Between the Lines - Spring 2015

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Spring Magazine

Dean’s Welcome Spring 2015

We welcome spring and the beauty of its message, both literal and figurative, that this is a time to start fresh, to bloom, and to smell the roses. The School of Humanities is itself springing forward—six faculty books have published since January with three more coming out in April, innovative new courses are being offered, our students are completing award-winning research and we continue to build relationships with foundations and community leaders who believe in our mission. Inside of this magazine, we pick up from where we left off in our Annual Report. You’ll get an in-depth look at what our faculty, students and alumni are accomplishing. I express my gratitude to professors Jonathan Alexander, Erika Hayasaki, Tiffany Willoughby-Herard, Claire Jean Kim and Kristen Hatch for sharing their latest research with us; to students Jessica Bond and Jazmyne McNeese for letting us see how studying the humanities is shaping their worldviews and life ambitions; and to alumnae Pheobe Bui and Aline Ohanesian for showing us where a humanities education has taken them today. I encourage you to keep in touch with us and the school’s latest developments by joining on us Facebook and Twitter and by staying tuned every second Tuesday of the month for timely faculty-led insight into today’s most topical issues via Humanities Headlines, our exclusive webinar series. If you are local, take a look at the events listed at the end of the magazine--we’d love to see you there. Sincerely,

Georges Van Den Abbeele Dean, School of the Humanities


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Humanities Studio Embodies UCI’s Global Mission with Language Tools & World-Class space where students and faculty can learn, teach, and conduct research with support from staff who understand their needs,” said Franz. Knowing multiple languages and how to deftly utilize and navigate a range of technologies are arguably two of the most important skills a global citizen can have. Globalization and technology make it increasingly seamless to connect with others around the world, but also more necessary than ever to create multilingual citizens who understand the histories, values and traditions of other cultures. The School of Humanities has offered instructional and

Adding to this theme of engagement is the wealth of historic art currently available for viewing throughout the studio. Acquired by Graham Arader, a well-known his¬tor¬ical art dealer and founder of Arader Gal¬leries, and facilitated by Georges Van Den Abbeele, dean of the School of Humanities, the studio now features natural history watercolors, woodcuts, engravings, lithographs, chromolithographs and maps dating from the 16th to 19th centuries and valued at approximately $1 million.

technological services to both students and faculty since its founding 50 years ago that aim to create this type of citizen. Originally called the Language Lab and housed in what was called the Humanities/ Fine Arts building (now Murray Krieger Hall & Humanities Hall), Humanities Studio/Academic Resources & Technology has seen many transformations over the years. Working in tandem with Humanities Computing, the studio houses three computer labs, audio visual equipment and other technological tools, offers language-learning services, hosts the SPEAK test, and provides a venue for workshops and other events. Judi Franz, Director of Humanities Studio, who came into employment by the School of Humanities in 1988, has led many of the changes to the studio’s technology-based academic services. When Franz began her tenure in the then Language Learning Resource Center, she was featured in the Daily Pilot in an article about the center and its translation referral services. In the article, Franz recalls the time a woman in labor needed an Arabic translator and mentions the center’s language-learning videotapes. As we near the 50-year anniversary of UC Irvine’s establishment, this article reminds us how far both the center/studio and technology have come. Franz has guided the studio’s transition from analog to digital, added a small teleconference space, and hosted an international conference on language learning technology. Last year, Franz led the rebranding of the space, changing its name from the Humanities Instructional Resource Center (“HIRC”) to the Humanities Studio/Academic Resources & Technology. The name change is meant to reflect that the studio “is an active, productive

“We want to foster an environment where students can look up from their computer screens to enjoy and learn about the varied botanical prints, maps, and other treasures that can enhance their studies in the Humanities,” said Franz. Several classes in history and Humanities Core have already given assignments to their students that incorporate our art installation. As we celebrate the continual growth of the Humanities Studio, we also express our gratitude to Franz and wish her the best of luck as she moves into a new role in campus wide classroom technology support. Dwayne Pack, director of computing for the School of Humanities, will be taking on primary administrative responsibility. The Humanities AR&T studio is open to the public, with limited hours. Because it is a technology lab and student resource center, the schedule varies each week. There are weekly calendars posted outside of the gallery space, as well as on its website here. If you’d like more information, or to schedule your visit in advance, please contact Arianne Schultheis, Operations Manager, at (949) 824-6344 or

Art History Internship Thrives Thanks to the generosity of the Friends of Art History, the department has collaborated with the San Diego Museum of Art’s Department of Asian Art to offer a paid internship with curator Dr. Marika Sardar. Please contact the department of Art History for more information.

La Casa Nuestra La Casa Nuestra is an on-campus living-learning residence designed for students seeking a way to study the Spanish language and culture in an immersed environment. To that end, participating in-residence students have signed a pledge to hablar español (“Spanish only”) on a daily basis, as long as they are “at home” at La Casa Nuestra.

AHUA members gathered in the Neoclassical Panel room at the Getty Center. (L-R) Effie Seong, Chelsea Trinh / Back Row (L-R) Gladys Preciado, Philana Li, Paulina Daquiz, Leilani Yamanishi, Alex Garcia, Nadya Kasimoff, and Eric Colbert. Photo credit: Chelsea Trinh

NEW Religious Studies House Professor Emeritus Keith Nelson and Krista Kernodle, resident advisor have organized informal faculty “fireside chats” (with

January events included friendly and informal conversation

refreshments) for interested students. Professor Cecelia Lynch spoke on January 15 on religion and humanitarianism. Professor

exchanges with UCI’s Spanish faculty, a home-cooked

Jack Miles spoke on February 12 on the history and practice

potluck dinner with the Dean and Professor Armin

of religious conversion. On March 3, professor Roxanne Varzi

Schwegler. In February, La Casa hosted a salsa dancing event in their common room.

“We are happy to see the growing warmth of this residence

spoke on religion and the Middle East – the Culinary Arts house residents were invited, and a Persian supper was served. The Religious Studies house will host the Honors house in April. Religious Studies House is located at #1050 in the Arroyo Vista housing village.

community and are proud to sponsor this house” – Hector Limon, UCI Arroyo Vista Housing

Students who are interested in the Religious Studies House in 2015-2016 should indicate their interest now to RS House faculty advisor Prof. Emeritus Keith Nelson (

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State of the School Breakfast The School of Humanities hosted its inaugural State of the School Breakfast Briefing event, which provided an informal and intimate opportunity for select donors to hear the latest updates from the school, and to share in the Dean’s vision for the future of the humanities at UC Irvine. We were pleased to host 20 of our close friends and community leaders in early February for a traditional breakfast spread and informational report, delivered by Dean Georges Van Den Abbeele, Associate Dean for Research, Julia Lupton, and Associate Dean for Curricular Development, Jim Herbert. Our guests shared that this breakfast was a great way to kick-start their week, and that they were pleased to learn about our recent faculty and student accolades, our burgeoning community partnerships and outreach programs, the launch of new inter-school initiatives, and our forthcoming endowed chairs in Armenian Studies and in Indic Religious and Civilizational Studies.

To view the Dean’s presentation and remarks, click here to watch the 30-minute video.

New Courses/Reqs Art History •

New course: Ancient Empires, focusing on the interconnections between India and Iran from c. 600 BCE through 600 CE.

Film & Media Studies •

Working with the Art Department on a digital production minor

History • •

Revised requirements for the major New course topics include: Terrorism, Global Crises, Soccer, Global Warming, Genocide, Bioscience: Ethic and Diversity (which is a new partnership with Public Health), Japan’s Modern Revolutions, California Dreaming, The Two Koreas, Technological India, US Urban/Suburban development, What to Eat (food history) Continuing to grow its history internship class, offered in the Fall

Spanish and Portuguese •

New graduate seminar on “Gender and Revolution in Mexico”

Humanities Network Receives Competitive $5.7M Grant The Humanities Network, overseen by UCI-based UC Humanities Research Institute, will support humanities research, UC-wide This January, the UC Office of the President announced that the Humanities Network received a prestigious UC Multicampus Research Programs and Initiatives award (“MRPI”) for $5.7M.

Homecoming UC Irvine’s 50th Anniversary Homecoming celebration on Saturday,

MRPI awards support innovative multi-campus research collaborations that strengthen UC’s position as a leading public research university. There were a total of 18 recipients of MRPI grants with fewer than 10% of proposals receiving funding this year.

January 31st, 2015, was a tremendous and lively afternoon that honored UCI’s Bright Past, and also featured the current talent, intelligence, and effervescence of our campus that are propelling us into our Brilliant Future. Aldrich park was bubbling with nearly 5,000 alumni, students, and friends who enjoyed interactive activities, food

The Humanities Network is designed to support, stimulate, and facilitate excellence in humanities research across the University of California.

trucks, free giveaways, an Anteater Ale garden, and music and dance performances.

