Voices of the Rainbow: Spring 2011 Reading Schedule

Post updated February 1, 2011: Room information added

March 3 (Thurs.) noon VALZHANA MORT (cosponsored with Gender Studies)

Health Sciences Building, Room 119

Valzhana Mort is a poet from Belarus known for her vibrant poetry readings. She is author of the first bilingual Belarusian-English poetry book ever published in the US, Factory of Tears (2008).

March 10 (Thurs.) 6:30 HA JIN (Annual Paumanok reading/lecture)

Kumble Theater

Ha Jin, a native of China, is the author of fiction, poetry, and prose. His writings include Waiting (a National Book Award Winner in 1999), War Trash (PEN/Faulkner Award 2005), A Free Life, and The Writer as Migrant. His latest work is a collection of short stories, A Good Life.

March 28 (Mon.) 11 SAPPHIRE (cosponsored with Africana Studies)

Health Sciences Building, Room 119

Sapphire is a poet and fiction writer. He works include American Dreams, Black Wings & Blind Angels, and the best-selling novel Push, about a brutalized Harlem teenager. Push, winner of many awards, was made into the major motion picture, Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire.


Humanities Building, Room 206

Russian-born author Gary Shteyngart has written the award winning novels The Russian Debutante’s Handbook, Absurdistan, and Super Sad True Love Story. In 2010, he was named as one of the New Yorker magazine’s 20 best fiction writers under 40.

Korean-American author Sonya Chung has written the critically acclaimed novel, Long for This World. She teaches at Columbia University.


Celebrate some of the talent of LIU’s own adjunct faculty and MFA program.

April 29 (Fri.) noon HARRYETTE MULLEN

Humanities Building, Room 206

Harryette Mullen’s poetry is filled with wordplay and allusion as well as being centered in the wider tradition of African American literature. Recyclopedia, which collects three of her earlier volumes, received a PEN Beyond Margins Award in 2006. She is also a recent winner of the Jackson Prize from Poets & Writers and has been nominated for a National Book Award. This reading is being given in conjunction with two other readings in New York the same week, one at Poets House and one at Cave Canem. The Poets-House reading is part of a celebration of the publication of Looking Up Harryette Mullen: Interviews on Sleeping With the Dictionary and Other Works by Barbara Henning (Professor Emerita in the LIU Brooklyn English Department). For more information about the other two readings, click here and scroll down to April 29 and 30.



Long Island University: Flatbush and DeKalb Avenues in Brooklyn.

For more information contact Louis Parascandola or Maria McGarrity at 718 488-1050.

Funding provided by the Provost’s Office.

MFA Reading Series Event: Enter the Rhizome

We are pleased to announce a late entry in this semester's MFA Reading Series.

See here for info on past events from this semester.

The New Event is a Poetry Reading Featuring:

Eric Alter
Alicia Berbenick
John Casquarelli
Kyle De Ocera
Yani Gonzalez
Aimee Herman
Tony Iantosca
Joe Infante
Rachel Jackson
Jamey Jones
Uche Nduka
Sarah Wallen
Mary Walker
Anne Waldman

When & Where

Tuesday, December 14
6:30-8:50 PM
Spector Lounge
Fourth Floor, Humanities Building

Refreshments following the reading.

Our First Video: The English Major at the Brooklyn Campus of Long Island University

We are pleased to unveil our first promotional video! Enjoy!

Stay tuned...

Keeley Ibrahim (English Major) Among Contributors to Art Exhibition on Women's History

Brooklyn-Campus English major Keeley Ibrahim and fourteen other Honor's-Program students are collaborating on an art installation entitled "Still Partying: A Collective Response to Judy Chicago's The Dinner Party."

From the Brookln-Campus press release:
Setting their own place at the table, students at Long Island University’s Brooklyn Campus will honor Judy Chicago’s iconic work, “The Dinner Party,” at an exhibition that celebrates important women in history, Dec. 13-16.

Styled after Chicago’s feminist masterpiece, the exhibition features artwork by 15 honors students who took the interdisciplinary course “Judy Chicago’s The Dinner Party: Feminist Art, History and Philosophy,” taught by Brooklyn Campus associate professor of philosophy Margaret Cuonzo and professor of art Liz Rudey. The course ends with its own “Dinner Party” in which the ceramics, needlework and written components of the course are all shared.
Read the full press release.

This exhibition will be up for four days only (December 13-16). Don't miss it!

Other participating students are Ariana Calderon, Phoebe Cha, Susanna Galvez, VeronicaHanna, Isabel Sierra, Michelle Lawton, Angely Martinez, Sabina Mazur, Athena Moustakas, Angel Ng, Amanda Romhin, Orasetin Samson, Jacqueline Simonian and Gianna Spinoso.

Congratulations, Keeley, et al.!

New Course for Spring 2011: ENG 203 Starting from Paumanok: Ha Jin 2011

In connection with the English Department's annual Paumanok Lecture on American Literature and Culture, which will be given on March 10 by Ha Jin, we are offering this one-credit course on Ha Jin's work.

Ha Jin, born in China, is a poet, fiction writer, and essayist. He was a member of the People's Liberation Army before coming to the United States in 1986. He is the author of such works as A Good Fall (about the Chinese immigrant experience in America), Waiting (winner of the National Book Award and based on his five-year service in the communist Chinese army), and War Trash (winner of the PEN Faulkner Award). He is currently Professor of English at Boston University.

English 203 will meet four times:

February 24: Discussion of stories from A Good Fall

March 3: Discussion of novel Waiting

March 10: Lecture/Reading by Ha Jin

March 24: Wrap-up session.

Course Requirements: Students will be required to come to all four classes, do the assigned readings, and to write a 2-page report on Ha Jin's March-10 talk and a 6-8 page paper on his writings.

Instructor: Dr. Louis Parascandola (English Department). Professor Parascandola has numerous publications including an article on Ha Jin's novel Waiting.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Louis Parascandola via email at louis.parascandola@liu.edu or by phone at 718-488-1050.

Professors from the English Department to Present Writing Workshops for Brooklyn-Campus Employees

Want to improve your business writing? Interested in grants writing? Fine-tune your poetry or start your memoir?

As part of the Provost's Professional and Personal Development Academy, several professors from the English Department will lead the following workshops, which are open to all Brooklyn-Campus employees.

Professional Writing
Professors Michael Bokor & John Killoran
Part 1

Thursday, December 2
12:30-2 PM

Part 2
Thursday, December 9
12:30-2 PM

Life Writing
Professor Deborah Mutnick (Director of Writing)

Thursday, February 17, 2011
12:30-2:00 PM
LLC 515


Thursday, March 3, 2011
12:30-2:00 PM
LLC 515

Also in Spring 2011, there is the following workshop (which is NOT being led by English faculty, but which we highly recommend):

James Cribbs (LIU Grants Coordinator)
Grant Writing

Thursday, February 3, 2011
11-12:30 PM

Light refreshments will be served.

Seating is limited.

Please register by calling 718-488-3406 or by e-mailing pppda@brooklyn.liu.edu.

Holiday Party!

Please join us for this year's holiday party.

December 15, 2010
4:30 PM

Potluck: Please see Karen or Patrina at the front desk to sign up to bring something.

Click image to see larger version of flyer for this event:

Liliana (Lily) Almendarez (MFA alum) Reading at Nuyorican

Applause Theatre & Cinema Books are hosting a celebration of Best American Short Plays 2006-2007 and Best American Short Plays 2008-2009.

When & Where
Monday, November 29, 2010, 7 PM
Nuyorican Poets Café, 236 E. 3rd Street, between Ave B & C in Manhattan.

The following playwrights will present excerpts from their plays:

Zilvinas Jonusas, Amy Fox, Adam Kraar, Jeni Mahoney, Victor Gluck, Mike Pasternack, Jules Tasca, Rick Pulos, Joe Salvatore, Carey Lovelace, Eric Lane, Liliana Almendarez, James Armstrong, and Murray Schisgal.

There will be a $5 cover charge, which may go towards the purchase of an anthology.

Bernard Schweizer Interviewed on Culture Shocks with Barry Lynn

Click here to listen to Barry Lynn's recent interview with Professor Bernard Schweizer (English Department) about his book Hating God.

Culture Shocks is a media production of Americans United, "a nonpartisan organization dedicated to preserving the constitutional principle of church-state separation as the only way to ensure religious freedom for all Americans." Read more.

Sigma Tau Delta Event: Harry Potter

The English Department's Omicron Zeta chapter of Sigma Tau Delta (the internatational English honors society) is hosting a screening of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.

Spector Lounge (Fourth Floor, Humanities Building)
Thursday, November 18th at 7 pm

Pizza and beverages will be served!

Click image to see larger version of flyer for this event.

Africa Forum Conference

The English Department is pleased to announce its co-sponsorship (with Sociology/Anthropology) of a conference, Africa Forum, which will take place on Wednesday, November 17.

