The Department mourns the loss of Brian Harris, ΦΒΚ Assoc. Professor of German, who passed away August 6 at his home. Dr. Harris brought humanity to every aspect of his work, from his love of teaching, to his research on Dada and German fiction and essays, his translation of Hugo Ball, his poems and plays, to his presence on faculty governance committees. He added jazz to every conversation, and was equally comfortable riffing on his sax or on the incompetence of those in power. His conversations would modulate from the role of time-signatures in Bebop, to the fabric of space-time, to the fabric of civilization, and always with self-deprecation and those smiling eyes. His great soul will be missed by those of us who knew and loved him.
In recognition of his extraordinary contributions to French national education and culture, the French Ministry of Education has named Dr. Frédéric Fladenmuller a Knight (Chevalier) in the Ordre des Palmes académiques. The French Academic Palms recognize those who have rendered eminent service to French education and have contributed actively to the prestige of French culture. French citizens living abroad and foreign (non-French) nationals may receive this award for contributing significantly to furthering French intellectual, scientific, and artistic achievements in the world. Originally a decoration founded by Emperor Napoléon to honour eminent members of the University of Paris, it is an Order of Chivalry of France for distinguished academics and figures in the world of culture and education. In the United States, dossiers for nominations and promotions are typically prepared by the French Consulates and forwarded to and reviewed by the French Embassy before being transmitted to the Ministry of the French National Education in Paris, which prepares the final recommendation for decree of the Prime Minister.
Dr. Fladenmuller was an invited contributor to a special edition of Bulletin Marcel Proust celebrating the centennial of the publication of Swann’s Way, alongside the foremost international scholars in his field. In addition, he is at work on his 5th monograph, La textualité du genre. Étude sur la sexualité non-normative. His published works include:
· Proust ou l’écriture inversive. Du temps perdu au temps retrouvé. (Forthcoming from Peter Lang Publishers).
· La voix neutre du chaos: étude sur la complexité de textes modernes. Series: Currents in Comparative Romance Languages and Literatures, v. 179. Peter Lang Publishing. NY. 2010
· Télescopie. La science du genre d’ À la recherche du temps perdu, in Currents in Comparative Romance Languages and Literatures. Peter Lang Publishing, Inc. Vol. 106, 2002.
· A novel entitled Les Oiseaux de Pékin, Éditions les 5 Continents, Québec, 2001.
· Caractérisation et les modes de la narration dans le roman moderne. Théorie de caractérologie narratologique. In Reading Plus. Peter Lang Publishers, New York. 1994
Dr. Charles E. Fantazzi, Thomas Harriot Distinguished Teaching Professor Emeritus of Classics and Great Books in the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures, was presented with Neo-Latin and the Humanities. Essays in Honour of Charles E. Fantazzi at the Renaissance Society of America Conference in New York City, March 28.
The collection of essays, contributed by scholars from the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Europe, were co-edited by Dr. Jonathan Reid, ECU associate professor of Renaissance and Reformation History. The essays resulted from a two-day international symposium on Neo-Latin and the Humanities, which was held in honor of Fantazzi at ECU in February 2011.
“The event was a smashing celebration of Charles and the riches of contemporary Neo-Latin and humanities research,” said Reid. “The papers were excellent. So much so that after the conference, although it had not been the original plan, two presenters, Tim Kircher and Luc Deitz, and I solicited these papers and others from Charles’s colleagues who were not able to attend, to form a festschrift. The result is solid contribution to the field of Neo-Latin studies and a durable mark of the esteem of his colleagues at ECU and across North America and Europe.”
Marc Laureys, of the Universität Bonn in Germany, writes, “This volume is a fitting tribute to the scholarship of Charles Fantazzi. Its eleven excellent articles by renowned scholars in the filed of Neo-Latin philosophy, Renaissance humanism and the history of early modern learning are of extraordinary quality and break new ground in a variety of ways.”
Fantazzi came to ECU in 1998 as The David Julian and Virginia Suther Whichard Distinguished Professor in the Humanities, after retiring from the University of Windsor in 1995, where he served as chair of the Department of Classics (1973-79), chair of the Department of Classical and Modern Languages (1979-82) and was honored as University Professor (1994). During his time at ECU, Fantazzi taught courses in Great Books; Greek and Latin literature; Italian; Italian literature of the Renaissance; Latin literature; and Medieval Latin, before retiring in August 2011.
