MemberJeremy McGinniss

…Salve Regina University   5/2015-08/2018 (anticipated)
Master of Arts in Humanities

University of Pittsburgh    5/2007-8/2009
Master of Library and Information Science

Cairn University      9/2000-5/2005
Bachelor of Music
Bachelor of Science in Bible…

Jeremy McGinniss is currently the Coordinator of Research and Instruction at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. He received his MLIS from the University of Pittsburgh and is currently pursuing a MA in Humanities at Salve Regina University. Jeremy’s research areas include student staff development, critical pedagogy, philosophy of maintenance, and the ACRL Framework.

MemberAmanda Miller

I earned a Master of Arts at Duquesne University and am currently pursuing a Master of Library Science degree at the University of Pittsburgh. My literary interests include 18th-19th British literature as well as the history of books as physical objects. I hope to work as either a liaison librarian in collaboration with a university English department or within a special collections.

MemberSusan Grunewald

I am a Ph.D. candidate in History at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA. My dissertation examines German prisoners of war in the Soviet Union from 1941-1956. I am interested in how they were treated, why they were held for so long, and their role in the Soviet forced labor economy. To access their labor contribution, I digitally map the camp locations with regards to resources and infrastructure developments with the program ArcGIS. The role of the POWs in the early stages of the Cold War is also a major part of my research.

MemberBrian Beaton

I’m an Associate Professor at Cal Poly, a STEM campus within the 23-campus California State University (CSU) System. I helped to develop and launch Cal Poly’s interdisciplinary Science, Technology and Society (STS) program and the Center for Expressive Technologies. Before joining the faculty at Cal Poly, I was a full-time professor in the School of Information Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh (now the “School of Computing and Information”). I helped to develop and launch the University of Pittsburgh’s Community Informatics Research Group, as well as directed the Sara Fine Institute for Interpersonal Behavior and Technology, an endowed research unit dedicated to the study of IT and society trends. CAL POLY

  • Associate Professor (2019-)
  • Director of the Center for Expressive Technologies (2015-2018)
  • Assistant Professor (2015-2019)
  • Program Coordinator & Embedded Researcher, California Cyber Training Complex (2016-2017)


  • Assistant Professor (2012-2015)
  • Interim Director of the Sara Fine Institute for Interpersonal Behavior and Technology (2013-2015)
  • Co-PI, iSchool Inclusion Institute (2014-2015) [Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Grant #21300668]
  • Co-Director, Community Informatics Research Group (2012-2015)
  • Faculty Affiliate, Graduate Program for Cultural Studies (2013-2015)

MemberSophie Esch

2018 Modernity at Gunpoint. Firearms, Politics, and Culture in Mexico and Central America, Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, Illuminations Series.
Winner of the 2019 LASA-Mexico Section Award for Best Book in the Humanities
Edited Volume
2006 La gota de la vida. Hacia una gestión sustentable y democrática del agua, co-edited with Delgado, Martha; et al. Mexico City: Ediciones Boell.
Special Issue for a Journal
2020 “Passages: Routes of Migration and Memory in Central American Literature,” editor of a special issue of the Revista de Estudios Hispánicos.
Peer-Reviewed Articles
2020 “Hippopotamus Dead or Alive: Animals and Trauma in Narratives of the Drug War,” Revista Hispánica Moderna (forthcoming).
2020 “Passages, Transits, Flows. Thinking Central American Literature across Space, Time, and Capital,” Revista de Estudios Hispánicos
2018 “El rifle como reliquia en las memorias letradas sandinis…

Sophie Esch is Assistant Professor of Mexican and Central American literature at Rice University. Her research focuses on revolutions and armed conflict in the Global South. She is the author of Modernity at Gunpoint. Firearms, Politics, and Culture in Mexico and Central America (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2018), which won the 2019 Best Book in the Humanities Award of the Mexico section of LASA. Her current book project, Ecologies of War, is a book-length study on the interactions of human and non-human life forms in recent war and postwar narratives from Latin America and Luso-Africa.  

MemberSamantha Lomb

…Ph.D., Department of History, University of Pittsburgh, 2014

Regional Focus: Russian and Modern European History

Thematic Focus: Text & Context

Dissertation: “Speaking Out: The Public Discussion of the 1936 Constitution and the Practice of Soviet Democracy”

Certificate in Russian Studies, Russian and Eastern European Studies Center,

University of Pittsburgh, 2014

M.A., University of Pittsburgh, 2009

Thesis – “Voices from the Village: Sel’kory, Stengazety and Popular Discussion of the Draft Constitution, June – December 1936”

B.A., History, Shepherd University, Summa Cum Laude, 2006…

I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Foreign Languages at Vyatka State University in Kirov, Russia, where I have been teaching since 2012. I completed my PhD in History at the University of Pittsburgh in 2014. My research focuses on the Stalinist 1930’s. My first publication, “Personal and Political: A Microhistory of the “Red Column” Collective Farm, 1935-36,” was published in January 2016 in The Carl Beck Papers in Russian and East European Studies.  In addition to this monograph, my book, Stalin’s Constitution: Soviet Participatory Politics and the Discussion of the 1936 Draft Constitution, was published in  November 2017 by Routledge.  The book uses a regional focus to examine the discourse between the central state leadership and citizens about the new Soviet social contract, the 1936 Soviet Constitution.

MemberJulie Ward


Manuscripts in Preparation

2017   A Shared Truth: The Theatre of Lagartijas Tiradas al Sol. Book manuscript. Under contract to University of Pittsburgh Press.

Manuscripts in Submission

2017   “The Forgotten Frontier: Body commodification along Mexico’s southern border in Nadia Villafuerte’s short fiction.” Under review.

Refereed Journal Articles

2017   “Making Reality Sensible:  The Mexican Documentary Theatre Tradition, 1968-2013.” Theatre Journal, vol. 69 no. 2, 2017, pp. 197-211. Project MUSE, doi:10.1353/tj.2017.0024

2017   “Affective Suffrage: Social Media, Street Protests, and Theatre as Alternative Spaces for Political Self-Representation in the 2012 Mexican Presidential Elections.” TransModernity, vol. 7, no. 2, 2017, pp. 97-118.

2014   “Staging Postmemory: Self-representation and Parental Biographying in Lagartijas Tiradas al Sol’s El rumor del incendio.”…

I joined the faculty of the University of Oklahoma in 2014 as Assistant Professor of 20th- and 21st-Century Latin American Literature. I hold a PhD in Hispanic Languages and Literatures from the University of California, Berkeley (2013). My current research focuses on the representation of the real in contemporary Latin America. My publications on this topic have appeared in Theatre Journal, TransModernityLatin American Theatre ReviewThe Routledge Companion to Dramaturgy and Revista de Literatura Mexicana Contemporánea. My current book project (under contract with the University of Pittsburgh Press) is a study of how the stage has become a space for constructing alternative personal and collective histories in post-traumatic national situations, specifically in the works of Mexican theatre collective Lagartijas Tiradas al Sol. Other research interests include the digital humanities, especially for linking research and teaching; contemporary Mexican literature by women authors; and literary representations of the Mexican borders. I am motivated and encouraged by artistic expressions that provoke, contest, and offer alternatives to an often defeatist status quo.