The topic of the conference is the experience of African immigrants in New York, and the program includes screenings of two interesting films, This America (filmmakers, Bethels Agomouh and Oliver Mbamaraand) and African Youth (filmmaker, Vigil Chime), as well as a reading by Uche Nduka (a student in the English Department's Creative-Writing MFA program) and novelist Teju Cole.

Please join us!

Click the image to see a larger version of the flyer for this event.

The following is the full conference program:

Africa Forum
Conference Program
Long Island University-Brooklyn Campus
November 17, 2010
Library Learning Center (LLC) 122


8:30-9:00am Arrival of panelists

9.00 – 11.30 Morning session

Introductions: Profs. Yusuf Juwayeyi and Jonathan Haynes
Screening of the film This America followed by discussion with film makers Bethels Agomouh and Oliver Mbamara. Moderator: Prof. Yusuf Juwayeyi

11.30- 12.30 Lunch break

12.30 – 5.00 Afternoon session

12.30 – 2.30 Readings by Uche Nduka and Teju Cole and panel discussion. Panelists:
Bethels Agomuoh Vigil Chime, Teju Cole, Oliver Mbamaram, Uche Nduka

2.30 – 5.00 Screening of the film African Youth followed by discussion with film maker Vigil Chime. Moderator: Prof. Yusuf Juwayeyi

5.00 – 5.30 Informal reception

Note: Students who are taking Africa Forum for one course credit are required (i) to indicate their participation in today’s sessions by signing the attendance sheet at the end of both the morning and afternoon sessions, and (ii) to contact Professor Yusuf Juwayeyi by December 1st, 2010 to collect the course assignment.

Conference Participant Bios

Bethels Agomuoh
Bethels Agomuoh began his career as an actor in Nigeria, appearing in productions at the National Theatre in Lagos before moving to the United States, where he has acted in plays Off and Off off Broadway. As a businessman, he founded AfricaMovies.com, the first internet site selling films from Nollywood, Nigeria’s film industry. He is a founder and the president of United African Artists, a not-for-profit organization supporting African performing artists in the Diaspora. He has directed, acted in, and/or worked on the scripts for a number of films, including This America and its recently-released sequel On the Run Again, A Mile to Cannan, In a Stranger’s Arms, Tears of my Joy, Unguarded, and Tobi.

Vigil Chimé
Vigil Chimé is a film producer, writer, editor, director, and novelist. As a child she moved with her family from Nigeria to Houston, Texas. She got a degree in English and technical writing from the University of Houston and then an MFA in film and screenwriting from Columbia. She has lived in New York since 1990. Her career as a filmmaker began in 2002 and includes the documentary TV series African Life and the feature films African Dilemma, parts 1 & 2, African Youth, Manchester Bound, and Honeysuckle. She has recently published a novel, My Songbird Can Dance. See vigilchime.com for more information on her career.

Teju Cole
Teju Cole was raised in Lagos, Nigeria, moving to the US at the age of seventeen. He is the author of Every Day is for the Thief, a novella of Lagos, as well as Open City, a novel of New York City which will be published in February. His writing has appeared or is in press with Transition, Tin House, Chimurenga, and other journals, and he has been featured several times on the BBC World Service. In addition to his fiction writing, Teju is a professional historian of art, with publications on sixteenth-century Flemish visual culture and contemporary African art. He lives in Brooklyn and is currently at work on another book about Lagos. For more information and to view his work as a photographer, go to tejucole.com.

Oliver Mbamara
Oliver Mbamara began multiple careers as a lawyer, theater and film actor, playwright, poet, and director of photography in Nigeria before moving to the United States. He has continued all these activities in this country and has also become the publisher of several on-line magazines. He is currently a New York State Administrative Law Judge. He wrote, co-directed, and starred in the films This America and its sequel On the Run Again. He is also at the center of Slave Warrior and the series of Spade films (Spade: The Last Assignment and The Return of Spade). For more on his many accomplishments, see http://www.olivermbamara.com.

Uche Nduka
Uche Nduka began publishing his poetry in his native Nigeria before moving to Germany, where he lived for many years. He recently relocated to New York and is currently in the LIU Brooklyn MFA in Creative Writing Program. His volumes of poetry include Flower Child, Second Act, The Bremen Poems, Chiaroscuro, If Only the Night, Heart’s Field, and Eel on Reef. He has also published a volume of prose, Belltime Letters. An e-chapbook of poems can be found at http://www.wheelhousemagazine.com/chapbook/nduka.pdf.

Africana Studies Courses Spring 2011

Black Female Creativity
Humanities 181: M/W 3:00-4:15
Prof. Carol Allen (English Department)
3 credits

This course explores black female creativity across disciplines. The aim of the course is to construct potential theories of black female creativity. That is: determine if black women share any common impetuses (historical, biological and/or cultural) that compel them to make artistic products that comprise a tradition of works. We begin by examining theories of black female creativity from several perspectives including that of Alice Walker and Ntozake Shange along with contributions from the likes of Monique Wittig and Robert Farris Thompson. Then we study a variety of primary texts from literature (novel, poem and play); art (photography, textiles, and mixed media pieces); oratory (sermon and speech); and performance (music, fashion, dance, drill teams and jump rope). Required texts include Flash of the Spirit, Beloved, and handouts. Assignments include informal writing, midterm, final exam, and recovery project with presentation.

Myth and Black Masculinity
Humanities 197: Independent Study, TBA
Prof. Orlando Warren (English Department)
3 credits

This course examines the myths concerning men of African descent in the Americas during slavery and freedom.

Colorism in Black Female Cinema
Humanities 197: Independent Study, TBA
Prof. Orlando Warren (English Department)
3 credits

We will explore “Colorism” in Black Cinema, a concept in which discrimination is based on skin tone as well as color.

African Civilizations
Anthropology 173: M 6:00-8:30
Prof. Yusuf Juwayeyi (Anthropology Department)
3 credits

The History of African American Women in the United States
History 502: M 6:00-8:00
Prof. Kimberly Jones (History Department)
3 credits

Click the image to see a larger version of the general-purpose flyer describing the Africana Studies Program.

Contact Professor Allen at Carol.Allen@liu.edu or 718 488-1053 for more information about the Africana-Studies Program and the above courses.

Deborah Mutnick Co-presents on Building Rubrics for Outcomes Assessment

Introduction of the LIU Brooklyn Campus Rubric Toolbox

The Brooklyn Campus Outcomes Assessment Committee has developed an LIU-Brooklyn Rubric Toolbox for those interested in guidance about developing rubrics. The Toolbox, which will be available for distribution soon, contains general information about rubrics, as well as sample rubrics from across the Brooklyn Campus. Please join us as Professors Deborah Mutnick (English), Sara Haden (Psychology), and Timothy Leslie (Biology) present on the development and implementation of rubrics used to assess their students.

When & Where
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
2:00 – 4:00pm
Main Building, Jonas Board Room

For further information, please contact William Burgos (718-488-1094) or Gladys Schrynemakers (718-780-3405).

Leah Dilworth Will Moderate Film Screening at NYMSA Conference

Leah Dilworth (Professor & Co-Chair, English) will moderate a screening of the film "Never Enough" (a documentary about hoarding), directed by Kelly Anderson, at the New York Metro Studies Association's annual conference. The theme of this year's conference is "Dirt."

Dirt is among the most material but also the most metaphorical and expressive of substances. This conference will explore how people imagine, define, and employ the various concepts and realities of dirt. What does it mean to call something dirty? How do we understand dirt and its supposed opposite, cleanliness? How do we explain the points at which we draw the line between clean and dirty, what we embrace and what we refuse to touch? Drawing on multiple disciplines we will uncover and foreground the (often unconscious) centrality of the metaphors and actualities of dirt to U.S. cultures, values, and lived experiences.

Conference When & Where
December 4th, 2010
St. John's University in Lower Manhattan
41 Murray Street

Registration forms can be found at www.nymasa.org. Registration is $20 ($10 for students/unwaged).

For more information about the conference, contact nymasadirt@gmail.com.

Two Upcoming Events Featuring Stephanie Gray (MFA alum)


MIX NYC Queer Experimental Film Fest

The Festival runs from November 9-14. As part of a session entitled "Not Found on eHarmony," Stephanie will screen her 7-minute Super-8 film "Never Heard the Word Impossible" which takes its title from 70s sitcom Laverne & Shirley. About the film, Stephanie says,
"[It's] kinda about that "L" word (and "L" shirt of you know who) in that show, those two "roommates. huh. it was handprocessed & the sound is reworked/distorted solely from a few lines in the theme song. i will be showing the real super 8 film on film, not video and we'll play the sound from a cd."
When & Where
Wednesday, November 10, 2010, 8:30 PM
Theater for the New City in the East Village
1st Ave. between 9th/10th Streets

For more information: http://mixnyc.org/23/eharmony.php


TENDENCIES: Poetics & Practice, curated by Tim Peterson (Trace), is a series of talks by and about contemporary poets, titled in honor of Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick. The series explores the relationship between queer theory, poetic practice, manifesto, and pedagogy. All events are co-sponsored by the Center for the Humanities, CLAGS (the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies), The Graduate Center PhD Program in English, and the Graduate Center Poetics Group.

