Volume 39:7

November 21st, 2012 | Posted by in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Volume 39:7)

Pumpkin image

Soon we’ll don jackets and scarves

and drift out into the cold, stopping for friends and chocolate stout

heavy like dark cream and smelling of malt. Soon

we’ll start to wonder how we made it through summer

–Cody Deitz

1. Announcements

Congratulations to Cody Deitz, whose poetry (above) will be featured on the College of Humanities holiday card. Cody is a first semester graduate student, whose poems have been published in various literary journals, including the Northridge Review, The Houston Literary Review, Scissors & Spackle, and others. Cody is currently working on a full-length collection of poems.

And while we’re on the subject of holiday greetings, this Thursday’s Notes comes wishing you all a very happy Thanksgiving and all good wishes for the coming holiday season.

Please join me in congratulating Gina Lawrence, who has been elected as the new Graduate Student Liaison. Gina will be joining us at department meetings starting in Spring, and we are looking forward to welcoming her.

It’s Department Award time again. Please be on the lookout for exceptional work by students, or exceptional students, and consider nominating them–and then actually do it–for the following awards:


To commemorate Oliver W. Evans, his colleagues and friends have established an annual prize of $100 to be awarded to the author of the best piece of prose—critical or creative—submitted in an upper-division English course.  The department’s Awards and Amenities Committee will judge submissions.


To commemorate Eva Latif, her colleagues and friends offer an annual prize of $100 to the author of the best piece of writing—critical or creative—by a student on the subject of children’s literature. The department’s Awards and Amenities Committee will judge submissions.


In memory of Linda Nichols Joseph, an English major who graduated from CSUN cum laude in 1981, up to four prizes of $2,000 each will be awarded each fall semester to undergraduate English majors who have demonstrated excellence in their studies.

The deadline for all Department Awards will be November 21 (oops, today–hope you got yours in), and the Awards will be distributed at the Department party, on December 14. For more information, please contact Cheryl Spector (Cheryl.Spector@csun.edu), Chair, Amenities and Awards Committee. And good luck to you and your students!

It’s that time of year again to begin sending in your Spring 2013 text book orders. Textbook orders need to be placed as soon as possible in order for the books to be available by the start of the next semester. If you have not yet placed your book orders, please email Ken at 0150txt3@fheg.follett.com and CC Frank on the email. Ken can also be contacted by phone at 818-677-2932.

2. Reminders

Just a reminder that given that this is Thanksgiving week, there will be NO SCHOOL November 22 to November 24.

The end of the semester is quickly approaching and as you may have noticed, we’re going right up to Christmas this year!  (at least this is better than the year when grades were due after New Years!). Finals start on December 11.  To facilitate getting the grades in and to ensure that the staff have plenty of time to do all the things that they need to do to finalize grades, please have your grades posted NO LATER THAN 4:30 p.m. Friday December 21st. Put it on your calendars, please! Then we can all enjoy the last weekend before Christmas and Christmas Eve.  If you have any questions or concerns about this, contact Jackie.

And while you are at it, make sure the department party is also already on your calendar, for December 14, from 12:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., with awards being presented at about 1:30. Don’t miss this opportunity to take a break from grading and celebrate the season, each other, our students, and the successful conclusion of the fall semester in what is always a gala affair!

But, as ever, don’t blink, because not long after, the 2013 (that’s right, 2013) shining Faculty Retreat, “CSUN Shines: Illuminating Pathways to Success,” will be convening. If you have already registered to attend, the retreat organizers want to thank you. Otherwise, please click on this link to register:  http://www.csun.edu/senate/retreat.html The Retreat will once again be held on the CSUN campus on Monday, January 14 and Tuesday, January 15, 2013 at the University Student Union Northridge Center.

The due date for the student evaluations is coming up very soon Wednesday, November 21st (well, today). Please don’t forget to get yours in on time.

But hey, if you’re interested in next summer, here are two opportunities form the Faculty Technology Center, that may help you improve your course design. But, again, you will need to be quick, as the deadline is December 1. (Questions may be directed to deone.zell@csun.edu.)

  • Summer Course Redesign Institute. Redesign your course into hybrid, online, or web-enhanced versions through this two-week cohorted session from June 7 – June 21. Learn how to “flip your classroom”, incorporate best practices, take advantage of technology tools, receive personalized support for your teaching needs, and network with your peers and outside experts. Faculty who complete the Institute receive a $1,500 stipend. Apply to the Redesign Institute
  • E-Text Initiative. Apply for support to create or assemble your own digital teaching materials to engage your students and customize your teaching. Explore tools such as iBooks Author, Softchalk, and Academic Pub. Create materials that are modular, multimedia and interactive that your students can access anywhere, anytime. Priority is given to courses that serve high numbers of students and cover large portions of course materials. Apply to the E-Text Initiative

3. Opportunities

The Office of Research and Graduate Studies invites applications from Instructional Faculty, Librarians, and Counselors for the Grant Application Support Program and for the Large Projects Support Program. These include projects aimed at basic and/or applied research, instructional projects aimed at student success and/or student research, teacher preparation programs, and  creative activities. All faculty are encouraged to apply. Application forms can be downloaded from our website http://www.csun.edu/grip/research/. In addition, two informational meetings will be held on November 14, at 3:00 p.m., in Sierra Hall 203; and November 15, at 3:00 p.m., in Juniper Hall 1131.

Here’s an upcoming conference of possible interest, “Critical Pedagogy & the Creative Writing Workshop,” hosted by Manhattanville College. For more information, please see http://call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu/node/48787.

Phoebe, George Mason University’s literary journal, is accepting submissions for its annual fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry contests. All winners will receive a cash prize ($500-$1,000), and both the winners and runners-up will be published next year in their fall issue. The contest deadline is Dec. 15, and there is a $15 fee to enter the poetry and fiction contests, and a $12 fee to enter the nonfiction contest. You may submit multiple entries. For more information about the contest and Phoebe, please visit their website at  http://www.phoebejournal.com/.

The editorial staff of Quarter After Eight is excited to announce that it is now accepting submissions for the Robert J. DeMott Short Prose Contest! Quarter After Eight, a graduate student run journal out of Ohio University, publishes poetry, nonfiction, and fiction that is innovative and quirky, energetic and fun. The contest is dedicated to finding and publishing those little prose gems in each genre: the essay-in-brief, the prose-poem, and the flash fiction story of 500 words or fewer. The reading fee is $15 for three pieces and includes a complimentary one-year subscription to the journal. Please make checks payable to Quarter After Eight. Mail entries, postmarked by December 31st, to: Quarter After Eight, Ohio University, 360 Ellis Hall, Athens, OH 45701. For more information please visit them at http://www.quarteraftereight.org/.

4. Achievements

Scott Andrews’s poem “Columbus Day 2092” is included in a book project titled Gambling on Authenticity: Gaming, the Noble Savage, and the Not-So-New Indian that has been accepted by Michigan State University Press.  The book looks at issues of tribal sovereignty and gaming from a variety of disciplines.  The poem originally appeared in Studies in American Indian Literatures.

Kate Haake has an essay on genre, “To Fill With Milk: or, The Thing and Itself,” in the newly released Key Issues in Creative Writing, edited by Dianne Donnelly and Graeme Harper, by Multilingual Matters.

Beth Wightman‘s paper, “Islands of Modernism,” was included in the “Colonial/Anti-Colonial Modernism” seminar at the Modernist Studies Association conference in Las Vegas in October. In November, she participated in the Developing in Honors roundtable on “Maximizing the Honors Budget in Difficult Economic Times” at the National Collegiate Honors Council Conference in Boston.

Volume 39:6

November 8th, 2012 | Posted by in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Volume 39:6)

Thank you for voting too!

1. Announcements

Proposition 30 sweeps California coast!  (well, excepting Del Norte, Ventura, Orange, and San Diego counties). With Imperial, Mono, and Alpine counties also embracing the measure, the final count in Tuesday’s elections was 53.9% Yes to 46.1% No. “Now we have more revenue,” Governor Brown has said, “but that revenue will be used prudently and judiciously.” Well, here’s a prudent and judicious sigh of relief, and a big thank you to everyone who helped make this happen.

President Dianne Harrison has announced a new initiative: Help Make CSUN Shine Brighter. Every few weeks or months, a new topic or issue that can benefit from the innovative ideas and solutions of the campus community will be posted at a campus website, with everyone invited to contribute. To find out the inaugural question, go to http://www.csun.edu/MakeCSUNShineBrighter/ and share your thoughts!

Anthony & Anna Dawahare's new baby, Oliver.

Baby Oliver Dawahare

And in the realm of all bright shining things, please join me in welcoming the arrival of a brand new member of the human race, who will be known as Oliver and who joined the family of Anthony, Anna, and Agnes Dawahare at 12:36 p.m. on Halloween (although possibly only Anna was spooked). Weighing in at a healthy 8 lbs, 5 oz, Oliver is gorgeous to boot! Congratulations to all of them on this truly blessed event.

This next announcement pales in comparison to new human beings, but November is–ta daaa!–National Novel Writing Month, the largest writing event in the world, bringing together 300,000 writers from over 60 countries for one month of literary abandon. Participants pledge to write 50,000 words in 30 days, starting from scratch and reaching “The End” by November 30. There are no judges, no prizes, no fees, and entries are deleted from the server before anyone even reads them. Although the event emphasizes creativity and adventure over creating a literary masterpiece, more than 90 novels begun during NaNoWriMo have since been published, including Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, and Cinder by Marissa Meyer, all #1 New York Times Best Sellers.Many university professors have incorporated the NaNoWriMo challenge into their curriculum as an extra credit option. Thousands of ambitious students take on the challenge on top of their regular coursework and gain not only a novel at the end of the month, but also a refreshing confidence in their writing abilities. For more information about resources for students and instructors, please visit www.nanowrimo.org/en/nanouniversity. Please let your students know. And while you are at it, how about you? Don’t you have a novel in you to write before finals? If not you, who? Seems we need all the novels we can get.

And when you are done with your novel, you can celebrate at the department party, so please mark your calendars now for December 14, from 12:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. (awards will be presented at about 1:30), when everything will already be different.

Or if you need a little extra time for that novel you’re writing, consider applying for the spring Faculty Fellows Awards, which will provide 3 units of reassigned time or funding for a student assistant or research-related travel to the successful (and happy) candidates. The application deadline is November 21 (but awards are contingent on available funding). Application forms are available in Word format from Associate Dean Juana Mora’s office.

The Fall 2012 Northridge Review had a fabulous launch on November 2 with a large and enthusiastic crowd attending and a host of amazing readers. Congratulations to all involved on yet another beautiful issue filled with good work! And a special thank you to Mona Houghton for making it happen, term after term.

Speaking of excellent reading, the four finalists for CSUN’s 2013-2014 Common Reading are:  Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity by Katherine Boo; Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair with Trash by Edward Humes; The Grace of Silence: A Family Memoir by Michele Norris’ Some We Love, Some We Hate, Some We Eat: Why It’s So Hard to Think Straight about Animals by Hal Herzog. The selection committee will choose the winning title for AY 2013-2014 in January 2013. But you still have time to let your opinion be know! For more information (and an invitation to share your own opinion), see http://www.csun.edu/afye/Titles-2013-2014.html.

The Eighteenth-Century Reading Group is hosting their second meeting on Tuesday, November 27th, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., in ST 701. This is a new group that seeks to advance the conversation surrounding literature from this period among the CSUN community and others, and the first book under discussion will be Francoise de Graffigny’s Letters of a Peruvian Woman. Even if you haven’t read the book, please feel free to come by–all are welcome! Come for the fun discussion, free snacks, and friendly faces, and to be among the first to hear what the next reading is going to be. For more information, please contact Hannah Jorgenson, at, or hannah.jorgenson.22@my.csun.edu, or Stephanie Harper, at stephanie.harper.15@my.csun.edu.

