Below is a list of past ARC events. Members can access archived emails here. This quarter's schedule can be viewed at our Events page. If you are a former ARC presenter and would like to include a link to your paper's abstract and/or your website next to your name, please e-mail the abstract text and/or link to Tara Fickle: tfickle at

2011-2012 | 2010-2011 | 2009-2010 | 2008-2009 | 2007-2008 | 2006-2007 | 2005-2006 | 2004-2005 | 2003-2004 | 2002-2003 | 2001-2002


FALL 2012

Oct. 11, DANA LUCIANO (Assoc. Prof., Georgetown Univ.), “The Erotics of Objects: Reading, Sex, ‘A New England Nun’.”

Nov. 1, TARA FICKLE (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), “No-No Boy's Dilemma: Game Theory and Japanese American Internment Literature.”

Nov. 29, KATE MARSHALL (Asst. Prof., Univ. of Notre Dame), “The Old Weird.”


Jan. 17, ELEANOR KAUFMAN (Assoc. Prof., UCLA), "And the Greatest of These is Charity: An Epistle to the Believers from the Denver Jewish Consumptives' Relief Society."

Feb. 7, SANDRA GUSTAFSON (Assoc. Prof., Univ. of Notre Dame), "Peace Studies and the American Novel; or, Regeneration through Nonviolence."

Mar. 7, CHRISTOPHER HUNTER (Asst. Prof., Caltech), "The Self's Silent Partners: American Autobiography and the Book Trades, 1790-1860."


Apr. 18, Brian Kim Stefans, (Asst. Prof., UCLA), "A Ludic Turn in Contemporary American Poetry and Fiction" (Humanities 250).

May 9, Lisa Mendelman, (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "Modernist Sentimentalism" (Humanities 250).

May 23, Michael Cohen, (Asst. Prof., UCLA), “The Minstrels’ Trail” (Humanities 193).



FALL 2011

Oct. 6, ALLAN BORST (UCLA), "Meth Matters: Whiteness During an American Drug Epidemic."

Oct. 27, KEVIN MOORE (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "'Joe Gould’s Secret’s' Secret; Unblocking Joseph Mitchell."

Nov. 3, SARAH MESLE (UCLA), "Sentimental Literature, Southernness, and 'American Slavery'."

Nov. 17, MITCHUM HUEHLS (UCLA), "'What [is] African American Literature': The Problem of Race in Twenty-First-Century Fiction."


Feb. 16, JACK CAUGHEY (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "Learning Fiction by Subscription"

Mar. 1, DONAL HARRIS (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "American Eliot: Modernism, Mass Media, National Character"


Apr. 5, JULIA STERN (Prof. of English & American Studies--Charles Deering McCormick Professor of Teaching Excellence, Northwestern Univ.), "Whatever Happened  to Elvira?  Slavery and Citizenship in Robert Aldrich's 'Baby Jane'"

Apr. 26, SUE LEWAK (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "The Whole New American Poetry: Alternative technologies and the raw"

May 17, BRENDAN O'KELLY (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "The 'Task' and 'Business' of Seeing: Conrad, James and the Unseen World of the Novel"

May 31, KYLA WAZANA TOMPKINS (Assoc. Prof. of English and Gender & Women's Studies, Pomona College), "Tasting Class in Melville's 'Rich Man's Pudding, Poor Man's Crumbs'"

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FALL 2010

Oct. 7, KENNETH W. WARREN (University of Chicago), “What Was African American Literature?”

Nov. 18, CHRISTIAN REED (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "'A moving world': Nation, Generation, Redburn."

Dec. 2, STEPHEN SHAPIRO (University of Warwick), "Pentecostal Modernism: Lovecraft, Los Angeles, and the New World-systems Literary Analysis."


Jan. 27, HESTER BLUM (Pennsylvania State University), "News from the Ends of the Earth: Polar Periodicals."

Mar. 10, ALLISON M. JOHNSON (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "The 'Body Electric' Goes to War: Whitman's Union and the Individual.”


Apr. 7, ALICE HENTON (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "'Once Masculines ... Now Feminines Awhile': Gendered Imagery and the Significance of Anne Bradstreet's The Tenth Muse."

Apr. 21, JAMES J. PULIZZI (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "Bio-technical Cognition—Brain, Media, and Techniques after the Human."

May 26, RACHEL LEE (UCLA), “The Exquisite Corpse of Asian America.”

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FALL 2009

Oct. 8, WINFRIED FLUCK (Freie Universität Berlin), “Poor Like Us: Poverty and Recognition in American Photography.”

Oct. 22, STUART BURROWS (Brown University), “A Man Named Marlowe.”

