April 2023 Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity

Several English Department faculty, graduate students, and alumni presented at the Popular Culture/American Culture Association Conference in San Antonio, TX, 5-8 April 2023.

Each month during the academic year, we assemble a newsletter of the department’s recent publications, presentations, announcements, and awards.

We’re happy to recognize the recent successes in research, scholarship, and creative activity outlined below. 

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 english@ksu.edu.

Karin Westman, Department Head


Philip Nel, “Comrade Redfield and Mr. Hoff.” Introduction to Syd Hoff, The Ruling Clawss. New York Review Books, 2023, pp. 4-13.



Traci Brimhall, poetry readings:

  • Kalamazoo Poetry Festival, Kalamazoo, MI. 15 April 2023
  • Dusty Bookshelf, Manhattan, KS. 6 April 2023
  • Salina Poetry Series, Salina Public Library, Salina, KS. 4 April 2023
  • Des Moines Area Community College, Des Moines, IA. 3 April 2023
  • Wor-Wic Community College, Salisbury, MD. 21 March 2023

Steffi Dippold, “Books Have Bindings: Tracing the Narratives of Colonial Leathers,” Objects, Pathways, and Afterlives: Tracing Material Cultures in Early America. The Huntington. Passadena, CA. 22 April 2023.

Melissa Glaser, “More Than Kindness: Practical Ways to Support Students with Empathy and Boundaries.” Teaching and Learning Center (Professional Development Series). Kansas State University. 22 Mar. 2023

Daniel A. Hoyt, fiction reading. Wichita State University. 4 April 2023.

Michele Janette, “Disrupted Consumption: Reframing and Reclaiming Images of the Vietnamese in Dao Strom’s We Were Meant to Be a Gentle People.” Association for Asian American Studies (AAAS) Annual Conference. Long Beach, CA. 6 April 2023.

Katherine Karlin, “‘Close It Yourself’: The Queerness of Gordon Parks’s Shaft.” Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association National Conference. San Antonio, TX. 6 April 2023.

Sarah Morgan (MA ’24), “Watching and Believing: The #MeToo Movement and Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window in Chloe Okuno’s Watcher.” Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association National Conference. San Antonio, TX. 5 April 2023.

Kara Northway, “The Letterwriting of English-Continental Actors on Tour” (seminar paper) and theater history seminar (co-leader with Dr. Chris Matusiak). Meeting of the Shakespeare Association of America. Minneapolis, MN. 30 Mar. 2023.

Ania Payne, “Writing With Habitat Homeowners: Creating Authentic, Community-Based Partnerships.” Gulf-South Summit on Service-Learning and Civic Engagement Through Higher Education. University of Georgia. Athens, GA. 12 April 2023.

Delaney Sullivan (MA ‘24), “Politics as Romantic Narrative in Kiera Cass’s The Selection Series.” Popular Culture Association/ American Culture Association Conference. San Antonio, TX. 5 April 2023. Also presented at the Graduate Literature Symposium, Kansas State University, 19 April 2023.

Lisa Tatonetti and Mary Kohn, “Kansas without the Kanza: Understanding How the Kanza Homeland Became K-State.” Riley County Genealogical Society. Manhattan Public Library, Manhattan, KS. 23 April 2023.



Traci Brimhall has received an Artist-in-Residence position with the National Parks Service for May-June 2023 at Bighorn Canyon. She has also received a fellowship from Writers Colony Dairy Hollow in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, where she will spend a week resting and writing.

Elizabeth Dodd’s ENGL 450 “Wild Lit” class won an Honorable Mention for the Kirmser Undergraduate Research Award in the Group category for their research poster, “Literary Connections to Yellowstone Research.” Awardees were Luke Carney, Jessie Hovis, Mikaela Jackson, and Audrey Poulson.

Additional Kirmser awards were presented to Catherine Torkelson (BA ‘25) for work in Roger Friedmann’s ENGL 210 and Mara Aberle (BA ’26) for work in Steffi Dippold’s ENGL 310. Read the full announcement.

Natassja (Totty) Norwood (BA ’24) received an Office of Undergraduate Research and Creative Inquiry grant for her summer 2023 project, “Destination Gustation.” Traci Brimhall will serve as mentor.

Tom Sarmiento received a 2023 Commerce Bank & W.T. Kemper Foundation Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award.

Lisa Tatonetti has been selected as the 2023-2024 Coffman Chair for Distinguished Teaching Scholars



Elizabeth Dodd has been elected to the Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences (NRES) Secondary Major Governing Board for a three-year terms (July 2023- June 2026).

Several English majors have been inducted into Phi Beta Kappa: Kyla Barry (BA ’23), Luke Cook (BA ’23), Leah Hennes (BA ’23), Katie Painter (BA ’23), and Bryn Reed (BA ’23).

Eleven English majors have been inducted into the English Department’s chapter of the national honor society Sigma Tau Delta: Kyla Barry (BA ’23), Ellie Brandt (BA ‘25), Bailey Britton (BA ’22), Richelle Collado (BA ‘24), Megan Gates (BA ‘23), Grace Odgers (BA ‘24), Katie Painter (BA ’23), Anna Poggi-Corradini (BA ‘23), Julio Ramirez Vera (BA ’23), Abigail Whitney (BA ’24), and Zach Zoeller (BA ‘23).

Don Hedrick and Katy Karlin retire this May following, respectively, 47 years and 14 years of service to Kansas State.


Research and Creative Activity from Alumni

Katie Cline (MA ’20) published “‘I’m sick of being the afterthought, the joke’: Hilda Spellman’s Empowering Domesticity in Netflix’s The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” in the edited collection Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (Rowan and Littlefield, 2023). Katie also presented “The Invisible Whiteness of Quinn Fabray: Messages of Feminism, Sexuality, and White Privilege in Glee” at the 2023 Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association National Conference.

Kenan Orhan (BA ’14) has published a collection of short stories, I Am My Country (Random House, 2023). Another of his stories, “The Renovation,” appears in The Atlantic (27 April 2023). That same issue also features an interview with Kenan.



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