Thank you for visiting the website of pAGES, the Association of Graduate English Students in the department of English, Film and Theatre at the University of Manitoba. At pAGES we are committed to involving our graduate students in larger university initiatives and encouraging interdisciplinary research connections. Our members include representatives of the DEFT to the Graduate Student Association of the University of Manitoba, a creative writing group, a film-screening initiative, and a theatre representative. We host an annual colloquium in January that invites the showcasing of new creative work and critical research, as well as various other events for DEFT students. We make it our priority to bring together varying research fields and interests under the banner of pAGES, and to use this platform to support our student collective and make their insights available to a wider public.
So welcome weary traveller of the interwebs, to the pAGES page, where we invite you to learn about the research interests of some of our current DEFT graduate students.
I am completing my PhD research on the fictional representations of genocide in Nigeria and Rwanda under the supervision of Dr. Adam Muller. I received my Bachelor of Arts in Literature and Master of Arts in Literature from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria. My general research interest has been on genocide histories and representations, atrocity films and literatures, traumatic memory, African studies, and African diaspora studies. Creative writing is also my thing and I have several uncompleted fiction manuscripts tormenting my sanity and more than occasionally challenging my stubborn devotion to completing a PhD dissertation first. Recently, one of my favourite indulgences has been to bore folks with scraps of poems I scribbled during agonizing moments poring over stories of cruelty. You can’t blame me for sharing the buck: It’s the stuff and delight of a research life.
Rachel is a first-year PhD student at the Department of English, Film, and Theatre. She completed a Bachelor of Arts in English and Music at Canadian Mennonite University, and a Master of Arts in English at McMaster University. Her research interests include postcolonial theory, second-wave feminism, science fiction films, screwball comedies, and anything to do with Barbara Pym.
Melanie is a first-year PhD student at the Department of English, Film, and Theatre. Being originally from Germany, she holds a bachelor’s degree in British and American Studies and a master’s degree in Literatures and Cultures in English from the University of Konstanz. Prior to her studies, she worked for several years as a newspaper editor and a journalist for print, TV, and online media. Melanie is grateful to be given the chance to come to the University of Manitoba and to work on Indigenous literatures in general and residential school literature in particular. She is also fortunate to work as a research assistant for Dr. Warren Cariou. Melanie’s research interests include Indigenous and Canadian literatures as well as theories of trauma, memory, identity, and community in literary and various cultural contexts.
Kirsty Cameron is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Manitoba, a SSHRC Canada Graduate scholar, a University of Manitoba Graduate Fellow, and has been awarded the CD Howe Fellowship in Creative Writing from the U of M Centre for Creative Writing and Oral Culture. Kirsty’s undergraduate work was in Creative Writing and Theatre, with minors in Gender and Women’s Studies, and Philosophy. Kirsty holds a MA in English from the U of M.
In February, 2017, Sarasvati Productions produced an excerpt of Kirsty’s short play, Jump or You’ll Die Laughing: A Tragicomic Short for the Endlessly Heavy Hearted, which was written in partial fulfillment of her MA creative writing thesis. Kirsty’s short stories have appeared in Prairie Fire literary magazine. She recently published an article in the Spring, 2017 edition of the University of Manitoba Teaching Life magazine, drawn from her experience of co-facilitating the writing-workshop portion of the 2016/17 DEFT Film Production course.
Kirsty has also worked as a crisis intervention/suicide prevention counsellor for Klinic Community Health, and has co-facilitated Klinic’s volunteer counselling skills training course. Kirsty is currently preparing to teach an introductory level creative writing class at Brandon University, scheduled for the second term of the 2017/18 academic year.
Katelyn Dykstra is a 4th year PhD Candidate in DEFT. She is the current pAGES president, having served once before in 2011-2012 during her MA, and once as co-president with Karalyn Dokurno in 2015-2016. Having completed her Masters in DEFT in 2012 (with Dr. Dana Medoro), with a thesis on the treatment of intersex bodies by William Faulkner and Virginia Woolf, Katelyn began her PhD in 2013, focusing on representations of intersex in contemporary literature and cinema (with Dr. Hee-Jung Serenity Joo). She also works as an intern at Mosaic, an interdisciplinary critical journal. Her research interests include: queer theory, Medical Humanities, intersex theory and literature, disability studies, queer cinema, 20th and 21st Century literatures, eugenics, and biopolitics. In her spare time she reads feminist blogs, gardens, and holds out for the feminist utopia to come.