The Department of Chicana and Chicano Studies, CSUN Pride Center and the Distinguished Visiting Speakers Program, Office of Graduate Studies, is pleased to be sponsoring a workshop for emerging writers and performing artists offered by Raquel Gutiérrez, a performance writer, playwright, and cultural organizer who has studied in university settings; performed in a variety of locations; and published  widely in such venues as Ambientes: New Queer Latino Writing and the Journal of Chicana/Latina Studies. The workshop will address such questions as: How do we invoke our truths in ways that create a dynamic cross-hatched narrative that straddles identity, politics, affect and community building; and how we do create a vernacular around the building of community and other senses of belonging? Using imagery work and a wide variety of experimental situations, participants will develop skills to communicate with text and the body and transform ideas into performance, with an emphasis on both solo and group explorations as well as performance process. The workshop will take place  on Wednesday November 14th, from 4:30 to 6:45 p.m., in the Colleague’s Room (2nd floor of the Sierra Center). For more info contact denise.sandoval@csun.edu.

It’s English Honors Open House time again, which offers students a chance to talk about our Honors Option. It will take place on Monday, Nov. 26th, between 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. in the Whitsett Room (Sierra Hall 451). Please feel free to come whenever you prefer for as long as your schedule allows!

A Post-Apocalypse Budget Update will be being help by Provost Harry Hellenbrand on Thursday, November 15, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., in the Music Recital Hall (Cypress Hall – CY158).

2.  Reminders

The end of the semester is quickly approaching and as you may have noticed, we’re going right up to Christmas this year!  (at least this is better than the year when grades were due after New Years!).  Finals start on December 11.  To facilitate getting the grades in and to ensure that the staff have plenty of time to do all the things that they need to do to finalize grades, please have your grades posted NO LATER THAN 4:30 p.m., Friday December 21st.  Put it on your calendars, please!  Then we can all enjoy the last weekend before Christmas and Christmas Eve.  If you have any questions or concerns about this, contact Jackie.

And even though we’re busy, and always especially so at school, we should take care not to forget about the Department Amenities Fund. Years ago, this fund was established to pay for the holiday party, for retirement gifts and other acknowledgements of our colleagues, and for refreshments at department meetings. The donations requested are modest, but vital for the small things we enjoy as a department. For those of you who have not yet contributed, the suggested donations are the same as last year’s:  Professors, $70; Associal Professors, $50; Assistant Professors, $40; and Lecturers, $10. All donations, in any amount, will be gladly accepted. Please make your check payable to “Amenities” and give it to Marlene Cooksey (ST 704). (And please do not leave cash in her mailbox.) And do it soon–the holidays will soon be upon us.

There will be no Department meeting this Friday, November 9, as previously scheduled. The Department having been efficient and productive and finding itself with no pressing matters, a Department Meeting Holiday has been declared.

But don’t forget the Graduate Reading Series still being held on Friday night at 7:00 p.m. in the LJN Reading Room (JR 319) and featuring the astonishing CSUN writers, Eric Barnhart (fiction), Raja Visweswaran (playwriting), and Robin Jewel Smith (poetry). Come out and support our graduate students.

Anyone thinking of FERP’ing? The deadline for the 2013/2014 academice year will be February 21, 2013. Tempting? Please see Jackie.

3.  Opportunities

As of September 4, 2012, applications are accepted for the 2013 Ford Diversity Fellowships Program for Achieving Excellence in College and University Teaching. Full eligibility information and online applications are available on our website at: http://nationalacademies.org/ford. But do it soon–the deadlines are coming up (November 14 for Predoctoral, November 19 for Dissertation and Postdoctoral).

Senator Dianne Feinstein’s Los Angeles office is looking for highly motivated, well informed college students with excellent writing and communication skills for internship positions with flexible hours for the winter, spring, and summer sessions. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis, until all positions are filled. Interested students should follow the instructions given on the Intern Application, which can be found at http://www.feinstein.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/intern-program. Application material, including a cover letter, resume, three academic/professional references (with contact information), and one page writing sample of your choice, in addition to a completed application, should be emailed to internapp@feinstein.senate.gov.  Please have one letter of recommendation emailed to that address as well. Only complete applications will be considered. For more information, please contact please contact Robert Oliver at robert_oliver@feinstein.senate.gov or at 310/914-7300.

A+ In Home Tutors is seeking an experienced tutor for a 10th grade girl in Tarzana. The ideal candidate will have a Bachelor’s degree or above and one to two years teaching or tutoring experience. Female applicants are preferred and the pay is $25.00 per hour. For more information, please see www.APlusInHomeTutors.com, or contact President Diane Lewis at 714/553-0308.

For all those creative writers among us, some of the journals that have written to solicit material include:

Foothill, a poetry journal that publishes work by current graduate students. If you are interested, see the journal at www.cgu.edu/foothill, or contact Brendan Babish at Brendan.Babish@cgu.edu.

Phoenix in the Jacuzzi Journal, a print literary journal.  PJJ is currently accepting submissions of poetry and short fiction (submission guidelines can be found at PJJ‘s Web site: phoenixinthejacuzzi.tumblr.com).

Harpur Palate.  HP welcomes unsolicited, previously unpublished reviews for the web review section of their blog. Reviews may be on recently published short story collections, novels, poetry full-lengths, or poetry chapbooks by emerging or established writers. In terms of length, brevity (2,000 words or less) is optimal, but they will consider reviews up to 5,000-words. Accepted reviews will be published on Harpur Palate’s blog, noted in the Harpur Palate journal, and promoted on Harpur Palate’s Facebook page.  They may be submitted (with a brief cover letter) via our Submittable page. Simultaneous submissions are acceptable.

And just up in Ojai, a new online literary journal, The Fiction Week Literary Review, is published twice a year and looking for innovative work. For more information, see  http://www.fictionweek.com/fwliteraryreview/fictionweekliteraryreview.html.

And finally, Cargoes literary magazine, of Hollins University, has announced its national undergraduate poetry and fiction competition. There is a $10 entry fee (make checks payable to Cargoes), and the winners of each genre receive a $200 cash prize as well as publication in this year’s Cargoes. Submissions must be from current undergraduate students at a university or college in the United States who may submit up to one (1) short story or three (3) poems by the January 6 deadline. Mail submissions along with a SASE envelope and entry fee to: Cargoes c/o C. Flerlage, Hollins University, P.O. Box 9274, Roanoke, VA 24020. And good luck to all.

4. Achievements

Here’s a spectacular achievement for all of us–we have made through ten weeks (going on eleven) of this semester, never mind yet another campaign season, and we are still smiling.

Volume 39:5

October 25th, 2012 | Posted by in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Volume 39:5)

1.  Announcements




Don’t miss the College of Humanities new faculty reception on November 5. Come meet all our new wonderful colleagues!




2.  Reminders

And don’t forget tonight’s NCWC reading by the award-winning and bestselling fiction writer Ben Loory. Loory will read from his short story collection, Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day (Penguin 2011), now in its fourth edition, and recognized by such distinctions as a selection of the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Program and the Starbucks Coffee Bookish Reading Club. Individually, Loory’s stories have appeared widely, in such magazines as Fairy Tale Review, The Nervous Breakdown, The New Yorker, Space and Time, and Word Riot. Loory has also worked as a screenwriter. And students who have met him praise his warmth, accessibility, affability and all-around brilliance and humor. Come see what they’re talking about, tonight, from  7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. in the Nobbs Auditorium of Sequoia Hall (Room 104). All are welcome.

Also not to be forgotten, Bobby Lopez’s “Myth Goes to the Movies” gallery exhibition of student research and panel of War on Terror veterans discussing Veterans, the Middle East, and Reflections on Lawrence of Arabia will be taking place on Thursday, November 8, from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., in the LNJ Reading Room (JR 319). Doors open at At 7:00 p.m. for research exhibits, and the panel–featuring Valvincent Reyes LCSW, BCD; Lt Joseph B. Lonergan; and our very own Melissa Filbeck, Jason Freudenrich, and Pierre Marcos–will begin at 7:30. This event is free and open to the public. Refreshments and food will be provided.

3.  Opportunities

Stanley Goodfriend, President and Founder of Loansuperstore.com, is looking for a business-savvy, new media-adept intern to raise his online profile. Goodfriend would like to optimize his web presence by making better use of such social networking media as Facebook and LinkedIn, as well as other web tools, like YouTube. This internship requires someone who is a resourceful, creative, and independent problem solver, who can write and design, and who is not afraid of business terminologies. The position is part-time and flexible, and for the right person with appropriate skills, could lead into a half-time paid position. For more information, please contact Stanley Goodfriend at Stanley@loansuperstore.com.

Frasco Investigative Services, a full service investigative firm specializing in insurance claims investigations is currently  seeking candidates for Claims Investigator positions to take statements, primarily concerning workers’ compensation and premises liability claims.  English students may be very interested in this position, as it requires investigators to gather the facts of a claim through extensive interviews and present these facts in a well written report.  The position offers a great deal of flexibility in scheduling and pays according to billable hours. Qualified candidates must have a natural investigative curiosity and instinct, and strong interpersonal, time management and report writing skills. They must also have a reliable vehicle and proof of insurance, a home computer or laptop with internet connection, a cell phone and digital camera.  Bilingual candidates are highly desirable. For more information, please contact Peter A. Goul, Regional Manager, at pgoul@frasco.com.

4.  Achievements

First, some great news from our fabulous graduate students, who attended just got back from the Pacific Ancient and Modern Language Association in Seattle:

Melissa Filbeck read her paper, “From Harper Hall to The Hunger Games: Teenage Female Protagonists in YA Science Fiction,” for the panel Science Fiction I: Gendered Bodies in SF.

Stephanie Harper read her paper, “(Avoiding) ‘The Reprobate State of a Useless Creature’: The Value of Women in the Turkish Embassy Letters,” on the panel English (1700 to Present) I. Additionally, she chaired the panel English (1700 to Present) II.

Susana Marcelo read her story, The Modern Ixchel,” on the panel Folklore and Mythology II.

Hannah Jorgenson read her paper “The Aesthetics of Self-Destruction” on the panel Gothic II.

Trista Payte read her paper, “Either I’m Nobody or I’m a Nation: Strategies for Post-colonial Selfhood Explored Through Earl Lovelace’s The Dragon Can’t Dance,” on the panel Postcolonial Literature II.

On Thursday, October 11th, Irene Clark presented a paper at the California State University English Council in San Diego. Her paper was titled “Threshold Concepts and the Teaching of Writing.” Back home, on October 16th, she presented a writing workshop for the department of Human Resources

Joseph Galasso has been busy! His article, “A Brief Perspective on the Role of ‘Private vs. Public’: Unions, University, and the Emergent Middle Class in the Context of a Reagan Legacy” will appear in the May/June, 2013 issue of Academe. And the revised edition of his text, Minimal of English Grammar: Vol 1 and Vol 2, will be published in 2013 by Cognella Publications.

Kate Haake‘s essay, “Diptych: Chrysalis, Prayer,” published last fall in Crazyhorse, was selected for the “Notables” section of  this year’s Best American Essays.

Jacqui Meisel attended Citizenship and Belonging: The Triennial Conference of the Society for the Study of American Women Writers (SSAWW) in Denver, October 10 -13. She chaired a panel entitled “Relationships, Citizenship, and Identity in the Work of Octavia E. Butler” and presented a paper on a “Women and Work” panel. The paper’s title is “Dorothy Allison’s Working Women and States of Be/Longing.”

Kent Baxter’s book, Coming of Age, has been published in the Salem Press Critical Insights series, and it includes Beth Wightman’ essay, “‘Not Now . . . Not Yet’: Developmental Difficulties in Jane Eyre and Wide Sargasso Sea.

Volume 39:4

October 11th, 2012 | Posted by in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Volume 39:4)

1.  Announcements

CSUN English faculty with Professor Andrea Lunsford

On Friday, October 5th, eight faculty members from Northridge attended a workshop given by Professor Andrea Lunsford (Stanford University), which took place  at California State University, Long  Beach. The topic was “Social Media and Student Writing” and the attendees were Norma Aceves, Irene Clark, Elizabeth Jurgensen, Gina Lawrence, Michelle Mutti, Ann O’Bryan, Tiffany Palioungas, and Lida Perez.

October also inaugurates an exciting new series of Brown Bag events, co-ordinated this fall by Martin Pousson who is generously stepping in for Leilani Hall while she is on leave. Well, ok, the first one already took place this afternoon (too late for these notes), but warrants announcing anyway, for the record.  And while we are at it, welcome back, Kim!

