English Department E-News - March 20, 2018

March 20, 2018


In this Issue:

Please note: ** indicates NEW announcements

Honors and Awards:



To add events to your calendar, please click on the  icon at the end of each listing.

Events This Week:

Events This Month:

Future Events:

Program Newsletters and Event Calendars:

Event Listings by Program:

Funding Opportunities:

Call for Papers (sorted by deadline):

Important Policies and Notices:

Crisis and Emergency - Faculty and Staff Guide for Helping Distressed Students

Sexual Misconduct and Discrimination Policy

Faculty and Staff Response to Student Injury

Active Shooter Response

English Department Resources


Campaign-Related Activities on Campus Policy


As we approach the general election on November 8th, we write to provide a reminder of University guidance regarding permissible political campaign-related activities on campus. 

Because the University encourages freedom of expression, political activities that do not reasonably imply University involvement or identification may be undertaken so long as regular University procedures are followed for use of facilities and for conduct by faculty and staff in their official University capacities. Guidelines for student activities are also provided here.

The enclosed memo details University guidelines, and offers resources for use by our community. Please review it and distribute it to your faculty and staff members, as appropriate.

Thank you,

Geovette Washington, Senior Vice Chancellor and Chief Legal Officer
Paul A. Supowitz, Vice Chancellor for Community and Governmental Relations

http://www.universityannouncements.pitt.edu/Campaign-Related Activities Memo.pdf

For more information about Read Green, please visit http://technology.pitt.edu/readgreen

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Sexual Misconduct and Discrimination Policy

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Faculty and Staff Response to Student Injury

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Active Shooter Response

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Honors and Awards

We are proud to announce the scholarship recipients of the Nationality Rooms Summer Study Abroad Scholarships. They will represent your school and the University of Pittsburgh abroad in the most positive way.  Congratulations to your student(s) and the Department of English!


Kent Kosack, graduate (Various locations, Japan) – Dr. & Mrs. Ryonosuke Shiono Scholarship $2500

Mary Katherine Koenig, undergraduate (Dublin, Ireland) – John F. Kennedy Scholarship/ Irish Room Committee $4000



Nationality Rooms and Intercultural Exchange Programs

University of Pittsburgh | University Center for International Studies

1209 Cathedral of Learning | 4200 Fifth Avenue | Pittsburgh, PA 15260

412-624-6150 | NRIEP@pitt.edu

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I am pleased to announce the launch of the Hillman Equipment Collection on February 26, 2018.  This collection of audio and video equipment is open to any student, staff, or faculty member with a Pitt ID.

Other than the roster system, this new collection largely follows the same policies and procedures as the reserve collection that you are familiar with.  All items are first come first served and have a three-day loan period with no renewals.

We are hoping that this collection will inspire Pitt colleagues to be creative and try new things.

We have handouts that we are distributing in Hillman, and I would be happy to send some your way if you often get students asking about equipment access.

New Items!

  • Logitech Conference Call Station x2
  • Hero 5 Go Pro (with optional selfie stick) x5
  • Stream Capture Card x5
  • Zoom Audio Recording Kit
  • Tascam Audio Recording Kit
  • Podcasting Kit- (Yeti Blackout Condenser Microphone) x5
  • G7H Digital Camera Kit x5
  • Magnus Tripod x5
  • Vlogging Kit- (Panasonic DMC-LX10 Camera) x5
  • Dracast Lighting Kit x2
  • Portable Projector x5

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out. ULS-HillmanEquipmentRoom@pitt.edu




Abby Jacobsen, MLIS

Hillman Library Equipment Room Coordinator

Library Senior Specialist
Research and Educational Support

G2- Hillman Library

University of Pittsburgh

Phone: (412) 648-7725

Email: AbigailJ@pitt.edu


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Careers in Community Organizing for Social Justice

The Direct Action & Research Training (DART) Center will hold an online information session on Tuesday, April 3 at 7 pm eastern to discuss careers in community organizing with Pitt students and alumni interested in uniting congregations and working for social, economic and racial justice.

RSVP at www.thedartcenter.org/Pitt

DART hires and trains organizers to build organizations that have successfully addressed issues including:

* Plugging the school-to-prison pipeline
* Reining in predatory lending practices
* Expanding access to primary health and dental care
* Prioritizing funding for affordable housing and job training
* Improving low-performing public schools
* Fighting for immigrants' rights

Positions start August 13, 2018 in Knoxville, TN, Charleston, SC, Lexington, KY, Louisville, KY, Lawrence, KS, and St. Petersburg, Tampa, West Palm Beach, Miami and Ft. Lauderdale, FL.