Originally developed and funded by a five-year grant from the UC Office of Research and Graduate Studies in 2009

Later in the afternoon, each school presented a break-out session to foster reunions within the respective quads. The School of Humanities hosted “Humanities Your Way” for our alumni – our group ranged from recent graduates to a member of the pilot class of UC Irvine (Class of 1969). Our sessions included a History of Chinese Food in

to incorporate and expand upon the Humanities Initiative established by former UC President David P. Gardner in 1987, the Humanities Network is overseen by the UC system wide Humanities Advisory Committee and administered, staffed,

America by Professor Yong Chen (complete with fortune cookies),

and coordinated by the UC Humanities Research Institute

a tour of the historically-significant artwork in the Humanities Art

located at UC Irvine. Since its inception, the Humanities

& Technology Studio by Dean Georges Van Den Abbeele, and a DIY

Network has consistently involved every campus in the UC

Journaling Session led by Professor Julia Lupton.

system, as well as campus-based humanities centers and affiliated programs that connect faculty and graduate students

It was very rewarding and exciting to reconnect with our friends and School of Humanities alumni, and our team had a great time at the event and are already looking forward to next year’s homecoming.

with colleagues across the system. Georges Van Den Abbeele, dean of the School of Humanities, served as principal investigator for this grant. To learn more, please click here.

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School of Humanities to Establish Endowed Chair in Indic Religious & Civilizational Studies The Dharma Civilization Foundation and donors Irma and Ushakant Thakkar have pledged $1.5M to the School of Humanities to establish the Thakkar Family DCF Endowed Chair in Indic Religious and Civilizational Studies along with additional academic opportunities. The Thakkar Family DCF Endowed Chair in Indic Religious and Civilizational Studies will be established at the School of Humanities, thanks to a gift of $1.5M from the Dharma Civilization Foundation and Irma and Ushakant Thakkar, individual donors with a profound interest in educational philanthropy. The Dharma Civilization Foundation (“DCF”) is a California-based non-profit organization that seeks to promote and enhance philanthropic giving to promote the systematic study of Indian religious traditions (Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and Sikh). “This new endowed chair not only anchors our religious studies program by permanently securing faculty-led research and instruction in one of the world’s most influential religions, but it also further supports our campus strength in Indian and South Asian studies, as well as in the study of the global South Asian diaspora. These are fundamental areas of expertise for UC Irvine’s international preeminence as a cutting-edge site of global learning,” said Georges Van Den Abbeele, dean of the School of Humanities. The endowed chair will be a respected scholar in Indic Religious and Civilization Studies and will have expertise in the study of Dharma traditions with an emphasis on interpretation and expression of the classical Hindu teachings, texts and practices. The scholar will work closely with the faculty associated with the School of Humanities’ Program in Religious Studies and other departments to develop relevant courses for the study of India and Indian Civilization that will emphasize, but not be limited to, research and programs on Indian culture, religion, ethics, philosophy, history, language, literature, arts and society. To learn more, please click here.

UCUC IrvineIrvine Enters intoEnters Agreementinto with The American University of Armenia to Provide Faculty, Student and Re- of Agreement with The American University search Exchange

Armenia to Provide Faculty, Student and Research Exchange

Led by the School of Humanities for the UC Irvine campus, this partnership adds incredible value and knowledge-share to the Humanities’ current Armenian Studies Program through faculty, student and research exchange.

A signing event took place on January 15th on the UCLA campus where Georges Van Den Abbeele, dean of the UC Irvine School of Humanities, and Armen Der Kiureghian, PhD, president of the American University of Armenia, were both present to sign the Memorandum of Understanding. “We are very pleased to have this agreement with UC Irvine, which aims at facilitating study abroad and faculty interactions between our two universities. AUA provides an ideal choice for study abroad for UC Irvine students, who are interested in Armenian studies or wish to study in their ancestral homeland for a summer, a semester or a year,” said Armen Der Kiureghian, PhD, president of the American University of Armenia. “We would also be very pleased to host UC Irvine faculty, who are interested in studying the history and culture of Armenia or would like to spend a sabbatical leave at AUA. We hope our students and faculty will be able to make reciprocal visits and benefit from the many rich programs available at UCI.” To learn more about this agreement, please click here.

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New Media with Jonathan Alexander of energies around communication that reciprocally invites us to reconsider the creative and rhetorical affordances of expression. How is the definition of composition changing to incorporate new media? [Or, how should it?] That is the question of our book! We argue that the very definition of composition—of what it means both to compose and to teach composing—must necessarily be in flux and under constant reconsideration as the field of composition studies incorporates new communication technologies into its domain of study and use, particularly as Let’s start by setting our foundation. How do you define

those technologies enable the exploration and development

“new media”?

of rhetorical affordances and possibilities beyond the more “traditional” domain of print literacies.

I don’t think “new media” is easily definable, as what counts as “new media” is always shifting and changing. With that

In your book, On Multimodality: New Media in Composition

said, we might call “new media” that conglomeration of

Studies, you and co-author Jacqueline Rhodes make the

communication technologies that, at any given moment,

case that utilizing new media to serve the rhetorical

has captured and provoked the social imaginary of

goals of writing limits the capacity of new media to bring

communication. More theoretically, “new media” is the

about new modes of thought. How should new media be

always in flux provocation to reimagine possibilities for

used in the classroom?

communication. So, for instance, in the context of the late 19th century, the rise of photography as a “new medium” both opened up new ways to create visual representations and challenged artists to reimagine the possibilities of painting—a re-imagination that coincided with increased experimentation with formal dimensions of painting. Likewise, in more contemporary terms, the advent of widespread access in the global north to multimediated forms of communication has prompted experimentation with the integration of textual, aural, and visual domains of expression, but it has also provoked the re-imingation of more “traditional” literacy practices. We see, for example, more experimentation with the visual field of the novel, such as the inclusion of printed PowerPoint decks in novels, such as in Jennifer Egan’s Pulitzer Prize winning A Visit from the Goon Squad. So we might say “new media” is always more than just a set of technologies; it’s the concentration

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We don’t want to be prescriptive here, but rather suggestive.

reimagine the field of composition and as the possibility of

With that said, we think it’s vitally important that, as we

re-imagining how we engage each other, individually and

work with different media and modes of composing, we pay

collective, to transform our world into (we hope!) a more

attention to the particular affordances of those media and

socially equitable one.

modes. So, for instance, when I was working last quarter with students who were making video “trailers” about their

Jonathan Alexander is Professor of English, Education,

favorite young adult fiction novels, we looked critically at

and Gender & Sexuality Studies at UC, Irvine, where he

what successful producers of video trailers do—how they

is the founding Director of the Center for Excellence in

narrate the subject, arrange visual scenes to create dramatic

Writing and Communication. The author, co-author, or

tension, use sound and music to set tone, and carefully edit

editor of nine books, Jonathan writes about sexuality,

to provoke a viewer’s interest. Such work required that we

technology, and literacy — sometimes all at the same

think through a whole host of rhetorical choices—some

time. He is the general editor of College Composition and

textual as students drafted “scripts” for their trailers, but


also visual as they drew story boards, and aural as they sampled, recorded, and remixed soundtracks for their trailers. Do you think some fields of study are more resistant to, or embracing of, new media into their studies? If so, why? We don’t see resistances to working with new media—not at all. What we see instead are failures to think through what working with different media means and entails. Hence, we caution folks in composition studies, who have increasingly adopted new media tools, not to use those tools as though they were just “add ons” to print. We’ve seen too many student-produced videos, for instance, that look like five-paragraph essays that have been filmed! Such seem to privilege the kinds of literacy practices that circulate in textual production while ignoring the possibilities of working with video. Why is it important to ask students to work with new media or multimedia in their studies? It’s important because they’re already working with multimedia in their private lives and will most likely be called upon to do so in their professional lives. But more importantly, working with (and that also means learning from) students about multimedia will equip them (and us) for more robust participation in the multimediated public spheres of complex democracies. So we see our call to rethink composing in relation to media as a call both to

Q & A with Kristen Hatch In this Q&A, we speak with Kristen Hatch, associate professor

the federal government stepping in and censoring the movies.

of film and media studies. Her book, Shirley Temple and the Performance of Girlhood, came out this February and explores

2. What was your most surprising discovery while writing

Temple’s early career in the context of the history of girlhood

and researching for this book?

and examines how her star image emerged out of the Victorian cult of the child.

