Rice English Department
April 2017
Welcome to the April 2017 edition of our newsletter! Remember to email Laura at if you have any news you would like to share with the Department.

Rosemary Hennessy
Department Chair
Faculty News
Emily Houlik-Ritchie has been selected as this year’s recipient of the Sophia Meyer Farb Prize for Teaching. This prize, selected and awarded by members of Rice’s Phi Beta Kappa chapter, honors a junior faculty member for outstanding work in the classroom. She will first be recognized during the University Teaching Award Ceremony, held from 3:00 to 5:00pm on Tuesday, April 25th in McMurtry Auditorium. Dr. Houlik-Ritchie will also speak about her teaching during Phi Beta Kappa’s annual Induction Ceremony on Friday, May 12th from 10:00-11:30am in Hamman Hall. 
Krista Comer has has been promoted to the rank of full professor. Congratulations, Krista!
Kirsten Ostherr has had an article accepted for publication in the journal Big Data & Society, called "Trust and Privacy in the Context of User-Generated Health Data." She co-authored the paper with the graduate students in her 2016-17 Mellon seminar, "The Quantified Self: A Techno-Human Experiment," including English grad student Rachel Bracken.
Kirsten is also giving a Scientia talk on April 11 at 4:00 in Duncan Hall that is based partly on this research, called "Trust and Privacy in the Ecosystems of Wearable Technology and Self-Tracking Devices." A brief discussion of the talk is here
Sarah Ellenzweig led a wonderful colloquium on March 8th
Graduate News
Derek Woods will be taking a postdoctoral fellowship in the Dartmouth Society of Fellows next year.
Joanna Fax received the Chair's Best Dissertation prize in English for her dissertation, "Sexual Deregulation: Reading U.S. Subjects of Affective Labor from the Early Cold War to the Neoliberal Era."

Last Day of Classes

Friday, April 21st

May 5th - last day to submit grades for degree candidates
May 18th - last day to submit grades for non-graduating

Student News
R2 Prize Winners
Cover Art 
Hope Zhou

1st- Maggie Schulze  
2nd - Sonia Hammer
Non Fiction
1st - Jennifer Fu
2nd - Indigo Villanueva 
1st - Hannah Che
2nd - Walden Permantle
Alumni News
Abby Goode (PhD 2016) has been awarded one of the first two university-wide Graduate Instructor of Record Awards for a course she taught during her last year at Rice. Her achievement will be honored at the University Teaching Awards Ceremony on April 25th from 3:00 - 5:00 in McMurtry Auditorium.
Martine Van Elk (PhD 2000): Martine’s book Early Modern Women's Writing: Domesticity, Privacy, and the Public Sphere in England and the Dutch Republic just came out with Palgrave Macmillan. Read more about Martine's work here.
Meina Yates-Richard (PhD 2016) has been awarded two opportunities for the coming summer: a fellowship with Duke’s Summer Institute on Tenure and Professional Advancement, run from its Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in the Social Sciences; and a residency with the First Book Institute at Penn State University.
Upcoming Speakers & Events
R2 Open Mic Night
Friday, April 14th, 7:00 - 9:00
Willy’s Pub
Cherry Reading Series:
Lacy Johnson & Justin Cronin

Thursday, April 20th, 4:30
Rice Chapel
Faculty Colloquium: Joseph Campana
“From Flesh to Fuel: Bees, Biopower, and Early Modern Cultures of Energy”
Friday, April 21st  |  12:00 -1:00  |  English Lounge

While the burgeoning field known as the energy humanities tends to look to dynamic fuel sources (coal, oil, nuclear) to make sense of a range of literary and cultural phenomena, this essay turns its attention to creaturely bodies, which form an integral part of an archaeology of energy for which, oddly enough, the bodies of bees and poets were central. Attention to the proverbial diligence and industry of bees spans centuries and genres, whether we consider literary celebrations from Virgil to Shakespeare and Milton, or georgic manuals, from the great burst of 17th English bee-books to recent writings about urban beekeeping and colony collapse disorder. These texts form part of a long history of a putting to work of bees that is part of a fantasy of limitless and infinitely expropriable energy. In exploring this fantasy of what Spenser might have called “endlesse worke,” we can understand how pre-industrial phenomena and pre-fossil fuel energy sources reveal something about pernicious present-day fantasies about energy. Aesthetic phenomena encourage us to conceive of energy as fundamentally corporeal rather than merely objects to be demystified with respect to a core power structures. The era we tend to name the Renaissance then might be most usefully understood as a transitional time when the location of energy gradually migrates from animate flesh to exosomatic fuels. The resulting out-scaling of the human body with respect to impossibly larger frames of references thus contributes to present-day dilemmas over what energy is and how it ought to be used.

Lunch will be served; please go here to reserve your space by Tuesday 04/18.
Other Upcoming Events

Tuesday, April 11, 2:00 - 5:00, English Lounge
    Sophia Hsu, Thesis Defense: “Biopolitics and the Victorian Novel”

Monday, April 24, 3:00 - 4:00, English Lounge
     FINAL Faculty Meeting

Tuesday, April 25, 2:30 - 5:30, Humanities, Room 119
     Senior Thesis Presentations

Friday, April 28, 11:00 - 3:00, Herring, Room 129
     6th Year Dissertation Lectures; reception to follow in courtyard

Friday, April 28, 1:00 - 3:00, English Lounge
     Karen Rosenthall, Thesis Defense:
     “Novel Economies: a Literary Prehistory of Industrial Capitalism, 1730-1859”

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