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English Department News


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Professor Cappello wins prestigious fellowship from American Academy in Berlin

Our moods determine our behavior, but what exactly is a mood and how can it be defined in literature and art? Professor Mary Cappello will explore that question as the recipient of the highly competitive Berlin Prize from the American Academy in Berlin, Germany. Cappello, who is among 21 writers, artists, and scholars selected for this honor from the U.S., will research and write in Berlin this fall.

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Michelle Caraccia wins URI staff excellence award

Graduate Program Administrator Michelle Caraccia is the recipient of the University’s 2015 Staff Excellence Award. With her signature calmness and exceptional professional skills, Caraccia is credited with making the English Department and its graduate program better in every way, bringing dedication, resourcefulness, and generosity of spirit to her work.

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Professor Cappello wins University’s scholarly excellence award

Professor Mary Cappello was the recipient of the URI 2015 Scholarly Excellence Award. The author of four books with a fifth one on the way, Cappello’s achievements include: a 2011 Guggenheim Fellowship in Creative Arts/Nonfiction; a Fulbright Fellowship to teach at the Gorky Literary Institute in Moscow; the Dorothea Lange-Paul Taylor Prize from Duke University’s Center for Documentary Studies; and the Bechtel Prize for Educating the Imagination from Teachers and Writers Collaborative.

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Writing conference features another Pulitzer prize winner

For the last nine years, URI has selected writers, poets and playwrights to participate in the Ocean State Summer Writing Conference. Two of those picks—Jennifer Egan and Ayad Akhtar— went on to win Pulitzer Prizes. Now it was just announced that conference presenter Gregory Pardlo has won the 2015 Pulitzer for poetry. Tracy K. Smith, one of this year’s keynote speaker, won the Pulitzer in 2012.

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Keynotes announced for 2015 Ocean State Summer Writing Conference

The keynote speakers at the Ocean State Summer Writing Conference this year are Tracy K. Smith, who won the Pulitzer Prize in 2012 and teaches at Princeton University; and Antonya Nelson, author of 11 books who teaches at the University of Houston and whose work regularly appears in The New Yorker.

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Jennifer Jones recognized for Teaching Excellence

The University recognized outstanding talent this month by presenting its annual excellence awards. The Teaching Excellence Award went to J. Jennifer Jones, who teaches courses on British Romanticism at the undergraduate and graduate levels and for the Honors Program.

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Ocean State Summer Writing Conference coming up June 19-21

The University of Rhode Island is hosting its annual Ocean State Summer Writing Conference with world-famous writers, including graphic memoirist Alison Bechdel, Harvard poet and literary critic Stephen Burt and digital media artist Charles Bernstein.

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Creative Writing Professor to receive $25,000 Creative Writing Fellowship

URI Professor of creative writing Josie Sigler entered college with an interest in marine biology and a simmering passion for writing. Numerous publications, awards, and experiences later, Sigler has been awarded a $25,000 Creative Writing Fellowship in Prose (fiction) from the National Endowment for the Arts.

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English Grad Student writes book about modern quilt movement

Rachel May has some good news: If you can sew a straight line, you can quilt. And if you’re a creative soul—or want to be—then you can make a masterpiece. In her new book, “Quilting with a Modern Slant: People, Patterns, and Techniques Inspiring the Modern Quilt Community,’’ May encourages beginners to “pick up fabric and scissors, needle and thread’’ and sew something that reflects “your voice.’’

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