Two English majors, each of whom assembled a book collection (one on Batman, the other on gender in crime fiction), have won prizes in the 2013 Collins Memorial Library Book Collecting Contest.
Ian Fox ’14 took the first-place prize for his collection “Hunting the Dark Night: Books on the Batman.” Ian said his collection of books on Batman, including some first edition items, followed the evolving nature of the superhero, from his 1939 appearance in Detective Comics #27 as a caped detective to his modern Hollywood depiction as the powerful vigilante, Dark Knight. “I contacted two of my favorite academic authors and scoured used bookstores,” he said. “They gave me tips on what to look for and about other authors and books. It’s what I’m most passionate about— the Batman.” Ian will enter his winning collection on The Batman in the national contest at the Library of Congress, D.C.
Ariana Scott-Zechlin ’13 was awarded the third-place prize for “Genderization of Crime Fiction from the Victorian Era to the Modern Day.” Ari said that as a huge fan of Sherlock Holmes, she had noticed how these Victorian era stories still shape our expectations today that crime fiction is largely written for and about white, upper-middle-class males. “Given such ‘masculine’ crime fiction’s origins in ‘feminine’ sensation fiction, I was interested in exploring this myth we have created for ourselves of the solely male detective and questioning why it ever came about in the first place and what we can do to challenge it today,” she said.
Congratulations to our English majors Taylor Applegate, Shannon Kilgore, and Hannah Fattor on winning summer research grants. Taylor will be working with Mike Benveniste on a project titled “Black and Blues: A Musico-cultural Analysis of Delta Blues as Racial Uplift, 1890-1930.” Shannon will be working with Harry Valez-Quinones on a project titled “Reading the Book Collection of the Ingenious Gentleman: Analysis of the Intertextual Universe of Don Quixote.” And Hannah will be working with Brett Rogers on a project titled “Manifesting Stories: The Progression of Comics from Print to Web to Print.”
Senior Ariana Scott-Zechlin has an article in Sherlock and Transmedia Fandom (eds. Kristina Busse and Louisa Stein). The article entitled "But It's the Solar System!: Reconciling Science and Faith Through Astronomy in BBC's Sherlock,” is an amalgam of her studies in literature and physics.
Shannon Kilgore, a junior English major, has been selected as the 2012 AHSS recipient of the Best Research Practices Award offered by the Collins Memorial Library. With the aid of a Puget Sound summer research fellowship, Shannon studied parallels between reading in medieval manuscript culture and contemporary virtual book culture, focusing on the reading and reception of Chaucer’s “House of Fame” and the postmodern novel “House of Leaves.” The study forms the foundation of Shannon’s senior Honors thesis. In other news, Shannon will be presenting her paper tentatively titled “Remembrance: A Comparative Study on Two Houses of Memory” at the Kalamazoo Medieval Conference in May 2013. The work follows her research last summer and a longer paper of the same name.
Three of our recent graduates will be starting assignments with Teach for America: John Derksen (in Phoenix), Marcus Luther (in Mississippi), and Zane Muller (in Chicago). Very best to them as they enter the rough-and-ready world of instruction!