The next event features talks by Stephanie Gray, Dawn Lundy Martin, and Nathaniel Siegel, followed by a discussion/Q&A session.

For additional information, visit the TENDENCIES website.

Thursday, November 11 at 7 PM
CUNY Graduate Center
Skylight Room, 9100
365 Fifth Avenue, NYC


Filmmaker and writer Stephanie Gray's first collection of poetry, Heart Stoner Bingo was published by Straw Gate Books in 2007. Publications include EOAGH, 2ndAvenuePoetry, The Recluse, and Press 1. Readings include the PRJCTNS, Segue, Zinc, and Poetry Project Friday series. Her short experimental super 8 films, often city portraits or mini-symphonies have screened internationally, including at the Ann Arbor, Oberhausen, and Viennale fests. Her queer-themed films are often about pop cultural figures such as dyke heroine Joan of Arc in Dear Joan and the perceived dyke heroine Kristy McNichol in Kristy, both of which have screened at gay & lesbian film fests such as Frameline (San Francisco), Outfest (Los Angeles), and Mix NYC. Her analog video from the early 00s, close your hearing for the cap(shuns) is probably the only art work out there to mash up "Our Lips Our Sealed" on slo-mo with Schoolhouse Rock's "Conjunction Junction" and Charlie Brown's indecipherable adults to explore themes of language, hearing loss and our construction of meaning. If you know of others let her know.

Upcoming Readings by Barbara Henning

Barbara Henning (Professor Emerita, English Department) is giving several readings over the next few months, as follows.

November 17, 2010. 7 pm.
Xavier University. Cincinnati (with Dan Bogan)

December 12, 2010. 3 pm.
DC Arts Center. Washington D.C. (with Rachel Levitsky)

January 22-March 5.
Flash Fiction Workshop. Poetry Center at U of Arizona, Tucson.

February 24, 2011. 3:30 pm.
San Francisco State University Poetry Center.

February 24, 2011. 7:30 pm.
Poetry Flash at Moe's in Berkeley, California.

March 12-13.
Poetry Workshop at the Book Festival, Poetry Center in Tucson.

March 24, 2011.
Seattle, Washington.

March 26, 2011. 7:30 pm.
Diva Center. Eugene, Oregon.

March 27, 2011.
Spare Room Series. Portland, Oregon.

See You on LIU Day!

Representatives from the English Department will be on hand at the LIU Day Open House for Prospective Students. Please come by and introduce yourself!

When & Where

Sunday, November 14, 2010
10 AM - 2 PM

Undergraduate: Find me (Wayne Berninger) at the English-Department table in the Paramount Gym. I can answer all your questions about majoring in English at LIU.

Graduate: Find Marilyn Boutwell at the English-Department table in the Humanities Building Lobby. Marilyn can answer all your questions about the Department's graduate programs.

Click here for further information.

Click here to RSVP.

Click this image to see larger version of flyer about LIU-Day events (undergraduate):

Click this image to see larger version of flyer about LIU-Day events (graduate):

Launch Party for SHAMBOREE #5

Congratulations to Eric Alter (graduate student, English Department Creative-Writing MFA program) on the publication of Issue #5 of Shamboree , the literary/art magazine of Alter's creative organization, Staten Island Creative Hub.

You are invited to attend a launch party/reading for the issue.

When & Where

Saturday, November 6 • 8:00pm - 10:00pm

Everthing Goes Cafe
208 Bay Street
Staten Island, NY

All who attend get a free zine!

Writing and reading from:

Nichole LeFebvre
Thomas Fucaloro
Jamey Jones
Thomas Henry
William Teague

Open Mic after feature readers!

Zine art by Mike Gerlich

Malinowitz to Co-Host Webinar

Professor Harriet Malinowitz (English Department) and Thomas Price (Scholarship Assistance Program) will co-host a webinar entitled "Creating an LGBTQA Student-Friendly Environment."

Date: Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Time: 3:00-4:30 PM
Room: Humanities Building, Room 315

Webinar Description: It’s important that advising and other student affairs offices create a welcoming and inclusive environment for their Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Allied student populations. This webinar will outline the important steps offices can take to serve LGBTQA students effectively in their day-to-day practice. Key terms, definitions and concepts will be presented. Participants will discuss the critical issues facing LGBTQA special populations such as low-income students, under-represented students, student-veterans, student-parents, and student-athletes. Participants will also learn about important regional and national resources including Safe Zone/Safe Space programs. Finally, the importance of understanding unique career advising issues that relate to LGBTQA students will be discussed.

Refreshments will be served!

Please R.S.V.P for this event by phone at 718-488-3405 or by e-mail to meseret.tzehaie@liu.edu.

Bernice Braid Honored

The English Department is happy to congratulate Bernice Braid (Professor Emerita in the English Department) on her being selected as a National Collegiate Honors Council Fellow. Formerly Dean of Academic and Instructional Resources, in which capacity she directed the Honors Program and the Freshman Orientation Program, among other things, Bernice is now the Director of the Core Seminar Program at the the Brooklyn Campus.

Click here to learn more about the National Collegiate Honors Council Fellows.

The following block quote is from the Brooklyn-Campus announcement:
We are proud to announce that one of our own, Professor Bernice Braid, has been selected as a member of the inaugural class of National Collegiate Honors Council Fellows. The NCHC is one of the nation¹s premier higher educational professional organizations, dedicated to honors teaching, learning, scholarship and leadership.

The NCHC named Professor Braid after a rigorous process of nominations and careful consideration of her significant contributions to honors education at regional and national levels.

Ms. Braid [sic] is adviser to the Provost and professor emerita of English. Her specialties include cross-disciplinary learning, curriculum design, experiential learning and honors education. She has written and presented widely on "place as text," and she was the founder of Honors Semesters, Faculty Institutes and City as Text©.
Congratulations, Bernice!

Two Students from Our Creative-Writing MFA Program Presenting at Conference

Yolaine M. St. Fort (Creative-Writing MA alum) and Willie Perdomo (current MFA student) will be presenting at Turning Tides: A Symposium on Diasporic Literatures, a conference to be held at Fordham University on November 6, 2010.

Yolaine will be on a panel entitled Haiti: After the Earthquake, from 1:15-2:15, and Willie will participate in a panel called Puerto Rico: Creative Disobedience in New Nuyorican Writing from 2:15-3:15.

Fordham University, Lincoln Center
McNally Auditorium
140 W. 62nd Street, Law School Entrance (Between Columbus and Amsterdam Avenues)

Free and open to the public.

Go here for more information about the Turning Tides conference.

Writing Program Reading/Writing/Research Conversation

Please join us for the first of a series of Conversations (formerly known as the Brown Bag Lunch Series) on Reading, Writing, and Research.

Vocabulary Acquisition:
How I Teach My Students the Meanings of New Words

Professor Sharman Yoffie, LIU Writing Program ESL Coordinator

Thursday, November 4, 2010
1:30 -2:30 p.m.
Spector Lounge
Humanities Building, 4th Floor

"What does __________ mean?"
"Well, that depends."
"On what?"

Why does new vocabulary matter so much when college students read challenging texts? Can we assume that our students know what certain words mean, words that seem obvious to us as instructors? How can we find out if students comprehend words or not? What should our approach be when they don’t know or misinterpret the meaning of a word?

Kindly RSVP to Deborah Mutnick at deborah.mutnick@liu.edu.

Our Condolences to the Birenbaum Family

We are saddened to hear of the passing of William Birenbaum, a former Brooklyn-Campus Provost (in the late 1970s), who died October 4.

Read the Brooklyn Eagle's obituary here.

Brooklyn Campus Named to Military-Friendly Schools List

From Brooklyn Campus Public Relations press release:
Scheduling flexibility, help with tuition costs and a broad array of on-campus support services for veterans have helped land Long Island University’s Brooklyn Campus on G.I. Jobs magazine’s list of “Military Friendly Schools.”

The 2011 Military Friendly Schools list recognizes the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools that are doing the most to embrace America’s veterans as students.

Read more.

Book Launch Party for Bernard Schweizer

UPDATE: Photo added of Professor Schweizer reading at the party; scroll down.
We recently congratulated Professor Bernard Schweizer (English Department) on the publication of his and Charles Thorne's contextual edition of Rebecca West's The Return of the Soldier, which came out in September from Broadview Press.

Now we are pleased to announce that Professor Schweizer's next book, Hating God: The Untold Story of Misotheism (Oxford University Press) will appear on November 4, 2010.

Congratulations (again), Bernard!