Poet, alumna, and new CSUN faculty, Kim Young

1. On Thursday, October 11, a 3:00 o’clock in the afternoon, new faculty lecturer, star alumna, and distinguished poet Kim Young was featured in the first Brown Bag event of Fall 2012. Kim read from her award-winning new book of poetry, Night Radio. A CSUN alumna, Kim Young won the Jane Kenyon Scholarship at Bennington College, where she was granted a MFA degree. She is the author of Divided Highway, a chapbook, the editor of Chaparral, and the recipient of the Agha Shahid Ali Poetry Prize. This Fall 2012, she joined the faculty of the English Department.

2. On Monday, October 15, three new faculty professors, Dr. Danielle Spratt, Dr. Nate Mills, and Dr. Lauren Byler, will be featured in the second Brown Bag event of Fall 2012. From 2:30-4:00 PM in the LNJ Reading Room (JR 319) Dr. Spratt, Dr. Mills, and Dr. Byler will present an overview of their research and scholarship. After their presentations, both undergraduate and graduate students are invited–encouraged!–to pose questions during a Q&A about graduate program applications and professional development. Dr. Spratt joined the faculty of the English Department in Fall 2011, with a PhD from Fordham University. She has published work on Swift, Garrick, and Siddons, serves as a 826LA leader, and now advises for the First-Year Integrated and Junior-Year Integrated programs. Dr. Mills joined the faculty of the English Department in Fall 2012, with a Ph.D. from University of Michigan, where he was awarded the ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award and the Clarence D. Thorpe Dissertation Prize. He has published work on Ellison, Baldwin, Cleaver, Alridge, and Benjamin. Dr. Byler joined the faculty of the English Department in Fall 2012, with a PhD from Tufts University. She has published work on Dickens and Trollope.

Also coming up, our amazing NCWC crew is hosting another reading by another illustrious LA local literati, the award-winning and bestselling fiction writer Ben Loory, who will read from his short story collection, Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day (Penguin 2011). Now in its fourth edition, this collection was chosen as a selection of the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Program and the Starbucks Coffee Bookish Reading Club, and was named one of the 10 Best Fiction Books of the Year by the Hudson Booksellers retail chain. Individually, Loory’s stories have appeared widely, in such magazines as Fairy Tale Review, The Nervous Breakdown, The New Yorker, Space and Time, and Word Riot. Loory has also worked as a screenwriter. And students who have met him praise his warmth, accessibility, affability and all-around brilliance and humor. Come see what they’re talking about on October 25, from  7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. in the Nobbs Auditorium of Sequoia Hall (Room 104). All are welcome. And while we are on the subject of the NCWC, kudos to all for their first fabulous event of the year, last week’s well-attended poetry reading by the inspiring Michelle Bitting.

Speaking of student clubs, the CSUN Critical Theory Club, whose mission is to bring students and professors together through conversations about theory, has announced it first meeting of the year, which will take place on Tuesday, October 16th from 3:00 p.m. to 5 p.m. in Sierra Tower 703. They will be discussing Harold Bloom’s The Anxiety of Influence and T.S. Eliot’s “Tradition and the Individual Talent” led by the amazing duo, Sean Pessin and George Fekaris with Dr. Bobby Lopez as their invited professor. Please help spread the word. They are also inviting book suggestions for November meeting, so if anyone knows any really cool theory, please let their President, Norma Aceves, know. For more information, please email them at ctc@my.csun.edu.

Now available for your reading pleasure, past issues of the Northridge Review–almost all of them!–can now be found on CSUN’s ScholarWorks page at http://scholarworks.csun.edu/handle/10211.2/1713. (Follow the link, then click on “Titles” under “This Collection” on the left hand side of the page.)  Also to be found are past issues of Angel’s Flight and Eclipse. This is a great new resource–please let your students know about it.

On Thursday, November 8, from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., in the LNJ Reading Room (JR 319), Bobby Lopez’s “Myth Goes to the Movies” project will be holding its second event, a gallery exhibition of student research and panel of War on Terror veterans discussing Veterans, the Middle East, and Reflections on Lawrence of Arabia. Doors open at At 7:00 p.m. for research exhibits, and the panel will begin at 7:30. This event is free and open to the public. Refreshments and food will be provided.

Looking ahead, the CSUN Research Fellows Program, funded collaboratively by the Office of the Provost, the Colleges and the Library, will again this year be providing twelve units of reassigned time and a small research budge to the tenured and/or probationary faculty who submit the winning proposals. Nine fellowships research will be awarded each–one per College and one in the Library–and the deadline this year will be January 21, 2013. Stay tuned for additional details, and start working on your best ideas now!

Faculty Development and CSUN Human Resources has announced a series of exciting events for October alone. Highlights include, but are not limited to, The Importance of Ethics: An Inspirational Introduction, presented by Michael Josephson (CHARACTER COUNTS!), on October 9, from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.; The Somatic Experience, presented by George Lough, on October 12, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.; Mentoring on the Run, Part 2, presented by Glenn Omatsu on October 16, from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.–and especially not to be missed, Basic Business Writing, by our own Irene Clark, on October 16, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. http://blogs.csun.edu/faculty-development/co-sponsored-events-for-fall-2012/. And while you are at it, check out the App Harvest–the Faculty Technology Center and Faculty Development are collecting suggestions for apps related to teaching, learning or other educational ventures. Take a minute out of your day to share your favorite app with them at https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dHg3Qmc2ZlB5cXhtSmZ2Zzg3S0R5dkE6MQ#gid=0.

2. Reminders

If you find yourself in Ojai this weekend, don’t forget about the October 13 reading at Bart’s Books, featuring What Books authors, Chuck Rosenthal, Mona Houghton, and Kate Haake.

3. Opportunities

Creative Age Communications, a publisher of magazines for the professional beauty industry, is looking for interns for the 2012/13 school year (Fall, Spring and/or Summer semesters). Responsibilities include: Writing and editing short articles for their magazines and websites; posting stories on the magazine websites using their content management system; SEO. The more initiative displayed, the more opportunities available. School credit available. For more information on their magazines, please visit www.beautylaunchpad.comwww.nailpro.com, and www.dayspa.com. Applicants should send a cover letter and resume to: Stephanie Lavery, Editorial Director, SLavery@creativeage.com.

The University of Nevada, Las Vegas, is now in its fifth year of publishing Wordriver Literary Review, a journal which provides a platform strictly for poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction written by Part-time lecturers. Past issues have featured work by instructors from all corners of the USA, as well as the United Arab Emirates and the UK. Given the number of talented writers we have among us, the next issue should surely feature one of ours. More information can be found at http://wordriverreview.unlv.edu.

Palooka,  a nonprofit literary magazine in both print and electronic forms, is seeking fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, plays, graphic short stories, graphic essays, comic strips, artwork, photography, and multimedia for their next issue. The editors of this journal see themselves as “determined to find those writers and artists who are hungry and relevant, flying under the radar, producing great works that are going unnoticed by other magazines,” and they claim to read all the words of everything sent to them. Dedicated to publishing the “the up-and-comer, the underdog in the literary battle royale,” they’ve asked us to let our students know, so please pass this information on. More information can be found on their homepage at http://www.palookamag.com/.

The editors of River Teeth invite nonfiction writers to submit their book-length manuscript for the annual River Teeth Literary Nonfiction Book Prize!  The deadline is November 1. Submissions can be entered online via Submittable or through the mail.

4. Achievements

Kate Haake, Mona Houghton, and Rick Mitchell all gave readings at the West Hollywood Book Festival, appearing (separately) in the Poetry Corner (books fairs not being all that particular about genre, it seems).

Martin Pousson has published a poem, “El Salvador,” in the current issue of Chaparral (http://www.chaparralpoetry.net/), from his collection in progress, Mississippi River Anthology.

Volume 39:3

September 27th, 2012 | Posted by in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Volume 39:3)

1.  Announcements

Congratulations to our new lecturers’ representative–Tina Love, who will be attending department meetings as Lecturer Representative; and Amanda Harrison and Angie Misaghi, Composition Committee Reps; Noreen Lace, Educational Technology Committee Rep; and Pat Swenson, Literature Committee Rep. We appreciate your participation–and that of everyone who put their names forward–and look forward to working with you.

We have been reminded by Chancellor Reed and our campus Academic Affairs division that “using the classroom to inform students about Proposition 30, including dismissing class early and speaking to volunteer students who remain after class, crosses the line into inappropriate political advocacy.”  We have also been directed to the guidelines for political and election issues in the CSU, which can be found in the Office of General Counsel Elections Handbook at http://www.calstate.edu/gc/Docs/ElectionIssues.pdf.  “It is impossible,” the Handbook states, “to establish clear or bright lines that apply universally in every situation, because the law is premised on reasonableness and balance, and the facts are different in each individual circumstance.”  The Handbook also states, “Factual  information about consequences that will result from the passage or failure of a political measure, even including some value judgments and opinions, may be acceptable so long as moderate in tone.”

Sigma Tau Delta, AGSE, 4Humanties@CSUN, Associated Graduate Students in History, and various individuals have joined forces with Better World Books, a “for-profit social enterprise or social business venture” that “uses the power of business to change the world,” to run a book drive that will benefit the literacy initiatives of Books for Africa (http://www.booksforafrica.org). If you have  unwanted college-level books published within the past 10 years (highlighting/writing in the books is fine) that you would be willing to donate to a good cause, please put them in the hall designated for later pick-up or leave them in the donations box in the English mail room. The drive will begin sometime later on in October, but it’s not too early to start clearing out now. Sub-Sahara Africa is in dire need of textbooks, and this is your chance to help.

The Northridge Creative Writing Circle will be presenting poet Michelle Bitting at CSUN this Thursday, September 27, at 7:00 p.m. in the Oviatt Library, Room 25. Bitting, a fourth-generation Angeleno, is author of the DeNovo award-winning Good Friday Kiss and the just-released Notes to the Beloved. Her poems have been published widely, including in American Poetry Review, Narrative, and L.A. Weekly. Dancer, actor, musician, and community activist, she teaches in the UCLA Extension Writers’ Program. And mark your calendars now for the next NCWC event–Ben Loory reading on October 25, also at 7:00 p.m.!

The College of Humanities announces a Call for Proposals for Academic Programming Support open to all full- and part-time faculty in the college. Funding from this source will provide supplementary support for academically related activities and events only (e.g., guest lecturers, workshops, performances). Funding from this source will not be allocated to support individual faculty stipends, curriculum development, travel, faculty research or creative projects, materials or resources for faculty or student training, and/or to hire student assistants. Please submit your one page proposals (including budget summary and contact person email and phone number) describing how the proposed activity or event supports a course or other academic program to: Academic Programming Fund, College of Humanities, SH 461, mail code 8252. But be quick–the deadline is Monday, October 1, by 5:00 o’clock in the afternoon.

For the last couple of years the College of  Humanities has featured the work of a creative writing student on the Dean’s office holiday card.  Believe it or not, it’s time to be thinking of this again!  The Dean’s office is looking for a poem or excerpt from something that captures the spirit of the season—but not specifically religious or Christmas-y (more something that evokes winter, etc) and needs to have it no later than Halloween so that they can get the card designed and to the printer.  They might also be willing to accept artwork—but it would basically need to be black and white because we don’t do full-color cards. Be on the lookout for high quality work, and pass it along to me (Kate Haake) when you find something good.

Provost Harry Hellenbrand cordially invites you to the 4th Annual Research Fellows Colloquium on Wednesday, October 17, 2012 from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. in the Jack and Florence Ferman Presentation Room, Oviatt Library.  Come and hear our distinguished faculty speak about their research.

The CSUN Faculty Retreat Planning Committee also shines, and for the 2013 Faculty Retreat has adopted the title “CSUN. Shine. Illuminating Pathways to Success.” This year’s retreat will be held on the CSUN campus on January 14 and 15, 2013. Faculty interested in making a presentation at the retreat are invited to submit proposals that think about illuminating pathways to their personal and professional successes at CSUN.  The presentation proposal form is available at: http://www.csun.edu/senate/retreat/proposalform2013.doc . Additional information on registering for the Faculty Retreat will be sent to all faculty in late October.  The Retreat website will include updates as planning proceeds; be sure to visit: http://www.csun.edu/senate/retreat.html .