“Charles is a cheery and arrestingly amiable man, who wears his tremendous learning very lightly, has a ready laugh and is ever eager to help colleagues with difficult passage in Latin, Greek, Italian, French, Spanish and more,” said Reid. “His enthusiasm for everything from Dante’s poetics and Renaissance letters to classical music and the ins and outs (and scandals) of modern Italian politics is infectious.”
Robert H. Wright Alumni Leadership Award
and Phi Beta Kappa Honoree:
M. Rachel Mehaffey, EC Scholar
BS Chemistry, BS Applied Physics, Hispanic Studies minor
Future Plans: Pursuing a PhD in Chemistry and Physics at UT Austin
Phi Beta Kappa Honoree:
Mariah Richards, BS Hispanic Studies Education
Future Plans: Graduate School, MA in Spanish and Latin American
Linguistic, Literary and Cultural Studies, NYU in Madrid
2014 Research and Creative Activities Week Presenters:
· Anna Lawrence (right – BA-Hispanic Studies) Paper: The Personified Cultural Contrast in “Blancanieves”
· Joshua Mangum (2nd major BA-Hispanic Studies) Poster: An Information-Theoretic Approach to Cellular Decision-Making Strategies
· Jennifer Moser (BS-Hispanic Studies Education) Poster: The Effects of Implementing Authentic Materials in a Foreign Language Classroom
· Laura Pons (2nd major BA-Hispanic Studies) Paper: Blancanieves: The True Hero
· Jessica Chirico (Classical Studies Minor) Poster: New Technologies in the Public Library
· Megan Mehaffey (Hispanic Studies Minor) Poster: Insight into the Location of DNA Xenobiotic Damage by Mass Spectrometry
· Sandra Ross (Hispanic Studies Minor) Paper: Comparison and Contrast of Sethe and Scarlett as Independent Women
Graduate School Fellowship Recipient: Samantha Belmont, MA in French Studies, LSU
2014 Conference Presentations
Mario Becerra and Briceida Rodriguez presented A sociolinguistic analysis of morphosyntactic phenomena in the Spanish of Pitt County: A pilot study’ at the SLINKI (Spanish Linguistics in North Carolina) Conference at Appalachian State University in February and again at the Southeastern Conference on Linguistics (SECOL) in North Myrtle Beach in March.
Pitt County Schools is doing a feasibility study on two-way immersion programs to start in 2015-16. In such programs the entire curriculum is taught partially in Spanish and partially in English. Prof. Ann Borisoff who has just completed a dissertation on this subject was featured in an article in The Daily Reflector on March 4, discussing the benefits of such an approach in Pitt County where schools like Belvoir Elementary are 48% Hispanic.
Borisoff said that not only do all the students become bilingual and biliterate, but achievement improves and students develop cross-cultural competence. Data from programs such as the dual immersion program in Greene County have shown that students in such language immersion programs not only learn the standard curriculum despite the language challenges, but actually perform equal or better on grade level tests than their mono-lingual peers. A sample classroom might be an equal mix of native-Spanish and native-English speakers on an alternate day schedule in which the same curriculum is taught exclusively in Spanish one day and in English the next.
On February 8, Mario Becerra and Briceida Rodriguez, who are completing a BA in Hispanic Studies and are student members of the SoCIOLing (Study of Community Involvement and Outreach & Linguistics) Lab, presented the poster ‘A sociolinguistic analysis of morphosyntactic phenomena in the Spanish of Pitt County: A pilot study’ at the SLINKI (Spanish Linguistics in North Carolina) Conference held at Appalachian State University. Under the mentorship by Dr. Stephen Fafulas and Dr. Ricard Viñas-de-Puig, the students summarized the results of the research project in which they investigated the expression of future and clitic doubling constructions by native Spanish speakers from Pitt County.
Stephen Fafulas (on left with mentor Kirk St. Amant), hired this year as Asst. Prof. of Spanish, graduated from the ECU Engagement and Outreach Scholars Academy in December. His project was entitled, “Bridging the Gap: Bilingual Education and Community Engagement.”
Suzanne Powell, our Lead Administrative Associate, was recognized as a Treasured Pirate for her leadership in keeping up faculty morale in difficult times.
Dale Knickerbocker, Professor of Spanish, was selected in a search to continue as the Linda McMahon Distinguished Professor of Foreign Languages and Literatures for 2014-16.