While atheists have now become public figures, there is another and perhaps darker strain of religious rebellion that has remained out of sight--people who hate God. In this revealing book, Bernard Schweizer looks at men and women who do not question God’s existence, but deny that He is merciful, competent, or good. Sifting through a wide range of literary and historical works, Schweizer finds that people hate God for a variety of reasons. Some are motivated by social injustice, human suffering, or natural catastrophes that God does not prevent. Some blame God for their personal tragedies. Schweizer concludes that, despite their blasphemous thoughts, these people tend to be creative and moral individuals, and include such literary lights as Friedrich Nietzsche, Mark Twain, Zora Neale Hurston, and Philip Pullman. Schweizer shows that literature is a fertile ground for God haters. Many authors, who dare not voice their negative attitude to God openly, turn to fiction to give vent to it. Indeed, Schweizer provides many new and startling readings of literary masterpieces, highlighting the undercurrent of hatred for God.

Oxford University Press is hosting a book-launch party for Professor Schweizer, to which you are invited.

When & Where
Tuesday, November 9
6-8 pm
Lobby, Oxford University Press
198 Madison Avenue, Manhattan

Special Guest: Barbara Ehrenreich

RSVP by October 28: lemcointl@gmail.com.

Click image to see larger version of invitation.

Click image to see larger version of photo of Professor Schweizer reading from his new book at the launch party:

Upcoming Readings by Lewis Warsh

Lewis Warsh (Creative-Writing MFA Director, English Department) will be giving several readings on the West Coast in early November.

November 2, 7:30 pm
Lewis Warsh and Gloria Frym
2476 Telegraph Ave.
Berkeley, California

November 4, 7:30 pm
Lewis Warsh and Dorothea Lasky
Open Books
2414 N. 45th St.
Seattle, Washington

November 7, 7:30 pm
Lewis Warsh and Alicia Cohen
3120 N. Williams
Portland, Oregon

New Book from Gary Parrish (MFA Alum)

Congratulations to Gary on the publication of Drive-In Picture Show (Erudite Fangs, 2010; cover design, interior design & typesetting by HR Hegnauer; original art work by George Schneeman)!

Blurb from Lewis Warsh (English Department):
There are two things going on simultaneously in Gary Parrish’s poems-- a mix of awkwardness and grace--the absentminded poet stepping on the toes of the goddess, and then apologizing, while his music plays on. The presentation of self is all periphery and sidelong glance and teetering at the edge, and tension--but with a bounce that keeps it all afloat.

These poems are always on the verge--and then (at some point) they explode, like fireworks, in a shower of sparks. He’s been in some odd places, seen things no one else I know has seen, stepped back from and entered into experiences that required more than a share of providence to survive. His poems are just like him--shy and flirty without being coy. He manages to give it all away every time.
Available at St. Mark's Bookshop and Small Press Distribution.

Gary Parrish is the editor of Farfalla Press / McMillan & Parrish (visit www.farfallapress.blogspot.com).

Michael Bennett Speaking at University of Idaho

Professor Michael Bennett (English Department) will give the inaugural lecture in the University of Idaho's Kurt O. Olsson Visiting Lecture Series. As part of his lecture, he will be sharing some brochures on the natural and built environment of New York City--created by students in LIU Honors classes he taught on "Urban Culture and Ecology."

Event Details

"Coming From and Going To: Explorations in Urban Ecocriticism"
Thursday, October 28, 2010
7:30 PM
Teaching & Learning Center 040

Michael Bennett is a leading scholar of American literature, specializing in ecocriticism and African-American studies. Among a wide body of published work, he is particularly well-known as the author of Democratic Discourses: The Radical Abolition Movement and Antebellum American Literature, and as editor of The Nature of Cities and Recovering the Black Female Body. He holds a Ph.D. in English from the University of Virginia.

General Information about the Kurt O. Olsson Visiting Lecture Series

The Olsson Lectures will bring major figures in literary studies and related fields to the University of Idaho to give scholarly talks based on their current research. The Olsson Lectures are sponsored by the University of Idaho Department of English.

Liliana (Lily) Almendarez (MFA alum) Reading in New York Foundation for the Arts Boot Camp Arts Festival

In Abundance: Poetry Reading Featuring Liliana Almendarez and Wanda Phipps
November 5, 2010 at 6-7pm
The Bowery Poetry Club ( http://www.bowerypoetry.com/#Event/95992 )
308 Bowery
New York, NY 10012
Tickets $5 at the door.

Liliana will be reading from her book of poetry, A Scorched Page. She will read from some of her new work as well. Her poems are inspired by nature and every day life. From folks waiting for a train to the birds that fly past her backyard, to the memories that sneak up on a quiet afternoon, they are all fair game for inspiration.

Wanda will read from her two books: Wake-Up Calls: 66 Morning Poems and Field of Wanting: Poems of Desire as well as the new work, Silent Pictures Recognize the World, written in response to static photographic images which mutate in writing into film noir scenes and dark romances. Stephen B. Antonakos will accompany her on guitar with tonal equivalents to the poems. Her work honors dailiness, the details of the personal, as well as the ecstasy of randomness that brings us all together.

Artist Highlights: Liliana Almendarez, Wanda Phipps, Kate Kirtz, Ryan Murdock, and Gretchen Farrar
November 13, 2010 at 7pm
LaunchPad ( http://brooklynlaunchpad.org/ )
721 Franklin Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11238, FREE!!!

A night of poetry reading, musical performances, and a film screening. Reading by Liliana Almendarez, Wanda Phipps (accompanied by guitarist Stephen B. Antonakos), and Kate Kirtz. Short film screening by Ryan Murdock. Musical performance by Gretchen Farrar.

See the full schedule of events here:


Africana-Studies Mentorship Program

Looking for a Mentor?

The Africana Studies Program is hosting two speakers this semester as a part of its Mentorship Program. According to Professor Carol Allen (English Department), Co-Chair of the Program, the purpose of the Mentorship Program is
"to connect professionals with students who might be interested in a specific career path. The Program is open to all students and will include the added benefit of the perspective of people from the African Diaspora who may have weathered particular circumstances which our students may encounter or are encountering. We also hope to highlight careers that have been underrepresented by minorities or those that our students may not have considered."

Interested in Starting Your Own Business? Want to Market Products or Services to Black Communities?

Rubye Hickerson, Co-Owner of the B.U.S. Shop (Black Universities Supply Shop), will speak about Black Business Ownership.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010
12:00-1:00 p.m.
Health Sciences Building, Room 119

Interested in Teaching on the College Level? Want to Capitalize on Your Love of Writing?

Michael J.K. Bokor, Assistant Professor of English (Long Island University), will speak about his Road to the Academy.

Thursday, November 18, 2010
6:00-7:00 p.m.
Health Sciences Building, Room 119

The following general information about the Africana Studies Program is provided by Professor Allen:
Africana Studies is an interdisciplinary program that draws from the humanities, social sciences, and sciences. It focuses on the contributions, world views, and concerns facing the African Diaspora from past to present and provides a complementary take on many of the discourses established by traditional disciplines while it also defines and attempts to answer through rigorous research alternative intellectual queries and problematics from the perspective of various and varying groups of people of African descent. The twelve-credit minor granting program, which began offering classes in Spring 2008, has already organized and launched several outreach programs with the assistance of university and community resources: A Mentorship Program, The African Forum Series, youth performances, a conference on Jazz and other African-based musical forms (Music of the Spirit), multicultural, multinational musical performances, films and discussion panels, fundraisers, and dance workshops. Two core courses, “Introduction to Africana Studies” and “African Civilizations,” have been scheduled regularly since the 2008-2009 calendar year. In addition, we have received several requests to cross-list or provide elective courses under the Africana Studies banner. Such titles include: “African American History,” “Slavery and the Literary Imagination,” “African Film,” “Blacks and the Law,” “Caribbean Literature,” and “African-based Art.” We hope to extend our outreach to the university and Brooklyn community and focus on faculty development and grant writing over the next few years. Faculty members are excited about the program, and we have graduated one minor and have several moving through the course. Support from the English, Music, History, Anthropology, Speech and Performance Studies, and Media Arts Departments along with the Gender Studies and Asia Studies Programs has been warm and forthcoming, and we plan to continue cultivating a spirit of collegiality and mutual cooperation both with the university and with the wider community.
Click the image to see a larger version of the general-purpose flyer describing the Africana Studies Program.

For more information about the African Studies Program or its Mentorship Program events, contact Professor Carol Allen.

Attention Poets & Writers! Downtown Brooklyn Now Accepting Submissions for Issue #20

Downtown Brooklyn, the literary magazine of the English Department, invites you to submit your poetry and/or fiction, for possible inclusion in the next issue.


• We accept submissions between September 1 and February 1. Please note: we will not be extending this deadline! Issue 20 will appear in Fall 2011.

• Include a cover page listing your phone & e-mail & detailing your connection to the Brooklyn Campus. (We only accept submissions from students, faculty & staff.)

• Save your submission as a Word document and attach to an e-mail to wayne.berninger@liu.edu. Or save on CD & place in Wayne Berninger’s mailbox in the English Department (Humanities Building, fourth floor). We cannot return electronic files, CDs, or manuscripts, so please be sure to keep a copy of your submission.

• You will receive confirmation by e-mail that we received your work. We will then notify as to acceptance on a rolling basis.

• For additional information, please visit


Free copies of #16, 17, and 18 are still available in the English Department.