Dec. 3, ELISA NEW (Harvard University), reading from and discussing  JACOB’S CANE: A Jewish Family’s Journey from the Four Lands of Lithuania to the Ports of London and Baltimore – A Memoir in Five Generations


Jan. 21, JESSE JOHNSON (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), “Figurative Absence, Abstract Presence: Frank O’Hara and Larry Rivers.”

Mar. 11, HEATHER LOVE (University of PenNsylvania), “Living Is Flat: On the Descriptive Turn.”


Apr. 8, SIEGLINDE LEMKE (Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg), “Facing Poverty: Towards a Theory of Articulation”

Apr. 22, CHRISTOPHER LOOBY (UCLA), “Strange Sensations: Sex and Aesthetics in ‘The Counterpane’.”

May 13, NANCY BENTLEY (University of Pennsylvania), “Warped Conjunctions: Jacques Rancière and African American Twoness.”

Jun. 3, SIANNE NGAI (UCLA), "The Zany Science: Post-Taylorist Performance, Gender, and the Problem of Fun."

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FALL 2008

Oct. 9, ERIN SUZUKI (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), “Sailors and Surrogates: Representations of the Pacific in Cook, Ellis and Melville.”

Nov. 13, VALERIE POPP (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), "Slashed and Torn but Doubly Rich: H.D.'s Poetics of Deformation."

Dec. 11, ADAM LOWENSTEIN (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), on Henry James’ The Ambassadors


Jan. 15, LANA FINLEY (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), “The Triumph of Unreason.”

Feb. 12, MARISSA LOPEZ (UCLA), “Border Bodies.”

Mar. 5, MIKE DEVINE (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), “Righting the Movies: Film, Poetry, and The Seven Arts.”


May 7, ADAM GORDON (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), “‘A Condition to Be Criticized’: Edgar Allan Poe and the Vocation of Antebellum Criticism.”

Jun. 4, OLIVIA BANNER (Ph.D. candidate, UCLA), on Greg Bear and Gene Science

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FALL 2007

Oct. 25, SAM OTTER (Associate Professor of English, UC Berkeley), "Frank Webb’s Still Life: Rethinking Literature and Politics through The Garies and Their Friends (1857)." [abstract]

Nov. 1, ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSION ON TRANSCENDENTALISM: STATE OF THE FIELD, featuring: Ronald A. Bosco (Distinguished Professor of English and American Literature, State Univ. of New York at Albany), Joel Myerson (Distinguished Professor Emeritus and Distinguished Research Professor, Univ. of South Carolina), Barbara L. Packer (Professor of English, UCLA), and Thomas R. Wortham (Professor of English, UCLA) [description of event]

Nov. 15, MARY ESTEVE (Associate Professor of English, Concordia University), "Shadow Economies: Realism, Race, and the Distribution of Wealth in Pudd'nhead Wilson." [abstract]

Nov. 29, 1:00 pm, JOSEPH REZEK (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), “Washington Irving and the ‘Eternal Playtime’ of the Literary Sphere.”


Jan. 17, KATE MARSHALL (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "Infrastructure." [abstract]

Jan. 31, NATHAN BROWN (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "DESIGN-SCIENCE." [abstract]

Feb. 28, MICHAEL SZALAY (Associate Professor of English, UC Irvine), "Robert Penn Warren, the New Criticism, and the Birth of the Hip."

Friday, Mar. 14, DAVID VAN LEER (Professor of English, UC-Davis), "'Call Me Straight': Resisting Sexuality in Melville." (lecture)

SPRING 2008:

All events will take place at 4:00 pm in Humanities Building 193 unless otherwise noted.

Apr. 17, SARAH RIVETT (Assistant Professor of English, Washington University), "Evangelical Enlightenment." [abstract]

May 1, JOYCE W. LEE (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "A. Magazine and Fictions of the Asian American Panethnic Market." [abstract]

May 15, AUSTIN GRAHAM (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "Got Over: The Chorus Girl Novel and the Musical Stage." [NOTE: Location change to Humanities 250.]

May 29, DENNIS TYLER (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "American Prosthesis: James Weldon
Johnson, Plessy v. Ferguson, and The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man."

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FALL 2006

Oct. 26, CECELIA TICHI (William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of English, Vanderbilt University), “Wealth Whiteout in the New Gilded Age.” [abstract]

Nov. 16, MARK McGURL (Assoc. Prof. of English, UCLA), "Transportopia: Programming a Transnational Turn." [website]

Nov. 30, JOHN ALBA CUTLER (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "Assimilation and Its Discontents: Richard Rodriguez, Danny Santiago, and Arturo Islas." [abstract]


Jan. 18, AMERICAN LITERARY STUDIES: The State of the Field. A roundtable
discussion featuring Professors Katherine Hayles (UCLA), Rafael Pérez-Torres (UCLA), Cindy Weinstein (Cal Tech), and a fishbowl.

