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News and Announcements

Award-winning Native American writer to visit NDSU

On Monday, April 28th at 3:00 p.m. in Beckwith Recital Hall, award-winning and internationally acclaimed Minnesota-born Anishinaabe novelist, poet, historian and screenwriter, Gerald Vizenor, professor emeritus at the University of California, Berkley, is scheduled to visit North Dakota State University to read selections from his new novel “Blue Ravens”. A book signing and reception will follow. For more information, click here.

English Department seeks Assistant/Associate Professor in Writing Studies

The English department at North Dakota State University seeks a full-time, tenure-track Advanced Assistant or Associate Professor in Writing Studies or related field to serve in the role of First-Year Writing Director, effective August 1, 2014. Writing program roles in the department are rotating, 3-year, renewable terms; this candidate will join a vibrant writing program team.

Teaching duties: 2/2 with 1 course release while WPA. Courses include a graduate teaching seminar, undergraduate- and graduate-level rhetoric and writing classes. Administrative duties: lead a First-Year Writing Program as part of a vertical writing curriculum, collaborate with Upper-Division Writing and Writing Center Directors; provide research-supported vision for program changes; prepare new GTAs; plan and conduct professional development workshops; lead and report on program portfolio assessment; chair the First-year Writing Committee; and oversee day-to-day operations. The successful candidate will advise undergraduate, MA, and PhD students and serve on thesis and dissertation committees. The WPA must expand an existing scholarly agenda through presentations and publications.

For more information, please click here.

Northern Eclecta Call for Submissions

Do you have a story to tell? Northern Eclecta wants to hear it! If you would like to submit poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, visual art, photography, or quick takes to the Northern Eclecta for this year’s issue, click here.

For more information, contact: 

Katherine Thoreson 
Editor-in-Chief, Northern Eclecta Vol. 8

English Department Updates

On Tuesday, April 22nd at 4:00 p.m, Gary Totten, professor of English, will give a talk titled "Bodies of Knowledge: Black Female Mobility and Authority in Zora Neale Hurston's Tell My Horse" at the UND Arts & Sciences Interdisciplinary Speaker Series in the UND Chester Fritz Library East Asia Room. All are welcome to attend. For more information, click here.

On July 1, 2014, Gary Totten will become the Editor-in-Chief of the journal MELUS: Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States, published by Oxford University Press.  Published quarterly, MELUS is the premier journal in the field and plays a pivotal role in illuminating the national, international, and transnational contexts of US ethnic literature and culture.   Articles in MELUS also engage newly emerging art forms such as graphic narrative and internet blogs, as well as multi-ethnic film, history, and culture.  The journal includes interviews with well-established authors such as Maxine Hong Kingston and Richard Rodriguez, as well as more recent writers such as Cynthia Kadohata and Diana Abu-Jaber.  MELUS is available online through Project MUSE, which sees over 1,400 downloads of full-text articles from the journal per month.   The journal’s presence at NDSU will provide training for a new generation of scholars by engaging English graduate students in the editorial processes of peer review, copyediting, and proofing.  For more information about the journal and to view the current issue, visit the website: 

Kevin Brooks presented "A Kind of Homecoming, 2013" at The Annual Africa Conference in Austin, Texas, April 4-6. His presentation examined the role of language traps, sexual violence, career success, and attempted homecomings in three contemporary Afropolitan novels: We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo, Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Ghana Must Go! by Taiye Selasi.  

Bruce Maylath, professor of English, was elevated to the rank of Fellow by the Association of Teachers of Technical Writing (ATTW) at an award ceremony held in conjunction with the association’s annual conference, March 19, 2014, in Indianapolis, Ind. For their “significant long-term contributions to technical communication,” ATTW each year elevates one or two members as Fellows “who have established national reputations based on their teaching, scholarship, or academic administration.”  In its nomination letter, the awards committee held up Maylath’s “innovative approach” in creating the Trans-Atlantic & Pacific Project, now in its 14th year, linking technical writing classes in the U.S. and Spain with usability testing classes in Finland and translation classes in Austria, Belgium, China, Denmark, France, Italy, Kenya, Portugal, and Russia. As one colleague from McGill University, in Montreal, noted, “While mainstream institutional globalization strategies at the time largely reproduced local four-walled classroom courses online for delivery in so-called global markets and poured millions of dollars into their marketing, Bruce was working quietly from the grassroots to build global networks connecting students and teachers from around the world, showing us that we all have a lot to learn from and with each other.” Also cited was Maylath’s success at expanding the Council for Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication internationally while he served as its president.