The Faculty Mentor Program & Educational Opportunity Program is accepting nominations for the 2011-2012 Don Dorsey Excellence in Mentoring Awards. The nomination deadline is Friday, Oct. 26, 5 p.m. These awards are presented to faculty, staff, and administrators who have been exceptional mentors at CSUN.  Faculty, staff, and administrators may be nominated for these awards, which recognize exceptional mentoring of past or present CSUN students; a holistic approach to mentoring, including academic and personal support and in informal and intangible ways; and support of the university’s commitment to the success of students of diverse backgrounds and communities. A reception honoring the recipients will be held Tuesday, Nov. 6, 5:00 to 7:00 p.m., in the Whitsett Room, fourth floor of Sierra Hall. The nomination deadline is Friday, October 26, 5:00 p.m. For more information, please contact Glenn Omatsu, Coordinator, Faculty Mentor Program, EOP Central, University Hall 205 (campus mail code: 8366); e-mail:  glenn.omatsu@csun.edu.

On-line training is  now available to help faculty and staff recognize and support students may be in distress.  We are pleased to also provide training that addresses the specific needs and challenges of student veterans, whose numbers are expected to grow on our campus.  The skills acquired in these sessions will help us to promote wellness within our community and make speedy referrals, when necessary, to the appropriate campus resources.

Just a heads up that the Associated Students will be sponsoring a non-partisan Political Fair on Bayramian Hall Lawn on Thursday, October 4, 2012 from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm.  This is open to any/all group wanting to distribute and share information on candidates and/or ballot initiatives for the upcoming elections.  The event will include the use of amplified music from 12:30 – 1:30.

On October 13, Kate Haake and Mona Houghton will be reading with What Books author, Chuck Rosenthal, at Bart’s Bookstore in Ojai at 6:00 p.m. For more information, please see the Bart’s webpage at http://www.bartsbooksojai.com.

2.  Reminders

Please be sensitive to University policy regarding religious observances. Although we have made it through the Jewish High Holy Days, there may be other occasions on which your students will be absent due to a religious holiday, which they should be allowed to observe without negative consequences in class.

As previously announced, you are invited to a book release party for Rick Mitchell’s new collection, Ventriloquist: Two Plays & Ventriloquial Miscellany, at The Last Bookstore, Downtown Los Angeles (453 S. Spring St.), on Friday, September 28th, at 8:00 p.m. The reading will feature actors (and a dummy) performing excerpts from Rick’s play Ventriloquist Sex. Also, on Sunday, September 30th, at 5:00 p.m., Rick will be giving a book-related presentation, The Art of Ventriloquism,” in the Poetry Corner at the West Hollywood Book Fair (West Hollywood Park). For further information on the first event: http://lastbookstorela.com/ai1ec_event/rick-mitchells-ventriloquist-two-plays-ventriloquial-miscellany/?instance_id=17529.  And for info on the second event, please see: http://www.westhollywoodbookfair.org/?page_id=3744.

Also, again, at the West Hollywood Bookfair, on September 30, Mona Houghton will be speaking on a What Books Panel from 3:00 to 3:30 p.m. in the Poet’s Corner. Immediately after, also in the Poet’s Corner, Kate Haake will be reading from her new novel (which, ok, has been described as a “long modernist poem that looks like a novel”) with the actual poet, Gail Wronsky.

3.  Opportunities

So to Speak: a feminist journal of language and art is now accepting submissions for the Spring 2013 issue! This issue will feature poetry and nonfiction contest winners, as well as fiction and visual art. Submissions will be accepted from August 15-October 15 through the online submissions manager at http://sotospeak.submishmash.com/submit. Full submission guidelines are available at http://sotospeakjournal.org/. Looking into the future, the judge for their Spring 2013 Poetry Contest will be Danielle Pafunda and for the Spring 2013 Nonfiction Contest will be Julie Marie Wade. Winners will receive prize money and publication, and finalists will also be published. The contest entry fee of $15 will include a free copy of the Spring 2013 issue for all entrants.

The Oklahoma Review, an online journal published by the Department of English and Foreign Languages at Cameron University,  will be accepting submissions in fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry until October 15. Submissions may be sent via email to okreview@cameron.edu.

4.  Achievements

On July 26, Joel Athey aced the 4th hole at Balboa Golf Course using a 4-iron on the 172-yard par 3. This is his second hole-in-one; the first was in Kansas in 1968. Joel’s playing partner was Don Brownlee, outgoing chair of Speech. For non-golfers, a ready distance comparison: a center field home run at Dodger Stadium travels 400 feet, or 133 yards.   And a person hitting a home run doesn’t have to nail a target the size of a teacup. Many golfers never make a hole-in-one in their lifetimes because it takes skill plus a whole lot of luck in the bounces.

Scott Kleinman taught a workshop on text mining at THATCampSoCal (The Humanities and Technology Camp). He also led a follow-up session and session on regional collaboration in the Digital Humanities. THATCampSoCal was also attended by Ashley Chang and Joshua Spurgeon, two students from his current course on Literary Criticism and Analysis in the Digital Age, as well as by Kristin Cornelius and Michael Green, two graduates of his course on The Technology Textuality from previous semesters.

Fred Field, who is still an official member of the English Department but who will remain one of us even after he leaves for Linguistics in the spring, has been offered a contract from Cambridge University Press for a book tentatively titled, Spanish and English in the United States:  The Collision of Two Giants.  Now, Fred cheerfully notes, all he has to do is write a 300-page book.

Volume 39:2

September 13th, 2012 | Posted by in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Volume 39:2)

1.  Announcements

Congratulations to this year’s English Department Personnel Committee, Dorothy Clark, Anthony Dawahare, Sharon Klein, Martin Pousson, and Beth Wightman. Thanks in advance for your very good work.

The September 19 deadline for the 2012/2013 Distinguished Speakers Program is fast approaching. Applications may be made in two categories: 1)  for up to $700 to request support for classroom visits or department seminars by a guest lecturer, and 2) for up to $1,800 to request funds for individuals or small groups of scholars with broad appeal to the university community to participate in artistic performances, public lectures, or topical conferences. (Please note that International speakers may have up to 30% of honorarium withheld for taxes.) Applications can be found at http://www.csun.edu/grip/graduatestudies/events/faculty.html. And let’s get some money to bring some of the accomplished and fascinating people we know to make a visitation this year!

Speaking of distinguished speakers, on Thursday, September 27, at 7:00 p.m. in the Grand Salon, CSUN’s brand new Department of Linguistics is pleased to co-sponsor, with the Department of Political Science, a conversation with Henry De Sio, Jr., Former Deputy Assistant to President Barack Obama and 2008 Chief Operating Officer at Obama for America, in which he will offer lessons from the campaign trail on leadership, organization, and the power of words.

You’re invited to a book release party for Rick Mitchell’s new collection, Ventriloquist: Two Plays & Ventriloquial Miscellany, at The Last Bookstore, Downtown Los Angeles (453 S. Spring St.), on Friday, September 28th, at 8:00 p.m. The reading will feature actors (and a dummy) performing excerpts from Rick’s play Ventriloquist Sex. Also, on Sunday, September 30th, at 11:30 a.m., Rick will be giving a book-related presentation, The Art of Ventriloquism,” at the West Hollywood Book Fair (West Hollywood Park). For further information on the first event: http://lastbookstorela.com/ai1ec_event/rick-mitchells-ventriloquist-two-plays-ventriloquial-miscellany/?instance_id=17529.  And for info on the second event, please see: http://www.westhollywoodbookfair.org/?page_id=3744.

Also at the West Hollywood Bookfair, on September 30, Mona Houghton will be speaking on a What Books Panel from 3:00 to 3:30 p.m. in the Poet’s Corner. Immediately after, also in the Poet’s Corner, Kate Haake will be reading from her new novel (which, ok, has been described as a “long modernist poem that looks like a novel”) with the actual poet, Gail Wronsky.

Stephanie Satie will be presenting her new solo play, Silent Witnesses, based on interviews and conversations with child survivors of the Holocaust, on Thursday, September 20, at 7:00 p.m. in the Community Room of the South Pasadena Public Library, at 1115 So. El Centro St. South Pasadena, CA 91030. Telephone, 626-403-7335. Refreshments will be served.

The Graduate Reading Series (the GRS) team invites you and yours to our first reading of Fall 2012. Come hear the fiction of Miles Simon, the poetry of Cody Deitz, and the dramatic works of Jessa Reed, while enjoying light refreshments and the company of CSUN’s wonderful creative writers. Friday, September 14, from 7 to 9 p.m., we’ll turn the Linda Nichols Joseph Reading Room into the graduate reading room. They hope to see you there!

Of special interest for those of you who work extensively with Freshman, don’t miss the new Fresh Connections roundtable on Thursday, September 13, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. in the Whitsett Room (SH 451). Join presenters Erin Delaney (English and BCFS/AFYE) and Kim Henige (Kinesiology and BCFS/AFYE) to learn new strategies for teaching time management (including this Academic Planner assignment<http://www.csun.edu/afye/documents/Planner-Assignment.docx>) and for engaging freshmen in the classroom. And bring your best strategies to share! The session will repeat on Friday, September 14, from 3:00-4:00 p.m., again in the Whitsett Room. Please RSVP to CIELO<http://www.csun.edu/cielo/> at x6535 with your choice of Thursday or Friday. More information about the roundtable:  http://www.csun.edu/afye/BCFS-AFYE-Roundtable-Fresh-Connections.html.

The University Student Union at California State University, Northridge is proud to announce the Grand Opening of two new resource centers on campus, the Veterans’ Resource Center  (http://vrc.csun.edu/) and  the Pride Center (http://pride.csun.edu/). Both centers are a result of student-led initiatives and have been serving the campus community since the first day of this Fall semester. The Grand Opening for the Veterans’ Resource Center was yesterday, so if you weren’t there, you already missed it. But there’s still time to make the Grand Opening of the Pride Center, next Thursday, September 27, at 10:00 a.m., in the Pride Center itself.

2.  Reminders

Do not forget, please, the first department meeting of the year, which is tomorrow, 3:00 o’clock in the afternoon in the Linda Nichols Joseph Reading Room. We’ll be discussing the MOU and other things. And there will be refreshments!

Do not forget, either, to post your office hours on the department webpage.  Here’s how:  log in to the English Department administrative system by clicking “Faculty Login” in the top right corner of the English Department web site.  (If you have forgotten your user name or password, click on the “forgot password” link on the log in page.  You will be sent a new password and a reminder of your username.  If you have not yet been assigned an account, contact Tonie Mangum (antoinette.mangum@csun.edu), and she will create an one for you.) After logging in, click “Office Hours” in the main navigation menu. Make sure that the current academic session (Fall 2012) is selected in the dropdown menu and then enter your office hours in the form. Your office hours can be a maximum of 200 characters. When you are finished, click the “Save” button, and your office hours will appear automatically on your profile page. If you need to change your office hours at a later date, you can login again and follow the same procedure.

And another important thing not to forget is the Wings/New Voices ceremony, in which the fabulous work of our students is recognized and celebrated. In the words of Irene Clark, this event “reminds us of why we entered this profession. It will make you happy.”  The ceremony will take place on Friday, September 21st from 3:30-5:30 in the Grand Salon. Light refreshments served. And please encourage your students to attend as well.

We are now in the Open Enrollment period for a wide range of our employee benefits. If you are looking to switch health plans or sign up for a Health or Dependent Care Reimbursement Account, now is the time to do it.  Open Enrollment ends on October 5.

Also due by October 5 are travel requests. Here is the form  http://www-admn.csun.edu/travel/forms/travel-approval-form.pdf. Fill it out and submit it to Tonie, or you may be flying the redeye.

And while you are at it, Tonie wants to know which classes you would like to have student evaluations done in this fall. Please remember that all full-time faculty, beginning in their second year, who are being considered for retention, tenure or promotion will be evaluated in all of their classes. The rest of us get to choose two classes for review. The deadline for letting Tonie know which two these will be is September 27.

