Office: HH 261
Becky Anderson is a PhD Candidate in the English Language and Literature Department at the University of Waterloo, where she’s also pursuing a concurrent Graduate Diploma in Cognitive Science. She completed her BA (English Literature; French Studies) and MA (Literary Studies) at UWaterloo. Her research interests include new media art, fandom studies, community formation, transmedial adaptation theory, and fantasy literature. Her dissertation examines how virtual communities are created in massively multi-player online role-playing games and explores what kinds of self-construction emerge in these digital locales and how such self-construction reciprocally affects the living culture of the game. She’s a researcher at and Graphic Artist for The Games Institute, is a Copy Editor at First Person Scholar, and takes pride in being a professional procrastibaker.
Kasandra Arthur, HBA (Lakehead University) and MA (Lakehead University), both with a specialization in Women's Studies. Kasandra studies young adult literature, particularly the processes in which these texts are adapted to film. She is also interested in fandom studies and the ways in which audiences engage in various media telling the "same" story. Her doctoral research focuses on the relationship between author, audience, and interpretation in the Harry Potter universe. Other interests include gender studies, fantasy literature and literary theory.
Office: PAS 1232
Shereena R. Aruldason- H.BA (University of Toronto) and MA (York University) is a PhD candidate at the University of Waterloo whose research examines the potency of early modern women’s domestic manuscript writings as a social networking tool in England from 1590-1660. Focusing on recipe books, herbal and medical texts, religious writings and mother’s advice books, Shereena’s doctoral project will examine the importance manuscript culture played in the cannon of early modern women’s writing. Influenced by the theories of pragmatic language use, spatial production and practice developed by Pierre Bourdieu, Henri Lefebvre and Michel de Certeau, she is interested in such questions as; what are the circumstances under which women are producing these documents? How are manuscripts read and interpreted within the period? What impact do they have on a contemporary understanding of early modern women’s writing? Her dissertation will explore ways in which early modern women writers were able to create literary positions for themselves within social domains previously dominated by men, complicating the understanding of writing within the public and private domain.
Office: PAS 1238
Lacey Beer, Honours BA (WLU, 2010) and MA (uWaterloo, 2011) has previously held both Master’s and doctoral Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarships (CGS). She is currently specializing in Composition Theory and Pedagogy. Her dissertation explores the intersections between translingualism and technology. More specifically, her work looks at how composing platforms surveil and constrain the languages and discourses available to student writers. Her critique of existing composing platforms and their impact on translingual teaching and learning emerges out of an ethnographic study on the composing processes of students in ENGL 109: Introduction to Academic Writing.
Office: SCH 227
Clare Bermingham, Honours BA (Waterloo) is a doctoral candidate and previous holder of Master’s and Doctoral Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarships (CGS). Her dissertation is an examination of the intersections between literature and political discourses in pre-Stonewall American lesbian print culture, with a focus on The Ladder magazine and the affective construction of identity and community. This research is part of a broader engagement with affect, gender, and queer theories, as well as discourses of marginalization and resistance. Clare is currently the Manager of the Writing Centre at the University of Waterloo, where she brings her knowledge of composition and writing pedagogy to help support student writers across disciplines.
Adam Bradley, BA (McMaster) MA (Waterloo), is a PhD candidate in both the department of English Language and Literature and Systems Design Engineering. He is interested in the intersections between technology and traditional literary studies with a focus on early 20th century poetics. His MA research project, titled “Data Visualization and the Avant-Garde Aesthetic” was a digital humanities project completed in conjunction with the English department’s Critical Media Lab and the Engineering department’s Touchlab. His project investigated whether shifting the aesthetics of a given text can offer new insights into the study of its structure and how the integrity of that text can be maintained within this paradigm. His current work focuses on digital tool design for literary criticism and investigations into how philology can still function within a technological context. Other interests include modernist literature, classical languages, and ancient rhetoric.