I was surprised to discover that audiences didn’t appear to be troubled by the “Baby Burlesks,” though audiences today find

1. What inspired you to focus your research on Shirley

them very disturbing. This became the starting point for the


book. In the course of my research, I found that it used to be quite common for little girls to impersonate sexualized women, and

I was doing research on Lolita figures, trying to understand

the very groups that were threatening to boycott Hollywood in

why audiences today seem to find images of sexualized girls to

the 1930s had given awards for children’s erotic impersonations

be more troubling than they did in the 1960s. Nabokov’s novel,

in the ‘teens and 1920s. Clearly, childhood meant something

Lolita, was published in France in 1955 (in the US in 1958), Elia

different in the early twentieth century than it does for us now.

Kazan’s “Baby Doll,” in which Karl Malden spies on his child bride as she sleeps, sucking her thumb in a crib, was released

As I dug deeper, I found that all sorts of things that seem

in 1956, and Stanley Kubrick’s film “Lolita” was released in 1962.

perverse to twenty-first-century audiences appeared benign to early twentieth-century audiences. For instance, in her

I became curious about how this figure of the fille fatale was

autobiography, Shirley Temple Black claims that Southern

imagined before Nabokov gave a name to Lolita, and I started

film exhibitors cut the sequences in her films in which she

looking for examples of eroticized girls prior to the 1950s. In the

holds hands with Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, who had been

process, I came across Shirley Temple’s “Baby Burlesks,” a series

the first black performer to headline on white vaudeville.

of short films that she made in 1932 when she was four years old.

However, when I looked through exhibitors’ reports on “The

The films are spoofs of popular Hollywood genre films from the

Little Colonel” and Temple’s other films with Robinson, I found

1920s and 1930s, with all the roles played by children dressed as

that southern exhibitors often identified their scenes together

adults. In these films, Temple was typecast as a femme fatale

as the highlight of these films. Similarly, audiences today are

(she was billed as a “devastating 36-month-old siren.”). In one,

often taken aback by Temple’s “Good Ship Lollipop” routine, in

she plays a prostitute in black, lacy lingerie and impersonates

which she sings her signature song to an enraptured audience

Mae West. In another, she sings in a saloon and flirts with two

of men, or to a sequence in “Poor Little Rich Girl” in which she

soldiers who compete for her affections, giving her lollipops in

sits on her co-star’s lap and sings “marry me and let me be your

exchange for kisses.

wife.” However, Depression-era audiences didn’t find anything objectionable in the image of an adult man cuddling a little girl

This seemed like a good starting point for thinking about

or of male fans gushing over Shirley Temple.

how audiences interpret sexualized images of children. In the 1930s, Hollywood was facing the threat of boycotts because religious and community groups objected to the violence and sexuality being depicted on screen. I imagined that there would be some interesting material about the apparent sexualization of Shirley Temple in the archives of the Studio Relations Committee, which was very concerned about the possibility of

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I began researching children’s performances on stage from the

popularity that had been enjoyed by Shirley Temple and previous

1880s onward as well as their performances in silent-era film,

child stars, and many of the conventions that had shaped Temple’s

and I found that all of these things that seemed so strange and

career fell by the wayside.

perverse about Temple’s career were actually common practice at the time. And these conventions were not taken to signal

4. What’s next for your research?

men’s perverse attraction to little girls. Rather, men’s adoration of Shirley Temple and other child stars was celebrated as a sign

I’m fascinated by the question of how Hollywood developed its

that men were not ruled by their desires.

conception of a mass audience in the 1930s. Nineteenth-century and early twentieth-century entertainments developed around

3. Has the performance of girlhood seen any modern day

local tastes. For instance, because vaudeville acts were performed


live, they could be adapted to suit specific audiences. This was somewhat true of silent-era film, which relied on live sound.

Freud’s ideas about sexuality profoundly undermined the ideal of

Theaters that catered to black audiences in Chicago, for example,

innocence on which the popularity of Shirley Temple and other

hired blues and jazz musicians—including Bessie Smith and

child stars depended. Not only did Freud introduce the concept

Louis Armstrong—to accompany Hollywood films. However, with

of childhood sexuality. He also changed the way we understand

the introduction of sound film, the soundtrack, too, was mass

adult sexuality by suggesting that our sexual desires are shaped

produced, and it became increasingly difficult to excise material

by the unconscious rather than by genetics or ‘breeding,’ as

to suit the tastes of regional audiences; the studios wanted to

previous generations had believed. (Previously, pedophilia was

standardize their films. Film producers struggled to develop films

attributed to senility or to race/ethnicity; it was unimaginable

that would speak to a mass, international audience.

that white, middle-class men of sound mind were capable of molesting innocent children.)

I’m interested in considering how the studios and radio networks adapted performances that had developed in

Under the new, Freudian paradigm, a man’s fascination with a

relation to regional tastes to suit this mass audience, and

little girl was not necessarily a sign of his self control. This is

in what they imagined that “mass” audience to consist of.

reflected in Graham Greene’s reviews of Temple’s films, in which he argues that her appeal rests on her “dimpled depravity” and that “middle-aged men” are lulled into imagining that they don’t desire Temple’s “well-shaped and desirable little body” because “the safety curtain of story and dialogue drops between their intelligence and their desire.” For Greene, the “safety curtain” is like a Freudian screen that prevents audiences from recognizing that they are driven by sexual desire. Greene was sued by Fox and had to write an apology to Shirley Temple, which may explain why other similar interpretations of her popularity weren’t published in the 1930s. However, during the post-war period, Freud became the dominant lens through which Americans understood childhood and adult sexuality. It was not uncommon for critics to describe Margaret O’Brien or Elizabeth Taylor in Freudian terms. Not coincidentally, these actors did not achieve nearly the degree of

To learn more about Hatch, please view her faculty bio here.

Breathing Life into Non-Fiction: Erika Hayasaki’s Latest Novel Tackles Drowning by Corn Four years ago, Erika Hayasaki, assistant professor of Literary Journalism, learned about the death of two young men in a corn grain bin accident in the Midwest. Over the next two years, while pregnant and later with her then-6-month-year-old daughter and husband in tow, she left her life in Los Angeles— home to 3M people—to visit Mount Carroll, Illinois, home to 1,700, to capture the story. Her interest, however, wasn’t so much in rehashing the deaths of the two young men, but in telling the story of the survivor, Will Piper, who nearly died trying to save his friends from the deadly pull of the grain bin, and whose life took a surprising turn after the accident. Hayasaki is a former Los Angeles Times national correspondent who hasn’t strayed far from her journalism roots. She writes regularly for Newsweek and The Atlantic and teaches literary journalism—essentially, true stories that are told using literary Erika Hayasaki (pictured)

techniques often employed by fiction writers.

The corn industry has had its fair-share of bad publicity. From documentaries like Food, Inc. to King Corn and books like Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma, the real-food movement has taken corn to task for its preponderance in packaged food due to government subsidies and its propensity to be genetically modified here in the U.S. Its nutritional value aside, whenever an item becomes in high demand, there are fringe consequences. With corn—death by grain-bin entrapment is one of those consequences. In fact, this year is expected to yield more deaths by “corn drownings” than in 2010, when 31 people died, according to Professor Bill Field with Purdue University’s Agricultural Safety & Health Program. In 2013, Hayasaki received a Hellman Fellows Grant to further her research for, and writing about, the grain-bin tragedy in Illinois. Hellman Fellows go to support the research of promising assistant professors who show capacity for great distinction in their chosen fields of endeavor. Her research recently culminated in the publication of her second Amazon Kindle Single, Drowned by Corn, which jumped into the top 10 nonfiction Kindle Singles when it was published in December. Her first Amazon Kindle Single, Dead or Alive, was published in 2012.

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Choosing to publish with Kindle Singles was no accident.

Erika Hayasaki is assistant professor of Literary Journalism

Hayasaki teaches courses in digital longform storytelling, and

and a journalist who writes about youth, education, health,

is excited about exploring the evolution of online platforms that

science, culture, crime, death and urban affairs. She is a former

publish and promote literary journalism, adding to the tradition

New York-based national correspondent for the Los Angeles

and variety of deeply reported narrative storytelling that has

Times, where she spent nine years covering breaking news

roots in newspapers like the Los Angeles Times, and magazines

and writing feature stories. She is the author of The Death

like Esquire and The New Yorker.

Class: A True Story About Life (Simon & Schuster 2014), Drowned by Corn (Kindle Single, 2014) and Dead or Alive

Drowned by Corn tells the story of the three young men involved

(Kindle Single, 2012). She has published more than 900 articles

in this tragedy while commenting too on the industrialization of

in the Los Angeles Times and various other newspapers, and

agriculture and its effects on those, usually young men, whose

her writing has also appeared in The Atlantic, Newsweek,

hard and dangerous labor stays mostly behind the scenes.