Starting salary $34,000/year + benefits.

Although it may be helpful, no prior organizing experience is necessary. Fluent Spanish speakers are encouraged to apply.

To find out more about DART or to apply, we encourage you to visit www.thedartcenter.org. Still have questions? Contact Hannah Wittmer at hannah@thedartcenter.org or (202) 841-0353.

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Quantum Theatre’s upcoming production, Inside Passage, a world premiere by local playwright Gab Cody which explores the complexities of cultural identity and what constitutes family.

From a literary perspective, the narrative is compelling: Gab’s patchy memories of her early childhood in Alaska spent with her Tlingit foster-siblings are interwoven with her quest for reunification 35 years later, blurring the lines between past and present. Six performers play a multitude of characters, with one character oftentimes represented by many people, while documentary footage shot on-location in Alaska anchors the theatrical narrative in the real-life events it recounts. At points audience members even become part of the recollection. Gab’s perspective unfolds as the script comes to life, revealing how her previous experiences inform her evolving identity and lingering impacts the foster-care system has had on her siblings. Inside Passage, with its unique tone and exploration of narrative technique and cultural studies, offers an intriguing experience for English students.

Quantum Theatre is a site-specific theatre company—we specialize in transforming diverse spaces into the world of our plays. Inside Passage will run from March 2-25 at the Provident Charter School in Troy Hill. Student tickets are $18 each and can be purchased online or via our box office at (412) 362-1713. Questions or requests can be addressed by Stewart, our Managing Director, at surist@quantumtheatre.com

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This morning, President Trump released his Presidential Budget Request for FY 2019, which again calls for the elimination of the National Endowment for the Humanities along with the National Endowment for the Arts, the Department of Education’s International Education Programs, the National Historical Publications and Records Commission, and the Institute for Museums and Library Services. The request also calls for the elimination of federal funding for the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars.

This is an assault on humanities research, education, and programming - all of which are essential to the cultivation of our national heritage and civic culture.

Congress will ultimately be responsible for writing the bills that fund the federal government.

Last year, we sent a forceful message to Congress that we oppose the administration’s efforts to eliminate humanities funding. While the appropriations process for FY 2018 has not yet been completed, Congress has rejected Trump’s proposals at every turn.

Now is the time to speak out to ensure that Congress rejects these proposals for FY 2019. Let your Members of Congress know that you support the NEH!

Click here to urge your Members of Congress to oppose these proposals!

Click here to take action on behalf of other humanities programs!

Want to do more? Join us on Capitol Hill for Humanities Advocacy Day in March! Learn more here.

You can read more about the proposal and our campaign here.

National Humanities Alliance

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Open Mic Nights @ Nordy's Place (8:30-10 pm)

The C4C Open Mic is a chance for University of Pittsburgh performers of all kinds – writers, musicians, comics, storytellers, and others – to meet and mingle while showcasing their skills. All levels and styles are welcome! Whether you have experience performing in public, or you’re a first-timer in search of a supportive and enthusiastic audience, the C4C Open Mic is for you. 


  • Monday, Jan. 29
  • Monday, Feb. 26
  • Monday, Mar. 26

Colliders @ Hillman Digital Scholarship Commons (7-9 pm)

Collider brings the Pitt community together for an evening of art, music, and performance. At each event, we focus on one important component of creativity, and invite creators of all skill levels to try out, display, or perform work around that theme in an informal party atmosphere.


  • Wednesday, Jan. 31 | Theme: Tradition (the concept is set, but the name may change)
  • Wednesday, Mar. 28 | Theme: Play

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Sandra Nelson on a panel on "What does it mean to be trans..." Mar 29, 6pm, Univ Club Ballroom B


Pitt Debate Team to Host Panel: “What does it mean to be trans and why does it matter? A discussion across disciplinary boundaries”

Event seeks to explore common ground among medical, critical, and activist perspectives

PITTSBURGH—On Thursday, March 29 at 6 pm in Ballroom B of the University Club, invited guests will engage in a dialogue and debate about the past, present, and future of advocacy for trans health concerns. Bringing together medical practitioners, scholars in the humanities, and community activists, the event seeks to highlight both challenges and opportunities for speaking across disciplinary boundaries in support of healthcare access for transgender persons. Panelists include: 

·       Kristen Eckstrand, MD, PhD; UPMC and University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

·       Morgan Faeder, MD, PhD; UPMC and University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

·       Cori Frazer; Pittsburgh Center for Autistic Advocacy

·       Sandra Lynn Nelson; University of Pittsburgh Departments of English and Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies (GSWS)

·       Marty Seltman, MD; Metro Community Health Center

·       Ciora Thomas; SisTers PGH, Proud Haven, and Pittsburgh LGBTQIA Advisory Council

The event is free and open to the public. Gender-neutral restrooms are available at the venue. Complementary food and beverage will be served prior to the event. 