President Dianne Harrison and Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Harry Hellenbrand invite all candidates who will be reviewed in the RTP process this year, including faculty under review for retention, tenure, and/or promotion in rank to Associate Professor as well as faculty seeking promotion in rank to Professor, to attend a Retention, Tenure, and Promotion informal discussion on Friday, September 21, 2012 from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. in the Ferman Presentation Room at the Oviatt Library. Members of reviewing agencies such as Department Chairs, members of Department and College Personnel Committees, and Deans and faculty planning to seek promotion in rank in future years are also invited and urged to attend.

Those of your who are teaching one of our GE courses such as 208, 255, 258, 259, 275, 300, 306, 311, 313, 316, 333, 364, or 371 might want to consider participating in the GE Paths. Curious? For more information, see the project webpage at http://www.csun.edu/gepaths/.

Just in case you missed this, CSUN has a new CSUN Today news webpage, and the COH webpage is new too. You can check them out at http://csuntoday.csun.edu/ and http://www.csun.edu/humanities/. Both look great!

And while we’re on the subject of webpages, there’s also a new CSYou, the California State University’s new systemwide employee intranet. This site marks the first time all CSU employees, regardless of location, can access employee-specific information from one location. You can find it and log in at http://csyou.calstate.edu. There’s also a cheat sheet at http://www.csunalumni.com/Schools/CSUNorthridge/Bemail/Files/CSYou-Cheat-Sheet-Campus.pdf that can help you figure out what this site can do for you. Please let me know when you do.

Jackie was gentle, but I’ll be blunt–don’t sell your textbooks to text book buyers, especially if you got them free. That’s against University policy. Just a thought–it’s probably best not to sell books to them at all, as this simply encourages them. If you have used books (NOT desk copies or other textbooks you have received for free from publishers) you don’t want to give to students for their sales or to your local library for the tax deduction but do want to sell (for their enormous resale value?), it’s generally probably best to take them to a proper used book store. Maybe try The Last Bookstore, officially ranked as one of the world’s 20 most beautiful bookstores. That alone will make it worth your trip.

3.  Opportunities

The department has had an inquiry from Daniel Holmes, Activities & Volunteer Coordinator at Sunrise Senior Living of Woodland Hills who is looking looking for someone to help enrich the cultural experience of the Sunrise residents. Specifically, he’d like someone to come in twice a month to facilitate a class or discussion group devoted to poetry. The sessions would take place in the early evening or afternoon and last an hour.  For more information, Holmes can be reached at 818/346-9046. Please do help spread the word–this could be an amazing opportunity for the right person. Preference will be given to upper level students and/or TA’s who are looking to earn community service hours, but Holmes is will to work with “fresh talent” provided the desire is there.

Also for students: Senator Feinstein’s Los Angeles office is looking for highly motivated college students for internship positions for the fall, winter, spring, and summer sessions and will be accepting applications on a rolling basis until all positions are filled.  Successful applicants will support Field Representatives and Staff Assistants in drafting memos to the Senator, scheduling or attending meetings with staff, constituent letters, conducting background research, phone calls, document requests, morning press clippings, research projects, and attending events with the Senator when she is in the area. The office is looking for polite and friendly students with some familiarity with the American political system and current events. Additionally, strong writing and communication skills are a plus. The position will require a minimum of 12 hours per week, but hours will be flexible, according to student schedules.

Now that we have a contract, we need to turn our attention to the November election and do what we can to ensure that the Governor’s Tax Initiative (Proposition 30) passes and increase our funding and halt this year’s tuition increases. Check with our local chapter of the CFA if you want to contribute to this effort (or to the defeat of the Koch brothers-sponsored Proposition 32) this effort by doing some phone banking and community walking.  (And that’s not saying anything about the rest of what’s at stake in this election!)

4.  Achievements

Irene Clark’s review of Mary Soliday’s book, Everyday Genres: Writing Assignments Across the Disciplines, appeared in the journal Composition Studies (Spring 2012, Vol 40,Number 1).

Kate Haake’s new novel, The Time of Quarantine, was an SPD Bestseller last summer.

An excerpt from the Japanese translation of Jack Solomon’s “The Signs of Our Times” is being used as part of the entrance examination to Tokyo Gakugei University.

Volume 39:1

August 30th, 2012 | Posted by in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Volume 39:1)

1.  Announcements

Welcome back to one and all after what I truly hope will have been fabulous summers filled with rest, fun, adventure, and maybe even a little reading or writing or other good work so that you are retuning fully recharged and happily optimistic and energetic about the coming year which, all at once, is upon us.

And a big welcome, too, to the newest members of our Department–Lauren Byler and Marlene Cooksey. We are very glad to have you joining us and wish you both the most seamless of transitions and the best of years ahead.

This not quite just in but at the very top of our announcements is the fabulous news from the Leilani Hall household, now larger by one brand new member of the human race. Leilani Hall and husband Joshua are the new proud parents of Ethan Thomas Hall Freedman, born July 14 at 4:33 p.m. in New Delhi, India, weighing in at 8 lbs, 4 oz, and measuring 20 inches, head to toe. Although subject to more red tape in his first days of life than most of us will be in a lifetime, baby Ethan is thriving and all are safe and well in Northridge. What an amazing saga this baby has already lived, and so it begins. Big hugs all around and welcome, too, to Ethan!

So, too, for new TA Morgan Mayreis-Voorhis, who gave birth to her new son, Declan Voorhis, on 7/6/12 at 4:19am. Baby Declan weighed in at 9lbs, 13oz, and was 21.25 inches long!  Well done, and best wishes to the new family.

This year’s Freshman Convocation will be held on Thursday, September 6, at 6:00 p.m. on the Oviatt Lawn. All campus faculty and staff are encouraged to attend and support this welcome celebration of the Class of 2016. Keynote Speaker will be Chitra Divakaruni, author of this year’s Freshman Common Reading, One Amazing Thing.  Divakaruni will lead an informal faculty-and-staff discussion of her book at 4:00 p.m.in the Oviatt Library’s Ferman Presentation Room. A reception will follow the Convocation. There are lots of ways for faculty to participate in this event, so if you are interested, please visit the website at http://csun.edu/nso/convocation. Meantime, welcome, Freshman!

And while we’re on the subject of the Freshman Common Reading, please do what you can to support this important project. Details can be found at http://www.csun.edu/afye/One-Amazing-Thing-Book-Groups.html. Be current. Read what everyone else is reading. Talk about it with students. And use it, if you can, in class.

Speaking of freshman, please mark your calendars for the upcoming Wings/New Voices ceremony, in which the fabulous work of our students is recognized and celebrated. In the words of Irene Clark, this event “reminds us of why we entered this profession. It will make you happy.”  The ceremony will take place on Friday, September 21st from 3:30-5:30 in the Grand Salon. Light refreshments served. And please encourage your students to attend as well.

Closer to now, indeed this very night, Sigma Tau Delta is hosting a fundraiser at Chili’s. 15% of all purchases made by people who can produce flyers (available on the elevator board and from representatives at Chili’s) will be donated to Sigma Tau Delta. Please come out and support our fabulous honors students.

Thanks in part to a grant from the Arthur N. Rupe Foundation, Bobby Lopez will be organizing a series this fall and spring called “Myth Goes to the Movies,” celebrating the 50th anniversary of six legendary films: The Music Man, Lawrence of Arabia, Dr. No, Cleopatra, It’s a Mad Mad Mad World, and The Birds. The first event will feature a guest appearance from Ms. Shirley Jones, who played Marian the librarian in the 1962 version of the Music Man opposite Robert Preston. Please encourage students to come to this event and spread the word. The event, which is free and open to the public, will feature a viewing of The Music Man, beginning at 4:00 PM in the Armer Theater, followed by a guest appearance from Ms. Shirley Jones. Please contact Bobby if you need further details.

And don’t forget that if you’ve hosting an event, the Dean’s office want to know. Please send the following information to Noreen Galvin (noreen.galvin@csun.edu):  Event title, start date, end date, event description, event website, contact person (phone and email), sponsor, cost, and location.  And please attach a flyer if you have one.  You can request, for example that the event be shared with other colleges, or with such campus institutions as the Institute for Sustainability, or the Library, or the Matador Involvement Center, or NCOD Events, or the Office of the Provost, or the University Events Calendar, or the Valley Performing Arts Center. Just let Noreen know and she will take care of the rest. And a big thank you in advance to Noreen and the COH for helping us spread the word!

On Tuesday, September 4, from 1 to 2 p.m.,  some of last year’s award-winning faculty will be holding a panel in the Whitsett room. Join Joyce Burstein, from Elementary Education, Eric Garcia, from the Oviatt Library, and Jerald Schutte, from Sociology, winners of the 2012 Distinguished Teaching/Counseling/ Librarianship award, as they share their advice at the start of the semester. And there will be coffee and cookies.

For those of you who need a little break in the week, Kathy Leslie has returned to us (welcome back, Kathy), bringing with her her lovely yoga class. All interested yogis will be meeting in the Linda Joseph Nichols Room on Wednesdays this fall, from 12:15 to 1:15. If you haven’t tried it before, now is a great time to do so. The class is open to all who are encouraged to come when they can. Don’t worry if you have to come late or leave early, or even if you can’t touch your toes. Bring a mat and come find out how yoga can really change your life (and this from someone who, for the better part of her adult life, rolled her eyes at yoga).

Finally, since no official announcement was made last spring, it’s worth noting here that the CSUN Native American PowWow last spring won the Diversity Award.

2.  Reminders

The first Department meeting of the year will be held on Friday, September 14, at 3:00 o’clock in the afternoon. Please plan to be there and continue to good work we started at the Department retreat. And for those of you who will be attending the Chair’s Advisory meeting, this first one will take place on Monday, September 10, at 12:15 p.m. in ST 703.

If you’re thinking of doing any university-related foreign travel, first–lucky you, and have a wonderful trip. And second (or perhaps this should be first, but never mind), please consult the new university foreign travel policy, which includes, but is not limited to, pre-paperwork and the requirement to obtain Foreign Travel Insurance through CSUN’s Risk Management office. Tonie can help. Bon voyage!

Or, if you have a secret hankering to be University Writing Council chair for 2012-13 (or if you know anyone else who does), Elizabeth Adams is looking for nominations. The deadline is Friday, August 31st, though, so please be quick.

Also, if you can’t get enough of our amazing students, or are just a soft touch in general, please remember that there will be no penalty this year (at least so far) for going over your course cap limits. Some students can’t get any classes; some need only one to graduate. (A word, though, of caution, it’s probably a good idea to confirm their stories before you award priority where priority might not be warranted.)

And here, again, is the list of campus resources available for students who might need some extra assistance.  Jackie distributed this earlier via email, and I am including it here for future reference.

And here’s just another reminder that SOLAR waitlisted students may show up in your Moodle, so use caution when using the “email all” function. Students are struggling enough with enrollment–let’s please not dishearten them further by sending them emails about yet another class they haven’t been able to get in to. Academic technology is working on this and hopes soon to have sorted things out. (This lingering trace of the shadow student also applies to those who have dropped your class, who may have to be manually purged from your Moodle lists.)

3.  Opportunities

Please bookmark the College of Humanities funding opportunities webpage at http://www.csun.edu/humanities/grants/openfundingopportunities.html and check it frequently. Grant opportunities coming up include ACLS Fellowships to fund replacement time (six to twelve months) for scholarly pursuit of a major project, the Charles A. Ryskamp Research Fellowships for untenured faculty, and the Frederick Burkhardt Residential Fellowships for recently tenured scholars. More opportunities are listed on the COH website and will be posted as they come up throughout the year. This is a valuable resource, and given the new CSUN commitment to applied research, it is important for those of us in Humanities to bring in outside dollars too.

The 2012 Benjamin Saltman Poetry Award is still open for submissions. But poets, you will need to be quick–the postmark deadline is August 31, 2012. Prize includes $3000 and publication. For more information, please see http://redhen.org/awards-2/bsa/.

Further in the future, Arizona State University is hosting the 18th Annual Southwest English Symposium (SWES) on February 15th-16th, 2013. This year’s conference is titled “-isms, -ologies, and -istics: Conversations Across the Disciplines” and the goal is to bring together scholars for an interdisciplinary conversation about the theories and ideologies that both unite and isolate us within academia. Please visit  http://english.clas.asu.edu/swes2013 for more information.