Be on the lookout for Issue #19—shipping to us on 10/21!

Congratulations, Handan Arikan (MA alum)

Congratulations to Handan Arikan, an alumna of the English Department's graduate program in creative writing, who recently started working at the Turkish edition of Newsweek, and whose personal essay about the veil ban in Turkey is the introductory article to the magazine's cover story this week.

Scans from the magazine:

Ribbon-Cutting & Naming Ceremony: Robert D. Spector Lounge

The Humanities Division is renaming the fourth-floor lounge in the Humanities Building, in honor of Robert D. Spector.

Please join us for a ribbon-cutting ceremony as we mark the occasion.

Thursday, October 28, 2010
11:00 AM
Spector Lounge
Fourth Floor, Humanities Building

Refreshments will be served.

For further information, please contact the Humanities Division at 718-488-1053 or mcuonzo@liu.edu.

MFA Reading Series Event: Anne Waldman

Please join us for a reading, reception, and book signing with Anne Waldman, the Fall 2010 Distinguished Visiting Writer to the English Department's Creative-Writing MFA Program.

October 29, Friday, 6-8
Spector Lounge
Humanities Building, 4th floor

Poet Anne Waldman has been an active member of the "Outrider" experimental poetry community for over forty years as writer, performer, professor, editor, magpie scholar, infrastructure and cultural/political activist. She has also collaborated extensively with a number of artists, musicians, and dancers. She grew up on Macdougal Street in Greenwich Village where she still lives, and bi-furcated to Boulder, Colorado in 1974 when she co-founded The Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics with Allen Ginsberg at Naropa University, the first Buddhist inspired school in the West, where she currently serves as Artistic Director of its celebrated Summer Writing program. She is the author of over 40 books of poetry including Kill or Cure, Marriage: A Sentence, and Structure of the World Compared to a Bubble. Manatee/Humanity (Penguin Poets 2009) is Waldman's most recent book. She is also the author of the legendary Fast Speaking Woman (City Lights, San Francisco), now translated into Italian, Czech and French; as well as the 800-page epic Iovis trilogy (Coffee House Press), forthcoming in 2011. She is editor of The Beat Book (Shambhala Publications) and co-editor (with Lewis Warsh) of The Angel Hair Anthology (Granary Books), Civil Disobediences: Poetics and Politics in Action (Coffee House) and Beats at Naropa (Coffee House, 2009). Her play Red Noir was produced by the Living Theatre and directed by Judith Malina in winter 2009-2010.

Spring 2011 Courses, Graduate

English 502 Writers on Writing (Course ID# 2075)
Professor Lewis Warsh
Mondays 6:30-8:50 pm

The course will offer readings and discussions with prominent fiction writers and poets. The writers will meet with us weekly during the course of the semester. The purpose of the course is to give students a chance to interact with and question a diverse range of visiting guest writers about their processes and techniques in an effort to expand and further develop the student's own writing. As with all of our process courses, the goal is to learn--in this case, first-hand--from other writers and their writings in order to better inform our sense of what it means to be a poet or fiction writer in 2011.

In addition to reading at least one book by each visiting writer, the students are required to submit a reading journal at the end of the semester and to complete all the writing assignments. These assignments will evolve from the ideas and techniques of the visiting writers and from our class discussions. On days when there are no visitors we will read and discuss our own work.

The visiting writers for this semester are Elizabeth Willis, Gary Lenhart, Samuel R. Delany, Ron Padgett, Tracie Morris, Laird Hunt, Wang Ping, Monica de la Torre, Bob Holman and Renee Gladman.

ELIZABETH WILLIS is the author of four books of poetry, most recently Meteoric Flowers (Wesleyan, 2006) and Turneresque (Burning Deck, 2003). Her collection, The Human Abstract (Penguin 1995) was a winner of the National Poetry Series. A fifth work entitled Address is forthcoming in January. Willis has been awarded fellowships in poetry from the California Arts Council and the Howard Foundation and has held residencies at Brown University, University of Denver, Naropa University, and the Centre International de Poésie, Marseille. She earned a Ph.D in Poetics from SUNY at Buffalo in 1994. Recently she edited a collection of essays entitled Radical Vernacular: Lorine Niedecker and the Poetics of Place, published in 2008 by University of Iowa Press. She was Distinguished Writer in Residence at Mills College from 1999 to 2002. Currently she is Shapiro-Silverberg Associate Professor of Creative Writing at Wesleyan University.

GARY LENHART is the author of six collections of poetry, including The World in a Minute (2010) ,Father and Son Night (1999), and Light Heart (1991) from Hanging Loose Press and One at a Time (United Artists, 1983). His published prose includes The Stamp of Class: Reflections on Poetry and Social Class (University of Michigan Press, 2006) and Another Look: Selected Prose (Subpress, 2010). He was also an editor of Clinch: Selected Poems of Michael Scholnick (Coffee House, 1998) and The Teachers & Writers Guide to Classic American Literature (T&W, 2001), and edited The Teachers & Writers Guide to William Carlos Williams (1998). He has contributed poems, essays, and reviews to many magazines and anthologies, and edited the magazines Mag City and Transfer. He has taught at Dartmouth College since 1996.

SAMUEL R. DELANY, JR. is an American author, professor and literary critic. His work includes a number of novels, many in the science fiction genre, as well as memoir, criticism, and essays on sexuality and society. His science fiction novels include Babel-17, The Einstein Intersection (winners of the Nebula Award for 1966 and 1967 respectively), Nova, Dhalgren, and the Return to Nevèrÿon series. He is the author of numerous autobiographical works, including The Motion of Light in Water. After winning four Nebula awards and two Hugo awards over the course of his career, Delany was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2002. Between 1988 and 1999 he was a professor of comparative literature at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Between 1999 and 2000 he was a professor of English at SUNY Buffalo. Since January 2001 he has been a professor of English and Creative Writing at Temple University in Philadelphia, where he is Director of the Graduate Creative Writing Program.

RON PADGETT's books include the poetry collections How to Be Perfect, You Never Know, Great Balls of Fire, and New & Selected Poems, as well as three memoirs, Ted: A Personal Memoir of Ted Berrigan; Oklahoma Tough: My Father, King of the Tulsa Bootleggers; and Joe: A Memoir of Joe Brainard. Padgett is also the editor of The Teachers & Writers Handbook of Poetic Forms and World Poets. His translations include Blaise Cendrars' Complete Poems, Guillaume Apollinaire's Poet Assassinated, and, with Bill Zavatsky, Valery Larbaud's Poems of A. O. Barnabooth. He has collaborated with artists such as Jim Dine, Alex Katz, George Schneeman, and Joe Brainard. For ten years he worked as a poet-in-the-schools, and for twenty years he was the publications director of Teachers & Writers Collaborative. Padgett has received Fulbright, NEA, Guggenheim, and Civitella Ranieri grants and fellowships, and was named Officer in the Order of Arts and Letters by the French government. In 2008 he was elected Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets. He also received the Shelley Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America. For more information, go to www.ronpadgett.com.

TRACIE MORRIS is an interdisciplinary poet and scholar who has worked extensively as a sound artist, writer, bandleader and multimedia performer. Her installations have been presented at the Whitney Biennial, Ronald Feldman Gallery, the Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning and the New Museum. She holds an MFA in poetry from Hunter College and a PhD in Performance Studies from New York University. Dr. Morris is an Associate Professor of Humanities and Media Studies at Pratt Institute. She is completing two books: an academic work WhoDo with Words on the work of philosopher J.L. Austin and a poetry collection, Rhyme Scheme as well as an untitled CD with music.

LAIRD HUNT is the author of a book of short stories, The Paris Stories (2000), from Smokeproof Press, and four novels, The Impossibly (2001), Indiana, Indiana (2003) The Exquisite (2006) and Ray of the Star (2009) all from Coffee House Press. His writings, reviews and translations have appeared in the United States and abroad in, among other places, McSweeney’s, Ploughshares, Bomb, Bookforum, Grand Street, The Believer, Fence, Conjunctions, Brick, Mentor, Inculte, and Zoum Zoum. He is currently on faculty in the University of Denver’s Creative Writing Program.

WANG PING has published numerous volumes of poetry and fiction, including
American Visa (1994), Foreign Devil (1996), Of Flesh and Spirit (1998), The Magic Whip (2003) and The Last Communist Virgin (2007). An expanded version of her doctoral dissertation on foot-binding in China--Aching for Beauty--was published in 2000. She has also edited an anthology of contemporary Chinese poetry, New Generation: Poetry from China Today (1999). She received her M.A. from the English department at Long Island University and her PhD in Comparative Literature from NYU. She is presently an Associate Professor in the English Department at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota.

