Fiona Austin (she/her)

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Education: BA in Theatre and Political Science, Loyola University Chicago; MA in Shakespeare Studies, King’s College London

Research: My current research focuses on the staging of violence in early modern drama and its contemporary adaptations, particularly as it relates to gendered and disabled bodies.

Josh Beckelhimer (he/him)

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Education: MA in English Literature and Cultural Studies, University of Cincinnati; BA in English Literature and Cultural Studies/Communications, University of Cincinnati

Research: My research focuses on speculative fiction and eco-criticism. I am primarily interested in literatures and media that utilize and subvert genre to represent important ways of thinking about climate change and human relations to the environment more generally. I draw on indigenous, feminist and black writers who theorize constructions and deconstructions of technology and myth-building techniques of Western science and narratives.

Katie Bradshaw (she/her/hers)

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Education: MA in Cultural Studies, Sabanci University (2020); BA in Film & Documentary Studies, Bard College at Simon’s Rock (2007)

Research: I study addiction and recovery, broadly conceived and across historical periods. I currently research a range of literature and other cultural production (e.g., early modern drama, modernist fiction and poetry, film, and contemporary memoir), considering how these works present and wrestle with the self and spirit, history and experience. I have published academic essays on W. E. B. Du Bois and José Garcia Villa, and I am also a writer of creative nonfiction. At USC, I support a network of incarcerated writers and volunteer readers/editors through my work at Dornsife Prison Education Project Readers’ Circle.

Zak Breckenridge (he/they)

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Education: BA, Bard College at Simon’s Rock; MA, University of Chicago; MA, University of Utah

Research: Zak’s research uses critical theory, decolonial thought, and the history of science to study the literary production of environmentalism in the United States. His previous work has used affect theory to study the literature of the American West, and he has ancillary interests in graveyards and documentary film. His writing has appeared in The Common and The Salt Lake Tribune, among other venues.

Amelia “Amy” Cruz (she/her/hers)

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Education: BA in English Literature and Women’s and Gender Studies, Rutgers University New Brunswick (2020)

Research: Amelia’s research interests span several literary epochs and subjects of inquiry from the highly controversial pornography of the Marquis de Sade to the new possibilities found in feminist writing of the 20th century. Currently, Amelia spends most of her time working with questions arising from the lived realities of autistic (and otherwise disabled) writers, thinkers, and artists. She is interested in questions of embodiment (how do we know where our body ends and the universe begins?), sensory perception, subjective reality, and the literary potential of interdimensional travel. More often than not, she works within the realms of feminist gender theory, queer theory, and disability studies, but she is always on the hunt for more disciplines to add to her ever-expanding areas of interest.

Shaibal Dev Roy (he/him/his)

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Education: MA in English, North Dakota St U Fargo, (2019); MA in English, University of Chittagong, (2006); BA in English, University of Chittagong, (2004)

Research: As a scholar of nineteenth-century transnational literature and culture, I am concerned with the form, structure, and discourse of intertextuality and material culture at the intersection of empire, coloniality, and racial pedagogies. I am interested in empire, writing, and racial pedagogies because I want to understand how people come to learn the socially constructed rules of race and racism, and how they come to unlearn these rules to formulate effective resistance and, perhaps, emancipation. I build upon interdisciplinary methodologies, formats, and areas of inquiry. My driving interest in how people learn to resist imperialism and slavery shapes my scholarly trajectory and will continue to do so.

Alisha Dukelow (she/her)

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Education: BA in Creative Writing, University of Victoria; MA in Creative Writing and English Literature, Concordia

Research: Alisha Dukelow is interested in the relationship between innovative modern and contemporary literature, the mind/body, time, and the environment. Her dissertation project, which was awarded a Doctoral Fellowship from The Social Science & Humanities Research Council of Canada, focuses on literary subversions of almanacs and weather and sky forecasting tropes (from Djuna Barnes’s Ladies Almanack to Leslie Marmon Silko’s Almanac of the Dead, Lisa Robertson’s The Weather, and Dionne Brand’s The Blue Clerk). Alisha’s creative writing has received support from The Canada Council for the Arts and can be found in journals such as The Malahat Review, PRISM international, and Room. Pareidolia (2020), her chapbook of poetry, was published by Anstruther Press. Modernist Affect Grid (2023), her book of poetic essays about the cybernetically-inspired architecture and emotion theory of the year 1962, is available through Anteism.

