Summer 2021 Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity

Cover for Lisa Tatonetti’s Written by the Body: Gender Expansiveness and Indigenous Non-Cis Masculinities (U of Minnesota P, 2021).

Each month during the academic year, we assemble a newsletter of the department’s recent publications, presentations, announcements, and awards. The issue for September showcases a greater range of research, scholarship, and creative activity that our faculty and students have shared beyond Kansas State, given that it covers the summer months of May, June, July, and August.

This summer, though, like the summer of 2020, was a bit different.

Thanks to the continued presence of COVID-19, most faculty and students were presenting online rather than in person. They were also finding ways to recharge after a challenging year, which included pursuing their research and creative activity from home rather than in remote archives.

As the second summer during COVID-19 comes to a close, we celebrate faculty and student success in research, scholarship, and creative activity.

Want to catch up on past successes or to find future announcements? Visit our archive of monthly newsletters Reading Matters as well as related blog posts.

Have news to report? Email us at

Karin Westman, Department Head

Publications (May – August 2021)

Elizabeth Dodd, “The Kansas Essay.” Essay Daily, June 2021. <>

“It Is Difficult / To Get the News from Poems.” Brevity, vol. 67, May 2021. <>.

“Isogloss: Language and Legacy on Mount St. Helens.” Reprinted in This Impermanent Earth: Environmental Writing from The Georgia Review, edited by Douglas Carlson and Soham Patel, U of Georgia P, 2021, pp. 196–206.

Phillip Marzluf, “Jiang Rong’s Wolf Totem, Travel Writing, and the Myth of Mongolian Pastoralism.” Modern Chinese Literature and Culture, vol. 33, no. 1, 2021, pp. 161–91.

With Anna Goins, Cindy Debes, Stacia Gray, A. Abby Knoblauch, and Cameron Leader-Picone, (Re)Writing Communities and Identities, NPP eBooks, 41, 2021. <>.

Designing Arguments for Academic, Public, and Professional Audiences, NPP eBooks, 40, 2021. <;.

Philip Nel, “Breaking up with your favorite racist classic childhood books.” Washington Post, 16 May 2021. <>.

Tom Sarmiento, “PhilippinExcess: Cunanan, Criss, Queerness, Multiraciality, Midwesternness, and the Cultural Politics of Legibility” (invited submission). Q & A: Voices from Queer Asian North America, edited by Martin F. Manalansan IV, Alice Y. Hom, and Kale B. Fajardo, Temple UP, pp. 318–30.

Lisa Tatonetti, Written by the Body: Gender Expansiveness and Indigenous Non-Cis Masculinities, U of Minnesota P, 2021.

Karin Westman, Naomi Wood, and David Russell, eds, The Lion and the Unicorn, vol. 45, no. 1, 2021.

Naomi Wood, ed., A Cultural History of Fairy Tales in the Long Nineteenth Century. Bloomsbury Academic, 2021.

Presentations (May – August 2021)

Katie Cline (MA ’20), “The Bigger Picture: The Representation of Female Characters in Jim Kay’s Illustrated Harry Potter Books.” Children’s Literature Association Conference, 10–12 June 2021. Online.

“‘I’ll Drive’: Freedom and Driving in the Lyrics of Taylor Swift.” Popular Culture Association Conference, 2–6 June 2021. Online.

Mark Crosby, “Blake and Sendak” (invited panelist for “Romanticism for Young Audiences”). British Association for Romantic Studies International Digital Conference, 20 Aug. 2021.

Elizabeth Dodd, Poetry Reading. Association for the Study of Literature and Environment Virtual Conference, 26 July 2021. Zoom. Archived at <>. Reading Series (host). Panelists Sandra Steingraber, Taylor Brorby, and Tamie Parker Song, 28 June 2021. Zoom. 

Greg Eiselein, “Walt Whitman and American Jewish Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century,” American Literature Association Conference, Boston, July 2021. Online.

With Anne Phillips, “Invincible Nina: Cornelia Meigs, Louisa May Alcott, and Depression-Era Feminism.” Children’s Literature Association Conference, 9 June 2021. Zoom.

Mary Kohn, “One Hundred Years of Language Change in Kansas” (workshop). UFM Community Learning Center, 22 June 2021.

Philip Nel, “How to Break Up with Your Favorite Racist Children’s Books” (invited talk). Association of Independent School Librarians, 11 Aug. 2021. Zoom

“Why Adults Refuse to Admit Racist Content in the Children’s Books They Love” (invited talk). Kansas Association of Independent and Religious Schools’ Conference, 28 July 2021. Zoom.

“The Creative Child and Inequalities of Identity” (panel chair). Society for the History of Childhood and Youth, National University of Ireland, Galway, 23 June 2021. Zoom.

“Dr. Seuss and Implicit Bias” (invited talk), co-presented with Donal Harris. Center For Excellence in Decision-Making, Memphis, TN, 23 June 2021. Zoom.

“The Future of Childhood Nostalgia; or, How to Break Up with Your Favorite Racist Children’s Books” (invited contribution to panel discussion). Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development, New York University, 7 May 2021. Zoom.

Jeff Storms (MA ’22), “The Bible Project: Decolonizing the American Christian Imagination,” 19th Annual Cultural Studies Association Conference, 12 June 2021. Zoom.

“The Bible Project: Decolonizing the American Christian Imagination,” Conference on Christianity and Literature, 23 June 2021. Zoom.

Lisa Tatonetti, “An Erotics of Responsibility” (keynote). The Sovereign Erotic: 42nd American Indian Workshop, 17 July 2021.

Karin Westman, “Faculty Anxiety and Remote Leadership.” ADE 2021 MAPS Leadership Institute: Why Humanities Now. 30 June 2020. Zoom.

“‘It’s Me!’: #Hamilkids and the Politics of Play.” Children’s Literature Association Conference. 9 June 2021. Zoom.

Featured in Media (May – August 2021)

Michael M. Phillips quotes the work of Mary Kohn and the Chapman Center for Rural Studies in “An old schoolhouse full of chickens irks a fading Kansas town” for The Wall Street Journal (10 June 2021): <>.

Kohn also recorded “Shifting Kansas Dialects” for the Kansas Humanities Hotline (1 Apr. 2021): <>.

Philip Nel’s work on racist and anti-racist children’s literature led to interviews in Irish, Turkish, and Indian media:

Announcements (May – August 2021)

Tanya González began her appointment as Acting Associate Provost for Institutional Effectiveness and Interim Director of the Teaching & Learning Center in June 2021.

Tom Sarmiento will serve as the facilitator for a cohort of K-State faculty enrolled in the ACUE (Association of College and University Educators) Inclusive Teaching for Equitable Learning Microcredential course during Fall 2021, which is sponsored by the Kauffman Foundation.

Sarmiento also was elected to serve as Treasurer of the Mid-America American Studies Association (MAASA) Executive Board for 2021–22.

Awards (May – August 2021)

Michele Janette received the 2021 Excellence in Advising Award from the Department of English.

Lisa Tatonetti received the 2021 Excellence in Teaching Award from the Department of English.

Anne Longmuir won this year’s Donnelly Award from the Department of English. She will hold a Donnelly Chair from 2021 to 2023.


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