Ouachita Baptist University’s Lile Hall experienced dramatic changes during the summer of 2012. In addition to Lile’s recent renovation and rededication, the English and Modern Foreign Languages departments merged and are now housed in a shared office suite.
The department also welcomed three new faculty members for the fall semester: Jennifer Burkett, lecturer in English and director of the Speer Writing Center; Elizabeth Dougan, visiting instructor of Spanish; and Dr. Margarita Pintado, instructor of Spanish.
Jennifer Burkett holds degrees from Hendrix College and the University of Central Arkansas and has completed her coursework toward a Ph.D. in English at the University of Southern Mississippi. Burkett was recently published in the University of Southern Mississippi’s graduate student research journal, Synergy. Her featured piece is titled, “From Bad Boy to Good Ol’ Boy: Literary Origins of the South’s Notorious Figure.” In January, The Encyclopedia of Women in Today’s World, Supplement 1 is scheduled to feature four of her articles with topics that include Allison Krauss, Susan Boyle, Helen Mirren and the Vietnam Women’s Union.
Elizabeth Dougan graduated in May with her Master of Arts degree in Spanish from the University of Central Arkansas. Her areas of expertise are Peninsular and Hispanic American literature and culture.
Margarita Pintado holds degrees from the University of Puerto Rico and Emory University and has completed her coursework toward a Ph.D. from Emory, as well. She is preparing to present a paper in October at the State University of New York in Albany for the Puerto Rican Studies Association conference.
Other faculty members in the Department of English and Modern Foreign Languages also had a busy, productive summer in preparation for the fall semester.
Dr. Jay Curlin, Kathryn Maddox Professor of English, had his poem, “The Evidence of Things Not Seen” published in the July 30 issue of The New Yorker. His article “That Silent Faubourg St. Germain: Ruskin and the Realms of Reading” was published in Philological Review 37.1. Curlin also served as a reader for the AP English-literature exam in Louisville, Ky., in June.
Dr. Raouf Halaby, professor of visual arts and English, has had five postings published on CounterPunch.org since August, and one of his sculptures, “Trojan Horse,” sold at an international fund-raising auction to a collector from Ireland.
Dr. Mary Beth Long, assistant professor of English, and her former student, Sarah Stark, presented a scholarly paper at the 47th International Congress on Medieval Studies in Kalamazoo, Mich. Long also chaired a panel at the Nuns’ Literacies in Medieval Europe Conference in Kansas City, Mo.
The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) selected Long and 15 other teachers to participate in the NEH Summer Scholar program. The NEH Seminar on Tudor Books and Readers was a five-week learning experience in London, Oxford and Antwerp, Belgium. She also attended a conference on pilgrimage in York, England. The month of August saw her publication in the online journal, Literature Compass. This semester, Long plans to guest-lecture at the University of Texas at Arlington and is focusing on an upcoming book project about maternality in legendaries of women.
Dr. Amy Sonheim, professor of English, and her student, Jody Persson, attended the annual Children’s Literature Association Conference at Simmons College in Boston, Mass., in June where they both presented papers. Sonheim chaired the “In and Out of Culture” session at the conference in which she presented her paper, “Homing Abilene Tuck in Moon over Manifest,” about the 2011 Newbery Medal winner. The Psychoanalytic Center’s bi-annual symposium at the University of Pennsylvania recently invited Sonheim to present her paper, “A Small Gardener Scripts Her Own Life,” in September.
Dr. Johnny Wink, Betty Burton Peck Professor of English, will have his poem, “Praise God,” reprinted in the next edition of Christianity & Literature, an annual journal published by the Conference on Christianity & Literature. The poem will be published among the journal’s all-time best poems from the past 50 years.
For more information, contact OBU’s School of Humanities at (870) 245-4186.
By Rachel Gregory