’s over and we can get on with the actual business of teaching, we might all want to reflect on how we ended up here and let the people who should be hearing from us actually hear from us. Or, as Vice Provost Cynthia Rawitch and Acting Administrator for Academic Affairs/Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students William Watkins suggested in their thoughtful dispatch last week, “what is playing out here on campus is a reflection of the larger budget crisis in the state of California. The University advocates for public higher education and CSUN students at the state and federal levels, but we can’t do it alone. Please reach out to your legislators to share your stories, so that they understand how their decisions impact you and your families. You can find out who represents you and how to contact them by at http://capwiz.com/csun/directory/statedir.tt?state=CA&lvl=state.”

For those who are missing it, the new and improved TN Calendar is now located on the English webpage.

It’s that time again.  Please, please, please announce to your classes that the Northridge Review is accepting submissions for the Spring 2012 Issue now until February 17.  The NR accepts fiction/drama/creative non-fiction (5000 words maximum) in typed, double-spaced manuscripts, and up to five poems. Names should not appear on manuscripts, but full contact information (name, address, phone number, and email) should be included on a separate cover page. Submissions may be sent or dropped off in the main English Office, ST 706. This is such a great opportunity for all our students–to be considered, to be read, and for some for of them to be published–it would be a shame if they missed out on it just because they didn’t know about it. This includes literature classes where many closet writers hide out or where spectacular (and perhaps non-conventional) essays may also prove worthy of a wider readership.

And while we’re on the subject of the Northridge Review, stay tuned for upcoming announcements regarding their not-to-be-missed bi-annual publication reading celebrating the work of so many students. You’ll be the first to know.

Gordon Nakagawa, Emeritus Professor and former Associate Dean, will be speaking on “The Japanese American Incarceration and Post 9/11 Fortress America on Wednesday, February 22 from 12:30 p.m. to 1:45 p.m. in the Whitsett Room.

Highways, in Santa Monica, will be presenting Rick Mitchell’s new, multimedia play, Ventriloquist Adrift; or Porno for Dummies (in which, lo and behold, the author is performing) on Friday & Saturday, February 24th and 25th, at 8:30 p.m. A theatrical exploration of race, identity, and performance in late 19th century America, the dark comedy is informed not only by vaudeville “humor,” but also by relevant historical conflicts (and, of course, by conflicts of today). The Saturday, February 25th show will be followed by an audience talk-back moderated by Dr. Anthony Dawahare, and featuring the play’s director, Roger Q. Mason, and the dramatist. To reserve tickets, please call Highways at (310) 315-1459. For further information, please go to http://highwaysperformance.org/highways/performance/rick-mitchell-ventriloquist-adrift-or-porno-for-dummies/.

The CSUN deadline for the California Pre-Doctoral Program is March 9. Designed to increase the diversity of the pool from which the California State University draws its faculty, this program provides critical support for the doctoral aspirations of CSU students who have experienced economic and educational disadvantages. A special emphasis is placed on increasing the number of CSU students who enter graduate programs at one of the University of California campuses. Successful applicants will work closely with a CSU faculty sponsor to develop an overall plan which leads ultimately to enrollment in a doctoral program. Funding is available for various projects associated with this plan. Please be on the lookout for students who might benefit from this program and try to help out when asked if you can.

CSU Long Beach Graduate Students have announced their 1st ever Interdisciplinary Conference for the Humanities, organized by students and for students, to provide a forum and discussion on scholarly topics facing our world today as well as creative and historical variations of the “occupy” theme. The Keynote Speaker’s Address, “Occupational Hazards at Home and Abroad” will be delivered by Dr. John Carlos Rowe of the University of Southern California. Graduate students and advanced undergraduates in the Humanities are encouraged to apply. Abstract submission deadline is February 20, 2012. For full details and submission guidelines, please refer to the formal CFP and conference website at http://www.csulb.edu/colleges/cla/departments/english/conference/.

While you’re at it, don’t miss our own AGSE’s Conference, Shattering, which is taking place on March 3, or our Sigma Tau Delta’s Colloquia, Sex or Something Like It, which is taking place on March 17.  Stay tuned for more details as they become available.

The Northridge Creative Writing Circle is thrilled to announce its first sponsored reading, featuring Pushcart Prize-nominated poet Eric Morago on February 16th at 7:00 p.m. in the Oviatt Library Presentation Room. Moraga will be reading a variety of his work in both poetry and fiction and has agreed to do a Q&A session after the reading. Also, he will have a collection of his books available at the reading for purchase and signing. Widely published in such anthologies as Carving in Bone (Moon Tide Press, 2007), Beside the City of Angels (World Parade Books, 2010) and Don’t Blame the Ugly Mug (Tebot Bach, 2011), Morago is currently an associate reviewer for Poetix.net, poet-in-residence with California Workforce Association, and a teacher for Red Hen Press’ Writing in Schools program. This is another exciting not-to-miss event. And kudos to the students for putting it together.

Another Northridge Creative Writing Circle event:  fundraising night at Chili’s is Monday, February 13, from 4 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.  With each flyer presented, Chili’s will donate 15% of the sales brought in to the Writing Circle. So pick up a flyer and come out to help support our students. Fun will be had by all.