MONICA DE LA TORRE is the author of two poetry books published in the U.S., Talk Shows (Switchback, 2007) and Public Domain (Roof Books, 2008), and two poetry books published in Mexico City, Acúfenos (Taller Ditoria, 2006) and Sociedad Anónima (Bonobos, 2010). She is translator of a volume of selected poems by neo-Baroque Mexican poet Gerardo Deniz (Lost Roads, 2000) and co-editor of the anthology of post-Latino poetry Malditos latinos, malditos sudacas: Poesía hispanoamericana Made in USA (El billar de Lucrecia, 2009). Recently she has participated in the collaborative book projects Collective Task and Taller de Taquimecanografía. She is senior editor at BOMB Magazine and a 2009 NYFA fellow in poetry.

BOB HOLMAN is a poet best known as a ringmaster of the spoken word/slam scene, but somehow he's got ten books under his belt and teaches at Columbia and NYU. He also founded Mouth Almighty/Mercury Records, a spoken word label, produced the award-winning PBS series, The United States of Poetry, and worked at the St. Mark’s Poetry Project and Nuyorican Poets’ Cafe before he founded the Bowery Poetry Club. He is currently working on a documentary about the poetry of Endangered Languages.

RENEE GLADMAN is the author of Arlem, Not Right Now, Juice The Activist, A Picture Feeling and Newcomer Can't Swim. Since 2004, she has been the editor and publisher of Leon Works, a series of books of experimental prose. She was previously the editor of the Leroy chapbook series, publishing innovative poetry and prose by emerging writers. She is Assistant Professor Literary Arts at Brown University.

English 512 Grant Writing (Course ID# 6343)
Professor John Killoran
Mondays 6:30 –8:50 pm

This course is designed not only for English graduate students but also for students from other disciplines and for professionals who seek to develop their skills as persuasive professional writers.

Behind much of the work conducted by social and cultural agencies, educational institutions, nonprofit organizations, researchers, and artists are successful grant proposals. The grant proposal is essentially a set of persuasive documents, and this course thus approaches grant writing through a rhetorical perspective and a process approach:

• The rhetoric perspective offers not just a wily way with words but strategies for responding to demanding audiences and complex rhetorical situations.

• The process approach walks students through the stages of researching and writing a grant proposal: defining the problem, analyzing the audience, researching the solution, and discovering the arguments that best present their case.

Specifically, with the guidance of their professor, students will . . .

1. identify a problem that could be solved by their social or cultural agency, educational institution, or other nonprofit organization (or, with the consent of the professor, a problem that could be solved through a research proposal, arts proposal, or business proposal);
2. analyze potential sponsors who might share the goal of solving the problem;
3. research their proposed solution, including researching and organizing the prospective team that will implement the solution; and
4. plan, draft, and revise each section of the grant proposal.

English 519 Editing (Course ID# 3010)
Professor Michael J.K. Bokor
Tuesdays 4-6:20 pm

This course teaches students theory, practice, and evaluation of editing skills as well as orientation to careers and professional concerns in academic and non-academic writing. Effective editing is a demanding task that requires a comprehensive command of communication skills, exacting attention to detail, good interpersonal skills, and the discipline to get work done on schedule. The course, therefore, includes a style/grammar review and emphasizes hands-on editing activities. Students will learn how to critically edit documents and graphics to suit the needs of specific audiences. They will also learn how to make good editorial decisions as well as develop a better understanding of the legal and ethical issues that surround written communication. The major assignment for the course is an extended editing project that students can later use as a portfolio piece in the job-search process.
For further information, contact Professor Bokor at Michael.Bokor@liu.edu or on phone, 718-488-1050 Extension 1112.

English 523 Fiction Writing Workshop (Course ID# 2257)
The Landscape of Fiction
Professor Calvin Baker
Mondays 4-6:20

From Don Quixote’s hallucinatory adventures in seventeenth century Spain to K.’s twentieth century struggle in The Castle a story’s setting provides inherent possibilities as well as limitations. This course will examine the ways in which the canvas of place operates with the other engines of fiction—character, plot, language, thought, time— to help create structure and meaning. We will explore both verisimilitude and dream. Expect weekly reading and writing assignments. Texts will be drawn from the major eras in the history of the novel, with a special consideration given to the past one hundred years, and will include works by Homer, Dostoyevsky, James Joyce, Franz Kafka, Italo Calvino, Virginia Woolf, Ernest Hemingway, James Baldwin, Luis Borges, V.S. Naipaul, Cormac McCarthy and Kazuo Ishiguro.

Calvin Baker is the author of three novels, Dominion (Grove Press, 2006), Once Two Heroes (Viking, 2003) and Naming the New World (St. Martin's, 1997). He has taught at Columbia University, Bard College and Barnard College.

English 524: Poetry Writing Workshop (Course ID# 1637)
Writing the Long Poem: Everything We Know
Professor Lewis Warsh
Wednesdays 4-6:20 pm

The long poem is a place where we can include everything: knowledge of ecology and politics, all the various emotional states and upheavals that we’ve experienced, annotation of the present moment and the passage of time. Each student will initiate what might be a long poem of several pages or even a book-length poem written and accumulated over the course of the semester. We'll discuss the ways of bringing together data by direct observation and journal writing, by reading the newspaper (which is a kind of daily poem), and by sustaining a rhythm, a feeling, a theme. We'll pay attention to ways of improvisation, how to translate daily life into poetry, and how to use repetition and variation. We'll use as models some of the great long poems of the last century, most notably Paterson by William Carlos Williams, The Skaters andThree Poems by John Ashbery, A by Louis Zukofsky and Midwinter Day by Bernadette Mayer. Mostly we'll look closely at each other's work, give each other feedback and advice, and share each other's concerns regarding the importance of poetry in the world.

English 525 Playwriting Workshop (Course ID# 2256)
Creating Characters: Their Dramas, Their Fictions
Professor Jessica Hagedorn
Wednesdays 6:30-8:50 pm

In this workshop, we will explore strategies for creating compelling characters and writing kick-ass dialogue. We will learn what it means to adapt a work of fiction for the stage. Be prepared for in-class improvs and exercises which will include writing monologues and scenes. We will examine and utilize the techniques of contemporary fiction writers and playwrights as varied as Harold Pinter, Roberto Bolaño, Adrienne Kennedy, Luis Alfaro and others. A portfolio of revised writing assignments will be due at the end of the semester. Students who have previously taken this workshop may continue working on their scripts. Guest artists and mandatory field trip to one Off-Broadway play, TBA. (CLASS SIZE LIMITED)

English 579 Seminar in Special Studies (Course ID# 3011)
Queer Fiction
Professor Patrick Horrigan
Tuesdays 6:30-8:50 pm

This course focuses on narratives by and about lesbians and gay men since the rise of the gay liberation movement after World War Two. For our purposes, “queer fictions” will refer both to the various images of gay/lesbian lives contained within these works and to the often-devious artistic strategies writers employ to capture queer experience (“queer,” a centuries-old term of derision, description, and, more recently, self-affirmation: “strange, odd, counterfeit, spoiled, suspicious, unconventional, homosexual, obsessed, mildly insane, fond of, in love with, touched”). The course will serve as a primer on some of the key works of modern gay American writing but will also function as a lens through which to examine the broad sweep of post-war literary and pop culture; hence, although we’ll be reading mostly “literary” fiction, we’ll also branch out into pulp fiction, history, autobiography, film, drama, and comics. Students will write a series of short essays as well as a longer piece which may take the form of a research paper or a creative project. Texts may include Jane Bowles’ Two Serious Ladies, William S. Burroughs’ Queer, Patricia Highsmith’s The Talented Mr. Ripley, James Baldwin’s Giovanni’s Room, Christopher Isherwood’s A Single Man, Martin Duberman’s Stonewall, Audre Lorde’s Zami, William M. Hoffman’s As Is, Vikram Seth’s The Golden Gate, Keith Haring’s Journals, Eileen Myles’ Cool for You, and Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home. A field trip to a film, performance, or exhibition may be arranged.

English 620 Theories of Rhetoric and Teaching Writing (Course ID# 3012)
Western Rhetorical Traditions and the Teaching of Writing
Professor Patricia Stephens
Tuesdays 6:30-8:50 pm

We will begin the semester by focusing on a few key questions: How (and by whom) has rhetoric been defined over time? How and why have these definitions changed and evolved? How do we, in this class, define rhetoric? What role does rhetoric play in the teaching of reading and writing? Our readings in the beginning of the course – from the Sophists, Plato, and Aristotle to the medieval and “feminist” work of Christine de Pizan -- will lay the foundation for our examination of other readings later in the semester – from 18th and 19th rhetoricians like Blair, Campbell, Grimké, Bain and Hill to contemporary and postmodern works by Bahktin, Burke, Perelman, Toulmin, Foucault, Cixous, Gates, Anzaldua, and others. Throughout, we will trace the influence of these ever-evolving rhetorical theories on the practice of teaching writing in American colleges from the 19th century to the present. By the end of the semester, students should be able to 1) discuss how (and by whom) rhetoric has been defined and practiced in various historical periods; 2) articulate shifts in definition and practices across historical periods; 3) discuss the influence of Western rhetorical tradition on the field of composition and rhetoric, specifically, the teaching of reading and writing since the 19th century; and 4) apply rhetorical theories to specific practices and problems in rhetoric and composition.

