GraduateGrad/Faculty Reading Groups

Graduate – Community – Grad/Faculty Reading Groups

THE ALTHUSSER READING GROUP meets at least quarterly and throughout the summer, and sometimes invites outside speakers.  We read works by French philosopher Louis Althusser and related material. The group is coordinated by Prof. Eleanor Kaufman.

THE AMERICANIST RESEARCH COLLOQUIUM (ARC) is an intellectual meeting-place for scholars with interests in any area or period of American literature and culture. Graduate students, faculty, postdoctoral scholars and other visitors are welcome to participate. The colloquium has met regularly since 2002, and usually convenes once or twice per quarter, on Thursday afternoons at 4:00, to discuss work in progress by its members and by invited guests. The usual format is a pre-circulated paper or draft chapter, which is presented for discussion (although occasionally we host a formal lecture, or convene a roundtable), followed by refreshments and sociability. UCLA graduate student alumni of ARC are now teaching at some of the finest universities and colleges around the country. ARC is coordinated by Prof. Christopher Looby and Prof. Carrie Hyde.

THE EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY / ROMANTIC WORKING GROUP is comprised of graduate students who meet regularly to share work-in-progress, debate secondary criticism, and discuss matters of pre-professional concern to young scholars of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. For more information, email the group at

THE ENVIRONMENTAL HUMANITIES RESEARCH GROUP (EHRG) is UCLA’s first organization and interdisciplinary working group that connects graduate students and faculty who are interested in the environmental humanities. Throughout the year, the group meets several times a quarter to discuss readings, run work-in-progress workshops, and sponsor speaker and workshop series. The EHRG has the support and co-sponsorship of LENS (the Laboratory for Environmental Narrative Strategies) and the English department. For more information, please contact

LATINX LITERARY READING GROUP brings together faculty and students across several departments at UCLA including English, Comparative Literature, Spanish, and Chicana/o Studies. The group meets twice a quarter to discuss current work in the field and to workshop members’ own writing. Recent meetings have centered on Hemispheric American studies, Central American studies, and writing the dissertation prospectus and dissertation. On occasion, we also invite speakers to discuss their work and offer advice on professionalization. For more information contact Prof. Marissa López.

THE LONG EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY SEMINAR is an interdisciplinary two-hour seminar, held at the Huntington Library four or five times each year. It features work and speakers from all aspects of the period. Past talks have approached the eighteenth century from the perspective of literary studies, performance studies, musicology, history, history of science, and art history. Funded generously by the USC-Early Modern Studies Institute, it is the first collaborative effort among the Huntington, UCLA, and USC. Speakers, who have included Malcolm Baker (Art History, UC-Riverside), Laura Brown (English-Cornell), and John Brewer (Humanities, Cal Tech), are drawn from the local community and community of Huntington fellows, with one or two visiting speakers per year. For further information please contact either Prof. Sarah Kareem or Prof. Ashley Cohen (USC), or visit the seminar website.

MEDIEVAL AND EARLY MODERN STUDENT ASSOCIATION (MEMSA) is an organization dedicated to supporting medieval and early modern graduate students in their academic and professional development by providing a community of scholars in which they may share their research, teaching, and grant and job search experiences. Scholarly activities include methodologies workshops, focused reading groups, conferences, round tables, and mock exams designed to assist graduate students in their exam preparation, research, and professional lives. We partner with various other organizations across campus to cultivate interdisciplinary dialogue and a robust community of emerging scholars.  For more information, contact For up-to-date information about our forthcoming events, please join our OrgSync group (accessible via the “Campus Life -> Student Organizations” link at

THE MEDIEVAL READING GROUP meets regularly. For more information, please contact Prof. Matthew Fisher or Prof. Christine Chism.

