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Anna Blackburn

July 31, 2023

Degrees

2023, BA English, Washington and Lee University

Bio

My research focuses on the relationship between fear, colonialism, and the Gothic genre. I am interested in how eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British texts use Gothic conventions to stoke fear of colonized peoples as well as how more recent postcolonial texts reclaim these conventions to criticize colonialism. I have studied the role of spirituality in the colonial and postcolonial Gothic, including British portrayals of Obeah and other Afro-Caribbean spiritualities.


Awards

  • Sidney M. B. Coulling Prize for Best Senior Work, Washington and Lee University
  • Catherine Houston Campbell Scholarship in English Literature, Washington and Lee University
  • Jean Amory Wornom Award for Distinguished Critical Writing, Washington and Lee University
  • Sidney M. B. Coulling Prize in English, Washington and Lee University

Curriculum Vitae / Resume

Joshua Cody Ward

September 8, 2022

Degrees

2022, MA English, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

2016, BA Religious Studies, Wingate University

Bio

A North Carolina native, Joshua Cody Ward joined the program in Fall 2022. His field is Modern and Contemporary American literature broadly (1900-Present), and specifically Literature of the American South, the Appalachian South, and African American Literature. His research interests include the archive, textual studies, editorial scholarship, intertextuality, and the Novel, though he is also an avid scholar of Cormac McCarthy and of Thomas Wolfe. His prospective dissertation will engage with Articulations of Appalachia, both scholarly and literary, centering on the political and aesthetic stakes of defining the Southern Appalachian range across the 20th century into the contemporary.

He is currently a Digital Content Coordinator for the Latina/o Studies Program, a Junior Coordinator for the Critical Speakers Series, a Graduate Lecture Series coordinator, and a Board Member (2023-2026) for the Thomas Wolfe Society. He is also on the committee for the 2024 Durham, NC conference for the Thomas Wolfe Society, and is an occasional Reviewer for the The Cormac McCarthy Journal. As a junior scholar, his work has been accepted or published in several journals and essay collections, and he has presented his work at over 20 academic conferences.


Publications:

  • “Darkness on the Edge of Town: Beat Subject Formation, Black Ontology, and Fugitivity as Gnosis in Cormac McCarthy’s Suttree.” In This Country’s Hard on People: Cormac McCarthy and American Identity, edited by Vernon Cisney. Forthcoming.
  • “Weird Object Relations, Ecology, and Apocalypse in Cormac McCarthy’s The Passenger and Stella Maris.” In New Perspectives on Cormac McCarthy: Encountering The Passenger and Stella Maris, edited by Jonathan Elmore and Rick Elmore. Forthcoming.
  • “Publishing the Black Arts Movement: Editors, Anthologies, and Canonization.” South Atlantic Review, vol. 88, no. 2-3, 2023, pp. 157-170.
  • “From Commas to Cosmos: The Pervading Influence of Thomas Wolfe on Cormac McCarthy.” The Thomas Wolfe Review, vols. 44 & 45, nos. 1 & 2, 2020 & 2021, pp. 8-25.
  • [album] The Boron Heist. Ridin’ Rough. Mystery School Records, April 6 2019.
  • “Light and Darkness, Sight and Blindness: Religious Knowledge in Cormac McCarthy’s Outer Dark.Wingate Research Review, issue 8, Fall 2016, pp. 87-106.
  • “Raison d’être.” Wingate University Counterpoint, Spring 2013, p. 9.
  • “On Testing.” Wingate University Counterpoint, Spring 2013, p. 23.

Awards

  • Graduate Teaching Fellow, Fall 2022-Present, UNC Chapel Hill, English and Comparative Literature Department.
  • Travel Grant, Fall 2023, UNC Chapel Hill, English and Comparative Literature Department.
  • Emerging Scholar Award, Summer 2023, UNC Chapel Hill, Southern Futures program.
  • John R. Bittner Student Literary Prize, May 27th 2023, Thomas Wolfe Society Conference.
  • LSP Teaching Fellowship, Spring 2023, UNC Chapel Hill Latina/o Studies Program.
  • Graduate Student Transportation Grant, Spring 2023, UNC Chapel Hill, Graduate School.
  • Languages & Literatures Graduate Student Paper Award Recipient, February 23rd 2023, 44th Annual SWPACA Conference.
  • 2021 Graduate Student Essay Award Recipient, November 12th 2022, SAMLA 94.
  • Travel Grant, Fall 2022, UNC Chapel Hill, English and Comparative Literature Department.
  • The Julian D. Mason Award for Excellence in Graduate Studies, April 29th 2022, UNC Charlotte, English Department.
  • Graduate Teaching Assistantship, Fall 2020-Spring 2022, UNC Charlotte, English Department.
  • Wittliff Collections William Hill Research Award, 2021-2022, Texas State University, For archival research conducted July 2021 in the Cormac McCarthy Papers and Woolmer Collections.
  • Anne Newman Graduate Student Travel Grant, Fall 2021, UNC Charlotte.
  • Excellence in Philosophy Award, April 24th 2016, Wingate University, Religious Studies Department.
  • G. Byrns Coleman Award for Excellence in Religious Studies, April 24th 2016, Wingate University, Religious Studies Department.
  • University Honors, April 24th, 2016, Wingate University.