Alison Graham Bertolini was elected vice-president of the Carson McCullers Society at the biennial meeting of the Society for the Study of Southern Literature on March 27, 2014.  She will serve a two-year term. Her duties include assisting the president of the society and coordinating sessions for national conferences, including the annual conference of the American Literature Association. Miriam Mara published "Mundane Doubles: Anorexia in Stories by Anne Enright and Colum McCann" in New Hibernia Review iris éireannach nua, 18:1 (earrach / spring, 2014), 120–135.

Kelly Sassi, assistant professor of English and education at NDSU, and Anne Ruggles Gere recently co-wrote the book Writing on Demand for Common Core State Standards Assessments. The book was published by Heinemann on March 13, 2014. The book, geared for secondary teachers of all subject areas, provides principles of effective writing instruction and shows how to apply the principles in the Common Core State Standards assessments, which begin in the 2014-2015 school year.  Sassi also recently became director of the Red River Valley Writing Project (RRVWP), after leading a successful bid for NDSU to become the new site of the RRVWP. The National Writing Project, a professional development and support network for teachers, announced NDSU’s new site status on March 1, 2014. The National Writing Project focuses on improving the teaching and use of writing across all grade levels and subject areas.



Pen & Pixels: Fall Semester 2013

Welcome!  Please enjoy the Fall 2013 edition of our department newsletter, Pen & Pixels: Notes from the NDSU Department of English. In this issue we introduce new faculty members and a few of the graduate students who have joined our department.  We also talk about some of the events that were put on by the English Department this year, including Sena Jeter Naslund's visit to NDSU and PhD candidate Steven Hammer's Cosgrove Seminar presentation on "Integrating New Media Avant-Garde Art and Writing Practices."  Additionally, we have added information for individuals who are interested in supporting the department through monetary donations, please see the link at the bottom of this page or included in the newsletter to learn more about how you can donate to the English Department!  

Your comments are always welcome and you can help in our attempt to keep track of our alumni by letting us know how you've been and where you are. Please send your stories, article ideas, and comments to Mercedes Lee.

As we head into the spring semester, we are already preparing for our spring issue which can be expected towards the end of the semester. The latest and all archived issues can be found on the "Newsletter" page.

Events and Activities

Wednesday, April 23rd at 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m., EML 378, please join us for lunch and a Brown Bag seminar where Brady Bergeson, Jessica Jorgenson, Cindy Nichols, and Heather Steinmann will present a session on "Addressing style and voice in the composition classroom: tools from creative writers." This session will offer pedagogy and tools to help students understand the sometimes tricky notions of style and voice. 

Monday, April 28th at 3:00 p.m., Beckwith Recital Hall, award-winning and internationally acclaimed Minnesota-born Anishinaabe novelist, poet, historian and screenwriter, Gerald Vizenor, professor emeritus at the University of California, Berkley, is scheduled to visit North Dakota State to read selections from his new novel “Blue Ravens”. A book signing and reception will follow. For more information, click here

Friday, May 9th at 8:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m., Memorial Union Arikara Room, Spring First-Year Writing Program Assessment

See the 2013-14 Calendar for a list of additional local events and national conferences. 

Donating to the English Department

Thank you for your support of the NDSU English Department.  If you would like to contribute financially to the department, please do so through this link:  Please contact the department chair, Gary Totten, with any questions:; (701) 231-7158.  Mailing address: NDSU Dept. #2320, P.O. Box 6050, Fargo, ND 58108-6050.

Mailing Address

English Department
NDSU - Dept. 2320
P.O. Box 6050
Fargo, ND  58108-6050
Office Location:
Minard 318
Office Phone: 701-231-7143

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Last Updated: Wednesday, April 16, 2014 10:15:33 PM