English 643 Seminar in British Literature (Course ID# 6941)
Professor Sealy Gilles
Thursdays 6:30-8:50 pm

William Shakespeare’s work is both daunting, in its scope and complexity, and an inescapable part of our cultural and literary landscape. This seminar aims in part to set the bard and his work in context by taking a look at the plays as they emerge from early modern London, a city undergoing exponential growth and beset by turmoil. By 1600, London was fast becoming Europe’s most populous city and the theaters provided its crowds with dynamic and unsettling entertainment. Much of that entertainment reflected contemporary anxieties about the vicissitudes of the human body. As we work to understand the Shakespearean stage as an urban art form, we will also be delve into the plays to explore the language of disease, the volatile presence of racial outsiders, and the constant rewriting of gender.

The seminar will be centered on six plays – two comedies, two history plays, and two tragedies. I have ordered tickets for two performances at Theater for a New Audience: Cymbeline with the Fiasco Theater Company & MacBeth, starring John Douglas Thompson (whom you may have seen in Othello last year). Both shows are on Thursday nights and we will be applying for funds to subsidize student tickets.

Course projects will include:
• A close reading of a passage or scene OR an original Shakespearean soliloquy or dialogue with a metatext linking it to passages in the plays
• A recitation of a passage from the plays.
• A research project that places a play in context: historical, critical, political, religious, or cultural OR an extended dramatic script using research on early modern London.

English 700 Practicum in the Teaching of Composition (Course ID# 1347)
Professor Donald McCrary
Thursdays 4-6:20 pm

Although the course will examine theoretical and practical implications of the teaching of writing, specifically, the course will prepare students to teach in the LIU/Brooklyn Writing Program. This is an important distinction because our readings and course discussions/exercises will serve to illuminate the theories and practices of teaching writing at LIU. However, the course should provide students with information and expertise to teach writing at other colleges or universities. The course will examine important teaching issues such as constructing course syllabi, integrating reading and writing assignments, promoting process writing, responding to student papers, contemplating the linguistic needs and abilities of a multicultural student population, and managing student behavior in the classroom.

Each student will create an English 16 syllabus that adheres to the program requirements. Moreover, each student will teach a fifty minute English 16 lesson plan and facilitate the class discussion of one course text. English 16 is a thematic course. Students can choose to teach a theme of either work or food. Once students have selected a theme, they must purchase a primary text of their own choosing, the program-mandated anthology of their chosen theme, Teaching Composition, and A Writer’s Reference.

English 707 Methods of Research and Criticism (Course ID# 1423)
Professor Srividhya Swaminathan
Wednesdays 6:30-8:50 pm

This course will acquaint students with the principles of different theoretical methods that can be used to evaluate literary and non-literary texts. Students will study drama, fiction, and essay from eighteenth century British sources in addition to understanding and implementing theoretical lenses in analyzing these sources. This period in British literature is often seen as the launching point of modern constructions of nation, identity, and global hierarchies. The course will proceed with the aim of analyzing a particular series of moments in literary history as a means of evaluating literature (in an inclusive sense) as shaping and reflecting trends in culture and ideology. Texts we will examine include Aphra Behn’s The Rover, Daniel Defoe’s Moll Flanders, Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels, and selections from Adam Smith’s Theory of Moral Sentiments. Students will discuss topics relating to the discipline of English Studies (e.g., canonicity, what constitutes text, what is minor literature) as an avenue into understanding literary theory. We will study a variety of theoretical models (e.g., New Historicism, Feminist Criticism, Cultural Studies) and then employ specific models in sustained oral and written analyses. Assignments will include one oral presentation of critical reception, one book review of secondary work, one annotated bibliography, and one article-length essay.

Spring 2011 Courses, Undergraduate

English Majors — If you are an English major, you must meet with Wayne Berninger (the English Department’s Undergraduate Registration Advisor) as early as possible BEFORE you register. Please plan to register as early as possible so courses fill up. As you know, if the Dean cancels courses for under-enrollment, you’ll have to scramble to find replacement courses at the last minute. Consult the English Department website to determine which courses you still need for your particular concentration (i.e., Creative Writing, Literature, or Writing & Rhetoric), and then contact Wayne (phone 718-780-4328 or e-mail wayne.berninger@liu.edu).

Non-English Majors — Advanced English courses aren’t only for English majors! The writing and analytical skills that students gain in English classes are very useful in a variety of professional careers. Even if you are not majoring in English, you can still take upper-division English courses—as long as you have completed the prerequisites (i.e., ENG 16 and two courses from ENG 61-62-63-64). If you really want to build up your transcript, consider an English Minor, which consists of any four English courses numbered 100 or above. Note: According to the Brooklyn Campus Undergraduate Bulletin, “Any minor satisfies the Distribution Requirement.” This is true no matter what division your major is in! If you’d like more information about minoring in English—or if you think you might like to major in English— contact Wayne Berninger in the English Department (phone 718-780-4328 or e-mail wayne.berninger@liu.edu).

Advanced English Courses
Spring 2011

English 126 News Writing (Class ID# 2077) / cross-listed with Journalism 119 (Class ID# 1178)
Professor Donald Bird (Journalism Department)
Tuesdays & Thursdays 1:30-2:45 pm

For English majors, this course will satisfy a writing-and-rhetoric elective requirement in the Writing & Rhetoric concentration. It can also satisfy an English elective requirement in the Literature concentration. Students in either of the preceding categories who wish this course to count toward their English-major requirements should be sure to register for ENG 126—not JOU 119. For English majors concentrating in Creative Writing, this course will count as a general elective.

Contact the Journalism Department for information about this course.

English 129 Later British Literatures (Class ID# 1581)
The Artist Coming of Age: Creating the “Uncreated Conscience”
Professor Maria McGarrity
Tuesdays 6-8:30 pm

For English majors, this course is required in the Literature concentration. It can also satisfy a literature requirement in the Creative Writing concentration or in the Writing & Rhetoric concentration.

This course will examine the development of artistic consciousness in the British tradition. We will examine the role of the artist in society, his or her alienation from society, the unique perspectives of the artist and his or her role as critic, both literary and social. We will begin with the youthful artistic idealism of Keats, move onto a discussion of Wordsworth’s vision of the poet, Byron’s art in action, and expand our vision of the artist to include the feminine with Christina Rosetti and Virginia Woolf. We will transition into the Modern period with Wilde’s conception of criticism as art. Finally we will examine modernity and the aftermath of Joyce’s achievement through the twentieth century. We will challenge the idea that any writer can, as Joyce claimed to through his character Stephen Dedalus, “create the uncreated conscience of [his] race.” Required Texts: Greenblatt et al., eds, The Norton Anthology of English Literature, The Major Authors, 8th Edition, Volume B; Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as Young Man, Norton Critical edition.

English 159 Literatures of the U.S. Since 1865 (Class ID# 1170)
High and Low Culture
Professor Carol Allen
Mondays 6-8:30 pm

For English majors, this course is required in the Literature concentration. It can also satisfy a literature requirement in the Creative Writing concentration or in the Writing & Rhetoric concentration.

This course begins with the shift in American culture that occurred during the nineteenth century when high and low sectors began to be defined, calcified and defended, a transition that continues to impact on us today. We will chart how major American artists have responded to this dichotomy with their texts that range from novels, to drama, to poetry and essays. Following such a path will also lead us to concentrate heavily on class, public space, racial and ethnic difference, youth movements, and such ideas as margin versus center and cosmopolitanism versus regionalism. Be prepared for a variety of assignments that will include trips to cultural institutions, informal writing, presentations, in-class essays and a longer project. You will learn about the major movements in American literary development from the Civil War to present, hone your critical reading skills, perfect your writing, and command an informed opinion about the ongoing cultural “wars” that shape us today. Required texts might include Highbrow, Lowbrow, Lawrence Levine; The Country of the Pointed Firs, Sarah Orne Jewett; As I Lay Dying, William Faulkner; Sula, Toni Morrison; A Streetcar Named Desire, Tennessee Williams; The Intuitionist, Colson Whitehead; The Namesake, Jhumpa Lahiri.

English 163 Explorations in Nonfiction Writing (Class ID# 3009)
Travel Writing: The Self in Other People’s World
Professor Michael Bokor
Thursdays 6-8:30 pm

For English majors, this course will satisfy a writing-and-rhetoric elective in the Writing & Rhetoric concentration. It can also satisfy an English elective requirement in the Literature concentration. Any student (no matter what major or concentration) may take this class two times for credit.

This course explores travel writing as an instrument of self-discovery as well as orientation to physical space as a site for political, economic, ideological, and cultural exchanges. It teaches students the skills for writing and evaluating travelogues. Some of the critical issues that we will examine include:

• What are the psychological urges that prompt people to leave home for other places?
• What philosophical insights into the nature of life and culture can traveling yield and how are these experiences presented in writing to reflect the travelers’ worldviews?
• Is traveling a political, economic, social, cultural, and ideological act, and how do the travelers’ own perspectives influence the way they experience the places they visit and write about?

