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MemberDebra Faszer-McMahon

Dr. McMahon is an Associate Professor of Spanish at Seton Hill University. She received her Ph.D. in Spanish Literature in 2006 from the University of California, Irvine, and she also holds an M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction, an M.A. in English Literature, and an M.A. in the Teaching of Languages. Research interests include 20th and 21st Century Spanish Literature, Poetry, and Immigration. Her most recent book is titled Cultural Encounters in Contemporary Spain: The Poetry of Clara Janés (Bucknell 2010), and she has also published articles in Hispania, Anales de la Literatura Española Contemporánea, Letras Femeninas, and Studies in 20th and 21st Century Literature and Culture. She has co-edited a volume entitled African Immigration in Contemporary Spanish Texts which will be published by Ashgate Press in 2015, and she is currently working on a manuscript about contemporary Spanish poetry written by Saharaui immigrants in Spain.She loves to travel and has lived in, traveled to, or taken students on trips to the following places: Spain, Mexico, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Morocco, India, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, China, and Germany.She is also living proof that it is never too late to learn a language! She did not begin studying Spanish until after graduating from college (she was an English Education Major), so she often tells students that her experience is proof that non-native speakers, even those beyond college age, can become experts in a foreign language.

MemberMichael Leong

My current book project, Contested Records: The Turn to Documents in Contemporary North American Poetry (University of Iowa Press, forthcoming), accounts for why so many contemporary poets have turned to source material, from newspapers to governmental records, as inspiration for their poetry. Synthesizing research in social ontology, cultural memory studies, art history, public sphere theory, and the history of the humanities, Contested Records argues that poems driven by the remixing and reframing of found texts powerfully engage with the collective ways we remember, forget, and remember again. Going well beyond Wordsworthian recollections in tranquility, authors of such research-driven and mnemotechnic work use previous inscriptions as a springboard into public intellectualism and social engagement. This is the first book-length study to examine conceptual writing and documentary poetry under the same cover, showing how diverse writers associated with different poetry communities have a common interest in documentation. Putting into provocative conversation writers such as Amiri Baraka, Kenneth Goldsmith, R.B. Kitaj, Mark Nowak, M. NourbeSe Philip, Vanessa Place, and Claudia Rankine, I analyze a range of twenty-first-century poems that have been reviled, celebrated, or in some cases met with equally telling indifference. In doing so, I offer nuanced and non-polemical treatments of some of the most controversial debates about race and ethnicity in twenty-first century literary culture.

MemberLaura E. Rotunno

I am at the beginning a new project that will examine female academics who are also athletes. I intend to study women from both the 21st and 19th centuries. I am interested in probing the cultural work done by these women and the response to them. My 19th century focus will be on British women; the 21st century focus could be global. My first book POSTAL PLOTS IN BRITISH FICTION 1840-1898: READDRESSING CORRESPONDENCE IN VICTORIAN CULTURE is due out from Palgrave, July 2013.