Multicultural and Transnational Literatures

Devoted to MTL at ECU and beyond

Archive for September, 2010

African American Studies Center Database

In the Methods and Bibliography class, students are examining archival treasures from the amazing variety of databases available through Joyner Library’s website.  Periodical holdings from nineteenth-century American and British sources have yielded some stunningly relevant documents concerning immigration, race, cultural difference, the struggle for women’s rights, and so on.  Check out the link below to the African American Studies Center, a remarkable archive that should be of great value to our students in their research: http://media.lib.ecu.edu/erdbs/erdbs_description.cfm?id=615.


Latino Leadership Summit

CONTACT: AMEXCAN President Juvencio Rocha Peralta, (252) 258-9967, amexcan@gmail.com

The Association of Mexicans in North Carolina (AMEXCAN) and East Carolina University cordially invite you to the 3rd Annual Latino Leadership Summit, which will take place on October 1, 2010, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., at the East Carolina Heart Center in Greenville, NC. This year’s summit will provide timely workshops as well as exhibit space for advocates and community organizations seeking to network and showcase their work.

This year’s summit comes at a critical time. While Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s signing of SB1070 has ignited a firestorm across the country, the political conditions that permitted the enactment of this and other laws targeting immigrants have been long in the making.Social and political divisions in Arizona and other states have led to the election of openly-anti-immigrant politicians, and the consequences policies such as Arizona’s new law have been felt dramatically on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. Copycat legislation and policies are now appearing across the nation, a turn of events that begs two important questions: What are the implications for any immigration reform, and what are the implications for the rest of the nation? Our keynote speaker, Isabel Garcia, will address these questions in her remarks. She is an attorney, and she has been a migrant and human rights advocate and organizer for more than 34 years. Daughter of a Mexicano copper miner and union organizer, Isabel is the founder and co-chair of la Coalicion de Derechos Humanos, whose mission is to expose and end the massive human rights violations and the militarization across the border. Isabel was the first recipient of Premio de Derechos Humanos from the Mexican Commission for Human Rights that has never lived or worked in Mexico, in 2006, as well as receiving the 2008 Cultural Freedom Award from the Lannan Foundation. She is also the Director of the Pima County Legal Defender, where she has fought against the growing criminalization of our migrant community for over 15 years. Isabel has consistently challenged the “national security” framework that has guided the immigration debate which has led to the human rights crisis in Arizona.

This year’s summit also will present four workshops designed to aid service providers and advocates.Topics are:

Human Trafficking: What It Looks Like in North Carolina and How You Can Help. In this participatory workshop, staff from Legal Aid of North Carolina’s Battered Immigrant Project will discuss the legal definition of human trafficking, what human trafficking looks like in North Carolina, the “red flags” that could indicate human trafficking, and resources and assistance for victims, including potential immigration relief for internationally trafficked victims.Presenters will provide real case examples of trafficking that have occurred on the East Coast and will employ these case examples to develop participants’ understanding of the subject.

MigrantsRights are Human Rights: Organizing for Human Rights in Our Communities.Human Rights abuses are rampant in immigrant communities in North Carolina; however, often these abuses are normalized by mainstream society.In this participatory workshop, staff from the Southern Coalition for Social Justice will discuss human rights abuses based on communities’ everyday experiences in North Carolina.Participants will learn what human rights are, discuss what migrants rights should be, learn from each other about ways their communities have been affected by human rights abuses, and discuss strategies communities can use to defend their human rights and fight against abuses.

What’s Immigrants’ Rights Got to Do with YOUR Issue, Anyway?This participatory workshop by staff from the North Carolina Justice Center will explore how immigrants’ rights and Latino issues are connected to many of the other struggles for justice in North Carolina. Can our movement be focused and strategic, yet built in a way that honors and joins forces with other progressive and human-centered goals? Participants will grapple with how the various issues are related and discuss what the barriers to effective coordination and cooperation are likely to be.

Legal Services and Protections for Mexican immigrants Living in North Carolina and South Carolina.In this participatory workshop, Carlos Flores, general consul of Mexico for the Carolinas, will explain the services the consulate provides for Mexican immigrants in the Carolinas and the ways that immigrants, service providers and advocates can access those services.


Electronic Thesis Submission: Message from the Dean of the Grad School

September 21, 2010

Dear Faculty directing theses or dissertations:

As you work with students completing theses and dissertations this term, please take a couple of minutes to review the following information carefully and peruse the Theses and Dissertations pages on the Graduate School web site.  Complete instructions and guidelines for preparation and submission of Electronic Theses and Dissertations may be found in the Guide to Electronic Submission at http://www.ecuedu/cs-acad/gradschool/ETD.cfm .

We encourage you to have your students attend one of the workshops sponsored each term by the Graduate School in collaboration with Joyner Library.  Topics discussed at workshops include document preparation, the electronic submission process, open access vs. traditional publishing, embargoes and restrictions and copyright issues associated with electronic publishing.  Dates and times of workshops are posted on the Graduate School website.

Some key points about ETDs to share with your colleagues and students:

1.         Electronic publication with option to embargo

·       All of ECU’s electronic theses and dissertations will be published worldwide by UMI/ProQuest International in the ProQuest Dissertation and Theses Database unless the student chooses to embargo the work.  Organizations that subscribe to this fee-based database will have electronic access to the student’s thesis or dissertation.  ECU’s subscription is found here: http://media.lib.ecu.edu/erdbs/title.cfm?searchWord=proquest&button.x=0&button.y=0&on=title .

·       Electronic theses and dissertations will also be automatically published in ECU’s open-access institutional repository (The ScholarShip: http://thescholarship.ecu.edu/handle/10342/1044) subject to any embargo period selected by the student.

