Category Archives: Dept. News

Charles Fantazzi Honored with Festschrift

FantazziDr. 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.”

Student Research and Achievements

 

 

Student Research and Achievements

Rachel Mehaffey

 
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
 

Rachel Mehaffey

 
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
 
 

AnnaLawrence2014 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.

Two Way Immersion Programs

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.

Students present at Spanish Linguistics in North Carolina Conference

SLINKI1

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.

SLINKI1

Faculty and Staff Awards

StephenFafulasStephen 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.

Michael Schinasi selected Fulbright Scholar to Spain


Prof. Michael Schinasi was selected for a Fulbright award to Spain in spring 2014, for his book proposal Performance and the Theater Industry in Nineteenth Century Spain: the Teatro Español and the Creation of a National Theater. The chapters of the book are tentatively entitled: 1. Ideology, Realpolitik and the Creation of Spain’s First National Theater. 2. Six Images of the Teatro Español and its Famous Café from the End of the 18th Century to the End of the 19th. 3. The Theatre’s Operation. The Monarchy’s Takeoever of the Building. 4. The Second Period of the Teatro Español. Quarrels and Jealousies. Politicization of the Theatre and Attacks by the Madrid Press. Demise in 1851.
More than one publisher has expressed interest in the completed manuscript on this neglected pivotal moment in 1849-51 of the History of the Spanish theatre. Prof. Schinasi was a Fulbright grantee to Spain once before, in 1987-88. He is author of an edition of the Poems of Ventura de la Vega (Grupo de Estudios del Siglo XVIII-University of Salamanca, 2005) and is at work on an edition of his prototypical bourgeois comedy, El hombre del mundo (1845). Prof. Schinasi’s work on Vega complements his proposal for the Fulbright: a detailed history of the national theatre and a textual edition of one of the most popular contemporary plays. Vega was a principal architect of the theater reforms of 1849 that created the Teatro Español, and was the national theater’s first director. Prof. Schinasi hopes to have an extended period in Madrid for use of the resources there, particularly the National Historic Archive, the National Library, and the Archive of the Comunidad de Madrid.

Fulbright Interview

Lizz Griffiths in Memoriam

LizzGriffithsThe Department mourns the loss of Elizabeth Griffiths, a Business major and Hispanic Studies minor who died in a traffic accident in Greenville on May 21, 2013. Last summer Lizz studied abroad in Granada with Rosa Lopez-Cañete, and she was a regular at the Spanish conversation roundtable, La Sobremesa. Javier Lorenzo recalls, “Lizz was a bright star in our Spanish program and will be sorely missed by both faculty and students. Her warm smile and kindness, both inside and outside the classroom, made a lasting impact on all of us and we are extremely saddened by her sudden and untimely demise.” Joanna Bradley remembers Lizz as “A very special student. She took my 8 am Accelerated Spanish course and ALWAYS had a smile on her face! The class was intense and the material was difficult, but she managed it, excelled and even provided much needed help to her classmates. I will always remember her as an encourager and a positive influence on those around her.”