The course emphasizes hands-on writing, reading, and discussion activities. The major assignment for the course is an extended writing project (that will involve students’ own traveling experiences) and multi-media presentations (writing on the Web).

English 166 Fiction Writing Workshop (Class ID# 1249)
How to Get There
Professor Lewis Warsh
Tuesdays 3-5:30 pm

For English majors, this course will satisfy a creative-writing elective in the Creative Writing concentration. It can also satisfy an English elective requirement in the Literature concentration. English majors concentrating in Creative Writing may take this class two times for credit.

This workshop will focus on the way autobiography overlaps with fiction and how the past is fictionalized as a way of keeping it alive. The premise is that the source of most fiction is fading memories, whether we're aware of it or not. Though Jack Kerouac is the most obvious exponent of this method, we'll look at other writers of the last century (Marguerite Duras, Thomas Bernhard, Lydia Davis, John Edgar Wideman, Georges Perec, Ernest Hemingway, Virginia Woolf, Laura Riding, Jamaica Kincaid, James Ellroy, Maurice Blanchot) who struggle to cross the borders between fiction and life story. We'll concentrate on the conventions of fiction--plot, character, conflict--with an eye towards expanding on what's already been done. Our writing projects will include working with secrets, memories, observations, opinions, over-heard conversations--fragments of everything.

English 175 Writing for the Professions (Class ID# 2074)
Professor John Killoran
Mondays & Wednesdays 4:30-5:45 pm

For English majors, this course will satisfy a writing-and-rhetoric elective in the Writing & Rhetoric concentration. It can also satisfy an English elective requirement in the Literature concentration. English majors concentrating in Writing & Rhetoric may take this class two times for credit.

This is a writing course for students in any field preparing for their careers.
When you are given your first writing project on the job, will you know what to do? Writing for the Professions is an elective for students across the disciplines as well as in English who are looking ahead to prepare themselves to write for their careers in business, law, the health professions, science, technology, education, and the arts.

Students will learn to orient their writing toward different audiences, such as managers, customers, clients, and professional colleagues. Students will also learn to write in ways that result in action. By the end of the semester, students will have written their resume and other career-related documents, and will be more confident in their abilities to write effectively.

English 180 Genre Studies (Class ID# 3008)
THE HORROR! THE HORROR!: 19th Century British Gothic Fiction and Film
Professor Louis Parascandola
Wednesdays 6-8:30 pm

This course will satisfy an English elective requirement in the Literature concentration. It can also satisfy a literature requirement in the Creative Writing concentration or in the Writing & Rhetoric concentration.

Read some of the most chilling gothic (horror) stories ever written. Works to be studied include such classics as Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Jane Austen’s satire Northanger Abbey, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights, and H.G. Wells’ The Island of Dr. Moreau. These works are not only great spine-tinglers; they also reflect and often question the prevailing divine, social, scientific, and political hierarchies. We will also view excerpts from some of the many films that were made of each of these works.

Click image to see flyer for English 180.

English 190: Senior Seminar in Literature (Class ID# 1034)
Professor Leah Dilworth
Wednesdays 3-5:30 pm

This course is required for English majors concentrating in Literature. If you register for this course, and it cancels due to low enrollment, consult one of the Co-chairs of the English Department (either Professor Leah Dilworth or Professor Sealy Gilles) or the Undergraduate Registration Advisor (Wayne Berninger). If you need it for May graduation, we can arrange for you to take it as a Tutorial. Otherwise, we may ask you to wait until the next time it’s offered.

This course will guide students through the process of writing a long research paper (20-25 pages) on a topic of their own choosing. Students will use a range of research resources and write an informal proposal, a formal proposal, a first draft, and a final draft of the paper. You will also read and critique each other’s work. Required reading will include essays on research methods and writing as well as a literary text and selected critical essays.

English 191: Senior Seminar in Creative Writing (Class ID# 1491)
Day/Time TBA

This course is required for English majors concentrating in Literature. If you register for this course, and it cancels due to low enrollment, consult one of the Co-chairs of the English Department (either Professor Leah Dilworth or Professor Sealy Gilles) or the Undergraduate Registration Advisor (Wayne Berninger). If you need it for May graduation, we can arrange for you to take it as a Tutorial. Otherwise, we may ask you to wait until the next time it’s offered.

English 192: Senior Seminar In Writing & Rhetoric (Class ID# 1177)
Day/Time TBA

This course is required for English majors concentrating in Literature. If you register for this course, and it cancels due to low enrollment, consult one of the Co-chairs of the English Department (either Professor Leah Dilworth or Professor Sealy Gilles) or the Undergraduate Registration Advisor (Wayne Berninger). If you need it for May graduation, we can arrange for you to take it as a Tutorial. Otherwise, we may ask you to wait until the next time it’s offered.


Because it is being taught by a member of the English Department faculty, the following Honors elective will satisfy an English elective requirement in the Literature concentration. It can also be used to satisfy a literature requirement in the Creative Writing concentration or in the Writing & Rhetoric concentration. Non-English majors can also apply this course toward a minor in English. Please discuss your situation with Wayne Berninger in the English Department before you register for this course. You may register for this course only if you are in the Honors Program.

HHE 162 Broadway: The American Musical (Class ID# 3063)
Professor Michael Bennett
Thursdays 6-8:30


The Global College Program of Long Island University invites English majors to study abroad for a semester or a year at one of our centers—Costa Rica, Japan, China, or India. Not only will you have the opportunity to study and travel in a foreign country while earning credit towards your major, but you will also become immersed in another culture, develop your global awareness and cross-cultural communication skills, and be provided with a variety of internship and service learning opportunities. At all centers, students are encouraged to engage in independent-study projects relevant to their academic interests.

The Costa Rica Program in Heredia offers home stays with Costa Rican families, internships throughout the region, and courses in writing, Latin American studies, cross-cultural research methods, Latin American literature, Spanish language, global health and traditional healing, peace and reconciliation studies, environmental studies, and an introduction to experiential education.

The India Program in Bangalore enables students to explore the country’s religious and cultural diversity, the caste system, travel writing, environmental issues, the situation of Tibetan refugees, and the status of women. Students also have the opportunity to study India’s art forms, dance, and music.

The China Program in Hangzhou allows students to study a wide range of topics including the history of China, religious life in China, traditional Chinese medicine, poetry, women’s issues, calligraphy, taiji, Mandarin Chinese language and modernization and economic development.

The Comparative Religion and Culture Program enables students to engage in intensive study of the teachings, rituals, and spiritual practices of the world’s major religions while exploring cross-cultural issues such as identity, human rights, peace and reconciliation, and world citizenship. During the fall semester, students travel in Taiwan and Thailand, and during the spring semester, students travel throughout India and Turkey while they immerse themselves in the religions and cultures of these countries. The courses offered in the fall include: Comparison: Theory and Method, Religions and Modernity in Taiwan, Culture and Society of Taiwan, and Religions and Modernity in Thailand. The following courses are offered in the spring: Comparison: Practice and Critique, Religions and Modernity in India, History and Society in India, and Religions and Modernity in Turkey.

The Australia Program in Byron Bay is offered only during the spring semester. Students explore the relationships between people and their environment from multiple disciplinary perspectives. Students travel throughout Australia and take courses that focus on indigenous peoples, the natural history, ecological diversity and related social and cultural contexts of Australia through seminars, field trips, service learning and internships.

Long Island University Financial Aid can be applied to all Global College overseas programs. For more information call 718 488 3409 or e-mail globalcollege@liu.edu.

A number of $5000 scholarships may be available to study in Global College programs.

English Majors who are interested in Global College should see the next page for the English Department’s Guidelines for English Majors Studying Abroad in the Global College Program—please do not register for Global College without meeting with Wayne Berninger first! Contact Wayne Berninger (718-780-4328 or wayne.berninger@liu.edu).


The following are guidelines for undergraduate English majors who wish to study abroad through the Global College Program and apply the credits earned toward their upper-division English major requirements.

*Student must receive permission from Undergraduate Registration Advisor (Wayne Berninger) and Chair of English to enroll in Global College. See Wayne Berninger FIRST, before you do anything else.

*Before going abroad, student must have completed ENG 16, COS 50, and six credits from ENG 61-62-63-64.

*A maximum of 12 Global College credits may be applied toward upper-division English major requirements.

*During any semester abroad, student must take 6 credits (or equivalent) in English. Independent study may be arranged, in consultation with Undergraduate Advisor and Chair of English.


*Tuition, fees, and room & board abroad is about the same as tuition, fees, and room & board at the Brooklyn Campus.

*University financial aid and scholarships are transferable to Global College. However, students should be aware that there are no work-study opportunities abroad. Also, athletes who receive free room and board at the Brooklyn Campus are not automatically eligible for same while abroad. Department of Athletics may agree to provide athletes with a stipend to cover Global College room & board fees. Students are urged to discuss this possibility with the Department of Athletics before they decide to study abroad.

*Global College has additional sources of scholarships for students studying abroad.