Office: PAS 1066
Lauren Burr is a PhD candidate, studying locative media, augmented/alternate/hybrid realities, and pervasive games. Lauren’s recent projects include Bonfire of the Humanities, an alternate reality game designed for Congress 2012; Cytopath, an augmented reality necromedia game set in downtown Kitchener; and House of Lexia, a locative hypertext remediation of Mark Danielewski’s House of Leaves. She is also a contributor to the online publication, First Person Scholar. Lauren conducts her research with both the Critical Media Lab and The Games Institute at uWaterloo, and continues to collaborate as an adjunct researcher with the Carleton University Hypertext and Hypermedia Lab after completing an MA at Carleton in 2011. Lauren’s work is generously funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.
Justin Carpenter BA (University of Calgary) MA (University of Leeds) is a PhD student interested in Aesthetics, Critical Game Studies, Indigenous Literature, and Multimodality. More specifically, he hopes to explore indigenous video games (such as Never Alone) and how oral narratives function in these games, particularly how music and spoken word interact with visual and ludic elements in a game. He is also a copy editor for First Person Scholar.
Ryan Clement, BA (Brandon University, English and History) and MA (York and Ryerson Universities, Communication and Culture), is interested, scholarly or otherwise, in games (both board and video), comics, globalization, international development, interactive art projects, travel writing, and creative writing. Working with the Games Institute and the CIHR, he is currently developing an allergy awareness-themed board game to be used in health education. For his dissertation, he is studying the relationship between games and narrative.
Office: PAS 2216
Keely Cronin, MA (Queen's University), BA (Concordia University College of Alberta), has research interests in contemporary Canadian literature and popular reading practices in Canada. Her research explores depictions of mental illness in contemporary Canadian novels, and the popularity of these texts in book clubs, CBC Canada Reads, and online reading communities.
Office: PAS 1065
Morteza Dehghani wrote comprehensive exams in New Media and Literary Theory and is now working on his dissertation, which explores the aesthetics of elegiac cinema, bringing together film and poetry. He won the department's creative writing award between 2012 and 2015 and his debut collection of poems Send My Roots Rain was published in January 2014 by North Waterloo Press. His second collection The Whale Who Breaks the Surface of Morning was published in Persian in October 2016. He is an avid reader of fiction and is also interested in continental philosophy and classical languages.
Jennifer Doyle, BA (Mount Allison University), BFA (Mount Allison University), BEd (Memorial University), MA (Wilfrid Laurier University), has research interests that include ecocriticism, American Literature, psychoanalysis, and concepts of place and being. She has just begun work on her dissertation.
Judy Ehrentraut , B.A. (University of Toronto), M.A. (Carleton University) is a PhD candidate specializing in digital humanities, new media and games studies. Her research interests include agency and identity in role-playing games, immersion and interactivity, spatial theory, cybercultures, and utopian/dystopian themes in games and literature. She is particularly interested in avatars and player representation in simulated realities, and how those realities are modeled to challenge current social and political issues globally. As a member of the Games Institute, one of her current projects is the development of a generative narratology application for in-game communication and storytelling.member of the Games Institute, one of her current projects is the development of a generative narratology application for in-game communication and storytelling.
Office: HH 261
Sara Gallagher, (B.A., M.A. Trent University),
Sara is a second-year PhD candidate in Waterloo?s English Literature program. Her areas of interest include Twentieth Century American literary and cinematic texts, adaptation theory, and genre studies. She intends to focus her dissertation on the representation and reception of African-American and Indigenous subjects in revisionist Westerns.
England. His specific interests lie in figurative language of
representation such as metaphor and allegory and how these aspects of language change and develop throughout the period. He also writes on religious and devotional literature of the period.
Office: HH 261
Kyle Gerber, BA (Laurier) MA (Waterloo) BEd (Laurier), is a PhD candidate in the department of English Language and Literature. He is in the process of concluding his first year of the program, and is gearing up to begin reading for his area exams. Kyle is a recipient of the W. K. Thomas Graduate Scholarship and an Ontario Graduate Scholarship, and has been nominated for the TA Award for Excellence in Teaching. He is interested in Rhetoric (especially Burkean) and understandings of forgiveness, as well as Canadian Literature (especially “Mennonite” writing): the question at the nexus of these interests is “what action do we symbolize when we say ‘I forgive’?” When not taking up space on campus, Kyle enjoys working with his wife Tracy on their 175-year-old stone house, and playing mandolin in a bluegrass band that is putting the finishing touches on their third studio album.