Feb. 22, PROF. CURTIS MAREZ (USC School of Cinematic Arts; editor, American Quarterly), "Seeing Skeletons: Whiteness in the Visual Field of Farm Workers." [abstract]

Mar. 8, ALISON HILLS (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "The Art of Not Knowing: Elizabeth Peabody and New England’s Antebellum Aesthetic Culture" [abstract]


Apr. 3, KATE BALDWIN (Associate Professor of American Studies, Department of English, Northwestern University), "Alice Childress, Natalia Baranskaya, and the Speakin' Place of Cold War Womanhood" [abstract].

Apr. 26, ERIC HAYOT (Assoc. Professor, Dept. of English, Univ. of Arizona; Global Fellow, International Institute, UCLA), "Chinese Bodies, Chinese Futures" [abstract].

May 17, ROBERT VON HALLBERG (Helen A. Regenstein Professor, Department of English, University of Chicago), "Sob-Ballads" [abstract].

May 31, SAM SEE (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "'Spectacles in Color': The Primitive Drag of Langston Hughes" [abstract].

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FALL 2005

Oct. 13, GENEVA GANO (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "'Outland, Outandish!': Willa Cather's Cosmopolitan West." [abstract]

Oct. 27, JESSICA PRESSMAN (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "The Revolution of the Word: Textual Montage in Ezra Pound's Cantos, Bob Brown's 'Readies', and Young-Hae Chang's Dakota." [abstract] [website]

Nov. 17, CHRISTOPHER CASTIGLIA (Professor of English, Loyola University-Chicago), "Maria Monk's Bad Associations: Institutionalism, Anti-Catholicism, and Reform in Antebellum America." [abstract]

Dec. 1, CATHERINE JURCA (Associate Professor of English, Cal Tech), "Hollywood’s Democratic Art, 1938-1942." [abstract]


Jan. 19, PAUL GILMORE (Associate Professor of English, California State University, Long Beach), "Aesthetic Materialism: Electric Language, Bodies, and Technology in American Romanticism." [abstract]

Feb. 9*, KAREN ROWE (Professor of English, UCLA), "Imag(in)ing the Female Reader: The Lady's Magazine in the New Republic."

Feb. 16, MARTHA BANTA (Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English, UCLA), "An American Aesthetic and Its Travails" - Part I of One True Theory & the Quest for an American Aesthetic. [abstract]

Mar. 2, MELANIE HO (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "Our Wilder: Progressive Education and Literary History." [abstract] [website]


Apr. 20, BONNIE FOOTE (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "Eco-Tales: Finding, Telling, and Living the Stories for the Future" - Introduction [abstract]

May 4, MARK GOBLE (Asst. Prof. of English, UC-Irvine), "Wired Love:  Pleasure at a Distance in Henry James and Others" [abstract]

May 18, KATHLEEN WASHBURN (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), Dying Prophecy”: Ghost Dance Texts and the Paradox of Terminal Modernity [abstract]

Jun. 1, ANTHONY GALLUZZO (Ph.D. Candidate, UCLA), "Dangerous Transformations: Charles Brockden Brown’s Subversive Aesthetics." [abstract]

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FALL 2004

Oct. 14, LARS ERIK LARSON (Visiting Lecturer, Dept. of English, UCLA), "Emily Post on the Road: Minding the Manners of a National Space."

Oct. 28, JENNIFER FLEISSNER (Assistant Professor, Dept. of English, UCLA), "Henry James's Art of Eating."

Nov. 18, AMERICAN LITERARY STUDIES: The State of the Field. A panel
discussion featuring Professors Jennifer Fleissner, Christopher Looby, and Mark McGurl.

Dec. 2, JULIA LEE (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA), "Strangers on a Train."


Jan. 13, SHARON CAMERON (William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of English, Johns Hopkins University), "'The Sea is the Sea': The Unpersonified Impersonal in Melville's Billy Budd." (lecture)

Jan. 27, GREGORY JACKSON (UCLA Ph.D., Assistant Professor of English, University of Arizona), "'What Would Jesus Do?': Practical Christianity, the Social Gospel, and the Homiletic Novel." (lecture)

Feb. 24, SIANNE NGAI (Assistant Professor of English, Stanford University), "The Cuteness of the Avant-garde."

