Monday, January 24, 2022

SDSU Department of English and Comparative Literature: Good News You Might Have Missed, 24 January 2022

 Good News you might have missed:

  • Lashon Daly has developed a new web series, Critical Conversations in Children’s Literature, that brings together children’s literature authors and scholars to discuss critical topics brewing within the field. Check out the first two episodes:

  • Hal Jaffe published Strange Fruit and other plays with Black Scat Books. The collection contains nine diverse and innovative one-act plays, featuring Billie Holiday & Lester Young;  Antonin Artaud & Georges Bataille; Marilyn Monroe & Marlon Brando; Samuel Beckett; condemned prisoners in Texas making their final statement before execution; Israelis & Palestinians in life-or-death dialogue; Charles Manson unleashed; Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin & Jim Morrison burning it at both ends; & the potently satirical “Splish Splash,” exploring gender discord.

  • In November, Joseph Thomas presented a paper, "Smashing The Penny Fiddle: Colliding Oppositions in Robert Graves’s Children’s Poetry" as part of the "Masks and Paradoxes in the Work of Robert Graves" panel at the annual conference of the Pacific Ancient and Modern Language Association. Joseph also published an essay on Graves, “Drawing Music from Penny Fiddles, or, a Biographical Account of Robert Graves and Theodore Roethke’s Secret Lives as Children’s Poets with a Look at their Neglected Masterworks, The Penny Fiddle and I Am! Says the Lamb, along with a Few Other Things”:

Friday, December 31, 2021

What's Happening Now, January 2022

Dear Colleagues,

Welcome to the Spring 22 semester. It's one we start in sadness, with the passing of our dear colleague Laurie Edson. We also start in uncertainty, with the spread of omicron having pushed us online for the first two weeks of the semester. These are challenging times and I’d encourage you to reach out if you have questions or concerns, or just fancy a chat. I’m in the main office most days, and can be reached easily by email ( or phone/ text (619.599.3820). My hope is that we can build momentum through the semester, re-establishing the bonds of our academic and intellectual community around the good work that we do in our classrooms and in our research and writing. You'll find news of some of that recent work in the penultimate part of this bulletin and will see it publicized on our social media feeds by our new staff member, Iris Quiroga.


  1. Please consider attending this Wednesday’s brainstorming session and Friday’s meeting with the Dean and Provost. All tenure-line faculty, lecturers, and staff are welcome. The Provost has been visiting departments across campus, so this is our opportunity to introduce ourselves and outline our priorities. 

  1. Please submit any funding requests for Spring 2022 by 1 February. This includes event funding, Humanities in Action funding, and lecturer and graduate student travel funding. The AC will review all requests at a 2/9/22 meeting. Requests (or queries about what is required) can be emailed to

  1. Tenure-line faculty: please send course requests for Spring 2023 to, ideally by Wednesday 26 January. Katie and I will present a first draft of the Sp 23 schedule to the Dean’s Office Friday 11 February so need some time to balance curricular needs with requests and availability. Please indicate which courses you would ideally like to teach, which you are willing to teach to help the department meet curricular and student demand, and let me know any factors that might impact your availability. 

  1. The deadlines for periodic evaluation have been extended by two weeks. Tenured and temporary faculty undergoing a periodic evaluation in Spring 22 must now submit material to Interfolio by 28 February 2022. 

  1. Faculty can start adding students to their classes from their waitlists on Wednesday 19 January. Students will be auto-enrolled in available seats through Tuesday 25 January, with faculty able to add students manually until the add/ drop deadline of Tuesday 1 February. Please consider adding students if possible to your classes, but keep in mind the capacity of the in-person classroom you have been assigned. 

  1. As they did in Spring 2021, Jessica Pressman and Joseph Thomas will be splitting the role of Graduate Director this semester. Thank you to both for stepping in. Joseph will focus on applications to the MA program and Jessica will take responsibility for helping students graduate from the program. Stephen-Paul Martin is the MFA Director in Spring 2022 and Clare Colquitt continues as Undergraduate Director. The Advisory Committee will be made up of Clare, Stephen-Paul, Joseph [acting grad director], and Jessica [elected, at-large member and acting MA adviser]. Please let them know if you have issues you would like the AC to consider. 