·       If the work contains patentable material or there are concerns about future publications, students may delay the release of their work by choosing to embargo their thesis/dissertation  with ProQuest and with ECU’s Institutional Repository for a period of 6 months, 1 yr or 2 yrs.  If more time is needed, they may request an extension of the embargo.  During the embargo, the full text of the ETD is not made available to the public by ProQuest or the Institutional Repository.  Abstracts and metadata may be restricted upon special request.

·       Students are required to consult with their thesis/dissertation advisor about potential problems concerning any intellectual property disclosure or prior publication issues.  The Graduate School will verify that this consultation has taken place by checking the advisor’s signature on the mandatory Non-Exclusive Distribution License Form: http://www.ecu.edu/cs-acad/gradschool/upload/NON-EXCLUSIVE-DISTRIBUTION-LICENSE-10-30-09rev.pdf .

·       It is important to note that when a student’s ETD is released to Joyner Library, it will be available in the Institutional Repository according to the choices indicated on the Non-Exclusive Distribution License Form irrespective of the options the student chooses on the ProQuest site.

2.         Precautions regarding intellectual property rights and electronic publication

·       Faculty and students are cautioned that electronic publication may disclose intellectual property and thus harm patenting and licensing rights.  In these cases, embargos are necessary to protect the intellectual property.

·       Faculty and students planning to publish their theses or dissertations in the future should investigate specific publishers’ copyright policies.  The Sherpa/RoMEO database collects publishers’ copyright policies: http://www.sherpa.ac.uk/romeo/.  Also, check “Instructions for Authors” or “Copyright Information” on the specific journal’s web site.  Faculty and students are also cautioned that electronic publication of theses or dissertations may preclude future publication of creative works such as plays or short stories. In these instances, the work may be embargoed indefinitely or completely restricted.

·       Please note that the copyright to theses and dissertation always rests with the student author. ProQuest does not ask students to sign over the copyright to their work during the submission process.  ProQuest copyrights only the metadata they produce when archiving a thesis or dissertation.

3.         Benefits of electronic publication

·       ETDs provide increased visibility of research produced at the university.

·       The immediate and widespread availability of ETD documents provides worldwide access to scholarship.

·       Increased visibility and accessibility often results in increased readership and more citations.

·       Multimedia objects data/files can be included, allowing researchers to display raw research data, video, images, art clips, and simulations.

·       Sharing and collaboration among universities and students are facilitated.

The deadline for submission of theses and dissertations for fall 2010 graduation is Tuesday, November 30.  Fall 2010 ETD workshops for students and interested faculty will be held:

Tuesday, November 9   2:00-3:00pm       Mendenhall 221

Wednesday, November 17         2:00-3:00pm       Mendenhall 221

Friday, November 19                     2:00-3:00              Health Sciences Building 1335


London 2011!

I spent the day outside Mendenhall Building the other day pitching the London program as part of the university’s Study Abroad Fair. This part of my work has become, after more than twenty years of doing it, a labor of intense love and is reflective of my most fundamental beliefs about teaching and learning.

I’ll spare you the sales pitch, unless you think you might be interested in participating next summer, in which case you should email me (Taylorr@ecu.edu), and I’ll add you to our mailing list.
As we have been doing for the past few years, four professors will teach from our flats off Edgware Road in central London. Will Banks teaches Children’s Lit, Brent Henze Document design, Anna Froula film, and me Multicultural London Lit. Students may choose two of the courses, or develop an independent study to replace one of them. The courses will be available at the graduate and undergraduate level.

Dates and a Special New Plan for Teachers

The regular program dates will be May 20 to June 12. We’ll do course work in the morning, afternoons and evenings dedicated to a wide range of activities, with plenty of time for independent exploration (students can go to Paris, Dublin, Edinburgh—wherever they like—on the weekends). I’m a theatre fanatic, and if you’re not one yet, I bet I can make you one!

The regular program fits into first summer session, so you could return having earned six credits, and then take courses second summer session, if you want. We realize, though, that these dates are too early for our public school teachers. So we’re offering a second program, to begin immediately after the first. From June 12 to June 22 (right before the start of second summer session), Will and I will offer teachers a chance to get continuing education credits for our program Staging London. It will be a whirlwind tour of London culture with as much theatre as we can possibly squeeze into ten days.

For those wanting both programs, we can probably arrange that. If you want to do the second program and receive regular university course credit, we can arrange directed readings, based on the experience, that would be completed second summer session.

So email me for further information. The cost will be reasonable—as low as we can possibly make it. I’m making up a mailing list now, so anyone wanting to be added will get all the details as we work them out.


What do we do with our degrees and certificates?

Not all of us are teachers or plan to be.  We’re very proud of our secondary school teachers and our grads teaching in community colleges and universities.  But we’re also aware that we are represented in a wide array of fields and professions, where cultural awareness and multicultural/transnational knowledge and sensitivity are valued.  Here’s what we wrote for the department website:  “The Master’s Degree in English with a Concentration in Multicultural and Transnational Literatures provides excellent preparation for the pursuit of the doctoral degree and a wide range of professions, including secondary and higher education, law, public policy, international service, business, or any profession that would benefit from an understanding of multicultural and global peoples, arts, traditions, histories, interactions, and issues as represented and interpreted through literature and criticism.”

We’d like more specific answers, though, when prospective students ask us about how the degree or certificate can help with their career aspirations.  I know that within the past two years, we’ve had professionals in law enforcement, state government, business, and many other occupations in addition to teaching.   Ellen will be emailing students to get a better picture of the range of professions in which we’re currently engaged and to which we aspire.  When we’ve gathered the information, we’ll add a permanent page to this site.  Thanks for your help!