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DepositENGL 372: Nineteenth-Century Literature of the Americas and the British Empire

372 [HUM] 19th Century Literature of the British Empire and the Americas. 3 credit hours. Literary and cultural texts in English from 1800 to 1900 focusing on global British literature and literatures of the Americas. My investment in the course. I am concerned about our country’s inability to work against climate change, the mass incarceration of African Americans, and widespread sexual assault. Each of these problems have a long history in British and American literature. By exploring that history, my hope is that we gain perspective on issues that concern all of us today.

MemberNiall Sreenan

I am a researcher and critic working at the intersection of literature, the history of science, and philosophy, interested primarily in 19th century evolutionary thought and its cultural, political afterlives. My first monograph, Rethinking the Human in the Darwinian Novel, examines responses to evolutionary theory in 19th century literary realism and later Utopian fiction. Other projects, both in progress and complete, include work on the representation of islands in literature and philosophy, Michel Houellebecq, and the reception of Samuel Butler in the writing of Gilles Deleuze.

MemberSamuel Grinsell

I am a PhD student at the Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, working on the history of the built environment of the Nile valley under the British Empire. Prior to moving to Edinburgh, I studied for a BA in Ancient History and History and an MA in Urban History, both at the University of Leicester. I also have an active interest in educational practices and learning technologies, and worked as an intern in the Technology Enhanced Learning team at St Mary’s University, Twickenham, in the summer of 2016. I am chair of Pubs and Publications, a blog about PhD life. My current research combines environmental, architectural and urban histories to produce a new understanding of British imperial power in the Nile valley in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. This can open up new readings of the histories of empire and modernity.

MemberChristine Yao

Christine “Xine” Yao is a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of British Columbia in the Department of English. She works on intersections of affect, race, gender, and sexuality in relation to science and law through long 19th century American literature. Her research has been published in J19: The Journal of Nineteenth-Century Americanists and American Gothic: An Edinburgh Companion. She is an award-winning instructor of literature, culture, and writing. She completed her Ph.D.  in English at Cornell University in 2016 with minors in American Studies and Feminism, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Dr. Yao’s postdoctoral, PhD, and MA work has been funded by competitive national grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Her archival research has been supported by travel grants to the American Antiquarian Society, the Massachusetts Historical Society, and the College of the Library of Physicians of Philadelphia. Additional training thanks to the Center for American Visual Culture, the Futures of American Studies Institute at Dartmouth College, and the LGBT Leadership Academy at Cornell in Washington. For further information and CV, please see http://www.christineyao.com 

MemberErvin Malakaj

I am Assistant Professor of German Studies at the University of British Columbia. Prior to my appointment at UBC, I served as Assistant Professor of German and Coordinator of the German Program at Sam Houston State University. I received my Ph.D. in Germanic Languages and Literatures and Film & Media Studies at Washington University in St. Louis (2015) and hold a B.A. (2007) and M.A. (2009) in German Studies from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

I specialize in late-18th to 21st-century German media and cultural history. In particular, my research focuses on 19th-century literary cultures, film history (Imperial Germany, Weimar Germany, cinema of the 60s and 70s), narrative theory, queer theory, and critical pedagogy.

Currently, I am writing a book examining the influence of fluctuating literary markets on authorial agency and narrative form provisionally titled Fragile Literary Cultures in Early Imperial Germany. Part and parcel of this research is my work on a volume titled The Becoming and Afterlife of Literature: Agents in the German Literary Field (co-edited with Vance Byrd).

My scholarship in film studies includes a book project examining the primacy of melodramatic form in the articulation of queer experiences in popular culture and the intellectual sphere of Weimar Germany. In addition, I am completing an article, which examines the queer potential of slapstick in Ernst Lubitsch’s early comedies. This article is part of my work on an edited volume titled An Interdisciplinary Companion to Slapstick Cultures (co-edited with Alena Lyons and under advanced contract with de Gruyter).

In 2016, I co-founded the international scholarly collective “Diversity, Decolonialization, and the German Curriculum” (DDGC). Following DDGC’s inaugural conference March 2017 at the University of North Carolina, Asheville, DDGC has been institutionalized into a biannual conference (the next conference will take place Spring 2019 at St. Olaf College). I also serve as the co-editor of DDGC’s official blog.

MemberAllison Neal

Victorianist and Neo-Victorianist interested in Victorian Literature, History, Culture and Heritage; Contemporary literature and culture, and particularly its recent negotiations with the Victorian era through neo-Victorian appropriations of the long nineteenth century; the (de)construction of identities and societal roles, adaptation theory, paratexts and their transformations; the relationship between the classes in the past and present as depicted in literature, on film and television, along with Victorian and neo-Victorian pastiche, parody, and satire. My approach to research is interdisciplinary in nature and involves drawing on critical literary analysis, historical evidence, and postmodern theories of interpretation. And I have a cat called Victoria.