Friday, May 8, 2015
May 8, 2015: NeMLA 2015 Recaps: New Colleagues
[This past weekend, the Northeast MLA held its annual spring conference in Toronto. I was there in my official capacity as the organization’s Vice President, as well as a presenter and audience member, and wanted to follow up on a handful of the many interesting things that took place. Leading up to a weekend post on how you can help me plan next year’s conference in Hartford!]
Brief introductions to the six colleagues I was excited to welcome to the NeMLA Board at our 2015 Board meeting.
1) John Casey: Our new American Area Director, John has as much to say about veterans’ experiences and texts as academic labor issues, farming histories as disability studies, and much, much more. I can’t wait to see how he develops connections for our Hartford conference! (Addendum: John also wrote a great follow up blog post of his own.)
2) Maria Di Francesco: Our new Second Vice President, Maria will be in charge of our 2018 conference (which likely will be held in Pittsburgh), and I’m excited to see what she does with it. But in the meantime, her interests in Spanish literature and culture, gender and identity, and the digital humanities will enhance all of our conferences and work as well.
3) Angela Fulk: Our new Member-at-Large for Pedagogy and Profession, Angela has what I consider to be an especially significant role: helping me and NeMLA address issues of adjunct and contingent labor at Hartford, one of my two central goals for the conferene (on which more this weekend). But there’s plenty more to this area than just those important issues, and Angela’s experiences and perspectives should inform it all!
4) Christina Milletti: Christina will be our first Member-at-Large for Creative Writing, Editing, and Publishing, a vital addition to our Board and to NeMLA’s work in an official capacity (that is, we’ve been doing this work for years, but this position and Christina will held amplify and extend those efforts). I can’t wait to work with her to help select our opening night creative reader(s) for Hartford!
5) Lisa Perdigao: Our new Cultural Studies and Media Studies Area Director, Lisa reflects just how capacious and rigorous this 21st century category is: that’s reflected by her two disparate and equally compelling contributions to the 2015 conference, a paper on Seamus Heaney’s final poems and the chaired panel on the future of TV about which I blogged yesterday, and by her many other evolving interests in American literature, culture, and Studies.
6) Richard Schumaker: Our new Comparative Languages and Theory Area Director, Richard brings a career’s work of impressive engagements with European and American literatures, cultures, and intersections to this transnational topic and work. That he’s also a pioneer in digital humanities and other uses of technology for scholarship and pedagogy exemplifies, as do the details for each of these six figures, how much each and all of them will bring to the Board, Hartford, and NeMLA. I’m lucky to work with them!
Special 2016 post this weekend,
PS. Were you at NeMLA 2015? I’d love to hear your follow ups as well—or your thoughts on this post even if you weren’t there!