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The English Department at NDSU

The mission of the English Department at North Dakota State University is to cultivate understanding, knowledge, and appreciation of the English language, its speakers and writers, and its literatures and cultures, such that students and department members use the language creatively, critically, and effectively to participate ethically in civic and professional life.

Sigma Tau Delta Luncheon Wednesday, December 2nd

Sigma Tau Delta, the English Honor Society at NDSU, welcomes all English Department faculty and staff, graduate students, and English and English education undergrads to a luncheon on Wednesday, December 2nd from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Rose Room at the Memorial Union. Join us for engaging conversation and delicious food.

Please invite people you know in the English department. All are welcome!

Successful Grant Proposal from PhD Candidate Jessica Jorgenson

PhD candidate, Jessica Jorgenson, wrote a grant to the North Dakota Humanities Council for a large grant of $5,184.00 to support the Quixote Cafes organized by Dr. Carol Pearson and Dr. Carlos Hawley in the Modern Languages department. The money goes to support scholars Drs. Pearson and Hawley brought to campus to give talks on Cervantes' work, Don Quixote. 

The Quixote Cafe events for the fall have concluded, but the money will go to support two art exhibits, one at the Fargo Public Library and one at the Spirit room. The money will also pay for the costs associated with brining in a scholar from Stanford University, Dr. Roland Greene, who will give a public talk on Cervantes at the Fargo Public Library on April 23rd. The narrative Jessica wrote for the grant is copied below, and will give further background on the events. Please note that the public is invited, and Jessica encourages people from the NDSU English department to attend:

The years 2015 and 2016 have special significance in the history of literature: 400 years prior, in 1615, Miguel de Cervantes published the second part of his masterpiece, Don Quixote, giving us the modern novel. Also, April 23rd2016 marks 400 years since the passing of both Cervantes, father of the novel, and his English contemporary, and only peer, William Shakespeare. In order to celebrate these important occasions in the history of civilization, we have assembled seven events, called Quixote Cafés. 

 Each Quixote Café engages the community in myriad ways, whether it is through an art exhibit, a public performance, sharing in a public reading, or critically listening to a scholarly lecture. During the month of September, we are hosting jazz radio shows with Bill Law to promote Cervantes’ work and life. On September 26th, the NDSU Modern Languages department is bringing Dr. Bruce Burningham to North Dakota State University’s campus to have him share a public lecture on Cervantes. On this same date, the Modern Languages department at NDSU will also host a round table on Cervantes and invite the public to a small banquet following the presentations. To wrap up our Quixote Café series, the NDSU Modern Languages department is working with the Spirit Room and the Fargo Public Library to host a public art exhibit sharing visual artistic works inspired by selected scenes in Cervantes’ novel, Don Quixote. Our series concludes on April 23, 2016 with a public lecture titled “400 Years Ago Today: What Ended? What Began?” from Stanford professor Dr. Roland Greene at the Fargo Public Library.  

The Quixote Café Series has significant value to the Fargo-Moorhead community. Our arts and culture scene is filled with visual arts events, but literary events are often underrepresented. Quixote Cafés will focus on giving a voice to Cervantes’ novel and its influence over writing, cinema, music, visual arts, theater, and scholarship. Two renowned scholars are invited and regional participation is employed through community readers, actors, singers, and studies. We at the Spirit Room, Fargo Public Library and NDSU envision these offerings as free public access to a wide range of expressions of the humanities involving grassroots collaborations between a variety of organizations and individuals and engaging the public in the multiple and compelling themes found in Cervantes’ work.

Study Abroad: England and Scotland May 2016

Travel with NDSU English!!!
England & Scotland: Literature & Popular Culture 

Do you want to Study Abroad? Registration Deadline is DECEMBER 1!! 

"England & Scotland: Literature and Popular Culture" offers an immersive experience of British culture and literature and showcases such popular works as Stoker's Dracula, Shakespeare's Macbeth, JK Rowling's Harry Potter series, and Alan Moore's graphic novel From Hell (about London's infamous Jack-The-Ripper murders). 

Click here to see an example of the blog prepared by last year's travelers. The course consists of pre-departure meetings during the spring and concludes with a 14-day trip to Scotland & England at the end of the semester, in May 2016. Financial aid applies!

View the program webpage here & start your application TODAY! Time's running out. 

We hope you will join us in this fantastic opportunity! We'd love to show you the world! Bring your friends! Spread the word!

Contact Associate Professor Verena Thelie for more information:



NDSU University Student and McNair Scholar Celena Todora Attended Naylor Workshop for Undergraduate Research in Writing Studies  

Celena Todora, who is majoring in English, English education, and international studies, attended to the Naylor Workshop for Undergraduate Research in Writing Studies held September 25-27, 2015 on the campus of York College of Pennsylvania. The workshop is an opportunity for students to grow as skilled researchers. Students submit an application for consideration, outlining a proposed research project. Two dozen students were accepted and received funding to attend the event.