The Wall Street Journal, Time, Los Angeles magazine and

The Chicago Tribune recently called it “a gripping narrative of

others. You can learn more about her by visiting her faculty

tenderness and horror, friendship and loss.”

profile here.

This isn’t the first time Hayasaki has breathed life into real stories that may have otherwise gone unnoticed. Last year, Hayasaki’s book The Death Class (Simon & Shuster, 2014) published and transfixed its readers so much so that former “Dexter” star Jennifer Carpenter teamed up with Sara Colleton to adapt the book for NBC. The two are currently working on a TV pilot.

Hayasaki currently finds herself fascinated by the intersection of psychology, neuroscience, human behavior and narrative, and is working on a series of related narrative-style stories for publications including Pacific Standard, Matter, and The California Sunday Magazine.

Q & A with Claire Jean Kim 1. Your book Dangerous Crossings

4. What can we learn about the complexity of power from

received initial support from a 2009

looking at these controversies over how racialized non-white

UCHRI Residential Research Group.

subjects treat animals in their (cultural) traditions?

What type of support did this group provide for your research? How did

In all three of the impassioned disputes I examine--over the live

it impact your work?

animal markets in San Francisco’s Chinatown, the Makah tribe’s proposed resumption of whaling after a hiatus of 70 years, and

The group brought together

the arrest and conviction of NFL superstar Michael Vick, who

several scholars from various

is black, on charges relating to dogfighting--we see that race

disciplines who were all interested in

and species have historically operated as “conjoined logics,” or

the co-constitutions of race, species,

taxonomies of power that together produce answers to questions such as “who matters morally,” “who is a grievable life,” and

gender, and sexuality. It was a rare space to talk about animality

“who is disposable.” Animalization is integral not incidental

in an academic setting-- and never just animality, but animality

to the construction of the race-d body, and animal bodies are

as articulated with these other systems of power.

frequently racialized, in turn. In this sense, the conventional posing of each scenario as a zero-sum conflict between the

2. You hold positions in both the Asian American Studies

interests of racialized humans and those of nonhuman animals

department within the School of Humanities and the

obfuscates the real power dynamics in play.

Political Science department within the School of Social Sciences. How does your research involve both schools’ fields of inquiry? This book clearly shows the imprint of my dual roots.


combines humanistic questions and concerns and language with social science-type methods such as ethnography.


central preoccupation with discourse, power, and resistance, of course, cuts across the humanities and social sciences. 5. What’s next for your research? What are you currently 3. Animal Studies is a relatively new field. What challenges

working on?

does it face and what possibilities does it present? I am writing a book on the positionality of Asian Americans in It’s an exciting field with dramatic possibilities and difficulties. It

the U.S. racial order, from the 1800s to the present. The focus

holds out the promise of powerfully elaborating and amplifying

is on the surprisingly consistent relation of Asian Americans to

our understanding of how classification and domination work

blackness and antiblackness across historical epochs, a finding

and thereby enlivening the fields of ethnic studies, gender and

that challenges currently popular notions about both Asian

sexuality studies, cultural studies, and more. At the same time,

Americans’ putative shift from near-black to white and race’s

it is bedeviled by its largely unreflective relation to whiteness.

overall fluidity and malleability. After this, a book of essays on

Here I am alluding to people’s political understandings and

race, animality, and institutionalized violence.

orientations, not their bodies. Claire Jean Kim is professor of Asian American studies and political science. You can view her faculty bio here.

SPRING | 2015


Q & A with Tiffany Willoughby-Herard In this Q&A with Professor

(LaRue 2002; Adams 2002). Their speeches and political

Tiffany Willoughby-Herard,

ideas demonstrated that anti-apartheid and anti-slavery

assistant professor of African

consciousness were pieces of an elaborate tapestry of Black

American studies, we learn

internationalist thinking. I first learned about South Africa

about her latest book and what

from them in sermons and community workshops and talks.

drives her research.

In addition to being a place where I could imagine one day conducting political historical research and doing activism, South Africa (long before I ever had a passport) was a place

1. What was it like growing up

of concrete political conscientization for me having been

in Detroit when you did? How

raised during an era in which Black Detroit was aflame with

has this influenced how you

the anti-apartheid movement and internationalist politics.

approach your research and your teaching?

What I have now come to understand as a particularly successful form of diasporic and translocal political

In a forthcoming essay in the National Political Science

education, I grew up in what Cynthia Young has called the

Review I described this in this way “Black Detroit in the

‘U.S. third world lef’ (2006). So while the South Africa of

1980s and 1990s in addition to being a community wounded

my mind was a place of reverie, the hoped for Lan Guinee-

by a lack of adequate public health response to the crack

Eden, figured in the art in my home (Benson 1992), South

epidemic, HIV/AIDS, and rampant gun violence was also a

Africa was also a place of deep reverence for the political

city made whole by the legacy of the Black nationalism of

commitments that animated enduring stories about Igbo-

Rev. Albert Cleage and the ideologies of Black working class

landing and ‘people who could fly’ and people who knew

self-defense and communalism among the stigmatized and

how to fight back and win (Okorafor 2009; Dash, Hooks, and

abandoned that showed up in Black trade union organizing

Bambara 1992; McDaniel 1990).

and Black credit unions coordinated by Rev. Charles A. Hill (Berger 2006; Dillard 2007, 13, 241). Black Detroit was also a

My city was etched by independent Black community

place whose spatial geographies of Blackness were shaped

organizations and an associational life that constituted

by the Pan-African and militant sentiments of civil rights

Black consciousness and Blackness itself around a dizzying

leaders like Rosa Parks (Theoharis 2009), were shaped by

array of possibilities from the Shrine of the Black Madonna

the insistence that Black people claim the public sphere

bookshop to the Grace Lee and James Boggs Educational

and the actual streets in the city as was done by Prophet

Center to the Black militant academics and lawyers who

James Francis Jones (Retzloff 2002), and were shaped by

migrated from Detroit and landed in Oakland and Berkeley

the sometimes incomprehensible but necessary support

and San Francisco to use the Afro-American Society to

and advocacy for an independent Africa by the Michigan

help launch the Black Panther Party for Self Defense

governor, G. Mennen Williams (Noer 2009, 239-242). The

(Kelley 2000). Such actions as Wildcat Strikes and the 1943

South African dissident and liberation theology liturgist,

and 1967 rebellions cannot be understood without the

Rev. Mangedwa Nyathi, and the civil rights theologian and

context of an associational life that took trans-local, cross-

pastor, Dr. Charles G. Adams, used the Hartford Memorial

generational organizing and political education of boys and

Baptist Church pulpit and community organizations to

girls very seriously (Shaw 2009). More than the American

explain the practice of civil rights struggle, anti-apartheid

South or the Northern city my family had migrated to, my

protest, black power and liberation militancy--globally

church community and my parents in Detroit helped me

Continues through page 7

understand that South Africa and its political life and the

disbanded by the late 1930s that the capital and state

struggle against apartheid were central to my basic identity

publicly acknowledge that black workers had a legal right

as a Black person.”

to organize for their own interests. But, in the course of my archival work at the National Archives in Pretoria, I was

Your book, Waste of White Skin: The Carnegie

at first distracted, curious, and then compelled to change

Corporation and the Racial Logic of White Vulnerability

course after hearing about a government office called the

(University of California Press, 2015) came out earlier

Inspectorate of White Labor. Once I learned about the ways

this year and discusses how government-sponsored

that black men and Colored men and Indian men were

research and philanthropy towards impoverished whites

pushed out of early industrial organization and re-classified

in South Africa in the 1930s influenced the creation of

into lower paying, lower status work on the mines and in

apartheid. You didn’t initially set out to research this

other industrial work, I found that I had to conduct research

topic though. What did you initially set out to research

on the racial regimes that repressed the history of their

and why did that change?