  1. Department meeting this coming Wednesday 19 January at 12 noon to discuss the upcoming meeting with the Provost and Dean: All are welcome to attend. 

  1. Department meeting with Provost Ochoa and Dean Casper, Friday 21 January, 9-10 am. All faculty and staff are invited and encouraged to attend.

  1. SDSU returns to in-person classes on Monday 7 February

  1. Diana Leong will deliver the annual Warner Innovation Lecture Monday 21 March at 12 noon

  1. This year's NCSCL Visiting Scholar's Lecture, "A 'Damn Mob' of Scribbling Girls: From Jo March to Starr Carter" by Maria Tatar, will be held Wednesday 23 March from 4:00-5:30 PM in the Leon Williams Room (LL-430) of the San Diego State University Library.

  1. The MFA Reading will take place Friday 6 May at 7 pm

  1. The CAL Commencement ceremony will be held Friday 13 May at 3 pm in Viejas Arena. It will be preceded by a departmental event from 11-12.30 pm in the Tula Community Center.  

Good News: 

  1. Stephen-Paul Martin’s latest story, “Sacred Places” will be published later this month by The Antonym, a journal based in Kolkata, India. The story will also be translated into Bengali and published in Anubad Patrika, another Kolkata-based journal.

  1. Bill Nericcio featured in a recent issue of the Union-Tribune for his work with SDSU Press:

  1. Matt de la Peña has been awarded the Alma Flor Ada Award by SDSU’s Department of Dual Language and English Learner Education for his book Love and in recognition of his commitment to bicultural literacy. 

  1. Jessica Pressman gave lectures about her book, Bookishness, to two different local groups of "lifelong learners" organized by two different universities: UCSD’s Osher Institute for Lifelong Learners (in October) and USD’s University of the Third Age (U3A) (on 13 January 2022).

  1. Visiting Professor Ronit Weiss-Berkowitz’s thriller ‘The Girl from Oslo’ is Netflix’s fourth most-watched show. Ronit taught screenwriting in the department in Spring 19 and Fall 21 as part of the Visiting Israeli Artists Program, and wrote the series during her first semester here:



  1. The meeting calendar is attached, listing department, advisory committee, and graduate committee meetings. 

  1. The Academic Operations Guidelines provide useful information on masking requirements and how to deal with issues surrounding masking in classrooms (both for faculty and students):

  1. There are resources available to help faculty and students deal with grief, loss, or other challenging events in their lives. Details may be found at In particular, faculty may contact EAP (Employee Assistance Program) on 1 800 367 7474 or find out details at  

As always, please let me know if you have anything you'd like to discuss. Please let me know, too, of any events you would like publicized or achievements you would consider sharing with colleagues.

A warm welcome to Iris as she starts her first semester in the department and best wishes to everyone for the upcoming term,

Quentin Bailey, DPhil
Associate Professor and Interim Chair
Department of English and Comparative Literature 
San Diego State University 
619 594 5271
Pronouns: he/ him/ his
Indigenous residence: Kumeyaay

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Thanks for the Visit

The Department of English and Comparative Literature no longer sends updates to this page; thanks to all the great visitors who supported our efforts here since this site's inception and thanks as well to all the amazing undergraduates and graduate students who made my life as Chair the experience of a lifetime!

Your Webmaster,

Bill Nericcio
Director, MALAS

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Author/Alum Greg Bear to Speak Tomorrow at the Library

Literati: The Library is proud to present a lecture by award-winning science fiction author and alumnus Greg Bear on Wednesday, November 18th at 2pm in LL430. As part of the Library's ongoing celebration of Darwin anniversaries, Bear will give a lecture entitled, "What Would Darwin Do? Fundamentalism in Science and Religion versus the Search for Scientific Truth."

Bear is a 1973 graduate of SDSU's English Department and the author of more than 30 science fiction and fantasy novels. He is the winner of two Hugo Awards and five Nebula Awards. His highly-acclaimed books
Darwin's Radio and Darwin's Children deal with accelerated evolution and its consequences. Bear has been widely praised for his adherence to scientific fact in his crafting of science fiction. Special Collections already holds a collection of Bear's manuscripts and papers, as well as first editions of all Bear's books in the Elizabeth Chater Science Fiction Collection. Please join us for an exciting talk! The lecture is free and open to the public.