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Current student profiles

M.A. Students

Wilfred Bradford
I am a second year M.A. student with a B.A. (Hons) in English from the University of Lincoln in the UK. My research interests include literary forms of traumatic expression, ecocriticism and memory, and concepts of “hyperreality” in contemporary culture.

Caitlyn Caldwell
I am a first year M.A. student with a B.A. in English from Hiram College (2013). My research interests include late 19th-century and 20th-century British and Commonwealth Literature. I am also interested in gender studies, religious symbolism and Post-Colonial theory.

Michael Chiappini
I am a second year M.A. student and hold B.A.s in English and Philosophy from Slippery Rock University. My academic interests include queer theory, deconstruction and poststructuralism, film and film theory, postmodern literature, contemporary American literature, and Native American literature.

Hannah Fogarty
I am a second-year M.A. with a B.A. in English from Kent State University (2011). I am interested in modern and postmodern American literature.

Zachary Hacker
I’m a second year M.A. student with a B.A. in both English and History from the College of Mount Saint Joseph in Cincinnati (2012). My interests include science fiction and fantasy, Bloomsbury, and post-colonial studies.

Cara Miller
I am a second year M.A. student focusing on postwar American literature and new media. I received my B.A. in English from Ohio University in 2011.

Mark Mowls  
I have B.A.s in English and in Film Studies from Ohio State University (2002) and interests in film studies, visual culture and rhetoric, and British and expatriate American modernism.
I am a second year M.A. candidate with academic interest in poststructuralism, film, queer theory, and the effects of technology. I hold a B.A. in English from Ohio University (2011).

Cammy Sray
I am a first year M.A. student with a B.A. in English from Cedarville University. I am interested in gender studies, literary portrayals of social stigma, and the morphing spiritual narrative of twentieth-century America.

Ph.D. Students

Mary Assad
As a fifth-year Ph.D. student, I am continuing work on my dissertation: a rhetorical analysis of the American Heart Association’s “Go Red For Women” campaign. This project looks at issues of health, persuasion, gender, and personal story-telling in the context of a national marketing campaign. More broadly, I am interested in studying how the general public learns about health issues through educational texts, and further how such texts shape individuals’, and particularly women’s, self-perceptions. My teaching interests include ESL and Writing in the Health Professions.  I have earned a B.A. in History from Baldwin-Wallace College (2006) and an M.A. in English from Case Western (2009), as well as a TESL certificate (2008).

Varsha Balachandran
A fourth year Ph.D. student, I am currently beginning work on my dissertation, which will explore how and why ethnic-American writers choose to write metafictions, i.e. self-conscious, self-reflexive fictions. My work focuses on authors such as Philip Roth and Toni Morrison, and the different ways they use metafictionality to portray the ethnic experience. More broadly, I am interested in theories of identity construction, reader-response theory, and the cross-cultural American experience. Other interests include life-writing and autobiography studies and ESL pedagogy. I hold a B.A. in English from Mahatma Gandhi University, Kerala, India (2006), and an M.A. in English from The University of Akron, Ohio (2009).

Drew Banghart
As a third year Ph.D. student, I am preparing for my qualifying exams and beginning work on my dissertation which will explore the ways Victorian literature and psychology theorized the body’s role in the growth of the mind.  I focus on such major Victorian authors as Robert Browning, George Eliot, and Thomas Hardy.  More broadly, my research interests include medical humanities, science studies, issues of embodiment, posthumanism, and composition and technical communication.

Erin Blakeslee
I am a first-year doctoral student drawn to CWRU by the Writing History and Theory (WHiT) program. Previous to beginning my studies here, I taught writing for seven years at Purdue University and Ivy Tech Community College in Indiana. I earned my B.S. in Cinema and Photography from Ithaca College and my M.F.A. in Creative Writing (Fiction) from Purdue. My research interests include writing program administration, computer-mediated composition instruction, community engagement, and feminist, queer, and minority rhetorics.

Cara Byrne
I am a Ph.D. student whose academic interests include children’s literature, African-American literature, gender studies, feminism and ESL pedagogy.  I earned my B.S. in Education and my B.A. in English from Bowling Green State University (2009) and my M.A. in English from Case Western Reserve University (2011). I am also licensed to teach middle school and high school integrated language arts in Ohio.

Jason Carney
I am a third year Ph.D. student who is interested in aesthetics, pulp fiction, modernist literature, and the history of Anglo-American literary criticism. I am attracted by questions of literary value, that strange divide between “high” and “low.” For fun I write stories of robots, sorcerers, and other novums.

Evan Chaloupka
I am a first year PhD student whose research interest include disability in literature, medical rhetoric and disability, and contingent labor issues in higher education. In 2012, I earned my M.A. in English  from The University of Akron. In 2010, I earned my B.A. in English from The Ohio State University. I am a member of the Ohio Part-time Faculty Association’s organizing committee and have taught composition at Lakeland Community College, Lake Erie College, and Ursuline College.

Thom Dawkins
I hold an M.FA. in Creative Writing (Poetry) from Chatham University and an M.T.S. from Vanderbilt Divinity School. My research interests include early modern literature, theological studies and expressions of illness and disease in the period, as well as poetry and poetics in general.

Kate Dunning
A Ph.D. candidate focusing on 19th- and 20th- century American poetry, my interests include Emily Dickinson, W. S. Merwin, ecocriticism, and third wave feminism. I hold a B.A. in English and French with a minor in Spanish (2008), as well as a Master’s in Library Science (2009) from the University at Buffalo. I also spent the 2009-2010 academic year teaching English at the University of Maroua in Cameroon (Central Africa) as a Fulbright grantee.

