December 2009 Archives

Gordon Hirsch on Sherlock Holmes

image of Colliers magazine with Sherlock Holmes storyProfessor Gordon Hirsch contributes to a UMNews video about the University Libraries' Sherlock Holmes Special Collections, the largest archive of Holmes material in the world. Having, say, original copies of Holmes' stories in the Strand Magazine here on campus "gives a student a real connection to history," notes Hirsch, and an opportunity to make unexpected discoveries: "You can really see Victorian values and Victorian attitudes in the advertisements in this sort of popular journal." The archive also features a replica of Holmes' 221B Baker Street room on the fourth floor of Wilson Library, which students might compare against scenes from the new Sherlock Holmes movie starring Robert Downey, Jr.

Ellen Messer-Davidow Awarded Stark

Professor of English Ellen Messer-Davidow was awarded the Dr. Matthew Stark Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Faculty Award Sunday December 13 at the College of Liberal Arts Commencement. The award recognizes Professor Messer-Davidow's distinguished writing, teaching, and service in the areas of civil rights, public education, and social justice. The Stark awards were created this year, based on a generous donation from Dr. Matthew "Matt" Stark, a former professor at the University of Minnesota and former executive director of the Minnesota Civil Liberties Union. Messer-Davidow represents the award's first faculty recipient; English major Joshua Capodarco, honored at the same ceremony, is the second student recipient.

New Faculty Books

cover image of Faith RunEnglish faculty continue to publish at a brisk pace: Creative Writing Program Director Ray Gonzalez celebrated the release of Faith Run: Poems (University of Arizona Press) in September and Cool Auditor: Prose Poems (B.O.A. Editions) in November. . . . Professor John Watkins also published his second book of the year, Shakespeare's Foreign Worlds: National and Transnational Identities in the Elizabethan Age, co-authored with Carole Levin (Cornell University Press), following up on the co-edited volume Shakespeare and the Middle Ages (Oxford University Press). . . . Professor Dan Philippon edited a collection of articles from the popular DNR magazine Minnesota Conservation Volunteer entitled Our Neck of the Woods: Exploring Minnesota's Wild Places (University of Minnesota Press). . . . Finally Professor Maria Damon co-edited with Ira Livingston Poetry and Cultural Studies: A Reader (University of Illinois Press). Congratulations to all!

MFA Awards

The MFA Program announces the recipients of new research fellowships for MFA students: Colleen Coyne (poetry), Claire Stanford (fiction), and David Malley (nonfiction). These fellowships of $1,000 go toward supporting the completion of the MFA thesis. . . . Brian Laidlaw was awarded the MFA Progam's first annual Book Arts Fellowship for his project, "Americana Mantra--Boxed Set." His proposal was selected from among several outstanding projects. There will be a public presentation of the project in the spring. . . . Colleen McCarthy (poetry), Sara Culver (fiction), and Priscilla Kinter (nonfiction) were nominated by the MFA program for the Associated Writing Programs' 2010 Intro Journals Project. Winners selected by AWP's panel of judges will have their writing published in participating journals such as Hayden's Ferry Review, Mid-American Review, and Quarterly West.


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