Alumni

Sharalyn Sanders

In Summer 2017, Shari Sanders defended her doctoral dissertation entitled: Being Imaginary: Reponsibility and the Literary Animal. She also pursued graduate emphases in Global Studies and Feminist Studies. Her fields of study include science fiction, animal studies, feminist studies, global studies, and rhetoric and composition. Her research fuses critical theory with cultural praxis; she is interested in integrating academic with non-academic knowledges in order to better understand human- and non-human animals relationships within gendered, racialized, classed, heterosexist, and speciesist hierarchies of power.

Allison Schifani

Allison Schifani received her PhD in Comparative Literature from UCSB in Spring 2013. She was a Digitial Humanities Postdoctoral Scholar at the Baker Nord Center at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. In January 2016 she joined the University of Miami as Assistant Professor of Modern Languages and Digital Studies. Her dissertation was titled, Biotechnical Ecologies: Urban Practice and Play in Buenos Aires and Los Angeles. Grounded in materialist criticism and theories of biopolitics as well as contemporary urban studies and architectural theory, Biotechnical Ecologies uses Buenos Aires and Los Angeles as heuristic fields in the development of a new critical rubric to tackle cultural texts that have emerged out of these two cities. The work offers "biotechnical ecologies" as a way to bring together biology and biopolitics, technology and ecology in a constellation, providing a necessary tool to tackle emerging urban practices as well as offer a critical map of the kind of work alternative speculations can do (both in art production and practice as well as critical writing of the sort the dissertation performs). Allison is currently developing the dissertation into a book-manuscript and continuing her research on technologically-mediated urban art and forms of play.

Mary Aileen Seliger

Mary received her Ph.D in Comparative Literature in June 2008. Her dissertation was titled, "Unmasking the Myths of Democracy in the United States: Narratives of Minority Race and Rights in Twentieth Century Literature and Jurisprudence." Since graduation, she has published: “Dessa’s Blues: Reimagining the Master’s Narrative in Sherley Anne Williams’s Dessa Rose.” Spec. issue of The Western Journal of Black Studies 36.4 (2012): 314-324; “Colonialism, Contract, and Community in Américo Paredes’s George Washington Gómez and … And the Earth Did Not Devour Him by Tomás Rivera.”  Latino Studies 7.4 (2009): 435-456; “Racial Violence, Embodied Practices and Ethnic Transformation in Helena María Viramontes’s ‘Neighbors’ and Their Dogs Came With Them.” The Bilingual Review. She is continuing to conduct research in American Studies with a focus on law and literature, race, and ethnic literatures. And has been an Academic Research Visitor, with the Chicano Studies Institute at UCSB.

Meaghan Skahan

Meaghan Skahan graduated in June 2013, upon defending her dissertation entitled "Problems at Work: Spatial Tensions in Modern Workspaces." The dissertation combines literary and theoretical representations of workspaces and theories of work with examinations of real contemporary workspaces. In an effort to demonstrate the important role that literary spaces can play in determining ways out of and around corporate capitalism, each chapter addresses a distinct and varied cluster of theories of power and resistance, as well as specific literary representations of work and workspaces. Meaghan is currently a Teach for America corps member, working in a charter school called The Mission Preparatory School in San Francisco. Her teaching and research interests revolve around postmodernism, post humanism, office space, spatial studies and distribution of power as it plays out in the body. She has presented work nationally, studied in Spain and Costa Rica, and published her research on Borges and translation.

Kristie Soares

Kristie defended her dissertation, Salsa Epistemology: On the Present, Utopia, and the Caribbean Intervention in Critical Theory in Spring 2015. She earned her Masters degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Colorado, Boulder, with a thesis entitled, Traveling Queer Subjects: Homosexuality in the Cuban Diaspora. In her doctoral dissertation, she focused on what she calls "salsa epistemology" in Caribbean literature and popular culture. Her research interests include Queer U.S. Latina/o Literature, Contemporary Cuban-American literature, Critical Theory, Gender Politics, Performance Art, and twentieth-century Brazilian poetry. She has published articles in FrontiersLetras FemeninasRevista de Estudios Hispánicos, and Counterpoise Magazine. She is also an active performance poet and organizes writing workshops. In fall 2016 she started her new career as Assistant Professor of Latino/a Literature and Culture in the Spanish Department at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

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