MemberLana Cook

Modern to contemporary American literature, film, and cultural studies. Specializing in cognitive approaches to literature, affect, modes of realism and fantasy. My dissertation is on representations of ‘altered states,’ such as psychedelic drug states and mental illness, in mid-century American narratives and film.

MemberJeremiah Mercurio

I currently serve as Head of Humanities & History in the Columbia University Libraries. Previously, I held positions as a librarian and faculty member at Fairfield University and Haverford College. My doctoral dissertation, completed at the University of St Andrews, Scotland, focused on the role of language and fantasy in Anglophone Decadent fiction and illustration. My scholarly interests include Decadent literature and art, book studies, literary doodling, comparative media studies, and Appalachian literature.

MemberLeah Phillips

I’m an interdisciplinarian with a particular interest in children’s and YA literature, the discursive category of adolescence, and the embodied state of being an adolescent girl. I’m also fascinated by contemporary media culture’s role in the production of adolescence/adolescent girls as well as how adolescent girls speak back to those productions. My doctoral work focused on our cultural concern with the adolescent female body and that body’s presentation and construction in popular media and culture. I aruged that YA fantasy offers a sub or countercultural space that is re-mapping the countours of the body and providing alterantive ways of being adolescent girl.   Within this discursive space, I’m particularly interested in how YA fantasy, while participating in bodily concern, manages to present that same body as changeable, unstable and open to possibility. The project is titled, “Myth (Un)Making: Female Heroes in Mythopoeic YA Fantasy”.