Mandy is a Ph.D. Candidate in Film Studies, and is supervised by Dr. Brenda Austin-Smith. Her previous work demonstrates her interests in cinematic representations of race and gender, and her current work focuses on personal and national identities in Prisoner of War cinema. Mandy has served on the pAGES council as PhD representative, film representative, and treasurer, and has contributed to various research clusters affiliated with the University of Manitoba Institute for the Humanities. She has worked as a reserach assistant with the University of Saskatchewan Digital Humanities Centre, The Affect Project, and she is currently teaching courses in English and film studies at Booth University College.
Emily is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Manitoba. She completed her Master of Arts English Literature degree at Queen’s University and her Bachelor of Arts English Specialist degree at the University of Toronto. Her research area is primarily disability studies, especially mental illness narratives, and its intersection with speculative fiction and postmodern American literature.
Sabrina is a PhD candidate in the Department of English, Film, and Theatre. She obtained undergraduate degrees in both Commerce and the Arts, with a major in English and a minor in Classics. She received her MA from the University of Manitoba where her critical thesis, entitled "Changing Clothes: Female Dress and the Widening Sphere in the Fiction of L.M. Montgomery," allowed her to link two of her great loves: historical clothing and L.M. Montgomery. Sabrina's other research interests include women's writing of the nineteenth century, girls' literature of the early twentieth century, empire, and gender. Her dissertation will explore the regenerative influence of girls on the physical space of the nation in such popular novels as Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, Anne of Green Gables, and A Little Princess. Sabrina is a member of pAGES and has served or continues to serve, at varying times, as ACCUTE rep, MA rep, and GSA rep.
Kasey Morgan is an MA student supervised by Dr. Erin Keating. She completed her BA in English at the University of Manitoba, where she worked as a research assistant for Dr. Erin Keating. Kasey is studying proto-autobiographical paratexts in the Restoration and eighteenth century, with a focus on the works of Aphra Behn and Delarivier Manley. Her other academic interests include feminist, postcolonial, and posthuman theories as well as celebrity, and dystopia.
Vanessa Nunes is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Manitoba, a SSHRC Doctoral Scholar, and a Research Assistant at the Centre for Globalization and Cultural Studies. Her dissertation examines literary and cinematic links between Brazil and Canada, focusing on the depiction of such iconic spaces as Rio’s favelas, the Amazon, and Northern Canada. She has recently co-edited with Dr. Diana Brydon “Canada, Brazil, and Beyond,” a special issue of Canada and Beyond: A Journal of Canadian Literary and Cultural Studies.
Vanessa has attended the University of Winnipeg for her BA in English and MA in Cultural Studies, where her work has been awarded a Gold Medal for Accomplishment in a Major, a Manitoba Graduate Scholarship, and a Graduate Student of Highest Distinction Medal, among other distinctions. Vanessa also holds a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), in her home country, Brazil. Before turning to academia, Vanessa has worked for several years as a reporter and columnist for one of Brazil’s leading daily newspapers.
Grace Paizen is a first-year PhD student in the Department of English, Film and Theatre. She received her BA in English and her MA in Cultural Studies from the University of Winnipeg. She specializes in the feminist critique of the representation of women in Western and popular texts and literature, with a focus on violence against women as the policing method that maintains the Western standard of “proper” womanly behaviour. Her other academic interests include fashion, Queer and feminist theory, popular culture, and celebrity.
Timothy is a PhD candidate in the department of English, Film and Theatre, where his is writing his dissertation under supervisor Dr. Brenda Austin-Smith, and teaching Film History in the department. He received both his B.A. and his M.A. from the University of Manitoba. His Masters thesis, for which he received the Professor Sidney Warhaft Memorial Award, dealt with the use of allusion and homage in the films of American director Wes Anderson. In his dissertation, Timothy looks at notions of persona construction and the role of the celebrity author as it relates to Ernest Hemingway and the frequent Hollywood cinematic adaptations of his work and appropriations of his personality. Timothy has presented papers relating to his research at conferences all over North America, and is looking forward to presenting at the International Hemingway conference in Paris in July of 2018.
Susan Rich is a PhD student whose area of interest is postmodern life writing. Her work investigates how postmodern memoir both illustrates and refutes a rhetorical and ontological problem of textual self-representation, drawing attention to the constraint imposed by language upon multifaceted and fluid ideas of self, while also undermining any sense of autobiographical authenticity or truth that has, historically, come to be expected in the genre of life writing. Her research also examines ideas of the self as constructed by such influences as nation, gender, diaspora, physicality, memory, class, and the family.