Nick Earhart (he/him)

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Education: BA, Wesleyan University (2007); MFA, Queens College (2017)

Research: My work examines intersections between art, environmentalism, and urban space. My dissertation, The Poetics of the Los Angeles River, looks at the relationship between art and activism along the Los Angeles River since the 1970s. I engage the works of muralists, poets, eco artists, and graffiti writers to consider the role the arts have played in making and remaking this famously concretized river, and I use these works as a jumping off point to explore questions of place and planet in the era of climate change. My writing has appeared in ISLE, GeoHumanities, and Western American Literature, among other publications.

Colin Flynn (he/him)

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Education: BA in English, Pitzer College (2012); MA in English, San Francisco State University (2019)

Grace Franklin (she/her/hers)

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Education: MA in English, University of Virginia (2015); BA in English, University of Georgia (2012); ABJ in Journalism, University of Georgia (2012)

Research: Grace Franklin is an Andrew W. Mellon Humanities in a Digital World Ph.D. Fellow (2022-24) and Provost Fellow. Her dissertation-in-progress explores intersections between infrastructure and aesthetics initiated by the first widely-used fossil fuel utility, which supplied coal-gas light and heat. Through digital mapping, archival research, and literary analysis, it brings the history of our entanglements with fossil fuel into sharper focus, accentuating forgotten aspects of extraction-based life and elucidating ways in which coal continues to figure in our imaginations (through the metaphor of psychosocial gaslighting, for example).

In 2020, Grace co-organized the GREEN Conference, a national, carbon-neutral event, and coedited a corresponding issue of Nineteenth-Century Contexts, with Devin Griffiths and Brianna Beehler. She serves as Assistant Editor of The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation. Grace received her MA in English from UVA, where she collaborated on Collective Biographies of Women, an NEH-funded digital humanities database, and she has worked in marketing, arts & culture reporting, and instructional design.

Sarah Frontiera (she/her)

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Education: BA (Honors) in English Language and Literature, Oxford University; MA in English Language and Literature, Loyola Marymount University

Research: My research focuses on the agency of animal commodities in the global nineteenth century. Animal bodies were processed into a variety of raw materials that subsequently had second lives as domestic commodities. These animal commodities ranged from billiard balls and piano keys to illuminants, soaps, and industrial lubricants. My work restores to these animal products an agency that the Victorians themselves recognized and with which they negotiated. My dissertation, Proximate Bodies: Animal Commodities in the Global Nineteenth Century, examines these commodities in the context of not only their consumption as domestic goods but also their manufacture. The racialized subjects that labored in proximity to these animal materials were discursively conflated with these commodities, resulting in a proximity that was a provocative mix of agency and affect. My project draws on a disciplinarily diverse archive, including nineteenth century poetry and prose, painting and advertisements, as well as ephemera, periodicals, and user manuals.

Katie Googe (any pronouns)

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Education: MA in Religion, University of Georgia; BA in Comparative Literature and Romance Languages, University of Georgia

Research: My dissertation focuses on the relationship between speculative fiction and understandings of history and temporality in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. I am also interested in science fiction, the legacies of colonialism, gender and sexuality, the connections between literature and film and television.

Teddy Hamstra

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Education: BA English, Magna Cum Laude, University of Colorado at Boulder M.A. English, University of Colorado at Boulder

Research: Teddy is a PhD candidate currently working on a dissertation entitled “The Power of Mysticism: Joseph Campbell, Creative Mythology & the Re-Enchantment of the Senses.” He was previously  the Research Assistant for the Visual Studies Research Institute from 2021-2023 and an NEH-Images Out of Time Seminar Graduate Fellow. His research interests include representations of spiritual experience across media; the history of interdisciplinarity in American thought; theories of embodiment pertaining to shamanism, yoga, and dance; and self-help as a literary form. His writing has appeared in the ASAP/Journal, The Grateful Dead Studies Journal, and Air/Light.

Wooyoung Kim (she/her)

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Education: BA, Yonsei University

Research: Speculative/science forms, queer/lesbian subcultures in East Asia, gender and sexuality studies

Meagan Meylor (she/her)

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Education: BA in English Literature; BA in English Rhetoric and Composition; Professional Writing Certificate, California State University – Long Beach

Research: Born and raised in Los Angeles, my interdisciplinary research bridges geography, literary ecocriticism, and relational race studies to expand our critical understanding of place. My dissertation, “Something in the Air: Literary Atmospheres of Los Angeles,” explores the cultural, historical, and environmental significance of Los Angeles air over time, from the “salubrious” settler imaginary of the nineteenth-century to today’s atmospheric disparities and aerial anxieties in the wake of climate change. During my graduate studies, I’ve published multiple peer-reviewed articles on a wide range of subjects in the environmental humanities and western US literature, politics, and history.

