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Chair: Kent Baxter
Notes compiled by: Kate Haake



It is with a sad heart that I write the department has lost two good friends.

Longtime CSUN administrator and former English Department Chair and colleague, Philip Handler passed away earlier this month after a long illness. An specialist in 20th century literature, with secondary interests in English drama and composition, Philip joined our department from the University of Texas Austin in 1968 and quickly distinguished himself as a very knowledgeable teacher and hard-working colleague. From 1979 to 1983, he served as Department Chair, and then went on to become Associate Dean of the then “School of Humanities.” In 1988, he was appointed Dean of the School of the Arts, and in 1996 became the founding dean of CSUN’s new College of Arts, Media and Communication. Under Philip’s leadership, the college grew to be one of the region’s leading arts education institutions. In 1999, Philip was appointed Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs and in 2000, he became the university’s first Vice Provost retiring in 2005. Among Philip’s numerous accomplishments was the founding of the University’s Entertainment Industry Institute, appointment as the Principal Investigator of The California Arts Project and the director of The Teachers for a New Era Initiative. He was also recognized as an authority on K-16 education and arts in education. Philip Handler will be much missed.

And in September, longtime Mitchell Marcus donor, and husband of Helen Marcus, David Williamson. Also known as “Bunny,” David was an avid rugby player and fan and an equally avid supporter of CSUN’s English department. He, too, will be much missed.

In happier news, Erin Settle, who who’s been working in the department for the past year as an emergency hire, has been hired as the Subject Matter/Composition Administrative Assistant. Congratulations, Erin! And, welcome!


Don’t miss the return of the Northridge Review, which will be holding a launch celebration and reading next on Wednesday, November 8, at 7:00 p.m.in CSUN’s Bianchi Planetarium. Representing work from the last three semesters, this review is packed full of remarkable writing.


Writer and CSUN MA alum Katharine Coldiron Mason is offering a three-hour workshop on crafting sentences. The event will take place on November 11, in Katharine’s home. The workshop is only $20 for CSUN students, a savings of $15 off the regular price. If you have students who need to bring more attention to their writing (of any variety) at the sentence level, please let them know about this workshop. Katharine knows sentences! For details, please email her at kcoldiron@gmail.com.

CSUN is sponsoring the 2018 Digital Humanities Summer Institute (DHSI) in Victoria, British Columbia, entitling CSUN-affiliated participants to reduced registration fees. An annual event, DHSI is the premier Digital Humanities training event, bringing together faculty, students, and staff to learn about the field. Typically, participants stay for one of two weeks of intensive coursework, seminars, and lectures. In 2018, DHSI course will take place during the weeks of June 4 to June 8 and June 11 to June 15. Faculty and students who would like further information about attending DHSI or access to CSUN’s reduced registration fees should contact Scott Kleinman (scott.kleinman@csun.edu) for further information.

CSU IP (International Programs) is hosting an academic seminar in collaboration with the University of Ghana in June 2018. CSU faculty members–both Africanists and non-Africanists–are encouraged to apply. The application deadline is December 1, 2017. For details, contact Keiko Hirata, at keiko.hirata@csun.edu.


CSUN’s creative writing community was well represented at last night’s Lit Crawl, with the GRS presenting a reading titled CSUN Solidarity: Poetry, Protest, and the Power of Story at the Metro Red Line Station, in the NoHo Arts District. Readers included Alvaro Castillo, Marisela Gomez, Sophia Apodaca, Rebecca Starkman, and others. Well done, CSUN writers!

CSUN alumni and students are also well represented in the Angel City Review, with poetry by MA alum Lucas Bailor, current student Emilio Sotelo, and fiction by alum Sam Goli. With Managing Editor and current MA student Zach Jensen and a masthead well populated by other CSUN-affiliated writers, the magazine is doing good work in getting our CSUN writing out into the world. Also well done!

MA alum, current part-time lecturer, and UC Irvine Ph.D. candidate Stephanie Lim has published a paper, “At the intersection of Deaf and Asian American performativity in Los Angeles: Deaf West Theatre’s and East West Players’ adaptations of Pippin,” in Studies in Musical Theatre.

Leo Sanchez (BA CW ’15) was just promoted to Program Manager for the Upward Bound Program at Occidental College.

On October 15, Audrey Thacker addressed the Jewish Book Group at Loyola Marymount University regarding Shalom Auslander’s novel, Hope: A Tragedy,  and its take on the legacy of Anne Frank and the Holocaust on American Jewish life and identity.

Leticia Valente (BA in Creative Writing, MA in English Candidate) has been promoted to Administrative Support Coordinator in Human Resources at CSUN.