Jeremy R. Strong is a PhD candidate in the department of English, Film and Theatre at The University of Manitoba, where he studies twentieth and twenty-first century literature and film in its intersections with public policy. He is particularly interested in apocalyptic, dystopian and disaster narratives that depict the future through logical extrapolation and in any policy that is written in a similar fashion, as well as policy documents and literary texts that when read in tandem for their socio-historical context unveil shifting attitudes within Canadian culture. Strong focuses closely on the human body as the site where the realms of art and legislation meet, and therefore currently works with many post-structuralist notions related to biopolitics and identity theory, such as Michel Foucault’s notion of biopower and Giorgio Agamben’s concept of homo sacer. Strong is keenly interested in the emerging field of critical posthumanism for the productive discourses it allows literary criticism to engage in about identity, including but not limited to individual, collective, local, national and global senses of self.
Strong is also a creative writer, and most recently produced a post-apocalyptic novel as one component of his MA. He has also published two articles that investigate the zombie as significant cultural artefact and has recently finished work editing an inter-disciplinary volume of essays on the apocalyptic. He was born and currently resides in Winnipeg, where he lives with his wife Jessie and two children Samantha and Quin.
Melanie Dennis Unrau is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Manitoba, a SSHRC Canada Graduate Scholar, a Sir Gordon Wu scholar, and a research assistant at the Centre for Globalization and Cultural Studies and the Centre for Creative Writing and Oral Culture. Her first poetry collection, Happiness Threads: The Unborn Poems (The Muses’ Company, 2013), was nominated for two Manitoba Book Awards in 2014. She is co-editor of Seriality and Texts for Young People: The Compulsion to Repeat (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014), and former editor of Geez magazine, where she is now poetry editor. Melanie is also a member of the Artist Mothers group at Mentoring Artists for Women's Art. She has an MA in English with a focus in Cultural Studies and a BA (Hons) from the University of Winnipeg. Her dissertation, “Petropoetics: Touching-Feeling the Structures of Oil,” is about the relationship between oil and culture, as reflected and reimagined in contemporary Canadian and Indigenous poetry and poetics.
2017 pAGES Colloquium, Communities: Wrenching / Repairing
Friday, February 3, 2017 8:30am-5:00pm Cross Common Room, 108 St. John’s College, The University of Manitoba
On February 2-3 2017, pAGES once again collaborated with our undergraduate cohort EFTSA to organize a very successful and well-attended colloquium at which many students and faculty were able to showcase their work. This year the colloquium was aligned with the Sidney Warhaft Memorial Lecture by Dr. David Eng, resulting in participants benefitting from both Dr. Eng's inspiring keynote Warhaft lecture and his engaging graduate seminar.
The colloquium call for papers stated: 2016 witnessed communities wrenched apart and/or formed around the election of an American president on a platform of divisive politics, around the shooting deaths of unarmed black people, around the ongoing war in Syria, around the blocking of the DAPL pipeline, and even around the strike at the University of Manitoba last fall. Throughout history, communities have been built and torn down through narratives of trauma, belonging, and resistance to change or to the status quo. In these uncertain times, how might we think about communities of the past, present, or future and how they narrate their existence through literature, film, theatre, and other media?
Sponsored by The Department of English, Film, and Theatre, and The University of Manitoba Graduate Students’ Association
2016 pAGES Colloquium, In Public/s
The keynote lecture for pAGES' annual colloquium, for the first time hosted in collaboration with EFTSA, took place at the UM Institute for the Humanities on January 28, at 4:00 pm in 409 Tier. Dr. Dina Georgis of the University of Toronto spoke on "The Aesthetic as Potential Space and Radical Hope." Situated in the fields of postcolonial and queer studies, Dr. Georgis’ work draws on psychoanalytic concepts to think through how political cultures are responses to the affective remains of the past. Her work engages how narrative and art articulate the conditions to engage the past and imagine new futures. Her book, The Better Story: Queer Affects from the Middle East (SUNY, 2013), considers the emotional dynamics of political conflict, the stories and subjectivities they produce, and what it means to make an ethical relationship to conflict.
The colloquium took place January 29th from 9:00 - 4:00 in the Cross Common Room (Room 108) of St. John's College. A full program can be found at https://inpublics2016.wordpress.com/friday/
2015 pAGES Colloquium
Making Sense(s): Interdisciplinary Considerations of Sense, Senses, Sensing, and the Sensational
Featuring Guest Scholar and Participant:
Dr. Andrew Burke, Associate Professor, University of Winnipeg
January 23, 2015 Cross Common Room 108 St. John’s College The University of Manitoba
Download colloquium program here.
Presented by the University of Manitoba Institute for the Humanities, University of Manitoba Graduate Student Association, and Department of English, Film, and Theatre