• Alumni Reading Series

English Alumni Faculty Lecture Series

The CSUN Department of English invites its alumni to a reading by two of its faculty,
Dr. Bryson and Dr. Dawahare,
along with a musical performance by CSUN alumnus and faculty Eric Kufs.

Five lucky alumni will win a signed copy of each of the presented books, as well as a CD.
Light food and refreshments will be served, and a cash bar available.

Date: Saturday, May 4, 2019

Time: 3:00-5:00pm

Location: USU The Lake View Terrace Room
                   18111 Nordhoff Street
                   Northridge, CA 91330

Dr. Michael BrysonLove and its Critics - Michael BrysonDr. Michael Bryson will present material from two projects: his recent book Love and its Critics, co-authored with former CSUN MA student Arpi Movsesian, and his forthcoming book The Humanist (Re)Turn. Central to each book is the question of the value of literature, and the often hostile relationship professional literary scholarship and theoretically-based criticism has to that literature. Central to the claims of Bryson's work is that literary theory and criticism based on a hermeneutics of suspicion, claiming to expose the hidden, has a very long history, shaping the way we have been taught to read and understand literature for over two thousand years. The earliest examples are rooted not merely in suspicion, but in the openly-expressed desire to exercise authority over the hearts and minds of others, and many modern examples of suspicion-based criticism retain more than a trace of that original impulse. But if we can learn to hear its multiple voices once again, literature has more than enough power to fight back against such entrenched ways of reading.


Anthony DawahareTillie Olsen and the Dialectical Philosophy of Proletarian LiteratureDr. Anthony Dawahare will discuss his recently published book, Tillie Olsen and the Dialectical Philosophy of Proletarian Literature (Lexington Books, 2018).  This book analyzes the impact of one of the most important philosophies of the last century, dialectical materialism, on the form and content of Olsen’s fiction. It makes a case for the importance of Olsen’s Marxist education during the “Red Decade” of the 1930s and within the U.S. proletarian literary movement. Barbara Foley (University of Rutgers-Newark) writes, “Anthony Dawahare brilliantly demonstrates the centrality of dialectical materialism not only to the methodology guiding Tillie Olsen’s writing but also to the proletarian literary movement as a whole.”  Bill V. Mullen (Purdue University) notes that Tillie Olsen is “A stirring, original work of scholarship.” Marcial Gonzalez (UC Berkeley) states that it makes “a serious and substantial case for a new, more critical Marxist reading of Tillie Olsen’s fiction.”

Eric KufsProfessor Eric Kufs is an independent singer/songwriter who will perform live on the Lake View Terrace patio, along with the company of his guitar. Besides being a CSUN alumus and a part of the Department of English faculty, Eric is the main songwriter for Common Rotation, an indie folk band. He has recorded with groups such as Indigo Girls, They Might be Giants, and Dan Bern. He has written almost a thousand songs and released six-full length records. Join us for the pleasure of listening to his soulful 70s pop sound.

Please join fellow alumni and the Department of English for an afternoon of reconnecting with old friends and recharging with new art.

Parking: Please keep in mind that parking on campus is $8.00 per vehicle, including weekends. Guests should stop at Information Booth #1 at Nordhoff Street and Lindley Avenue OR Information Booth #3 at Prairie Street and Zelzah Avenue to purchase their parking permit.  From there, guests will be directed to the G3 parking structure or surface lot. Follow this link for a map of the campus: CSUN Campus Map. Follow this link for a map of the University Student Union: USU Map.

Assistance for persons with disabilities, including interpreters for deaf and hard of hearing persons, is available for this event. Please submit requests to Wendy Ventura at least five (5) working days in advance.

Please RSVP by Friday, April 19th.

If you have any questions, please feel welcome to email us at englishalumni@csun.edu or contact Wendy Ventura at (818) 677-3431.


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