Omnidawn Publishing has announced its first annual Fabulit Fiction Chapbook competition, which joins its award winning poetry contest.  The deadline is October 15, and the winner will receive a $1,000 prize, publication of the chapbook with a full color cover by Omnidawn, 100 free copies of the winning book, and extensive display advertising and publicity. Full details are available at http://www.omnidawn.com/contest/fiction/

4.  Achievements

One important function of Thursday’s Notes, as we all know, is to make note of faculty achievements, but some of us try to keep a low profile by garnering recognition during the summer months. So we begin with  Evelyn McClave’s recognition as one of the Princeton Reviews best 300 professor in America, with a 2010-2011 ranking of 13 on the top 25 of ratemyprofessor.com. If Evelyn likens the recognitions as being equivalent to “Greatest Mom in the World” award, what can we do but envy her children? Really, Evelyn, way to go. (And yes I know that technically Evelyn is no longer one of us, but I know I speak for others when I say that she will always have an honorary place in English.)

Next up is Charles Hatfield, super-academic-hero of the Comic-Con and recipient of this year’s Eisner Award for the best academic book in the comics field. Charles’ book, Hand of Fire, is a study of the legendary comic book figure Jack Kirby, co-creator of Captain America, the Fantastic Four, the X-Men, and the Hulk. According to Slate.com, Hatfield waxed emotional in his acceptance speech, raising both fist and voice to declare, “I want to thank my subject, one of the greatest narrative artists of the 20th century—Kirby lives!”

Dr. Robert Chianese, Emeritus Professor of English, CSU Northridge, delivered his Presidential Address, “When Art Connects to Science,” to the 200 scientists and students at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Pacific Division, held this June in Boise, Idaho.  Chianese has been President of the Pacific Division for the academic year 2011-2012. He is the first non-scientist president in the organization’s 100-year history. This western division, with its 27,00 members, is one of four divisions of the national AAAS, which publishes the weekly Science magazine. Chianese’s address was based on his recent AAAS-PD book, Art Inspired by Science,  which  grew out of an art exhibit he co-curated at Southern Oregon University in 2010 that displayed the works of thirty-five artists from throughout the United States and included a hundred paintings, watercolors, sculptures, and constructions inspired by science techniques, ideas, and theory, as well as from mathematics.

For the fifth year in a row, a student from Audrey Thacker’s ENGL 371 course (“Issues in American Jewish Writing”) won the annual Jewish Studies Essay Contest, sponsored by the Jewish Studies Department. Kelly Anderson‘s essay, “The Plot against America: A Thoughtful Conclusion,” won the honor and its $250 prize for her excellent rumination on the text and its controversial conclusion. And, Audrey notes, she’s not even an English major. Maybe we should look into that.

From June 17th to 22nd , Irene Clark attended a five day seminar in Raleigh Durham titled, Elon Research Seminar on Critical Transitions: Writing and the Question of Transfer. On July 19th, she presented a paper at the Writing Program Administration conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico. It was titled “Academic Writing and Transferability: Print and New Media.”

Alum Abby Pikop McMillen had an opinion piece on remembering Ray Bradbury published this summer in the Santa Clarita local newspaper.  Read it here:  http://www.the-signal.com/section/33/article/68183/.

Alum Patricia Colton‘s indie novel was nominated for the Foreward Reviews’ Book of the Year award in the genre of Fantasy. You can read about it here:  http://www.smdp.com/Articles-local-news-c-2012-06-11-74195.113116-Author-nominated-for-book-award.html.

Volume 38:16

May 24th, 2012 | Posted by in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Volume 38:16)

1.  Announcements

It is with bittersweet pleasure that I submit to you this year’s final edition of Thursday’s Notes, which has weathered, like all of us, some transitions and challenges over the past nine months. Looking back through these posts, it strikes me again how productive we have been as a faculty and how resourceful and resilient. Kudos to Jackie for her spectacular first year as Chair, and to all the rest of us for the hard, good work we have done. Although this hardly needs announcing, summer is at last upon us. Here’s wishing everyone all good things in the several months ahead, which I hope will be restful and regenerative. But first, one last set of Notes.

Which begins with one more accolade for all of our graduating seniors!  The Honors’ Convocation on Monday, May 21, and the English Department Awards Ceremony and Reception (more on that below) and the College of Humanities Commencement, both on May 23, were, as ever, moving and successful events. More kudos to us all, who taught our award-winning graduating seniors, and to the graduating seniors, for finally graduating, and to the rest of our students, whom we also commend.

Moving on, and alas, Shelly Thompson is leaving the College of Humanities SSC/EOP Office to become, hooray, the Associate Director of Undergraduate Studies. Although we will miss her very much, we can’t not be thrilled for her too, and I know I speak for all of us when I wish her the heartiest of congratulations.

And for those of you who want to keep busy this summer, the Course Identification Numbering System (C-ID) (that’s the articulation agreement we are still working on with the community colleges) is pleased to announce that course descriptors for English are now available for our review. This means they want our help in ensuring widespread consensus about the most appropriate preparation for students earning an associate degree in English and then transfer as English majors to CSU. To do so, please log on to the C-ID website and provide feedback on the draft C-ID course descriptors for English. Here’s how:

  1. Go to www.c-id.net and select the “Descriptors” page from the menu on the top of the website.
  2. Choose the “Comment on Descriptors” link.
  3. Click the “Register Here” link if you haven’t already registered for access to the review area.
  4. After registration, a confirmation email with your password will be e-mailed to you immediately. You must click the confirmation link contained in that email message to enable your password so that you can log in to C-ID’s review area. Your e-mail message will be sent by noreply@c-id.net, so please check your spam mailbox if you do not receive it and add this address to your safe sender list.
  5. Use your email address (username) and password to login to the review area.
  6. Read the draft descriptors in your discipline area or related areas having impact on your discipline.
  7. Comment on the draft descriptors, indicating what you feel could use improvement, or any other feedback you think would be relevant or useful. Please note it is just as important that you comment when you are in agreement with the descriptors.
  8. They will keep your email address on file and send you email updates when additional or revised descriptors become available for comment in your discipline.
  9. Please do all this by June 15.

Once the C-ID descriptors are finalized, colleges will be asked to submit their Course Outlines of Record to C-ID, to ensure courses in Transfer Model Curriculum (TMC)-aligned degrees are aligned.  The C-ID course descriptors are at the heart of the TMC and are the curricular foundation; they identify the essence of the course content.  Your participation as a discipline expert is critical at this time. Your articulation officer will facilitate the submission of course outlines.

The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is accepting applications through September 27, 2012 for their 2013 Summer Stipends program. Successful applicants receive an outright award of $6,000 for two consecutive months of full-time research and writing. And if you are interested in applying, tomorrow, May 25, is the deadline for letting the Dean’s Office know.

Bob Chianese will be signing copies of his new book, Art Inspired by Science, in Ventura at the Bank of Books bookstore, on Saturday June 2, from 1:30 to 2:30 pm. You can purchase a copy at the bookstore, the last one in Ventura, which is a warehouse of used books with sections of new books written by both contemporary and local authors. Bob will also make a brief presentation about a few works of art in the book. The Bank of Books is located in Ventura at 748 E. Main Street.

And Mona and Kate will be reading from their new books on May 31st at Chaucer’s Bookstore in Santa Barbara, in case you are looking to get away twice.

2.  Reminders

If you haven’t turned in grades yet, there’s still time. But do get them in by tomorrow, Friday, May 25, and be sure to click all the buttons to make sure they’ve been properly submitted.

Dean Say has asked us to be reminded of and to share widely CSUN’s Drug-Free Campus and Workplace Policy, which is available at  http://www-admn.csun.edu/ohrs/relations/drug_free_campus.htm.  The website features useful information about work-related problems and health risks associated with alcohol and other drug abuse problems.  Also listed are campus and community resources available to faculty, staff, and students. Please take a moment to review this important information. The Dean further reminds us that we cannot serve alcohol in class or at school-related events. Students, as well, cannot bring alcohol for individual consumption or for distribution at school-related functions.   There is a process by which one can petition to serve alcohol, but this must be pursued in advance of the function.

Please turn your 319 key in to Frank as soon as you no longer need it. We have desperate need of them.

3.  Achievements

Six rhetoricians/compositionists from the CSUN English Department participated in The Inaugural Southern California Rhetoric and Composition Research Symposium at UC Irvine on May 4: Norma Aceves, Jada Augustine, Ian Barnard, Irene Clark, Stephan Topf, and Nicole Warwick.

Irene Clark‘s review of Mary Soliday’s book, Everyday Genres: Writing Assignments across the Disciplines, has been published in the Spring 2012 issue of the journal, Composition Studies.  Irene has also received a Research and Creative Activity grant for her proposal titled “Genre Awareness, Rhetoric, and Transferability: Students’ Perspectives.”

Nate Mills presented “Samuel Steward, Eldridge Cleaver, and the Practice of Materialist Sexual History” at the Queer Places, Practices, and Lives Conference at the Ohio State University.

On Thursday May 17th, Pat Swenson and Nancy Taylor (along with Hillary Kaplowitz from Instructional Technology) will present “Creating a Dynamic and Interactive Online Classroom” at EduSoCal’12, to be held at Loyola Marymount University.

And the winers are…

This, again, is the time of year when the Departments announces the recipients of its various awards and distinction. Although many of our here are a few of the stand-outs this year:

 The $500 Henry Van Slooten Scholarship in English for the essay written in English 258, 259, 275, or 355 which best demonstrates a “passion for the English language”  has been awarded to John Kubler for his essay, “Does Poe Condone Revenge in ‘The Cask of Amontillado’.”

 The $500 Lesley Johnstone Memorial Award for the best written scholarly or creative work on some aspect of the natural world or environment has been awarded to Megan Magers for her essay, “Near a Body Buried.”

The $250 Robert apRoberts English Honors Essay Prize for the English Honors student whose thesis is judged to be the best thesis submitted during that academic year is being shared this year by Melissa Filbeck for her thesis, “A Tale of Three Hymens:  Abstinence and Agency in Pamela, Twilight and Fanny Hill,” and Trista Payte, for her thesis, “Either I’m Nobody or I’m a Nation:  Strategies for Post-Colonial Selfhood Explored through Pantomime, The Dragon Can’t Dance, and The Mimic Men.”

The $1000 Annamarie Peterson Morley Award for a currently enrolled English major planning to become a teacher at any level has been awarded to  Megan E. Betry.

The $1000 George Morley/Annamarie Peterson Scholarship for a currently enrolled English major in need of Financial support has been awarded to

The last $500 Finestone Award given to a graduate student whose thesis is in the study of literature and is considered by a faculty panel as the most distinguished has been awarded to Lilit Manucharyan for her thesis, “The Representation of Women and the Transmission of Armenian Ethnic Identity in Twentieth-Century Armenian-American Literature.”

The $2000 Professor Mitchell Marcus Prize in English for a currently enrolled classified graduate student in English whose achievements in the study of English are considered by the faculty to be the most distinguished has been awarded to Sean Pessin.

And the Academy of American Poets Award goes to Robin Smith for her poem, “blue into blue.”  Co-Honorable Mentions were given to Jaclyn Hymes for her poem, “Plumage,” and to Itiola Stephanie Jones for her poem “Palms Open, Love Fading.”  This year’s judge was Kim Young, CSUN alum and author of Night Radio, winner of the 2011 Agha Shahid Ali Poetry Prize (The University of Utah Press) and the chapbook Divided Highway (dancing girl press, 2008).

Finally, César Soto has also been awarded 2012’s Nathan O. Freedman Memorial Award for Outstanding Graduate Student which is a university-wide award open to all Master’s students. César was featured at the Honors Convocation on May 21st and his story was a moving inspiration for all. For more on Cesar, please see the Daily News at http://www.dailynews.com/ci_20682293/award-winning-csun-grad-student-heads-notre-dame.

Congratulations all around, and one more big thanks to the Amenities and Awards Committee for their hard work overseeing these awards and and to everyone else who worked on behalf of these students.

4.  Opportunities

Lisa De Niscia has written to let us know about her new publishing company, Whitepoint Press.  She is excited about discovering new writers who want an alternative to the New York publishing and is very open to writing (fiction, poetry, and non-fiction) that takes risks. Please let your students and former students know that Whitepoint Press is now accepting submissions for consideration of publication.  Guidelines can be found at http://whitepointpress.com/submissions/.