The event is sponsored by the William Pitt Debating Union, which is housed in the Department of Communication at the University of Pittsburgh. It is part of the Marcella L. Finegold Memorial Public Debate Series, which funds conversations on issues of concern both to the university community and the broader public. This will be the kickoff event for the third Finegold topic area, “Addressing Inequality.” Previous topic areas were “The Future of Pittsburgh” and “Healthcare Issues.” 

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Professor Chris Roman of Kent State University will be lecturing on “The Desires of Richard Rolle: Queer Theology and the Disrupting Hermit” March 22 at 4:30 in College Hall 104 on the Duquesne University campus. Prof. Roman’s lecture is free and open to the public.


In addition, Prof. Rolle has generously agreed to lead a small-group seminar at 3pm in the History lounge (COLH 614). Attached is the essay, "Geoffrey Chaucer and the Acoustic Ontology of Dreams", which he will be discussing in the seminar. Participation in this seminar is available on a first-come, first-serve basis, but with Duquesne-affiliated attendees receiving priority. If you are interested in taking part in this seminar, please contact me at 





Greg Barnhisel, Ph.D.

Professor and Chair

Dept. of English

Duquesne University 

Pittsburgh PA 15282


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PIVOT workshop for Humanities and Social Sciences


Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2018 

Time: 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Location: Martin Colloquium Center, Seminar Room 4127, Sennott Square


RSVP: https://pitt.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_er1RBklkw9REgPr


The Dietrich School supports faculty research through internal funding as well as by helping faculty position themselves to capture external grants and fellowships. 


The University of Pittsburgh subscribes to Pivot, a comprehensive source of funding opportunity information.


Intended specifically for scholars across the Humanities and Social Sciences, this hands-on session will provide an overview of this resource and how faculty may use it to find funding and collaboration opportunities to support their research.  Junior faculty, and faculty new-to-Pitt, are particularly encouraged to participate.


Additional resources related to funding competitions coordinated within the University will also be presented.


Presenter: Ryan Champagne works as the Grants Development Coordinator in the University of Pittsburgh Office of Research. In this position, he supports strategic research priorities at the University through analyzing and sharing funding information. His outreach and instruction work with faculty, students, and staff focuses on discovering novel resources and building collaborative partnerships.

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Health within Disability: Contradiction, Construct, or neither?

Disability Studies Reading Group

March 23rd, 12-1:30, Cathedral 1414


Academic Jeff Bennett of Vanderbilt joins Pittsburgh activist Cori Frazer to lead a discussion. How are individuals with disabilities treated within the healthcare system? How applicable are the labels of ‘disabled’ and ‘healthy’ to the same bodies? And to what extent does the ‘healthy U’ presuppose an ‘ableist U’?


Cori Frazer is an Autistic and queer/nonbinary activist and director of the Pittsburgh Center for Autistic Advocacy. Cori is currently pursuing their master’s degree in social work with an emphasis on community organizing at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania and serving as an intern with the Education Rights Network, an education justice project of One Pennsylvania which focuses on dismantling the systemic causes of school-to-prison pipeline and ameliorating its impact on students of color and students with disabilities.


Jeff Bennett is an Associate Professor at Vanderbilt University. Jeff is currently completing a book-length project that investigates the rhetoric of diabetes management.  That work, tentatively titled Critical Conditions: The Cultural Politics of Diabetes Management (NYU Press), argues that diabetes’s public character is not simply a product of medical knowledge that stems from epidemiology and endocrinology, but a condition whose meanings are organized by culture, constituted through communicative practices, and distinctly realized in varying public spheres.  He is also launching a research project about the origins and consequences of pre-exiting conditions clauses and their impact on healthcare deliberations.  Jeff’s first book, Banning Queer Blood: Rhetorics of Citizenship, Contagion, and Resistance, engaged the federal donor deferral policies that prohibit queer men from giving blood.  His work has also appeared in the Quarterly Journal of Speech, Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies, the Journal of Medical Humanities, and Critical Studies in Media Communication.       


RSVP required by March 12th to jessicabenham@pitt.edu, please include any accommodation requests and dietary restrictions. Lunch provided. 


