Monday, February 3, 2014

Elizabeth Williams, Meghann Meeusen, Amy Hicks - English Studies and Children's Literature

Elizabeth Williams, Meghann Meeusen, and Amy Hicks - "More than Child's Play: Children's Literature and Interdisciplinarity"

Our roundtable discussion will open up the idea of interdisciplinary by exploring how each of our diverse perspectives, while all based in children's literature, include elements from a variety of fields, including film studies, cultural-historic activity theory, rhetoric, eco-feminism, etc. We will begin with a brief introduction to how interdisciplinary has affected our research and study, then open the panel to discussion and questions about the role of interdisciplinary approaches in children's literature and beyond.

Emily R. Johnston - trauma theory, feminist theory

Emily R Johnston - "Feminist Geographies: Narrating Trauma Across Borders in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo"

How does trauma get narrated across borders? What is gained? What is lost? This presentation will explore these questions in relation to the narration of rape in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo phenomenon, drawing from work in trauma theory (Judith Herman, M.D. on sexual abuse and traumatic disorders; Laura S. Brown on feminism and psychic trauma; and Van der Kolk and Van der Hart on memory and trauma), cultural theory (Appadurai on the dimensions of mediascapes and ideascapes in global cultural flows), and theories of globalization (Manfred B. Steger on ideology and globalization; and Brian Larkin on film and globalization). The novel and films of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo erode and cross multiple borders: national borders, with the novel’s translation into almost forty languages (Baker); borders of genre, with two film adaptations of the novel—a Swedish and Hollywood version; and identity borders between conflicting parts of oneself, such as perpetrator/victim. These border crossings illustrate the phenomenon’s tremendous, global capacity for travel; and tracking this phenomenal movement across space, genre, and identities exposes how the narration of rape in Dragon Tattoo refuses hegemonic notions, as well as conceptions in trauma theory, about who rape victims are and how they respond to rape.

Danielle L Cochran, Evan Nave, and Dr. Ricardo Cruz - "Traveling Theory" by Edward Said and Wai Chee Dimock's "Multilateral Theory"

Danielle L Cochran, Evan Nave, and Dr. Ricardo Cruz - "Check The Rhyme: Cross-Cultural Literary Influences"

Hip-hop has become a recent academic aesthetic due to the influx of former practitioners and current educators whom have been inspired by its cultural movement. However, there are certain questions that arise with the power of this cultural movement from a literary and cultural perspective. Is hip-hop a form of cultural exceptionalism that serves as a gate-keeping between academic and social discourse? Meaning has the ideology of what hip-hop is perceived affected its’ reception or disclusion in educational and socio-economic communities? Has this anti-systematic culture secretly matriculated its way through to our classroom as a successful connecting point to our students? In order to answer these questions the panel will look at Edward Said’s “Traveling Theory” and Wai Chee Dimock concept of “Multilateralism” as a foundation to address the following concerns regarding Hip-Hop in the academia:

• Personal motivations for connections with the culture
• How has hip-hop manifested as narratives in writing or area of study
• Current relevance of hip-hop in English literature/studies
• Intellectual limitations
• Issues of inclusion
• Classroom practices which can assist or bridge the intellectual gap with popular culture driven generation of students.

The purpose of this panel is to engage in discourse that aligns old and new practices in the field of English studies through theory,creative writing, fiction and pedagogy.

Ryan Edel - Neurosemiotics and Pedagogy

Ryan Edel - "On the Writer’s Brain: A Neurosemiotic Approach to Creativity, Language, and Social Justice"

In the age of Facebook and MRI machines, “defining” writing has become a troubled occupation for teachers. While fMRI studies are now beginning to differentiate those areas of the brain which generate ideas from those which recall words and move the hand, scholars such as Favareau argue that such positivist approaches ignore the semiotic nature of intellect – neurologists might envision the mind as a machine, but literary scholars still favor the evolving response to signs and signification as a model for intellect. However, bridging these two approaches may help us understand how the social disconnection between students and teachers leads to pervasive – and seemingly irreparable – differences between academic expectations and student performance. Theories from both camps depend heavily upon the concept of mirror neurons – specialized cells which selectively mimic observed reality via mental rehearsal. I argue that the socialized differences in values among social groups (particularly between students and teachers) leads language learners to mentally disconnect from the classroom in ways which prevents the uptake of new skills.

Jeff Rients - book history, systems theory, game studies

Jeff Rients - "Read/Play: A Brief History of Nonlinear Textual Practices"

"In this presentation I will survey the field of ergodic literature, the term coined by Espen Aarseth for texts that demand nonlinear reading strategies, ranging from Choose-Your-Own-Adventure books, Milorad Pavić’s Dictionary of the Khazars, Nabokov’s Pale Fire and Mark Z. Danielewski’s House of Leaves. Although Aarseth posits ergodic literature as a new form born of the information age, a successor to the linear texts of preceding eras, I will argue that reading ergodic literature can be placed on a continuum with normative linear reading practices. In support of this continuum hypothesis the output of William Morris’s Kelmscott Press will be examined as works that occupy the middle space between strictly linear text and Aarseth’s ergodic literature. Finally, the economic and political ramifications of linear/ergodic continuum will be touched upon. "

Cristina Sanchez-Martin - TESOL

Cristina Sanchez-Martin - "The Corpus of Contemporary American English: a tool for ESL learners to perform agency"

The aim of this paper is to propose learning tools for ESL learners that can help them develop and perform their agency in real life communicative exchanges in an Anglo-American context. In particular, I claim that the Corpus of Contemporary American English can be a supportive tool to use both in the ESL classroom by teachers and outside the classroom by the students themselves, especially for those with a high level of English, like international students at American universities. I will focus on three grammatical aspects of the English language as linguistic items that, once seen in the classroom, students can further explore by looking at the Corpus of Contemporary American English.

Jessica Zhang - Biopolitical Theory & Communicative Capitalism

Jessica Zhang - "Rethinking What Culture Means in Intercultural Professional Communications "

In the field of Intercultural Technical and Professional Communication, many scholars and practitioners tend to rely on Geert Hofstede's cultural model. This model is one of the first models of culture in the field of Intercultural communication and it accommodates and reinforces a anti-historical and culture-free work culture during transnational interactions in the workplace. This paper will examine the workplace problems that this work culture generates that has been overlooked by both scholars and practitioners. This paper will also explore ethical and efficient solutions for this dilemma.