Faculty News

Dr. Marius Carriere (History & Political Science) kicked off Black History Month activities with a presentation on ”Blacks in Post Civil War Memphis: White Resistance to Reconstruction and the 1866 Riot.” Later that day, Student Life, in conjunction with Student Government Association, Black Student Association, and the National Pan-Hellenic Council fraternities and sororities, sponsored a showing of the Academy Award-nominated 12 Years a Slave at Playhouse on the Square. After the Brother Allen Johnson and Dr. Jeffrey Gross (Literature & Languages) shared their impressions and lead a discussion after the event.

Education Department faculty members participated in the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) conference in Nashville the weekend of March 26th. The faculty attended the conference in preparation for a visit by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) in spring 2015. Topics included accreditation standards, reviewers’ expectations, how to measure candidate effectiveness, and the overall review process.

Dr. Jeff Gross (Literature & Languages) delivered the keynote address at the 11th Annual English Graduate Student Conference at the University of Kentucky on March 28. His address, “Grad School Won’t Kill You: Reflections on the Transition from Ph.D. Program to Assistant Professor,” addressed trends in the humanities and deconstructed both the rhetoric and accuracy of sensationalized “Don’t go to Grad School” polemics.

EmilyDr. Emily A. Holmes (Religion and Philosophy) served on the planning committee of the Fourth Annual Mid-South Farm to Table conference, held on February 4, 2014, at Christian Brothers University, for which she organized three well-attended panels: “Beyond Charity: Faith-Based Food Justice Initiatives”; “Theory and Practice: The Role of Colleges and Universities in Building a Just, Local, and Sustainable Food System”;  and “Good Food for All: Increasing Access to Locally Sourced Foods.”

Additionally, on February 9, 2014, Dr. Holmes gave a public lecture on “Healing the Body and Repairing the World: The Ethics of Eating.” She was invited to speak by the Women of Reform Judaism Temple Israel Sisterhood as part of their event called SPA…ahh! A Spiritual Approach to a Happy & Healthy Life.

Her most recent book, Flesh Made Word: Medieval Women Mystics, Writing, and the Incarnation, was published in November by Baylor University Press. Dr. Shawn Copeland, Professor of Systematic Theology at Boston College, writes, “Flesh Made Word brings medieval mystical writers and post-modern theorists into dialogue in order to demonstrate their relevance for a contemporary feminist theology and a theology of the Incarnation. This is an engaging and elegant work of history and theology.”

Furthermore, Dr. Holmes and Dr. Paul Haught (Dean, School of Arts) have each published an article in a special environmental issue, Living with Consequences, of the Slovenian philosophy journal Poligrafi. Dr. Holmes’ article is entitled “Ecofeminist Christology, Incarnation, and the Spirituality and Ethics of Eating.” Dr. Haught’s essay is entitled, “Place, Narrative, and Virtue.”

CFTK_SAECBU’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity and many other amazing CBU students volunteered their day on Saturday, January 25th, to the annual Cheer for the Kids event and helped raise $44,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of the Mid-South.

Cheer for the Kids is a grassroots non-profit organization founded by Professor Chanda S. Murphy (Behavioral Sciences) and fellow Memphian Ashley Bradford (front right and left respectively) to help raise awareness and money for local child-focused philanthropy organizations. For more information please visit Cheer for the Kids.

Professor Nick Pena‘s works Disruptive Pattern, oil on canvas, 48×48” and Through the Moulin, oil on canvas, 48×48” were selected, by Curator Ian Lemmonds, for an exhibition at Crosstown Arts Gallery titled Inspired Resistance. The exhibition focused on highlighting artists who have resisted failure by continuing to hone their craft. The exhibition featured 7 artists and more than 50 works of art. The exhibition opened on Monday, the 11th of February and closed on Saturday the 1st of March. Further information including a review of the exhibition and video introduction by the curator, Ian Lemmonds, can be found at the Memphis Flyer.


Through the Moulin

Professor Peña was also one of eight finalists for the third annual Emmett O’Ryan Award for Artistic Inspiration, an award organized by ArtsMemphis. This was the first year the competition was open to faculty and students at local college and universities. Peña’s recent work in his What Lies Beneath series has exhibited at the Eggman &  Walrus gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico and at Lyon College’s Kresge Gallery in Batesville, Arkansas. Paintings from this series will be highlighted in a solo exhibition entitled Processing the Ideal at the Dixon Gallery and Gardens from July 13th to October 5th. The exhibition will be sponsored by Suzanne and Nelly Mallory and Charles Wurtzburger with an opening reception on Thursday, July 17th in the Mallory and Wurtzburger Gallery from 6-8pm.

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Professor Pena (front row, first from left) with the other nominees.

Dr. Brendan M. Prawdzik’s (Literature and Languages) article “Theater of Vegetable Love and the Occult Fall in Paradise Lost,” has been accepted for publication in One First Matter All: New Essays on Milton, Materialism, and Embodiment by Duquesne University Press, Pittsburgh, PA (publication date TBA).

He recently delivered his paper, “‘Eyes and Tears’: Spiritual Phenomenology and Marvell’s Religion,” at Exploring the Renaissance: An International Conference, a meeting of the Marvell Society of America in Tuscon, AZ, April 3-5, 2014. At the conference Dr. Prawdzik was nominated for and elected to the Executive Committee of the Marvell Society, an international group of scholars — some the most renowned in the field — who work on the poet Andrew Marvell.

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Dr. Prawdzik (back row, fifth from right) with members of the Marvell Society, including scholars from the U.S., Canada, England, and the Netherlands.

The following School of Arts faculty members have been promoted effective the 2014-2015 academic year:

Clayann G. Panetta, Ph.D. to Professor of Literature and Languages                   Nicholas Pena, M.F.A. to Associate Professor of Visual and Performing Arts            Conrad J. Brombach, Ed.D. to Professor of Behavioral Sciences