Eric Earnhardt
I hold a B.A. in English from Geneva College (2006) and an M.A. in Literary History from Ohio University (2011). I am a second year Ph.D. student focusing on ecology and literature, critical theory, and issues of environmental and social justice in American literature.

Nicole Emmelhainz
As a Ph.D. student focusing on writing studies, I’m specifically interested in how digital/new media technologies and feminism and gender studies influence writing classrooms. I hold a B.A. in English (Professional Writing) from Capital University, as well as a Master’s in English (General Studies) from Ball State University and a Master’s in Creative Writing (Poetry) from Ohio University.

Catherine Forsa
I hold a B.A. in English from Fairfield University and an M.A. in English from Seton Hall University. My research interests include eighteenth- and nineteenth-century American literature and Writing Studies, especially medical rhetoric and the intersection of literature and medicine.  

Jennie Giaconia
I am a Ph.D. student interested in History and Theory of Rhetoric and Composition, Life Writing, and the Teaching of Writing.

Miriam Goldman
I am a Ph.D. student focusing on Post-War, primarily American literature. My research foci are narrative and rhetorical theory, technical and professional writing, and issues of agency, identity, and the body. My teaching is as important to me as my own work. In the classroom, I undertake to deploy experiential methods and create classroom communities based on trust and co-decision making whenever possible.

Megan Griffin
I am a first year Ph.D. student, and received my MA from John Carroll University in 2013.  My main research interest is Renaissance literature, with a focus on drama.  Other areas of interest include 19th-century American literature, 20th-century science fiction literature, gender studies, and authorship studies.

Raymond Horton
I am a first year Ph.D. student with my B.A. in English from Mercyhurst College (2010) and my M.A. in English from Case Western Reserve University (2012). My research interests include American literature (postbellum to contemporary), literature and religion, critical theory and philosophy of religion, multicultural and immigrant fiction, and composition.”

Kristin Kondrlik
As a third year Ph.D. student participating in the WHiT program, my research interests include medical rhetoric and literature of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, particularly in periodicals. I received my B.A. in English and Political Science from Canisius College (2008) and my M.A. in English from Case Western Reserve University (2011).

Michelle Lyons-McFarland
I hold a B.A. in English and Humanities from the University of Washington (2010) and an M.A. in English from Case Western Reserve University (2012). My area of focus is 18th-century British literature. Academic interests for me include thing theory, gender and sexuality studies, gothic literature, games and new media, reader/author/publisher communities and relationships, and composition. student focusing on 18th-century British literature.

Claire McBroom
I received my B.A. in English with a minor in Art History from Bowling Green State University (2010), and my M.A. in English from John Carroll University (2012), where I worked as a graduate assistant in the First-Year Writing program. I am most interested in contemporary literature, film, and television, as well as the medical discourses of Type 1 diabetes. My research and teaching typically consider gender, sexuality, marriage and romantic relationships, performance and social construction, and notions of metafiction and postmodernity.

Marcus Mitchell
I am a third-year Ph.D. student focusing on Victorian and Edwardian literature and culture. My specific research interests include discourses of embodiment, gender ideologies, New Woman fiction, and supernatural studies. I hold a B.A. in English from Illinois Wesleyan University (2008) and M.A. in English from Case Western Reserve University (2011).

Andrea Nienstedt
I am a first year Ph.D. student, with both a B.A. and M.A. from Oakland University in Michigan. My research interests are primarily in 19th-century transatlantic literature (mostly British/Irish and American). Within this period, I’m especially interested in gender issues, specifically, representations (by women or men) of things like gender stereotypes, womanhood, femininity, female sexuality, spinsterhood, etc. I like to utilize information from traditionally non-literary period documents, like advertisements and newspaper articles. I also enjoy the free time and inherent social acumen of a career bibliophile.

Monica Orlando
I received a B.A. (2005) and M.A. (2008) in English from John Carroll University, and I taught high school English for two years before coming to Case to work toward my Ph.D.  My academic interests include 19th- and 20th-century American literature, autobiographical writing, and disability studies, particularly life writing about disability.

Michael Parker
I am a Ph.D. student focusing on queer theory and Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Utopian literature. My primary areas of interest are queer temporalities, utopias, aesthetics, and orientations. I received my B.A. in Russian Language and Literature from the University of Pittsburgh in 2007 and my M.A. in English from Case Western in 2011.

Jessica Slentz
I am a second year Ph.D. student interested in rhetoric and digital literacies, new media, multimodal composition and visual rhetoric. I hold a B.A. in Professional Communication and Information Design from Nazareth College, an M.A. in Creative Writing from Kingston University, London, UK, and an M.A. in English Literature from the University of Rochester.

Gregory Summers
I am a Ph.D. student interested in visual rhetoric and new media studies. My dissertation topic is “Sustainability Reporting in the Age of New Capitalism: A Textually-Oriented Discourse Analysis of the Global Reporting Initiative.”

Matthew Trammell
I’m a first year doctoral student who primarily studies British literature and culture of the long nineteenth century, with particular foci on the Victorian and Modern periods. I hold a B.S. in English from Troy University (2009) and an M.A. in English from CWRU (2013). I’m interested in the study of objects, things, and material culture in general, particularly with issues of how humans attempt to identify with and define themselves through the world that surrounds them, as well as the role served by objects and art objects in influencing and structuring both phenomenological and aesthetic experience. I’m also interested in aesthetics and neo-formalism, questions of value, and film.

Scott Weedon
I graduated from Loyola University of Maryland with a B.A. in English and from Case Western Reserve University with an M.A. in English. I am a Ph.D. student and I focus on professional communication, rhetorical theory, and narratology.