labor—so that the only remnant of their presence was the


trope of them as “cheap labor” and of white working men as “protected” and “efficient” laborers and “workers.” 3. Are there contemporary examples of similar scientific racism or sponsored research that drives racial tensions? I think in the STEM fields this issue is debated more readily because of research on disadvantaged and vulnerable populations. However, even in those conversations which usually focus on research procedures and how to conduct ethical research the social, legal, historical, and political context that researchers are functioning in and more importantly that vulnerable and exploited populations are surviving is not always considered. In a recent example, my I initially set out to research two commissions the Wiehahn

child was hospitalized critically. During his second day in

and Riekert Commissions conducted and published in the

the ICU when he was still in full-on respiratory failure, a

late 1970s to investigate the conditions of black working

UCI research doctor came to check on his case and offer a

people in South Africa. They hoped to maintain racial

second set of eyes on his treatment plan. Unfortunately he

segregation by law but deal with working conditions that

also showed up asking if I wanted my child’s body samples

included it being illegal to organize as unions for black

to be used in a research study on the genomic component of

people. I was interested in mining labor and wildcat

his illness. Not only did I recoil in horror because it seemed

strikes and how black workers had come to consciousness

that the researcher was unwilling to take no for answer

of rebellion and how to utilize mobilizations of their

and returned two more times to advocate that my child be

political force to institutionalize change in their material

a subject in the study but I also was horrified because it was

and working conditions. I had read that the commissions

definitely unclear whether my child would get quality care

were the first time since Clements Kadalie’s 1919 founding

if I said no. This happened in March 2015. I am sure many

of the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union which

readers would say well that’s just how research occurs and

SPRING | 2015


somebody has to be the human subjects. But, that research

most of all because it is such a marvel to watch students think

was unethical on several levels—and one level that is actually

again about what they might believe about blackness and

ontological and that relates to concept formation. Genomic

black consciousness and black movements and the politics

components or not, predispositions or not, conditions of life

of gender, sexism, patriarchy, and colonial feminisms. I talk

do a great deal to trigger health conditions. When I asked

with them both about Oyeronke Oyewumi’s critiques of

the researcher after looking at his study materials why

“sisterarchy” and T. Denean Sharpley-Whiting’s embrace

they were not considering other intervening factors like

of Frantz Fanon’s critique of “anti-black femininity” and

exposure to harsh chemicals that are part and parcel of the

the ideas of many other thinkers for whom the black world

everyday air, water, and soil quality, of black communities

and feminist consciousness and politics extends far beyond

across Southern California—he was dumbfounded and

national borders.

a bit frustrated by my inability to buy into the miracle of medical research science. I use this personal experience to

5. You’ve been working with the Future of Minority

explain that the ramifications of decisions about research

Studies and wrote a piece titled, “Mammy No More/

and the production of knowledge impact real people. If

Mammy Forever: The Stakes and Costs of Teaching Our

the researcher on this project and his team discover some

Colleagues” published in a book by an FMS research

awesome remedy will I be enthusiastic to use it, heck yeah.

project called, The Truly Diverse Faculty: New Dialogues in

But, that doesn’t change the context that binds life-extending

American Higher Education (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014).

to death-dealing or treating some people like the inert/the

What challenges and opportunities currently exist with

experimented upon and the dead in order to extend life for

making higher education a truly diverse place?

others. The relations that bind those two are shot through with the social, historical, legal, and economic conditions that make up our present society. Another example I am fond of was brought to my attention by the Anarcha Project, a collaborative research project and traveling performance, exhibition, and installation. It documents the life of three of the many many women operated on by medical doctor and the putative founder of American gynecological surgery, J. Marion Simms. Anarcha, Betsy, and Lucy were not allowed to have control over their bodies, of their flesh. They were subject to the literal medical plantations that are part of the hidden history of enslavement in the United States which has its corollary in the medical experimentation done on black South Africans under apartheid and the contemporary trade in organs. These are perhaps extreme and easy examples. The ones in social science—because of its imperatives for care are sometimes much harder to

Well, since my raison d’etre/ calling/vocation/daily

name as being profoundly unethical. But, thinking about

inspiration is rooted in centuries of research, radical

plantations as sites of medical chattelization has been very

practice, and survival politics that has sought to liberate

important to me.

black people and pour into them a courageous abolitionist consciousness, I would argue that the most critical

4. Do you have a favorite class to teach? If so, which one

opportunity is to challenge every moment when we mis-

and why?

remember the history of higher education in the United States. It is not a history of open-arms and inevitable

I love all my classes. But, if I had to choose I would say I really

progress. Instead it is a history shaped by the fact that

enjoy teaching African Feminisms/ African Gender Studies

places like Harvard and other universities founded in the

unfolding of conquest in North America raised much of

Dr. Tiffany Willoughby Herard is an assistant professor

their money and their earliest market of students from

in our African American Studies department, a faculty

among the children of slave owners in colonial Barbados.

affiliate in Gender and Sexuality Studies, and on the faculty

The symbols, public art, architecture, demography, motto on

for the Queer Studies Minor and the Graduate Program in

every campus is part of its “hidden curriculum”--that makes

Culture and Theory. She is the author of Waste of a White

each teacher, alum, staffer, and policy maker an inheritor of

Skin: The Carnegie Corporation and the Racial Logic

and colluder in its history and its present prerogatives.

of White Vulnerability (University of California Press, 2015), the co-editor (with H.L.T. Quan) of African Identities

Each time students do the work in every generation to

11(2), the Special Issue on Cedric J. Robinson: Radical

remind us of what Sandy Grande calls the imperatives of

Historiography, Black Ontology, and Freedom (Taylor and

working for “red pedagogy” and what Cathy Cohen calls

Frances, 2013), and the editor of Theories of Blackness:

“remixing democracy” we should listen and learn to not

On Life and Death (Cognella, 2011).

finger wag and talk down to them. There are political and ethical claims that animate what I think “diversity” is. These are not simply claims about professionalism and civil dialogue. A diverse campus, in my understanding, has to be willing to be a genuine learning environment where people have the opportunity to change their minds but also have the obligation to focus their minds on doing better as well as knowing better. 6. You have been known to bring in non-academics into your classroom. Why? We encourage lifelong learning in students by making sure they know that adults who are non-academics use life experience and their own study (successes and mistakes) as a basis for research and becoming knowledgeable about all kinds of dimensions of human experience. The fancy way of talking about this is called “decolonizing theory” and it is a foundational way of doing political education that makes life worth living. Everybody can relate to that. I have had gang interventionists speak in class and lay historians from the OC who have done amazing oral histories of the black community here--academics don’t get to have all the fun. We teach each other, we heal each other, we disagree, we learn, we hunger to learn, we grow. That’s what I love about university life at its best--we tell the truth and we grow.

SPRING | 2015


Jonathan Alexander (professor of English, education, and gender & sexuality studies) and Jacqueline Rhodes (English, CSU San Bernardino) won the 2015 “Outstanding Book Award” for their book, On Multimodality: New Media in Composition Studies by the Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC). The co-authors will be presented with this award during the 2015 CCCC Convention on Friday, March 20, 2015 in Tampa, Florida. Since 1949, the Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC) has been the world’s largest professional organization for researching and teaching composition, from writing to new media.



Elizabeth Allen (associate professor of English) organized and participated in the symposium, “The Matter of Beauty,” in February, featuring Sarah Beckwith, Duke University, Maura Nolan, UC Berkeley, and Andrew Cole, Princeton University. Julia Lupton (Director of Humanities Commons and professor, English), and Jim Steintrager, (professor, English), of our English department, also participated. Emily Baum (asistant professor of modern China & world history) was awarded a postdoctoral fellowship from the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) for her proposal, “Spit, Chains, and Hospital Beds: A History of Madness in Republican China, 1911-1937” Anke Biendarra (associate professor of German; director, German Undergraduate Program) has been awarded a UC Grant for the Academic Integration of Study Abroad to facilitate work on our departmental collaboration with Engineering (dual major in Engineering and German – pending approval for Fall 2015). This grant is one of the sixteen given out by the UCEAP office systemwide and will support a number of specific tasks the ELS department needs to undertake to support the design and implementation of the double major. Her co-investigators are Professors John Smith (ELS) and John LaRue (Engineering). Biendarra was also awarded Study Abroad Director for Northern Europe 201517, a post she will resume in Berlin on August 1. She was also recognized by a CORCL Single Investigator Innovation Grant for 2014-15. Yong Chen’s (professor of history) book, Chop Suey, USA: The Story of Chinese Food in America was awarded an Honorable Mention in the category of U.S. History in the 2015 Prose Awards by the American publishers Awards for Professional and scholarly Excellence. Ed Dimendberg (professor of film & media studies), has won the 2015 Photographic Arts Council/Los Angeles Fellowship at the Center for Creative Photography in Tucson. This will allow him to spend a month working in one of the largest photography archives in the US to research the work of Max Yavno, a photographer who figures in his book on Los Angeles infrastructure. Alice Fahs (professor of history) has been invited to hold the Rogers Distinguished Fellow of 19th Century American History at the Huntington Library for 2015-2016.