Mar. 10, CINDY A. WEINSTEIN (Associate Professor of Literature, California Institute of Technology), Excerpts from Family, Kinship, and Sympathy in Nineteenth-Century American Literature (2004)


April 21, MEREDITH NEUMAN (Postdoctoral Fellow, William Andrews Clark Memorial Library),"Telling Time in Puritan Conversion Narratives" [abstract]

May 5, SHARON OSTER (Visiting Lecturer, Dept. of English, UCLA), "Immigrant Nostalgia and the Dialectic of Value in Abraham Cahan's The Imported Bridegroom" [abstract]

May 19, ERIN TEMPLETON (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA), "'The eternal bride and father-quid pro quo': William Carlos Williams, Marcia Nardi and Paterson." [abstract]

June 2, MAX CAVITCH (Assistant Professor, Dept. of English, Univ. of Pennsylvania), "Richard Nisbett's Privacy and Yours" [abstract]

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FALL 2003

Oct. 30, BRIAN WALKER (Assoc. Prof. of Political Science, UCLA) "Toward a More Sufficient Secular Humanism: Thoreau's Encounter with Learning of the Way Confucianism"

Nov. 13 LYNN ITAGAKI (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA) "Intersectionalities: Race, Righting, and Representation in Anna Deavere Smith's Twilight" [abstract] [website]

Dec. 4 MARY HOLLAND (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA) "‘The Art’s Heart’s Purpose’: Braving the Narcissistic Loop of David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest"


Jan. 15, DAVID S. REYNOLDS (Distinguished Professor, Baruch College, CUNY) "Transcendentalism, Abolitionism, and the Civil War."

Jan. 22, The Job Market Meeting

Feb. 19, ERIN TEMPLETON (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA) "'Who is the third who walks always beside you?': The Waste Land (1922)"

Feb. 26, THOMAS AUGST (Assistant Professor, University of Minnesota) Excerpts from The Clerk's Tale: Young Men and Moral Life in Nineteenth-Century America (2003)


Apr. 22, CHRISTOPHER LOOBY (Professor of English, UCLA), "Southworth and Seriality: The Hidden Hand in the New York Ledger."

May 6, MARK McGURL (Associate Professor of English, UCLA), " Autobardolatry: Modernist Fiction, Progressive Education, 'Creative Writing." [website]

May 20, JOANNA BROOKS (UCLA Ph.D., Asst. Prof. Univ. of Texas--Austin), "Trickster Tracks in the Colonial Archive: Theorizing Early American Indian Literature."

June 3, HELEN CHOI (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA), "A Great People's Audience."

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FALL 2002

Oct. 10, JUNE CHUNG (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA), "Getting the Picture: Corporate Advertising and Cosmopolitan Modernism in The Ambassadors."

Oct. 24, MEREDITH NEUMAN (Ph.D. Candidate, Department of English, UCLA), "Occasional Genres: Reconsidering the American Jeremiad in Light of 1660s Election Sermons."

Nov. 7, MARTIN GRIFFIN (Ph.D., Dept. of English, UCLA), "Cambridge Interiors:  Nation and Irony in Lowell's Harvard Commemoration Ode." [abstract]

Dec. 5, LARS ERIK LARSON, (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA), "Home From the Road: Highway Habitat in The Grapes of Wrath."


Jan. 30, PROF. ELISA TAMARKIN (UC-Irvine), "Loyal Americans; or, How the Prince of Wales Saved the Union."

Feb. 13, MICHAL LEMBERGER (Ph.D., UCLA), "From Prophet to Poet: Spinoza's Enduring Cult of Personality."

Mar. 6, PROF. JANICE KNIGHT (Univ. of Chicago), "Reading Women and the Bible."


Apr. 17, DAVID WITZLING (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA), "'Incompatibilities have come to bed:' Jazz, Language, and Cultural Alienation in Pynchon's V. and its 'Beat' Influences."

May 1, ANDREW ROSENBLUM ((Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA), "The Alpine Flower: Hawthorne, Accidental Friendship, and Slavery."

May 15, MOLLY HIRO (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA), "The 'Race Problem' and the Problems of Sympathy in Stephen Crane's 'The Monster."

May 29, ANDREW SARGENT(Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA), "Interracial Male Bond(age) and the Limits of the 'Buddy Cop' Formula."

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Mar. 7, JENNIFER FLEISSNER (Assistant Professor, Dept. of English, UCLA) "The 'Feminization' of American Naturalism"


Apr. 18, SHARON B. OSTER (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of English, UCLA) "The Noble 'Shopkeeper of the Mind': Henry James, Cosmopolitanism, and 'The Jew'" [abstract]

May 9, NAOMI E. SILVER (Faculty Fellow, UCLA) "Sacrificial Rhythms: Myth, Ritual, and History in Cullen's 'Heritage'"

Jun. 6, MARK J. McGURL (Assistant Professor of English, UCLA) "Arts and Sciences: Pluralisms of Postwar American Fiction" [website]

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