Over the course of this weekend-long workshop, students develop their own research projects by engaging in seminars on composition research, collaborating with teams of experienced scholars and peer researchers, and crafting research artifacts during independent time. After sharing their ideas, their experience, and their spirit of inquiry, Naylor scholars return to their home institutions ready to conduct research.

Todora’s research focuses on “grit,” the ability for a person to be tenacious. Prior to the workshop, she had done extensive reading in Duckworth’s work on this trait. She was interested to see how composition instructors can potentially help students foster grit. Her faculty mentor at NDSU is Professor Amy Rupiper Taggart of the English Department. Todora said, “The Naylor Workshop was a significant experience for me because I was able to learn more about qualitative and quantitative methods. I was also incredibly lucky that one of the faculty experts at the conference shared my interest in grit, so we collaborated to create a project together. We hope to investigate whether or not service-learning-based courses can enhance basic writing students’ grit.”

Naylor Scholars from last year’s inaugural workshop present their research at the Conference on College Composition and Communication 2015 and other venues, some students winning awards for best presentation. It is expected that the 2015 Naylor Workshop Scholars will be similarly successful. Professor Joyce Kinkead of Utah State University, who served as the Plenary speaker for the workshop said, “Celena’s initial proposal was one of the best received, and she continued that high quality of work throughout the weekend. NDSU has every reason to be proud of her.”

Attending the Naylor Workshop helps students become part of a network of undergraduates from varying institutions, who are guided by mentor faculty members. One of the real benefits of the Naylor Workshop is discussing one-on-one with writing researchers in the fields of composition, rhetoric, or writing center studies to discuss research ideas, goals, and methodologies. Participants also engage in intensive workshops to assess the quality of research, design a research question, and learn and practice qualitative and quantitative research methods.

Dr. Dominic DelliCarpini, the inaugural Naylor Endowed Professor in Writing Studies, oversees the conference. He said, “We are fortunate to have a stellar group of students who are interested in diverse topics. They are passionate about their topics, and over the three-day workshop, they move from research question to poster presentation.”

For more information about the Naylor Workshop and to consider application for the 2016 event, see this website: This workshop is suitable for undergraduate students of any major who are interested in developing and conducting research projects to expand knowledge and improve practices in fields of composition, rhetoric, and writing center studies.

Dr. Lisa Arnold Invited to Chair Committee of the CCC

Lisa Arnold, Director of First Year Writing and assistant professor of English, has been invited to serve as Chair of the CCCC (Conference on College Composition and Communication) Committee on Globalization of Postsecondary Writing Instruction and Research.

Heather Slomski's Award-winning Short Fiction

Heather Slomski, lecturer in the department of English, read her short fiction at Concordia College, Jones A/B, on October 7 . Slomski is the author of The Lovers Set Down Their Spoons, winner of the 2014 Iowa Short Fiction Award and a Finalist for the 2015 Minnesota Book Award in Novel & Short Story.

English Chair Publishing and Presenting

Gary Totten, Professor and Chair of English, has two book chapters forthcoming: an afterword, “Edith Wharton and the Promise of Cosmopolitanism,” in the edited collection Edith Wharton and Cosmopolitanism (UP of Florida) and “Naturalistic Despair, Human Struggle, and the Gothic in Wharton’s Short Fiction” in the edited collection Haunting Realities: Naturalist Gothic and American Realism (U of Alabama P). He will also present “Hybrid and Social Media Approaches to Online Journal Content” as part of a roundtable panel of journal editors at the Society for the Study of American Women Writers Conference in Philadelphia, Nov. 5-7, and he will serve as respondent to the panel “Social Class in American Multi-Ethnic Literature” at the Modern Language Association Conference in San Antonio, Jan. 7-10.

Professor Mara Publishes Chapter on Posthumanism

Professor Andrew Mara published the chapter "Utopian Laptop Initiatives: From Technological Deism to Object-Oriented Rhetoric," with Professor Byron Hawk (University of South Carolina) and NDSU MA graduate, Chris Lindgren (PhD candidate, University of Minnesota). This chapter appears in Professor Sid Dobrin's (University of Florida) collection, Writing Posthumanism, Posthuman Writing (Parlor Press).

Turtle Mountain Teen Art and Writing Workshop

The Turtle Mountain Teen Art and Writing Workshop took place July 27-31st in Belcourt, ND. Fifteen Native American students participated in this program, which was a partnership between NDSU’s Red River Valley Writing Project, Turtle Mountain Community Schools, Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, the National Student Poets Program, and the Plains Art Museum. Students had choice of eleven workshops to attend. National Student Poet West Clark led a praise poetry workshop. The week ended with an Open Mic performance attended by the community and publication of a chapbook of student work. NDSU Associate Professor Kelly Sassi facilitated this collaborative project, which was funded by grants from Scholastic and the State of North Dakota.

30 Internship Opportunities

Thirty companies are looking for interns.  Please click on this link:

Mailing Address

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

Make a Donation
MELUS: The Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States
Trans-Atlantic and Pacific Project
Red River Valley Writing Project
The Arts Partnership

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Published by the NDSU Dept. of English

Last Updated: Wednesday, November 25, 2015 9:35:06 PM