Springing into action!

California State University, San Bernardino
English Department Newsletter
April 2019

Spring has been a productive time for the Department of English at California State University!

Alumni & Students

Alexandria Precie
Recent alumna Alexandria Precie (B.A. 2018) was accepted to the Master of Management in Library and Information Science program at University of Southern California and is very much enjoying her coursework there.

Alexandra Precie

Precie writes this about her experience as a graduate student:
Being a part of the USC’s Management of Library and Information Science online program has been a wonderful academic and personal learning experience. . . Not only are we learning the necessities of librarianship, we also learn how to effectively lead and communicate with others. I especially enjoy the opportunity to connect with peers and leaders in the profession from all around the country. I’ve already seen personal growth from what I have learned thus far, and I cannot wait to see where my experience in M.M.L.I.S. will take me.

Lupina Hossain
Lupina Hossain is in her second year of the MA in English Composition Program at CSUSB. In March, she presented her paper ‘Edgar Allan Poe and the Arabesque as a Border That Evades Borders’ at the American Comparative Literature Association Conference, held at Georgetown University.

ACLA Hossain

Hossain’s paper was very well received at the conference and it was nominated for the Horst Frenz prize for the best paper presented by a graduate student.

Chad Sweeney
Congratulations to Professor Chad Sweeney on the publication of his new book, Little Million Doors (Nightboat Books, 2019). Winner of the 2019 Nightboat Prize, Little Million Doors is a book-length elegy for Sweeney’s father. In her review of Sweeney’s book, Carmen Jiménez Smith comments, “Chad Sweeney’s book Little Million Doors enacts the starkness of Barthes’ Mourning Diary but with the potency of the long poem, a meditation on the “living shadow on the wall.” This moving work considers how the body finds solace in the world-building of elegy. This book is also an extended meditation on elegy as subjectivity. Little Million Doors is an original.” This March, Sweeney gave three readings of his poetry in Portland at the American Writers and Writing Programs Conference.

Miriam Fernandez
Assistant Professor Fernandez joined the English department this academic year and teaches rhetoric and composition. She completed her Ph.D. at Washington State University and has won the James Berlin Memorial Outstanding Dissertation 2019 Award from the Conference on College Composition and Communication. The award recognizes Fernandez’s dissertation, Tropes of the Nation: Tracking the Colonial Origins of the Matriarchal Figures of Mexican Nationalism.

An article on Fernandez’s prestigious award can be accessed here:  http://iecn.com/cal-state-sb-english-professor-miriam-fernandez-honored-for-dissertation

David Carlson
Professor and Chair David Carlson presented on Dugan Aguilar’s (Pit River/Maidu/ Paiute) photography at the Native American Literature Symposium in Minneapolis (March 7-9). His talk was titled “Irony and Iconicity in the California Indian Photography of Dugan Aguilar.”

Karen Rowan and Alexandra Cavallaro
Karen Rowan and Alexandra Cavallaro’s article, “Toward a Model for Preparatory Community Listening,” was published in the Community Literacy Journal in Fall 2018.

cover of journal

This special issue of Community Literacy Journal demonstrates a commitment to developing equitable partnerships with the concept of “community listening.” Professors Rowan and Cavallaro contribute to the issue by focusing explicitly on approaches to community listening in the early stages of building community partnerships, a stage of the process often overlooked in scholarship. They address this gap by drawing on a case study of “preparatory community listening” in San Bernardino, California. In this case study, they articulate an asset-based method for practicing community listening that emphasizes attention to discursive, material, political, and economic dynamics, particularly in communities shaped by deficit narratives.

Alexandra Cavallaro
Professor Cavallaro presented her paper, “Preparing to Go Inside on the Outside: Cultivating Allies and Advocates” at the Conference on College Composition and Communication in Pittsburgh (March 12-16th).

Cavallaro also published an article in Literacy in Composition Studies, “Making Citizens Behind Bars (and the Stories We Tell About It): Queering Approaches to Prison Literacy Programs.” The journal is open access and the article can be found here: http://licsjournal.org/OJS/index.php/LiCS/article/view/206

Jennifer Andersen
Professor Andersen presented “The Struggle to Control the Meaning of the Marprelate Controversy” on Thursday, March 14th at the University of Maryland, College Park. The talk was sponsored by the Graduate School Field Committee in Medieval and Early Modern Studies.

Luz Elena Ramirez
Professor Ramirez has been conducting field work in Tulum and Chichen Itza, archaeological sites documented by Victorian artist Frederick Catherwood.


Ramirez presented her research on Catherwood this March at the Pacific Coast Conferences on British Studies Conference held at University of California, Merced.


Her paper was entitled, “British Interpretations of the Maya Past: Catherwood’s Vision of the Yucatan.”

Jason Magabo Perez
Professor Perez published an interview with Craig Santos Perez on poetics, archives, and ethnic studies in Ploughshares. That interview can be accessed here:

Jason Perez

Perez also published a creative nonfiction essay excerpted from his ongoing research in Entropy Magazine. Perez’s Because Love is a Roar: Sketching a Critical Race Poetics can be accessed here: https://entropymag.org/because-love-is-a-roar-sketching-a-critical-race-poetics/

Perez is faculty director of the Pacific Review, which is edited by students in his English 543 Literary Production seminar. This March, several students working on the journal joined Perez at the American Writers and Writing Programs Conference in Portland.

Holly Henry
Professor Holly Henry wrote the preface to the Chinese edition of her book  Dreams of Other Worlds, which Princeton University Press will publish in China this year.  Co-writer and astronomer Chris Impey also contributed to this new edition.

Copy of Henry's book

Michaelsun Stonesweat Knapp
Lecturer Michaelsun Stonesweat Knapp published an essay titled “On ‘At What Number Are Numbers No Good?’ and Tecumseh’s Speech to the Osages” in the anthology Native Voices from Tupelo Press.

Stonesweat Knapp read his poetry this year at the dA Center for the Arts in Pomona; at the American Writers and Writing Programs annual Conference in Portland; and at Center Justify, at an offsite AWP event at Portland State University.

Diane Adams
Lecturer Diane Adams presented at the Charlotte S. Huck Children’s Literature Festival at University of Redlands on March 9. The topic of her presentation was “Teaching Empathy and Connection through Children’s Books.”

With support from CSUSB’s University Diversity Committee, the English Department invited writer and editor Theodore C. Van Alst to campus on March 14. Van Alst, Jr. is Associate Professor and Chair of Native American Studies at the University of Montana. He is co-editor and Creative Editor for Transmotion (an on-line journal of postmodern indigenous studies).

van alst

Van Alst read from his debut fiction collection, Sacred Smokes (University of New Mexico Press, 2018).

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