Curriculum Vitae / Resume

Angelique Bassard

August 22, 2022

Degrees

2013, BA English, Wake Forest University

2020, MEd Curriculum and Instruction, Virginia Commonwealth University

Bio

Angelique Bassard is a second-year PhD student and Teaching Fellow in the English and Comparative Literature program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She received her Bachelor of Arts degrees in English from Wake Forest University and a Master of Education from Virginia Commonwealth University. Her research area is American Literature throughout the Long Nineteenth Century, with special interest in Postbellum African American Literature, Southern Writers, Reconstruction, the memory and haunting of the slave past, and Southern realism and romanticism.

Currently, she is researching NC-born black writer Jack Thorne, pseudonym of David Bryant Fulton, and his use and subversion of Southern romance in his 1901 novel, Hanover; or the Persecution of the Lowly: A Story of the Wilmington Massacre. 


Awards

  • Lee Green Award, UNC Chapel Hill Department of English and Comparative Literature, 2023
  • Hanes Graduate Fellowship, Wilson Special Collections Library at UNC Chapel Hill, 2023

Curriculum Vitae / Resume

Brennan Jones

August 15, 2022

Degrees

2021, BA Liberal Arts, Sarah Lawrence College

Bio

Doctoral student and Teaching Fellow in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill who studies late nineteenth- and twentieth-century American literature.


Lara Nicole Pur

August 3, 2022

Degrees

2020, BA English, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champagne

Bio

Lara is a PhD student in the Department of English and Comparative Literature studying woman-written sensation novels of 19th century Britain. More specifically, she is interested in the sensation novel as a potential vehicle for feminist satire and woman’s comedy, and the way that this comedic tradition can be traced back to earlier novelists like Burney, Edgeworth, and Austen. Her interest sometimes branches into the gothic, feminist history, antifeminist woman writers in the Victorian period, and ecocriticism.


Awards

  • Dahl Family Fellowship

Curriculum Vitae / Resume

Rachel Rackham

August 3, 2022

Degrees

2021, MA English, Brigham Young University

2019, MA Library and Information Science, University of Iowa

2017, BA English, Brigham Young University

Bio

As a PhD student at UNC-Chapel Hill, Rachel studies British Victorian literature. Specifically, she is interested in ruins, material culture, and imperialism in the Victorian era, interests which were shaped by her studies in literary tourism and heritage in her MLIS degree. She plans to expand her studies in these topics by exploring print media and culture, industrialization, commodity culture, memory, and nostalgia in nineteenth-century Britain.


Curriculum Vitae / Resume

Anna Merz

March 16, 2022

Degrees

2020, MA English Literature, Virginia Tech
2015, BA English Literature and Education, Roanoke College

Bio

Anna Merz is a second year PhD student interested in literature of the long, undisciplined nineteenth century, Anna’s past research projects have centered literary depictions of Victorian education and childhood. Her early-stage dissertation research focuses on depictions and illustrations of “bad” children in Victorian literature, especially the ways in which “badness” as a label is often gendered and racialized.

At UNC, Anna works closely with the Jane Austen Summer Program, a public humanities outreach program, and in the William Blake Archive—a Digital Humanities project cataloguing Blake’s works.


Teaching Awards

  • Richard Hoffman GTA Teaching Award for Excellence: Virginia Tech English Departmental Award, 2020
  • Michael J. Sandridge Education Award for Excellence: Roanoke College, 2015
  • English Department Teaching Award for Excellence: Roanoke College, 2015

Awards

  • Caroline Pace Chermside Award for Best Master’s Thesis: Virginia Tech, 2020
  • Dickens Universe Fellow, 2020
  • Phi Beta Kappa, 2015
  • Briethaupt Scholarship for the Scholarly Study of Literature: Roanoke College, 2014

Eleanor Rambo

November 10, 2021

Degrees

2020, MA English, Boston College

2016, BA English, Case Western Reserve University

Bio

I study twentieth-century American and Russophone literature, and I am also interested in urban studies. In my academic research I focus on things ranging from American movie musicals to postcolonial theory, and I write literary reviews of works in translation.


Teaching Awards

  • UNC Latina/o Studies Program Teaching Award

Timothy Gress

August 19, 2021

Degrees

2019, BA Philosophy and Religious Studies, Manhattan College

2021, MA English and American Literature, New York University

2021, MLIS Rare Books and Special Collections, Long Island University

Bio

Tim Gress is a PhD student and Graduate Teaching Fellow in the department of English & Comparative Literature. His research focuses primarily on the literary and cultural history of Britain during the 19th century, especially as it relates to the history of the book. Other interests include lesser-known woman writers of the late-Romantic and early-Victorian periods, the history and development of the novel in English, descriptive bibliography, and book collecting. Tim also works as a Graduate Assistant in the Rare Book Collection at Wilson Special Collections Library.


Publications:

  • A Collector’s Zeal: Treasures from the DeCoursey Fales Collection at Manhattan College. (Riverdale, New York: Manhattan College, 2020).

Awards

  • William T. Buice III Scholarship, Rare Book School, University of Virginia, 2020
  • Director’s Scholarship, Rare Book School, University of Virginia, 2019
  • Edward Branigan Scholars Grant for Research in the Humanities, Manhattan College, 2018