Norma Aceves would like to invite all the faculty, staff, and students in the department to see her perform in Eve Ensler’s, “The Vagina Monologues.”  This event is put on by CSUN VDAY, which is part of a worldwide organization that fights against violence in the world. Proceeds will help our local women’s shelter, Haven Hills. We have only two showings this year, February 17 and 18th at 7:00 p.m. in the USU Performing Arts Center. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the AS ticket office in the USU or online at ticketmaster.com. Please tell your classes about it and check your mail boxes for flyers.

2.  Reminders

Interim President Harry Hellenbrand recently called your attention to the “Emergency Operations Desk Reference for Faculty Members” posted at http://www-admn.csun.edu/publicsafety/emergency/, and it’s worth repeating here: safety on campus is a shared responsibility. Follow the link and check it out for a quick guide on what to do during emergency situations that might occur on a university campus–medical emergency, fire/explosion, hazardous materials, bomb threat or suspicious object, and earthquake, or a shooting.  You may find a time when you’ll be glad you did.

Don’t forget the All College Meeting, with President Harry Hellenbrand & Administrator-in-Charge William Watkins, an opportunity to share important information regarding the university, still coming up on Monday, March 5, 2012, from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. in the Whitsett Room.

And again, the 2012 Majors Fair, on March 7, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Matador Square.  The SSC/EOP and Liberal Studies will be representing the College of Humanities, but is asking us to help promote the event with our students.  This is a wonderful opportunity for the College of Humanities to recruit new majors and minors from within CSUN’s existing student body.  If anyone has any materials they’d like to have displayed and/or distributed to students there, please deliver them to Kate Haake (me) who will see that they’re delivered the EOP.

3.  Opportunities

Faculty who are potentially interested in applying for the 2012/13 CSUN Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity Awards (deadline, Monday, February 27, at 5 p.m.) are invited to attend an informational meeting on Thursday, February 9, from 3 to 4 p.m. in the Whitsett Room. Director of Research and Sponsored Projects Scott Pérez, CAS Associate Professor Douglas Carranza, and COH Grants Officer Teresa Morrison will be on hand to discuss the writing, submission, and evaluation of these mini-grants, which award up to $5,000 or 3 units of reassigned time to pursue scholarly and creative interests. Examples of previously funded grants will be available at the workshop (and are also available for reference at the Office of Research and Sponsored Projects).  This internal competition will fund many diverse research projects throughout the university, and all who are interested are encouraged to apply.  Please RSVP to teresa.morrison@csun.edu .

The Faculty Technology Center has issued a call for proposals for its Summer 2012 Course Redesign Institute. Interested in learning trends and best practices for hybrid and online instruction?  Redesigning your course for 50/50 delivery? Taking advantage of campus supported technologies? Networking? Custom support for your teaching needs? This may be the opportunity for you. The Institute will bring together twelve lucky participants for a two-week, face-to-face session from June 4 to June 15 and pay a stipend of $1500. To apply , please go to http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/RedesignInstitute. The deadline is February 15, and applicants will be notified by March 15.

If you know of any students still looking for graduate opportunities, here is an exciting new one in Creative Writing. The University of Central Arkansas will be inaugurating a new studio MFA in Fall 2012 with a progressive and intensive curriculum.  Assistantships will be available and class sizes will be small.  The program will train students in publishing and pedagogy and poise them for an increasingly global job market where creative imaginations are in demand.  Located just outside Little Rock, near two beautiful mountain ranges (the Ozarks and the Ouachitas), the area boasts a growing and exciting literary arts culture. For more information, please go to http://www.uca.edu/writing/mfa/ or write program director Dr. Stephanie Vanderslice at stephv@uca.edu. The deadline is March 15.

Precipitate, a Journal of the New Environmental Imagination, is accepting submissions for its Fall issue until February 21.  As a literary and visual arts journal, Precipitate aims to better understand how language and art act as interpretive devices for an external world that is simultaneously present and absent, riveting and severe, earthy and complex, and that inspires humor, irony, fear, and joy. Precipitate explores non-traditional perspectives of the physical world, and within these pages we invite writers, artists, and readers to investigate and destabilize ideas of place. Submission guidelines can be found at http://precipitatejournal.com/home/submission-guidelines/.

4.  Achievements

Ian Barnard’s article “Queer Writing” was published in the inaugural issue of College Composition and Communication Online (CCC 1.1, Jan. 2012).  The piece is part of a cluster of texts treating Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick’s impact on the field of Rhetoric and Composition.

Fred Field evaluated a research project in linguistics for the Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) of Canada, the Canadian equivalent of the NSF.

Charles Hatfield presented a paper at the 2012 Modern Language Association Conference in Seattle this January on the panel, The Material History of Spiderman. His paper was entitled, “Tangled Web: Spider-Man’s Discontinuous Continuity,” and rumor has it that he was “amazing.”

Cesar Soto has been offered admission into English doctoral programs at the University of Maryland and Marquette University (Milwaukee) with good financial packages and is looking forward to continuing his studies in British Romanticism. Still waiting to hear back from other programs before making a final decision, he wishes to thank Ranita Chatterjee and Irene Clark for their guidance and unflagging support.