If you know of any talented student writers, NorthStar Moving is looking for a writer/copywriter with a strong handle on English language who is able to follow directions well. Starting salary is $9 an hour for copy writing, letter writing, blog writing, writing responses to clients, etc. It’s a fantastic learning opportunity for students needing experience.


And so it ends, at least for now.  One more round of applause to our entire community for making it through another year. And very best wishes for wonderful summers all around.

Also, please note the vacation photo above.  Those of you who so desire, please send me your own vacation photos from this summer for possible inclusion in the inaugural EOTN of the 2012/2013 Academic Year, which will be upon us in a blink.

Signing off for the 2011/2012 year, Kate Haake.

Volume 38:15

May 3rd, 2012 | Posted by in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Volume 38:15)

1.  Announcements

In sad news, we have lost another member of our CSUN English faculty extended family with the passing of Lila Fink on April 20.  Born on April 30, 1930, Lila was originally from Milwaukee, and was a long-time parttime lecturer at CSUN; Lila also taught at Pepperdine and East L.A. College.  Known as real dynamo who loved to talk and teach lit, she used to hold forth in the mail room to any and all and was tireless when it came to pushing students. As the April 29, LA Times obituary reads, “Lila was a great traveler and enjoyed visiting over 100 countries. Lila is survived by her husband Fred, a marriage that was great for almost 63 years, her children Steve, Larry, and Patty, seven grandchildren, one great grandson, and twin great grandchildren due in July, who will all miss her. Lila was a good bridge partner for Fred. She was also an expert at solving crossword puzzles. Lila was a superb cook. We’ll miss her cooking and her endless love and support.” An online guestbook can be found at http://www.legacy.com/guestbook/latimes/guestbook.aspx?n=lila-fink&pid=157206840&cid=gbsrchres

In sad and happy news, on Saturday, April 27, members of the English Department gathered at the home of Irene Clark to honor, celebrate, and say goodbye to too many wonderful people. The day was warm, the food, fantastic, and the tributes both funny and moving as a good time was had by all and we learned a few secrets, to boot. These are the colleagues we will be missing next year: Rei Noguchi, Pam Bourgeois, Pat Watkins, Patrick Hunter, Elyce Wakerman, and (now I am teary all over again) our very own Martha Alzamora. Congratulations to them all and our very “best wishes” for whatever in the world may be lie ahead in the next part of their lives that is coming. And thanks, as ever, to Irene Clark for her gracious and generous hosting of a very special event. Thanks, too, to Kathy Leslie, for another wonderful slide show of the event, which can be found at http://albums.phanfare.com/slideshow.aspx?i=1&db=1&pw=BwFvXg3Y&a_id=5560618.

Speaking of good times, the recent dedication of the Linda Joseph Nichols English Reading Room, previously known as JR 319, was a huge, and hugely moving, success. If you missed it, take the time to read the plaque in her honor now in the Reading Room. We remain both touched and grateful for her unexpected gift, and so are the future students who will benefit from her scholarship fund.

And in completely happy news, the nation’s oldest and most prestigious teaching honor, the 2012 Teacher of the Year Award,  goes to Northridge alumna and ex English Major, Rebecca Mieliwocki, who earned a single subject credential in English in secondary education from Cal State Northridge in 1996 and is known for her “unconventional” teaching techniques.  A seventh-grade English teacher at Luther Burbank Middle School in Burbank, Mieliwocki was recognized on April 24 by President Barack Obama  in a ceremony at the White House. “Students learn best when they have the most enthusiastic, engaged teachers possible,” she said in a statement, and ok, it’s worth at least noting she might have some pretty good models for this in her past.

Speaking of enthusiasm and engagement, retired Professor Robert Chianese is forging ahead with his impressive work in what looks to be a second career of intense involvement with the connections between the Humanities, Arts, and Sciences.  As current President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science—Pacific Division, Bob continues to promote the humanities in numerous ways, including featuring work on science-based fiction at the upcoming AAAS Pacific Division 93rd Annual Meeting in Boise this June. Bob also has a new book Art Inspired by Nature, with comments on more than thirty works of contemporary art, including paintings, and sculpture–some made by hand, many assisted by machine and computers–from an exhibit at the Schneider Museum in Ashland, Oregon that Bob co-curated, and including discussions on the ends and methods of art and science as ways of knowing. Congratulations, Bob!  Keep up the good work, but not too good, or you will make us look like slouches.

And a great big thank you from your students to all of you who took the time to nominate them or to write support letters for the soon-to-be-announced Department Awards. And another big thank you to the Amenities and Awards Committee for all its hard work in making these selections. We await your decisions with keen anticipation and real pride in our most deserving students.

Meantime, the Department hosted a highly successful visitation with external reviewers, James Kincaid, of USC, and Lisa Weston, from CSU Fresno. The team had a series of meetings with faculty, students, and administrators, and, as above, we also await their report with keen anticipation.

And now that we’ve told them our stories, we might want to memorialize at least some of them in the CSUN Story Cube, now returned for its second year. How about sharing highlights of your university experience with the important project, which aspires to collect and preserve the oral history of our campus by recording the stories and memories of individual members of the faculty, staff and student body. You make the university what it is today, so help us document what it means to be a part of the CSUN community. The StoryCube booth is set up near the front entrance of the Matador Bookstore and interviews may be scheduled to take place Monday through Friday, 9am-4pm, April 30 to May 11, and during Commencement Week, May 22-24. To set up an interview time, please email the StoryCube staff at storycube@csun.edu<mailto:storycube@csun.edu>.

On Friday, May 11th, the Northridge Playwrights Workshop will present performances of new student writing. The show, which begins at 7:30 p.m. in JR 319, will feature aesthetically innovative plays, comic monologues, and free refreshments. For further information, please contact Professor Rick Mitchell (rick.mitchell@csun.edu).  Also, on May 20th, SPIT will be presenting a bunch of plays and monologues from English 512 at Two Roads Theatre in Studio City.

The  Center for the Digital Humanities is creating an “Undergraduate Digital Showcase” for the best digital projects by undergraduate students. The program is being undertaken as part of the Humanities Undergraduate Outreach Project of the 4Humanities initiative, a multi-institution consortium that advocates for the Humanities. The Undergraduate Digital Showcase will display five of the best student projects on the Center for the Digital Humanities web site, and the showcase may also be duplicated on the 4Humanities site. A “First-Year Feature” subcategory will highlight the most outstanding digital project by a first-year student on a subject in the Humanities or a closely related field. All formats are accepted, and projects can either be individually or collaboratively authored. Projects must be nominated by a faculty member. If you would like to nominate a student project from one of your classes during the 2011-2012 academic year, please e-mail the student’s name and the project URL, or send the project as an attachment (if it is not web based), to Scott Kleinman (scott.kleinman@csun.edu). Please check that your students agree to having their work made public in the showcase before nominating their projects. The deadline for nominations is May 15.

Graduates students at Binghamton University are excited to announce the return of the national Writing By Degrees annual conference, the nation’s oldest graduate student run creative writing conference. Binghamton University invites graduate student poets, prose writers, essayists, and critics from all theoretic and aesthetic backgrounds to submit paper or panel proposals by September 1. This year’s conference will take place at the historic Bundy Mansion & Museum in Binghamton, New York, on October 19-20, and will feature panels, readings, and presentations by accomplished keynote speakers, as well as other events and informal gatherings, and a key note address by Marie Howe and Catherine Sneed. For more information and the call for papers, please see Writingbydegrees2012@gmail.com should you have any questions about the event or submissions.

But you don’t have to go all the way to New York to be impressed by graduate students, as Dorothy Clark’s 698 D class amply demonstrated on Friday, April 30, with their culminating conference, “Looking Askew: Odd-Angle Approaches.” Congratulations on a highly successful day and to all our soon-to-be-new-MA’s.

Please inform your faculty that the Office of Graduate Studies, Research and International Programs will conduct a Faculty Fulbright Program Workshop on May 9, Wednesday, from 10 to noon, in Room 211, University Hall.  The latest information on Fulbright application will be presented and former Fulbrighters at CSUN will share their personal and academic experiences abroad on Fulbright awards.   Refreshments will be served. We are very pleased to announce that two of the five CSUN students who applied to the Fulbright Student Award Programs this year were recommended by the U.S. Fulbright Commission.  One of the students, Grady Turnbull, a graduate of our special education program, was awarded the English Teaching Assistantship to Serbia and a second student, Andrew Taylor, a student in multimedia, was an alternate for the ETA award to Malaysia.Please RSVP via e-mail to Dr. Justine Su at zsu@csun.edu by May 7, and we hope to see many of you there!

Finally, for the second time in the still new 21st century, the California Faculty Association has voted, by a resounding 95%, to authorize a strike in our current stalled contract negotiations. Please stay informed through the CFA. A spokesperson for the Chancellor’s office was heard last night on NPR to assert that there are only a “few outstanding” issues separating the two sides, but that’s not what we hear from the Union. Maybe it’s time to dig out your pickets.

 2.  Reminders

It’s a busy time of year in any event, so mark your calendars now and plan ahead to attend the 2012 College of Humanities Graduation, on Wednesday, May 23, at 6:30 p.m. on the Oviatt Lawn, with the English Department Reception and Awards Ceremony immediately preceding. If you can be there for your students and their families, it will mean the world to them.

Also, don’t forget the Honors Convocation on Monday, May 21,at 6:00 p.m. on the Oviatt Lawn, another very special occasion.

But before we get between here and then, there is finals week, from Monday, May 14, to Saturday, May 19, with grades due by Friday, May 25. Hang on to your hats, and don’t wish for time to go too quickly because it always does.

It probably also needs also to be said that, looking ahead, the 2012 Composition Meeting will be held on Wednesday, August 22nd, from 12:30-3:30, with the Department Retreat tentatively scheduled the following day, on Thursday, August 23. But this information is for planning purposes only–don’t give up on summer before it’s even here.

3.  Achievements

Scott Andrews presented “Julia Kristeva and the Pups: Theorizing a Tlicho Abject” at the recent Native American Literature Symposium in Albuquerque, N.M., and his review of Sy Hoahwah’s poetry collection, Velroy and the Madischie Mafia, appears in the most recent issue of Studies in American Indian Literatures.

MA Student Kristin Cornelius has won one the 2012 Kairos award for Graduate Students and Adjuncts for Teaching. The $500 award is given by Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy to graduate students and/or adjuncts in the field of computers and writing based upon service, scholarship, and teaching.

Nate Mills presented “Writing Civil Rights Politics: The Dozens and Conspicuous Consumption in Ralph Ellison’s Three Days Before the Shooting…” at the Stephen J. Meringoff Seminar on Ralph Ellison, a session of the Association of Literary Scholars, Critics and Writers Conference at Claremont. On other most excellent news from Nate, his  2011 dissertation “Ragged Figures: The Lumpenproletariat in Nelson Algren and Ralph Ellison” has been awarded a ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award by the University of Michigan and the Clarence D. Thorpe Dissertation Prize by the English Department at Michigan. Congratulations on both counts!

Jutta Schamp presented “What’s Cooking? Food, Alchemy, and Individuation in Anton Nimblett’s Sections of an Orange and Lelawattee Manoo-Rahming’s Curry Flavour” at the conference “Narrating the Caribbean Nation” at Leeds Metropolitan University, U.K., April 14-15.

Our amazing poet and alum Dan Murphy has had a poem,  “Faithless II,” accepted for publication in the esteemed literary journal Field.

And Kate Haake (me) and Mona Houghton, will once again be reading from their new books tomorrow, May 4, at 7:30, at Stories Bookstore in Echo Park, and then again at the Richard J. Riordan Central Library on May 17, at noon.

4.  Opportunities

Summer job opportunities for 74 college students are now available through the L.A. County Arts Internship Program. Descriptions of and contacts for the internship positions are posted on the Arts Commission’s Web site, at  www.lacountyarts.org. Interested students should act as soon as positions are posted and apply directly to the organization offering the internship, not the Arts Commission. The organizations make final candidate selections quickly as internships begin on June 1.  Graduating seniors who complete their undergraduate degrees by September 1, 2012 are eligible, as well as undergraduates. The positions are for 10 weeks and pay $350 per week. Interns also take part in educational and arts networking activities generously funded by The Getty Foundation. Through the program, interns gain real work experience to strengthen their resumes and develop business skills that can be put to use in their future careers. Please let your students know.