Julia Lupton (professor of English) co-hosted a conference at UCLA entitled “Touching Shakespeare: Proximity, Precarity, Resilience.” English Ph.D. students Chris Dearner, Peter Cibula, and James Funk shared their research projects at a concluding roundtable featuring graduate students from three campuses. (February 13-14, 2015) Viviane Mahieux (assistant professor of Spanish and Portuguese) presented a paper at: Reunión Internacional de Investigadores de la Frontera, in La Paz, Mexico. February 27th, 2015: “Francisco Cornejo y el renacimiento de la estética Maya.” Jack Miles’ (Distinguished Professor of English and religious studies) The Norton Anthology of World Religions is now available in a six-volume paperback edition. Miles will be lecturing on art and religious studies, with possible reference to art incorporated in the anthology, at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art on Wednesday, March 18, this as the museum’s annual Sneh Singh Lecture. Ève Morisi (assistant professor of French) has been selected as one of two junior scholars for a 2015-2016 residency at the Paris Institute for Advanced Study. Gonzalo Navajas (professor of Spanish & Portuguese) is newly appointed to the following editorial boards: Studia Iberica et Americana: Journal of Iberian and Latin American Literary and Cultural Studies, Cuaderno Internacional de Estudios Humanísticos y Literatura, and Aula lírica. Revista sobre poesía ibérica e iberoamericana. Jane O. Newman (professor of comparative literature) was awarded a National Humanities Center (Research Triangle, North Carolina), AY 2015-16 Research Residency grant, for completing a book entitled: Early / Modern Mimesis: Erich Auerbach between Religion and History. Rachel O’Toole (associate professor of history) has been awarded a 2015 - 2016 Long-Term Fellowship funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) at the John Carter Brown Library (at Brown University), one of the leading research institutions in Atlantic and colonial history of the Americas, for her project “Uncertain Freedom: African beyond the Laws of Slavery in 17th-Century Peru.” Jaime Rodriguez (professor emeritus of history) was named a Member of the Academia Nacional de Historia in Ecuador. Jacobo Sefami (professor of Spanish & Portuguese) did a reading at Casa Sefarad, Madrid, titled, “Memorias hechas pedazos: una Siria judía” [Broken Memories: A Jewish Syria], February 11, 2015; was interviewed at National Radio, Spain, for a program called “Entre paréntesis.” Podcast available here at (8:25-19:45); published a posthumous interview with Esther Seligson, at “Confabulario” [February 26, 2015]. Interview available here.

SPRING | 2015



Q & A with Alumna Aline Ohanesian Aline Ohanesian’s debut novel, Orhan’s Inheritance,

There a great quote by novelist Arundhati Roy who says,

was a finalist for the PEN/

“There’s really no such thing as the ‘voiceless’. There are only

Bellwether Prize for Socially

the deliberately silenced, or the preferably unheard.” I’ve always

Engaged Fiction. Her work has

been fascinated by what I call “hidden” stories. I think our

been translated into Italian,

stories, (our words, language) are what distinguishes us from

Hebrew, and other languages.

everything else on the planet. We use stories to explain our

Orhan’s Inheritance will be

selves, our families, our nations and our world.

published on April 7th and can currently be pre-ordered through

A broader collection of stories, both in literature and in

Amazon here. Ohanesian will be

historiography, means we get a more complete picture of

showcasing her book at several

our humanity. As far as the straddling goes, I learned that in

local events and bookstores,

fiction, you only use the facts needed to push the plot forward.

which you can learn about here.

I probably only used about 10% of the research I did for this

She received her master’s degree

book. But that other 90% was necessary to build the world in

in history from UCI in 2005. 1. Was there a particular moment you knew you wanted to

my head, to know it intimately. 4. How has your history education informed your writing?

become an author? I had amazing teachers at UCI. Dave Bruce, Jon Wiener, Sharon I fell in love with novels at an early age, but in an immigrant

Block, Heidi Tinsman and Alice Fahs among others. They really

family, the idea of being novelist was akin to wanting to be a

changed the way I examined history. I don’t think I’d be able

“rock star.” I didn’t have the guts to really go for what I wanted,

to write the books I write without that experience. Also, I’m

until my grandmother was dying. She asked me what I really

stickler for research. I could probably footnote the whole novel,

secretly wanted in life and when I told her, she said “I didn’t

but the beauty of writing fiction is I don’t have to. The novel

make it all the way to this country for you to play small.” She

I’m writing now takes place in California from 1820-1864, when

was asking me to play big, and I did eventually.

the land was part of Spain, then Mexico, then the United States. The first step in the process for me is to read as many history

2. What inspired you to write your first book?

books as I can about that period. I’m 14 books in and have a long way to go before I feel like I know enough to write about

All of my grandparents were genocide survivors. Though they

the period.

never wished to talk about it, it was the elephant in the room that colored everything in our lives. I wanted to examine their

5. What was your experience like as a student here at

experience but also the experience of their Turkish neighbors

UCI? Any particularly fond memories or a favorite class or

and friends. I felt a moral obligation to write about this but I also


felt a kind of mystical connection to that place, that event, that particular time & place. In the end, alI novels, at their core, are

I really loved my time at UCI. I can honestly say that I’ve

explorations of the human spirit.

never ever felt more intellectually stimulated in my life. I still fantasize about going back for my PhD. I think I’m considered

3. Your book is considered “historical fiction.” What drew

ABD, if that’s a real thing. I know I passed my orals and have 75

you to that genre and what was the experience like crafting

pages of my dissertation in a drawer somewhere.

a story that straddles the line between truth and fiction?

SPRING | 2015


Q & A with Alumna Pheobe Bui Arranging flowers for others is one of my favorite things to do, so I felt that starting a small flower business was something I should also do. With this in mind, towards the end of my senior Pheobe Bui is a 2013

year of college and a few months into my first post-graduate

graduate with a B.A. in

year, I began working at a small flower shop in Irvine, a decision

English with an emphasis

that surprised my family and friends who had known me best

in creative writing (poetry)

as someone who wanted to pursue writing. My decision to work at the flower shop, however, did not surprise me in the least. I loved to tell people that flowers have their own language, too, and they need people to interpret it. So, though I believe flowers are most beautiful when left alone to nurture themselves, my motto is simple: that flowers require human interpretation to become vessels of feeling. I viewed work at the flower shop as an opportunity to improve myself as a person and writer, to

We’ve heard that you’ve launched a business since

learn more about the subject matter I wrote the most about and

graduating. Give us the details!

to learn more about myself relative to how my writing evolved from it. I continued working with floral arrangements and

Upon graduating, I did start my own (small) business! Named

observed what I could about people from the reactions of those

after my favorite flower coupled with a natural environment

receiving them. At some point, I wanted to learn more than

that has been manipulated for its own preservation, Rose &

what had been taught to me, and to incorporate more of who

Woodland is a flower arrangement and event service that

I was into where I spent most of my time. I began to develop

specializes in planning all aspects floral for weddings located

my own vision of what my own flower business would be like.

in Orange County. It began more as an extension of who I am

For example, there was room for creative improvement of the

and what I love to do in my spare time than it did as a business

consultation process. This is where Rose & Woodland begins to

venture guided by any strong entrepreneurial instinct. As a

differ from other flower planning services: with my background

young girl growing up, I admired my mom’s gardening skills and

in writing and drawing, I like to create a “storyboard” made from

the magic of her green thumb with the flowers in our backyard,

my sketches of the event, a sense of poetry in descriptions of

so the act of arranging flowers and the comfort of feeling at

flower pairings, photographs, etc. to help tell the story of what

home became intimately associated and dear to my heart.

the client’s wedding or special event may look like. A personal

Likewise, had I not felt keen on sketching flowers and writing

touch at the beginning goes a long way.

about them in my poems over the years, the idea of detailing a large-scale event with the same level of commitment as I give

Why did you decide to switch from biology to English as a

to my artwork and to my writing would have overwhelmed me.

major? I stumbled into biology as a practical major. Writing has always been my strength. By my second quarter at UCI, I decided to work hard to turn a small talent into something to help define me. And just recently I was accepted into the MFA Writing Program and awarded a fellowship at the University of San Francisco! Had I pursed biology as a major, my concentration might have been botanical studies, or so I tell myself…

I know that you took “Marketing Fictions” with professor Julia Lupton while you were a student. Has what you learned in that class affected your business? The course helped me to conceptualize what my small business would offer. Becoming a small business owner involved accountability to my customers, but also to my vision of what flowers are capable of expressing when arranged with purpose, care, and details unique to my particular brand. At the same time that I developed my mission statement, I became friendly with members of a number of unique start-up wedding magazines whose mission it was to publish textual content that allowed for fashion, design, and event photography to leap off the page and into their readers’ hearts. They asked all of their readers and subscribers to submit inspiring, well-crafted, and relatable stories. What I needed to pinpoint from the beginning was a great story behind my brand. This is where Professor

How has your humanities education in general affected

Lupton’s Marketing Fictions course and a bit of good fortune

your business?

came in handy. I took a step back and began deconstructing successful brands to unravel their stories. Professor Lupton and

In all the ways above! Being a student instructor of prose poetry

Professor Christenson had offered Disneyland and Starbucks as

and chief editor of the creative writing journal taught me how to

examples. I visited Disneyland Resort with my old annual pass

be a better leader. Also, I incorporate my writing into describing

and remembered how Professor Lupton described each “land” as

and advertising the services provided.

similar to themes and settings present within a story, and how the employees (who are better known as “cast members”) were

What advice do you have for budding entrepreneurs?

like their characters. One of my favorite films is “You’ve Got Mail,” which was screened by Professor Christensen in class

I am new to this myself! Just to work hard and be creative!

as an example of marketing in media. It was a great example, but what stayed with me was unintended. I identified with the

The Rose & Woodland website is currently under construction.

character of Kathleen Kelly, who feels about her mother, her

Those interested in learning more about Bui’s floral designs,

books, and owning a valuable bookstore the same way I feel

can email her at

about my mother, my flowers, and owning a valuable flower business. The course did impact how I represent my business and what my business represents. I have no doubt that Rose & Woodland is as close to my vision as it is because this course and my humanities education as a whole taught me to observe and apply intentional design and careful story-telling to things lacking them.

