A small circle of University of Mary Washington students scrutinized the printed sheets of poetry resting on their laps. Lost in their lively deliberation the amateur literary critics seemed oblivious to the bitter cold outside the Combs Hall window.
Chris Foss, professor of English, presented a paper entitled “Erin Go Bharat: Political Affiliations with Ireland in Fin-de-Siècle Indian English-Language Poetry” at the historic first-ever supernumerary joint meeting of the North American Victorian Studies Association, the British Association of Victorian Studies, and the Australasian Victorian Studies Association. The conference took place during the first week of June in Venice, Italy.
On Sunday, August 5, Gary Richards, assistant professor of English, presented a paper, “Statues, Stories, and Hominy Grits: The Light in the Piazza, Grey Gardens, and the Complicating of the United States South in the Contemporary American Musical,” at the Association for Theatre in Higher Education Conference in Washington, D.C. The paper was part of a panel entitled “Broadway Musicals as Sites of American Identities and American Histories.”
Richards also was the University of Mary Washington’s chapter delegate to the Forty-Third Triennial Council of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, which met in Palm Beach, Fla., Thursday, August 2 through Saturday, August 4.
Richard Finkelstein, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and professor of English, published “The Comedy of Errors and the Theology of Things” in the spring issue of Studies in English Literature, 1500-1900.
The article looks at both theological and mercantile traditions to argue that Shakespeare sees participation in the marketplace as redemptive.
Professor of English Steve Watkins’ 2011 young adult novel “What Comes After” has been named to Bank Street’s list of 2012 Best Books of the Year. “What Comes After” is one of 46 books in the category for children older than 14-years-old.
The Bank Street College of Education chose the books for the annual list based on several criteria, including literary quality and the potential emotional impact of the books on young readers. Bank Street is a private institution composed of children’s programs, a graduate school and a research and policy initiative.
Watkins’ novel also is a finalist for the 2012-2013 Georgia Peach Book Award, given by the Georgia Library Media Association, Georgia Library Association, Georgia Public Library Service and the Georgia Education Association. Watkins is one of 20 nominees in the teen readers category. Teens will read and rate the books to determine the winner of the award, which will be announced in April 2013.
Gary Richards, assistant professor of English, presented a paper, “Where The Wind Done Gone Done Went: An Unauthorized Anniversary Parody,” at the Society for the Study of Southern Literature Conference in Nashville, Tenn., held Thursday, March 29 through Saturday, March 31. A member of the SSSL Executive Committee, Richards also was part of the four-person program committee for the conference.
Richards facilitated the Breakfast Book Club discussion of Tennessee Williams’s short fiction at the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival in New Orleans, La., held Wednesday, March 21 through Sunday, March 25.