News

Publication by Kate Bolton Bonnici

September 15, 2021

Kate is a Lecturer in Rhetorical Arts at Loyola Marymount University. She received her PhD at UCLA following an MFA at UC Riverside and JD at NYU. Her poetry collection, Night Burial, won the 2020 Colorado Prize for Poetry and was published in November. Her poetry and essays have appeared in Tupelo Quarterly, Arts & Letters, Southern Humanities Review, CounterText, Image, and elsewhere.   She writes a publication for these times. https://uchri.org/foundry/during-this-pandemic/

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Kersti Francis wins Charles E. and Sue K. Young Graduate Student Fellowship Award for 2021-22

September 7, 2021

Congratulations to Kersti Francis, PhD candidate in English at UCLA, for winning the Charles E. and Sue K. Young Graduate Student Fellowship Award. This prestigious award bestowed by the College Deans recognizes “outstanding graduate students for exemplary academic achievement, research, and service to the campus and the community.” As a PhD candidate in English at UCLA, Kersti works on the intersections between magic, gender, and sexuality in the Middle Ages and early English Renaissance (1100-1600). Her dissertation project, Queer Magic: Sodomy, Sin and The Supernatural in the Later Middle Ages, uses the guiding framework of medieval understandings of nature and sins contra naturam to argue that literary magic functions as a “safe” form of heresy for authors to engage in queer imaginings of bodies, genders, and sexual acts.

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Marissa López Teams up with 826LA on Summer Writers Workshop for Teens

August 10, 2021

Professor Marissa López’s digital humanities project, Picturing Mexican America, teamed up with 826LA to create a virtual summer writers workshop for middle- and high-school students. 826LA is a non-profit dedicated to developing the writing skills of students 6 to 18, and provides a variety of services such as tutoring, workshops, help for English-language learners and student publications. Professor López partnered with 826LA to create a virtual summer writing workshop based on research from her Picturing Mexican America project. In the summer workshops, Professor López showed students photos of the city, uncovered in her research project, which are different from what is typically included in standard textbooks, and challenged them to think about questions such as “Who makes decisions about what gets remembered? How can we bring unseen or ignored things to light?” Over the course of the workshop, the students created written and visual works that explore the past, present, and future of Los Angeles. In addition to Professor Professor López, two UCLA graduate students in English participated in the project. Gabriela Valenzuela taught the students to create their own maps of Los Angeles, and Efren Lopez led students in an exercise to consider what the future of Los Angeles might look like, and to imagine themselves as historical figures of the future. Read more about the workshop, and see some of the students visual work, here.

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Associate Professor Matthew Fisher’s Capstone Course Provides New Material for UCLA Library

June 24, 2021

Associate Professor Matthew Fisher and curator Devin Fitzgerald taught the capstone course, “Writing the Digital Archive: Old Books in New Worlds” during the Winter 2021 quarter. They taught students to learn and think about books from a new perspective, with the end goal being able to write a grant proposal to acquire new materials for the UCLA Library. Read more about it here.

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Uri McMillan Selected as 2021-2022 Radcliffe Fellow

June 2, 2021

Uri McMillan has been named a 2021–2022 fellow at Harvard Radcliffe Institute, joining an extraordinary group of artists, scientists, scholars, and practitioners who will learn from and inspire one another in a year of discovery and interdisciplinary exchange in Cambridge. McMillan will pursue an individual project in a community dedicated to exploration and inquiry. Project Title: “Airbrush, Instamatics, and Funk: Art, Pop, and New York City’s Long 1970s” Brief description: This project is a cultural history of select artistic figures living and working in New York City in the late 1970s and early 1980s, tracing their networks of affiliation and the category-defying work they produced. These cultural actors–including fashion illustrator/photographer Antonio Lopez, performer Grace Jones, and model Pat Cleveland–often frustrated dichotomies between high art and the popular while routinely communicating through style. In this book, I delimit increasingly sophisticated artistic practices staged in disparate sites, be it department store Fiorucci or nightclub Paradise Garage while also understanding the import of the late 1960s, particularly counter-cultural tendencies, on this historical period. Subject Areas: Art History & Visual Culture, Performance Studies, African American Studies, Feminist and Queer Theory, Fashion Studies The full list of fellows is online here.   ……………….   About the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University   Harvard Radcliffe Institute is a unique space within Harvard—a school dedicated to creating and sharing transformative ideas across all disciplines. Each year, the Institute hosts leading scholars, scientists, and artists from around the world in its renowned residential fellowship program. Radcliffe fosters innovative research collaborations and offers hundreds of public lectures, exhibitions, performances, conferences, and other events annually. The Institute is home to the Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library, the nation’s foremost archive on the history of women, gender, and sexuality. For more information about the people and programs of the Radcliffe Institute, visit www.radcliffe.harvard.edu.

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Brian Kim Stefans Publishes Festivals of Patience: The Verse Poems of Rimbaud

June 1, 2021

Brian Kim Stefans has published a new English translation of Arthur Rimbaud’s poems in verse in a volume entitled Festivals of Patience: The Verse Poems of Rimbaud. Rimbaud, poet of “logical revolts,” of sexual freedom, inveterate modernist, Symbolist, and inspiration to beatniks, conceptual artists and punks, wrote some of the most enduring poems of world literature. His career lasted all of five years, between 1870-1875. In this new English translation of all his poems in verse, Brian Kim Stefans has kept Rimbaud’s sense of songcraft in mind, retaining the French meters in his English versions. He is the first to have done this. The book opens with a Latin poem that Rimbaud wrote more than a year before his first known French poem, and it ends with a short poem he wrote a few years after leaving Paris, one which became a touchstone for Surrealist Andre Breton.

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Oriah Amit Serves as Historical Consultant on The Nevers

May 11, 2021

Oriah Amit, graduate student in the Department of English, is serving as a historical consultant on the science fiction drama TV series The Nevers. Set in Victorian London, the series follows a group of women with supernatural abilities; Oriah, whose dissertation focuses on late Victorian and Edwardian speculative fiction, used her expertise to advise on integrating aspects of London’s history at the turn of the twentieth century into the world of the show. Oriah’s work as a historical consultant informed the creation of the show’s characters: she created biographies for characters that the writers wanted to base as closely as possible on real historical figures. She also advised on the technological and cultural aspects of the late Victorian period so that they could be accurately represented in the series; in terms of technology this includes the early history of the automobile, the telephone, the x-ray, sound amplification, and the the expansion and electrification of the London underground, and for cultural references, period-appropriate slang. She was also able help the writers when the arc of the show departed from the historical record, for example, in the fifth episode, when a public execution is staged in a show set in 1899, despite the fact that public executions were banned in 1868. Oriah used her in-depth knowledge of the period to help the writers create a framework for the execution plot line that would make sense in the historical context. You can see an interview with Oriah and learn more about her work on the show at: https://www.hbo.com/video/the-nevers/videos/creating-the-nevers-shock-and-awe.

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