THE NINETEENTH-CENTURY GROUP is an interdisciplinary research colloquium for the study of British literature and culture broadly and openly defined, including trans-atlantic exchanges, empire, and more. We are interested in the long nineteenth century—including the late eighteenth century and the Edwardian period. The Group holds meetings each quarter for the purpose of providing a place where graduate students and faculty can share their work in progress. We also discuss work circulated by invited visiting scholars. Most meetings occur on Tuesdays at 4 p.m. Scholarly participants from outside UCLA are welcome. For information see the website or contact Prof. Jonathan Grossman.

POETRY READINGS AT THE HAMMER MUSEUM. The longest continuously operating series of poetry readings in southern California began forty-six years ago at the Sunset Canyon Recreation Center under the direction of Doris Curran, whose project Professor Stephen Yenser has advised nearly from the beginning and has curated since 1993. Each year it presents eight or nine poets, many of whom have been awarded prizes such as the Nobel, the Bollingen, the Tanning, and the Pulitzer; fellowships ranging from the MacArthur to the Guggenheim; and terms as Poet Laureate of the United States. The coming year’s schedule includes former Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky, Irish poet Eamon Grennan, and UCLA Ph.D. Rhoda Janzen. Each year’s program concludes in June with UCLA students who have won poetry awards during the academic year.

THE POSTCOLONIAL LITERATURE AND THEORY COLLOQUIUM meets on a bi-monthly basis to workshop faculty and graduate student essays, to discuss recent scholarship in the field, and to host lectures and events on campus. Past events have included talks by Peter Hulme, NourbeSe Philp, Tiphanie Yanique, a conference on “Globalized Islands”, film screening by Anne Keala Kelly, and a book launch of Chamorro writing. For more details, and to subscribe to our email list, see the PLTC website:

THE QUEER STUDIES READING GROUP welcomes all graduate students and faculty to informal discussions of books, articles, and works-in-progress related to queer literature, culture, and theory across history and the globe. Contact Kersti Francis, Emma Spies, and/or Emma Ridder for more information.

THE SOCIAL JUSTICE PEDAGOGY WORKING GROUP meets at least once each quarter and welcomes all graduate students and faculty. The goals of this working group are to read and discuss current research on higher education pedagogy with a special emphasis on social justice-oriented approaches, to create opportunities for graduate students to workshop and share lesson plans and techniques, to create a community-wide dialogue on the practical applications of these practices in the classroom, and to workshop papers related to pedagogy. All of the above will be approached with an emphasis on social justice. Social justice in pedagogy requires examining not only the content of courses, but also the structures and methodologies by which educators create communities in the classroom. For more information and/or to join our mailing list, please email

THE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY GROUP meets once each quarter on a Thursday evening at a faculty member’s home to discuss literary, historical, and cultural matters from 1660 to the early nineteenth century. Drawing on the vibrant eighteenth-century community in Los Angeles, we invite a scholar who is visiting the Huntington or the Clark Library, or a faculty member from an institution in the Los Angeles area, to present a pre-circulated paper followed by a lively in-depth exchange. Recent speakers have included Harriet Guest (York), Carole Fabricant (UC-Riverside), and Joseph Roach (Yale).  For further information, please contact graduate student co-ordinators Lesley Thulin, Bethany Johnsen, and Suzannah Beiner.

THE 20/21 WORKING GROUP is a graduate student and faculty reading/working group focused on 20th- and 21st-century texts and issues. The group meets a few times a quarter to share works-in-progress and discuss concerns related to post-1900 scholarship. For more information, please contact

THE UCLA WORKING GROUP IN MEMORY STUDIES brings together faculty and graduate students from across the humanities and social sciences who are interested in the interdisciplinary field of cultural memory studies. Cultural memory studies focuses on the dynamic interplay between the past and the present in local, national, and transnational contexts and can involve the study of works of art and literature; memorials and monuments; processes of reparation, reconciliation, and transitional justice; activist movements; media; and more. The working group usually meets two to three times per quarter for discussions of recent scholarship in the field, coffee chats with visiting speakers, and other events. In February 2020, we hosted our first conference on “Memory and Political Responsibility” with keynote speaker Ann Rigney (Utrecht University). For more information, please visit our website.