The future is looking especially exciting for the Department of English & Creative Writing. I am thrilled to announce that, thanks to support provided directly by The University of Tulsa’s Office of the President, we will be hiring three fellows from Tulsa Artist Fellowship (TAF) to teach creative writing courses for us next year. An initiative of the George Kaiser Family Foundation established in 2015, TAF has created a vibrant community of multidisciplinary arts practitioners in the Tulsa Arts and Greenwood districts, providing studio space, housing, stipends and community for artists from around the country who are committed to this place-based creative enterprise. While we have been able in the past to hire individual writers from TAF to teach in our program, this new collaboration provides unprecedented opportunities for our own students to enhance their learning and hone their craft with several nationally known and up-and-coming authors. Stay tuned for more details about this collaboration.
The conclusion of this academic year also brings a momentous transition for the James Joyce Quarterly (JJQ). After 21 years of serving as the journal’s third editor, Professor Sean Latham will be resigning his editorship and stepping away from the classroom to take an administrative position spearheading TU’s public humanities initiatives. Associate Professor of English Jeffrey Drouin and Chapman Professor of Law Robert Spoo will succeed him as co-editors. As many of our alumni will know, this transition looks to the future even as it presents continuity with the past, because Professor Spoo served as the journal’s second editor before pursuing an esteemed and ongoing career in legal scholarship that remains deeply immersed in literature. Professor Spoo has accepted a courtesy appointment to our department, even as he retains his primary position in the TU College of Law, and we look forward to a closer relationship with him. Congratulations to Professors Drouin and Spoo as they join in this editorial venture.
Much gratitude is also due to Professor Dennis Denisoff, who is concluding his term as director of graduate studies. Professor Denisoff steered the graduate programs with great success through the turbulence of the pandemic, increased the size of our M.A. program and did an immense amount of work to support our students and foster community. Even as he takes on the co-editorship of JJQ, Professor Drouin will be succeeding Professor Denisoff as director of graduate studies. I thank him for taking on this responsibility and look forward to working with him.
This fourth issue of our newsletter, which was curated by M.A. student and Henneke Fellow Emma Palmer, with a contribution from M.A. student Lily Rogers, features three recent faculty publications, introduces us to graduate student Glenn Craig, presents highlights from the recent English Graduate Student Association conference and converses with alumnus Brennen Gray (BA ’20) about his work in the world of nonprofit grant-writing. My thanks to Emma and Lily, and profuse gratitude, as always, to Morgan Holmes in the Office of Strategic Marketing and Communications, for mentoring our students in the production of this newsletter.
Wishing you a happy and relaxing summer.