SPRING | 2015


Steven Chung ( ‘07, Ph.D East Asian Languages & Cultures )

Alumni News

He has received tenure at Princeton.

Yunjong Lee (‘12, Ph.D East Asian Languages & Cultures) Now a tenure-track professor at Dong-A University.

David J. Morris (‘08, MFA) His latest book, The Evil Hours, has been extremely well-received and reviewed in the The New York Times. Morris will also be visiting the Humanities Core class and will give a lecture/reading this spring.

Collier Nogues (’08, MFA) The Ground I Stand On Is Not My Ground, by Collier Nogues, has been selected by Forrest Gander as the winner of the inaugural Drunken Boat poetry book contest.

Kem Nunn (‘84, MFA) His novel, Chance, published this fall (check out the NY Times Sunday Book Review of Chance here. He also read in the Humanities Author Series last November.

Matt Sumell (’07, MFA) Featured in our upcoming Author Series Event, April 16, 2015, Matt Sumell’s collection of stories, Making Nice was just released. Click here to listen/read to a review on

Matthew Thomas (‘05, MFA) His novel, We Are Not Ourselves, was released in early fall 2014 and has received rave reviews.


SPRING | 2015


Q & A with Jessica Bond I want to come back to UCI to apply for the Writing MFA program. I may or may not take a year off in between. For now, getting my bachelor’s seems like an accomplishment enough— by the time I graduate, I’ll have been in college for seven years (I spent four of them floundering in community college). I don’t exactly know where I’ll end up and when (though I certainly have my hopes), but I made up my mind a long time ago that I want to stay in school for the rest of my life. I want to get a PhD someday; I want to teach, to write… I want it all. 1. Why did you decide to major in English?

4. What has been your favorite humanities class at UCI and why?

I have always loved to write, but I was actually once a music major at a community college —my original “plan” was to be a

There’s no way that I can pick. Every quarter I discover a new

studio musician and an arranger. But then I switched majors

obsession; it never stops. Everything I learn in one course crosses

after I took a critical thinking course, and met a professor who

over in some way with something I’ve learned in another. Right

I now consider to be my mentor. When I was in her class, she

now, there’s a particular topic that I’m studying in all three of

challenged and frustrated me more than any teacher I ever had

my classes. I thus see all of the courses I’ve taken parts of a

in literally my whole life. But I was absolutely determined to get

whole—and I love it all. My favorite topics are probably state

an “A” in that class. And oh, it was a nightmare—sitting in her

& society, which I’m studying in the Humanities Proseminar,

office for hours, endlessly going over the same sections of my

contemporary British/American literature, and creative writing,

essays with a red pen with her, brooding over every single word

among many other things—these are all things I’ve always been

I wrote…I definitely cried more than once because of that class.

interested in. But even the classes about topics that aren’t my favorite I find worthwhile. I haven’t yet encountered a single

And yet, when I finally did get that “A” that I wanted so badly, I

professor or lecturer that isn’t a deep believer in what he/she

had never felt more rewarded. But I wasn’t just rewarded with

studies. Since I’m surrounded by this enthusiasm and vitality

a grade—the same professor that so tortured me in her class

whenever I’m on campus, it’s hard for me not to be inspired by

recommended me for a job at my college’s Writing Center, where


I met even more people who encouraged me to write. A couple of literature and creative writing classes more, and I became a true

5. What has it been like participating in the Humanities

believer. Even now, three years after that class, I haven’t changed

Honors Program?

my mind: this major is who I am. And I can’t put to words how glad I am that I found it.

I’m so glad that I get to be a part of it. I can’t wait to write my thesis; I’ve already asked at least four of my professors for their

2. What has been most surprising about your education here

involvement, and I’m not even set to write it until next year.

at UCI?

State & civil society is a topic I’ve been obsessed with since high school, so I feel very lucky that I now get to spend the

Just how well-connected this school is. Legendary people have

next two years studying it, and writing a thesis about it. I also

gone here, have lectured here, taught here, are teaching here.

love my professors, as well as my classmates, and the special

I mean, who doesn’t like having a Pulitzer Prize winner for a

bond we share from being in the same program and sharing the


same pressures. Yes, it’s a demanding program, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. After all, I already know from previous

3. Do you have any post-graduation plans?

experience how rewarding a demanding class can be.

Q & A with Jazmyne McNeese Since I am still in the process of thinking through it, things may change, however as of now, and after reading the work of Jessica Gordon Nehmhard’s book, Collective Courage, My research is about the idea of cooperative economics. This is the idea that Black People for centuries (which she documents) have been working together as a collective in various organizations to provide for themselves economically what America never has. She documents a the existence of these cooperatives and my research looks at the existance today in the form of credit unions (financial institutions created by Black people) Specifically my research assess the intersections of wealth across gender and the existence of something called linked-fate (the ideas that there is a sense of community or shared identity when creating or running these cooperatives). 1. Why did you choose to double major in dance and sociology and minor in African American Studies?

3. This summer, you’re going to take part in UC Berkeley’s The Goldman School of Public Policy’s “PPIA Junior Summer Institute,”

When I applied to UCI I applied as a dance major. So along

which is a seven-week program of coursework designed to improve

with the normal application process, I also had an audition that

the participants’ analytical and quantitative skills vital to success

would weigh in on whether or not I got accepted. Once I was

at top-level graduate programs in public policy and international

accepted , there were general education requirements that I

affairs as well as law school. What are you hoping to gain from this

had to fulfill, and after being involved with the Black Student


Union my first year, I decided to take the African American 40 Series which began with 40A taught by Bridget Cooks. I was so

Im hoping to primarily get knowledge about public policy as an

Filled by the course that I decided to continue the series and

occupation to see if that field is what Id want to pursue in graduate

add African American Studies as my minor. As a freshman I was

school. Im also looking to gain additional skills that would help me

also employed, I worked a a reader, and as he assistant for the

get more experience with research. Ive come to enjoy it and Id like to

Summer Academic Enrichment Program for the School of Social

get as much experience as I can from a program that is so prestigious.

Sciences. Both jobs revealed how much I like writing , learning

Also, in my current research I’m studying qualitative analysis and id

about people, and the idea of research. Because of this I decided

like to learn about the quantitative research that directly affects my

to take the necessary classes I needed to add the major. And


after Being in the SAEP program I learned what Research was all about, and decided to add sociology spring of my sophomore

4. What are your post-graduation plans?


Post graduation I would like to go to graduate school at Berkeley. Following that Id like to possibly work for a think tank that focuses on

2. Under the direction of Dr. Tiffany Willoughby-Herard,

economics and race.

assistant professor of African American Studies in the School of Humanities and Dr. Samuel Gilmore, lecturer in sociology

5. What drives you?

in the School of Social Sciences, you’ve crafted a thesis proposal titled, “Special Call: Black Economic Discourse

I believe what drives me is the my family but more importantly my

Assessing Wealth, Gender and Linked-Fate,” which has won

mother. We have been through so much and her strength and passion

two awards: the Special Call UROP and the UCI Libraries

for me to be the best I can be and be happy with what I want to do in

UROP Research Fellowship Award. Tell us about your thesis

life has inspired me to keep pushing through adversity. Her love and


wisdom provides me with the strength to get through the each day.

SPRING | 2015


Analaura Brophy (Spanish and Portuguese) Brophy has won the highly competitive UCI Pedagogical Fellowship for the 2015-16 academic year.