Carolina Muñoz (she/her)

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Education: BA in English, UC Riverside (2021)

Research: Chicanx/Latinx Studies, Gender and Sexuality Studies, Critical Theory, Cultural Studies

Rachel Newman (she/her)

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Education: BA in English Literature and History (Joint Honors degree), McGill University (2016); MA in English Literature, University of Virginia (2018)

Research: My research focuses on fin-de-siècle women’s writing, including the figure of the “New Woman” and other cultural, socio-political, legal, and novelistic developments at the end of the nineteenth-century. My dissertation looks at anxiety, female anxiousness, and different modes of anxious plotting across women’s fiction, focusing particularly on the novels of Mona Caird, Sarah Grand, and George Gissing.

Sarah Nolan-Brueck (she/hers)

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Education: BA in English, Purdue University

Research: I study how science fiction authors alienate gender and the sexed body to both critique and reimagine contemporary forms of legal and social control; I focus specifically on how this trend coalesced into a central element of SF in the 1970s and has increased in relevance in the genre today.

Khaliah Reed (she/her)

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Education: MA in English, University of Southern California (2022); BA in English, Howard University (2017)

Research: Khaliah Reed is a PhD Candidate in English Literature. Her scholarship focuses on the works, writers, genres, and styles of authorship on the literary margins. Her primary research interests are in multimedia storytelling, fan studies–with an emphasis on literary fandom and fanfiction—and contemporary popular literature.

Camila Reyes (she/her/hers)

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Education: BA in English and Psychology, University of California –  Riverside

Research: Camila’s research focuses on Shakespeare, early modern women writers, girlhood studies, and gender and sexuality studies.

Saar Shahar (he/him)

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Education: MA in English, California State University – Los Angeles (2020); BFA, California Institute of the Arts (2006)

Research: Saar Shahar researches the voyages of Captain James Cook and their legacy in the Space Age.

Jessica Somers (she/her)

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Education: BA in English, Cal State Long Beach; MA in English, Cal State Los Angeles; MA in English, University of Southern California

Research: Jessica Somers is a doctoral candidate in the English department and a Graduate Certificate student in Gender and Sexuality Studies. Her dissertation focuses on the ways that colonial homes and domestic objects unsettle British expectations of gender, sexuality, and western subjecthood in global anglophone literature of the long nineteenth century.

Janet Song (she/they)

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Education: BA in English, Media Studies, Vassar College

Research: Asian American literature, nineteenth-century American literature, transpacific studies, archival work

Julian Suhr (he/him)

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Education: MA in English Literature, University of Southern California (2021); BA in English Literature, Williams College (2011)

Research: Julian is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Southern California. His research interests include literary representations of the American west as an “unknown” space, the relationship between fictionality and the production of knowledge, and the effects of American domestic imperialism on public culture. His dissertation examines limits to conceptualizing the possibility of Indigenous sovereignty in 19th century America in relation to settler colonial fantasies and anxieties about national progress; key texts include Washington Irving’s Astoria, Mark Twain’s “Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer Among the Indians,” and Sarah Winnemucc’s Life Among the Paiutes.

Samuel Teets (he/him)

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Education: MA in English & American Studies from NYU (2018); BA in English and French Literatures and minor in dance, CU Boulder (2014)

Research: Samuel Teets is a fifth-year ABD English Literature PhD candidate researching scenes of dance in twenty-first century American literatures. The working title of his dissertation is “Improvising Contact: Dance, Race, and Twenty-First Century Transmedia.” Upon its completion, he will receive dual certificates in Gender and Sexuality Studies as well as in Communication, Leadership, and Management from the Dornsife PhD Academy.

He is a contact improvisational dancer and works to bring the disciplines of both dance and literature to bear on politics of reading and moving in the United States, especially as it relates to intersections of African American, Latinx, and LGBTQ communities.

He has taught as an assistant lecturer in both the Thematic Option and WRIT 150 programs, and before that, as a teacher in both the New Haven and New York City Public School systems. He is passionate about educational equality, board games, and learning how to play the cello.

Ethan Trejo (he/him/his)

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Education: MA in English from Chapman University; BA in English and Political Science from Whittier College

Research: My scholarship is situated in the fields of Queer Studies and Latinx Studies. My primary interests lie in Affect Theory, Performance Studies, AIDS Literature, and Contemporary Queer and Latinx Literature, particularly YA Literature.

Lauren White (she/her)

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Education: MA in English, Cal Poly Pomona (2018)

Research: My research centers around displacement, migration, and climate refugees. I primarily write about SF texts set in Southern California.

Viriya Yoo (she/her)

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Education: BA in Literature, American University (2021)

Research: Southeast Asian/American literature and film, transpacific studies, critical refugee studies, WOC feminist theory, gender and sexuality studies

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