The office of Los Angeles City Councilmember Richard Alarcon, along with local education based organizations, is looking to organize a Summer Speaker Series for Youth in their Community Room at the City Facility located in Pacoima. They are looking for Speakers to speak on a variety of topics, whether its career and life choices or lecture on a specific topic such as financial aid, access to higher education or historical events. If you are interested in speaking to youth with the intent to inspire them to be successful in life or educate them on a subject matter that you specialize in, please contact Jaime Rodriguez,Education Liaison, at jaime.p.rodriguez@lacity.org, or (818)-485-0600. They are looking to coordinate as many events and activities for youth during the Summer before students go on Summer Break. Also, if you or students are interested in holding a Summer workshop for youth in the area as well, please respond. Finally, if you know of Summer internships, paid or un-paid, Summer employment opportunities or volunteer opportunities for youth, please let the office so they can share with local schools.

5. Very Special Announcements:  Our Amazing Students

And now, as promised, the good news you have all been waiting for as to where our students will be headed next year and what they will be doing. This is a good year for our graduating seniors. And please accept my public apologies in advance if I’ve neglected anyone, but here is what’s been reported to me to date.  And with one more TN to go in this academic year, if anyone has been left out–or receives late good news–there will be time for additions and proper announcements two weeks hence. Meantime, congratulations to them all. We will miss them, but wish them all the best.

As noted in these notes before, Cesar Leon Soto was accepted to the University of Maryland and Marquette University in Milwaukee packages and is excited to be continuing his studies in British Romanticism. As the spring progressed, Cesar was also accepted at Fordham and Notre Dame, also with good financial packages.  Cesar, in fact, was accepted, with funding, at all seven doctoral programs to which he applied, and–the envelope, please–has decided to accept the offer from Notre Dame, which includes the Joseph L. Gaia Distinguished Latino Studies Fellowship. In addition, Cesar was awarded the prestigious Ford Fellowship, which among its several benefits includes an annual stipend of $20,000 for three years of doctoral work, as well as the opportunity to be mentored by a former Ford Fellow and thereby gain access to the national Ford Fellows Liaisons network.  Cesar wishes to thank his mentors again, Ranita Chatterjee and Irene Clark, for writing him letters as well as for their constant support. He also wants to thank Julie Carlson (English, UCSB) and Margarita Nieto (Chicano Studies, CSUN) for writing letters of recommendation for the Ford Fellowship. And a warm thank you to CSUN’s English department–professors, administrators, colleagues, and friends for always providing an intellectually stimulating environment filled with friendly faces and ready smiles.

Loretta McCormick (B.A, M.A. 2011) was accepted into Ph.D. programs in English with Creative Writing dissertations at both the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, the alma mater of our own Leilani Hall, and the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.  After visiting both places, Loretta has decided she can’t miss the chance to march with beleaguered state workers (yes, there, too) in Wisconsin, where we will be looking for her in news footage.  And Loretta has been offered funding, too, including a first year fellowship along with a four-year TA-ship.

Kathy Torabi has been accepted to doctoral programs in Medieval English literature at UC Irvine, Arizona State, and Texas A&M, and will be attending Texas A&M with full funding. Kathy has also received the Texas A & M University Diversity Fellowship.

Marina Mularz has been accepted into three MFA programs in Fiction: Northwestern University, Roosevelt University, and Butler University, and is thrilled to be returning to the Midwest, from which she comes, to earn an MFA at Northwestern University. All are invited to stay with her if they ever want to visit the great city of Chicago.

Djinji Jimenez has been accepted into the California Institute for the Arts MFA writing program in fiction and the Antioch LA low residency MFA program. She is thrilled to be attending Cal Arts.

Zach Fromson has been accepted into the UC Riverside MFA writing program in fiction.

Ramsey Mathews was accepted by and will be attending the MFA program in poetry at Cal State Long Beach.

Ani Bakhchadzyan has been accepted into four MFA programs for Fiction: CalArts, California College of the Arts, CSU Fresno, and CSU San Bernardino, and has also been placed on the wait list at the New School. She was offered a full fellowship at CSU Fresno and a partial fellowship at CalArts. She will enroll in the CalArts program in Fall 2012.

Kelly Moreno has been accepted into the Law School at the University of New Orleans.

Steve Bockover has been accepted into the MFA program in Fiction at Mills College. He will enroll in Fall 2012.

Jared Thomas (B.A. Fa ’11) has been accepted and has enrolled in the MA program at CSUN.

Cody Deitz (B.A. Sp ’11) has been accepted into the MA program at CSUN and will enroll in Fall 2012.

Eric Barnhart (B.A. Sp ’11) has been accepted into the MA program at CSUN and will enroll in Fall 2012.

Miles Simon, Deanna Herbert, and Jacklyn Himes have been accepted into the MA program at CSUN and will enroll in Fall 2012.

Volume 38:14

April 19th, 2012 | Posted by in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Volume 38:14)

1.  Announcements

Apologies to all whose Thursday’s Notes shows up in their inbox looking a bit funky (for example, no nice spaces between entries). This seems to be a browser issue and the woeful inelegance can’t be helped. However, please be reminded that the Notes also appear on the English Department webpage, where they can be read in their original and intended format.

The Graduate Reading Series (G.R.S.) would like to invite you, your friends, and your family to the final reading of the 2011-2012 academic year! Several excellent graduating graduate students will be performing their work. Please plan to come and show appreciation for all the hard work they, and by extension you, do in this program. Save the date:  Saturday, April 28, at 7:00 p.m. in the Linda Nichols Joseph English Reading Room. For those of you who have question or comments, or want to get involved, please email Hudit Simonyan, hudit.simonyan.972@my.csun.edu; George Fekaris george.fekaris.36@my.csun.edu; Jon Beadle jon.beadle.50@my.csun.edu,; or Sean Pessin, sean.pessin.38@my.csun.edu.

Also on Saturday, April 28, the NCWC would like to invite you and all to the final undergraduate student reading of the 2011-2012 academic year! This reading will feature graduating seniors reading their work and will take place from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. in the Linda Nichols Joseph English Reading Room.

On April 27 from 10 am to 5 pm, M.A. candidates will hold a conference entitled “Looking Askew: Odd-Angle Approaches” in JR319 as part of their culminating experience. Graduating students will present their finest work covering multiple facets of literature, theory, composition and genre.  Dr. Jeffrey Kahan (PhD, Shakespeare Institute of the University of Birmingham) will be the  keynote speaker. Dr. Kahan’s main talk is entitled “New Shakespeare, ‘now improv’d with nobler Lustre’: A Selection of Imitations and Forgeries (1710-1820).”  Afterwards, Dr. Kahan will hold an interactive workshop on how to successfully publish in the humanities based off his new book.  The event is free and food would be served.  All are welcome to attend.

All interested students are invited to attend an information session about the CSUN Credential Program and English Subject Matter Option on Wednesday, April 25, in JR 319, the English Reading Room.  A CSUN Credential counselor will answer questions about credential procedures, possibilities, pathways in this excellent opportunity to learn about this possible pathway with your English degree.  Any additional questions you might  have about the English Subject Matter Option will also be addressed. Light refreshments.

Interim President Harry Hellenbrand will be giving the opening address at this year’s Faculty Retention Workshop for Chairs and Tenured Faculty, which is being held on Monday April 23, 2012, from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. in the Grand Salon of the USU. This year’s event marks the 2nd installment of the Educational Equity Committee’s new three-part approach to our annual Faculty Retention Workshop.  Last year, the 1st installment, as many of you will recall, was designed for the Pre-tenured Faculty only.  The Spring 2012 Faculty Retention Workshop (2nd installment) will be for Chairs and Tenured Faculty only, while the 3rd installment (Spring 2013) will be designed for Deans and Associate Deans.  The goal of the Faculty Retention Workshops is to gather information and report on best practices for both retaining our diverse CSUN faculty and creating a campus climate that promotes educational equity.

Anne Kellenberger is once again imploring us to send her our best students for next year’s SI positions. This is a win/win situation for all concerned. Our students get jobs and a great learning experience, their students get terrific SI’s and a great learning experience, and Anne keeps running her truly daunting program as expertly as she has this year. Please do take a moment and send her your recommendations. Both she and your students will be grateful.

2.  Reminders

If you haven’t RSVP’d for the upcoming retirement gala at Irene Clark’s home, 1314 Comstock, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. on May 28, you’re in luck, because the actual party is not May 28, as announced in the last TN, but April 28, instead, which is nearly upon us. Please do come to help thank Martha Alzamora, Pam Bourgeois, Patrick Hunter, Rei Noguchi, and Pat Watkins for all their wonderful work over all these wonderful years, and to wish them the very best at whatever in the world may be coming next.

Just a quick reminder to vote in the College’s Spring elections by going to  https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/HUMELEC and casting your vote. This ballot will be open until Wednesday, April 25, at 8 a.am.

And another ongoing vote is the CFA strike vote. Vote online or in person next week and make your voice heard.

English Department Award deadlines are fast approaching. All applications, nominations, and materials (five copies each) must be submitted by 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, April 25. Please support your students and our program, and consider nominating promising students, or encouraging them to apply, for the following awards. (For details or more information, please contact Pat Watkins, Chair, Awards and Amenities Committee.)

The Lesley Johnstone Memorial Award ($500) for the best written scholarly or creative work that takes some element of the natural world as a central focus.  Undergraduates only.

The Annamarie Peterson Morley Award ($1000) for a currently enrolled English major planning to become a teacher at any level and possessing a minimum 3.5 grade point average.  Undergraduates and graduates.

The George Morley/Annamarie Peterson Scholarship ($1,000) for a currently enrolled English major in need of financial support and possessing a minimum grade point average of 3.0.  Undergraduates and graduates.

The Professor Mitchell Marcus Prize in English ($2000) for the currently enrolled classified graduate student in English whose achievements in the study of English are considered by the faculty to be the most distinguished.

The Mahlon Gaumer Award ($500) for the best close, critical analysis of a work of English or American literature, with an emphasis on the use of language, given to a classified graduate student currently enrolled in the academic year in which the award is given.

The Richard Lid & Helen Lodge Scholarship ($500) for a graduate student enrolled in English and/or Secondary Education to help pay fees for graduate work.

The Henry Van Slooten Scholarship in English ($500) for an essay written in English 258, 259, 275, or 355 which best demonstrates a “passion for the English language.”  By professor nomination only.

Just in case you are looking for fun on Saturday night, Kate Haake and Mona Houghton will be reading from their new books at The Last Bookstore in downtown LA at 8:30 p.m. (And thank you to all of you who have come to listen already.) Two more readings are coming up:  Friday, May 4, at 7:00 p.m. at Stories Bookstore in Echo Park; and Thursday, May 17, at 12 p.m. in the downtown Central Library.

3.  Achievements

Linda Rader Overman presented “Ekphrastic Narrative: A Genre Focalizing Image and Text,” an excerpt from her dissertation, at the International Journal of Arts and Sciences Conference at University Nevada, Las Vegas on Wednesday March 14, 2012.

César Leon Soto has been awarded a Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship, which among its several benefits includes an annual stipend of $20,000 for three years of doctoral work, as well as the opportunity to be mentored by a former Ford Fellow and thereby gain access to the national Ford Fellows Liaisons network. This year there were over 1,300 applicants and only 60 fellowships awarded. Fellowships are administered by the National Research Council of the National Academies.  César has also been awarded 2012’s Nathan O. Freedman Memorial Award for Outstanding Graduate Student which is a University-wide award open to all Master’s students. César will receive the award, and his name will be announced, at this year’s Honors Convocation on May 21st.

Danielle Spratt has received an NEH fellowship to participate in the summer seminar “Jane Austen and Her Contemporaries,” which will take place at the University of Missouri.  At the end of March, she also presented ” ‘A large, uneven thread’: Spectacles and the Anatomy of Attention in Tristram Shandy” at the annual American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies conference held in San Antonio; she also chaired two panels at ASECS.