Kristen Galvin (Visual Studies)

Graduate Student Awards

Galvin has received the James Harvey Scholar Award, which “provides financial assistance to individuals pursuing research in the field of homosexuality.” The award will allow Kristen to enjoy a non-teaching quarter in the spring, when she can work on her dissertation, “The Art of Parties: Downtown New York Cultural Scenes, 1978–1983.”

Deanna Kashani (Visual Studies) and Parisa Vaziri (Comparative Literature) Kashani and Vaziri were recently awarded the 2015 American Institute of Iranian Studies Pre-doctoral Dissertation Research Fellowship. This fellowship provides for one- to two-month research travel to countries with resources essential to the dissertation. These fellowships enable students in the field of Iranian Studies to acquaint themselves with the range of academic activities and resources in relevant foreign countries. To learn more about their research, please click here.

Mark Ocegueda (History) Ocegueda is the first Humanities student to be awarded the Public Impact Fellowship from Graduate Division. The Public Impact program supports “academically excellent students whose research demonstrates the potential to significantly improve or enrich the lives of people in California and beyond.” Mark receives this award to allow him to complete his dissertation “Sol Art History Undergraduate Association members (L to R) Gladys Preciado, Eric Colbert & Paulina Daquiz. Photo credit: Chelsea Trinh

y Sombra: San Bernardino’s Mexican American Community, 19001960” under the guidance of Professor Vicki Ruiz.

Leopoldo Peña (Spanish and Portugese) Peña has been awarded a UC-Mexus Small Grant to work on his project “Zapotec Double Gazing: The Surplus National Citizen in the Works of Lamberto Roque Hernández”

Eugene Smelyansky (History) Smelyansky has been awarded a Chancellor’s Club Fund for Excellence Fellowship from Graduate Division. This award recognizes both the academic accomplishments and the leadership qualities of the applicant. Smelyansky will use these funds to advance his dissertation, “Self-Styled Inquisitors: Heresy, Mobility, and Anti-Waldensain Persecutions in Germany, 13901400,” under the guidance of Professor James Given.

Christina Spiker (Visual Studies) Spiker has been awarded a Chancellor’s Club Fund for Excellence Fellowship from Graduate Division. This award recognizes both the academic accomplishments and the leadership qualities of the applicant. Spiker will be able to use this fellowship to advance her dissertation, “Primitive Picturesque: Ainu Representation in a Transnational Visual Economy, 1868-1930” under the guidance of Professor Bert Winther-Tamaki.

Art History Undergraduate Association member Gladys Preciado Photo credit: Chelsea Trinh

SPRING | 2015


BOOKS 2015

In alphabetical order by faculty’s last names. Book publication dates are Jan. 1, 2015-May 2015

Shirley Temple and the Performance of Girlhood Kristen Hatch, associate professor, film & media studies

Dangerous Crossings: Race, Species, and Nature in a Multicultural Age Claire Jean Kim, professor, Asian American Studies

Voices of Negritude in Modernist Print: Aesthetic Subjectivity, Diaspora, and the Lyric Regime (Modernist Latitudes) Carrie Noland, professor, French

SPRING | 2015


The Coming of the Terror in the French Revolution Timothy Tackett, professor emeritus, history


Keywords for Asian American Studies Linda Trinh V천 , associate professor, Asian American studies, with Cathy J. Schlund-Vials and K. Scott Wong

Vietnamese in Orange County Linda Trinh V천 , associate professor, Asian American studies, with Thuy Vo Dang, archivist for the Southeast Asian Archive and Regional History at UCI Libraries, and Tram Le, associate director of the Vietnamese American Oral History Project

Waste of a White Skin: The Carnegie Corporation and the Racial Logic of White Vulnerability Tiffany Willoughby-Herard, assistant professor, African American studies

The books below came out in 2014, but were not featured in the Annual Report

On Multimodality: New Media in Composition Studies (Cccc Studies in Writing & Rhetoric) Jonathan Alexander, professor of English, education, and gender & sexuality studies

Drowned by Corn Erika Hayasaki, assistant professor, literary journalism

SPRING | 2015


Left Bank Dream Beryl Schlossman, professor, comparative literature

Art Worlds: Artists, Images, and Audiences in Late NineteenthCentury Shanghai Roberta Wue, associate professor, art history



SPRING | 2015


Click photos to be linked to detailed event info.

Salar Abdoh at the Jordan Center for Persian Studies

Monday, March 9, 2015

East Asian Languages & Literatures’ “The Internment of Japanese Americans During World War II” - Harumi “Bacon” Sakatani (Momoyama Gakuin University)

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Film & Media Studies’ “Discharged masses - On the crisis of a concept” - Wolfgang Hagen, Max Kade Visiting Professor, UC Santa Barbara

Friday, March 13, 2015

Art History & Jordan Center’s Dr. Jenny Rose: “From Behistun to Bamiyan: Meetings Between Ancient Empires”

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Religious Studies’ “Interfaith Marriage: Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Perspectives” Fr. Patrick J. Ryan, S.J., McGinley Professor of Religion & Public Life at Fordham University

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Art History Undergraduate Association’s 3rd Annual Art Exhibit, “Altered Perceptions”

Thursday & Friday, April 16-17, 2015

UCI Humanities Commons & UCIRA Department of Gender & Sexuality present, “Desert/Structure/Modernism”* Studies’ “The Invisible Sinews of Counterinsurgency” with Laleh Khalili

Saturday & Sunday, April 25th & 26th, 2015 *Not a local event. Organized by Lyle Massey (Art History and Visual Studies) & Jamie Nisbet (Art History and Visual Studies)

Thursday, May 7, 2015

MFA & Development’s Author Series, featuring Matt Sumell

MFA & Development’s Author Series, featuring Matthew Thomas

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Thursday, May 14, 2015

History’s Inaugural Keith Nelson LecOffice of the Dean and Department of ture in US International History with European Languages and Studies’ Professor Mark Bradley, “The United “The Trial of Hatred” - Marc Crépon States and the Global Human Rights Imagination”

Thursday, April 30, 2015 SPRING | 2015

Tuesday, May 19, 2015 41



History’s “Nuestra América: Rethinking Fronteras in US History,” A Conference Honoring the Career of Vicki L. Ruiz

The UCI English Majors’ Association’s, “Never, Ever Valentines; Break Up Poems for Friday the 13th”

Friday, February 20, 2015

Friday, February 13th, 2015

Religious Studies, Classics & Critical The Department of Comparative Theory’s “Josephus without Judaism” Literature with The School of Social lecture by Prof. Daniel Boyarin, Sciences’s Center for Global Peace and Taubman Professor of Talmudic Conflict Studies present, “Biosecurities” Culture and Rhetoric at UC Berkeley

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Beryl Schlossman: “Reading Paris Spleen with Walter Benjamin”

Wednesday, February 18, 2015 SPRING | 2015

Thursday, February 5th, 2015

Religious Studies with support from the Pacifica Institute, and International Studies Public Forum, present “Islam’s Jesus”

Thursday, January 29th, 2015


The School of Humanities is proud to launch our new and exclusive webinar series, Humanities Headlines. This series is an audience-led glimpse into today’s most topical issues. In just 30 minutes, you’ll enrich your knowledge of today’s current events with our most prestigious faculty in a given field, all in the comfort of your own surroundings. With nine issues in total, the most current Humanities Headlines webinar will be posted on the second Tuesday of the month.

Our previous webinars are all linked below (just click on the image):

These humanities-centered approaches to understanding current events truly demonstrate the utility and applicability of liberal arts studies, and we are excited to see our viewership expand beyond the UCI campus. One of our viewers shared her positive feedback with us:

“I am so glad you are doing this. I am having my high school daughter listen to them too, as the episodes have been very relevant to her World Civilizations class, and I intend to pass them along to others. I think it is a great way to provide outreach from the university -- especially for those of us who can’t get to campus too easily.”

We are very receptive to audience feedback, and look forward to producing more interesting, relevant, and exciting episodes! Share your thoughts about Humanities Headlines via this brief survey.

Stay tuned for Episode 6 of Humanities Headlines, “Digital Publishing,” featuring Erika Hayasaki, assistant professor of literary journalism, publishing Tuesday, March 10 at 9:00 AM PST.

Please Give Back Help the Humanities Continue to Thrive Thank you for being a part of the School of Humanities! Nicole Balsamo Director of Development If you are interested in making a tax-

deductible donation, please contact Marijana Lekousis, Interim Director of Development, at or 949-824-1342. You may also make a gift online by visiting, selecting the Make a Gift Online option, and then choosing the School of Humanities under Area of Support.

Marijana Lekousis Interim Director of Development Between the Lines is produced by Communications and the Department of Development. For information on the report, or if you’d like to send your news to be included in the next one, please reach out to Annabel Adams at amadams@uci. SPRING | 2015