Funding provided by the Year of Healthy U, along with the Center for Bioethics + Health Law, Department of English, Department of Sociology, Department of Communication, Rhetoric Society of America, Cultural Studies, the Humanities Center, and Students for Disability Advocacy.

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Funding Opportunities


Dear MLA members,
The Whiting Foundation has invited the MLA to make nominations for Whiting Public Engagement Fellowships for pretenure and recently tenured faculty members. Guidelines for the fellowships, which award $50,000 for fully developed public engagement projects and $10,000 for developing new projects, are available online.  
Any MLA member who is not tenured or who has earned tenure since the 2012–13 academic year is eligible to apply for a Whiting Public Engagement Fellowship, which rewards and encourages humanities work that engages a community beyond the university. Information about the most recent cohort of Public Engagement fellows is available here, and you can also access information about the 2017–18 and 2016–17 cohorts. More information on the Whiting Foundation’s $10,000 Seed Grants can be found here.
The MLA may nominate up to four members for consideration for these fellowships. To apply, please follow the Whiting guidelines for proposals, identify your primary MLA forum affiliation most closely related to the proposal, and submit your proposal to czuses@mla.org by 15 April. If more than one submission is received from the members of a given forum, we will ask the relevant forum executive committee to rank the proposals for the MLA Whiting Committee. The MLA Whiting Committee will be made up of Executive Council members and MLA members who are especially active in public engagement.
Please consider applying for these exciting opportunities.

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$250 Teaching Award

The A&S GSO Elizabeth Baranger Teaching Awards acknowledge excellence in graduate student teaching across the Arts & Sciences. Awards are presented to two students nominated by faculty, fellow graduate students, and undergraduates, in each of the Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, and Humanities. The award, which is given in April, is named after Elizabeth Baranger, former Dean and, later, Vice-Provost of the School of Arts & Sciences.

To nominate a graduate student please follow the link: 2018 Elizabeth Baranger Teaching Awards Nomination Form. Share this link with your students!!

Nominations open: January 8, 2018
Nominations close: January 30, 2018
Students notified: February 1, 2018
Applications due: February 28, 2018
Students who were nominated will receive instructions via email on how to apply.
Notification date: April 9, 2018
Award Ceremony date: April 23, 2018 


$100 Grad Expo Outstanding Presenter Award

The Grad Expo is an all day event where Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences graduate students from a variety of disciplines present papers and posters to their fellow students, faculty, and other members of the Pitt community. This event provides the opportunity for graduate students to gain experience in presenting their research as well as fostering interdisciplinary communication amongst the departments and programs within the School of Arts and Sciences. It is an opportunity for students from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines to be exposed to practices and concepts which, while possibly foreign to their field, might nevertheless enrich their work and certainly their academic experience at The University of Pittsburgh.

Outstanding papers and posters will receive a $100 award towards expenses for attending a conference or for the purchase of research material.

Abstract submission: January 10th-31st

Abstract submission link: Grad Expo 2018 Abstract Submission

When: March 23rd, 2018
Where: WPU 5th Floor

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Dietrich School Curricular Innovation Fund

The Dietrich School announces a two-year program to fund efforts to improve our undergraduate curriculum, especially efforts that support School-level initiatives to enhance departmental advising, develop innovative majors, enrich large-enrollment and introductory courses, or scale-up mentored research, scholarly, and creative arts experiences for undergraduates. 


Funds must be requested by department chairs or program directors on behalf of a full time T/TS or NTS faculty member or group of faculty members within, and in some cases also outside, their department or program.  Funds can be used to assess and/or purchase materials, including software that might augment teaching, learning, assessment, or grading; support travel to visit colleagues at institutions with curricular programs being considered at Pitt; convene workshops or retreats for sustained faculty consideration of curricular changes, especially those that cross departmental or School lines; or similar purposes.  In exceptional cases that involve complex departmental or program changes, funds can be requested for limited summer salary support.  No funds are available for course releases or salary support during fall or spring terms. 


There is no minimum or maximum request limit, but, as funds are limited, most successful proposals will have budgets less than $10,000 in one-time (non-recurring) funds.  Proposals should contain a short (1-3 page) description, a 1-page letter from the chair or program director that details the faculty involved in the project and their respective responsibilities, a 1-page timetable for the expenditure of the funds and the testing and/or implementation of the project, and a 1-page budget that should be reviewed in advance by the department’s fiscal administrator. 


All funds must be allocated by the end of the spring 2019 term.   Proposals can be submitted anytime and will be considered until the fund is expended.  Please send proposals as a single PDF document to j.seemann@pitt.edu

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Calls for Papers

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