Ian Gibson, BAH (Queen's), MA (Trent), is a PhD candidate in the department of English Language and Literature. He has research interests in literary theory, the Frankfurt School (specifically Walter Benjamin and Theodor Adorno), and in dialogue between literature and philosophy. His dissertation is an attempt to develop, based on treatments of allegory and Dialectical Image in the work of Walter Benjamin, a preliminary ethics of reading.
Some other interests include: 19th and 20th century American literature, philosophy of language, theology, existentialism, rhetoric, imagination, and cognitive science. And less literary/philosophical: climbing, running, camping, horror movies, video games, cartoons, and playing the drums.
Amna Haider is a third-year PhD student with two MPhil degrees in English Literature from University of Bristol, UK and Government College University, Pakistan. Her University of Bristol MPhil thesis, titled "Memory Remains: Dialectics of Gothic and Trauma, Hauntology and Narratology in Pat Barker's Historical War Novels" focused on the role and the purpose of the Gothic in the writing of war trauma in Pat Barker's historical novels. It evaluated the Gothic's particular effect in disturbing and destabilizing narrative constructions and historical representations to provide alternate discourses of understanding and perceiving trauma. It located and examined the lacunae present in the narrativization of history and analyzed how Barker's manipulation of the Gothic tropes deconstructs public history by privileging personal histories of traumatic estrangement and liminality. In her PhD dissertation she hopes to further her research into trauma theory and narrativization of history by focusing on African-American theater. She has publications on War trauma in Gothic Studies and War, Literature and the Arts journals.
Office: PAS 2224
George Henry, BA (University of Illinois at Chicago), MA (San Diego State University), is a fourth-year PhD candidate currently working feverishly to get his dissertation done before his funding runs out. Despite the acute anxiety generated by discussing himself in the third person, as well as mentioning funding, and dissertations, and work, he would like to declare research interests in humor theory; satire, parody, wit, and humor in American literature and performance; as well as the history and theory of rhetoric. George reads, watches, and listens to all types of humor with genuine fascination and gratitude as he attempts to keep a balanced perspective on life and not take himself (or much of anything else) too seriously. His dissertation is a rhetorical analysis of contemporary stand-up comedy.
Office: HH 261
Nicholas Hobin, BA (King's University College at WU) and MA (University of Waterloo), is a first-year PhD student curious about video games, narratology, Lovecraftian horror, and Shakespeare. He is currently pursuing questions about the figurative and narrative roles of space in virtual worlds, while considering broader questions of how video games manifest processes of conceptualization.
Office: PAS 2217
Christine Horton, BA (English and Political Science, University of Western Ontario) and MA (Wilfrid Laurier University), has research interests in the History and Theory of Rhetoric, Discourse Analysis, Literary Theory.
Office: PAS 1284
Mohsen Hosseini, BA and MA in English Literature (Shiraz University, Iran), is a third-year PhD candidate. For his master's degree, he worked on Gothic sublimity and the role of supernatural and superstition in ballads and romances of Coleridge and Keats. He has shifted to American Gothic since he chose American Literature as his primary area of study for the doctoral program. He is interested in Freud’s concept of “the uncanny” and its relationship to horror fiction.
Ashley Irwin, B.A. and M.A. (University of Guelph) is a Ph.D. student specializing in contemporary Black Canadian Literature. Her research interests include gender and sexuality, critical race theory, Black Canadian history, and literary theory. For her dissertation, she intends to explore the representation of racial discrimination in the works of Austin Clarke, George Elliot Clarke, Dionne Brand, and Dany Laferrière. She will pay particular attention to the way Canada grants second-tier citizenship to people of colour while paradoxically regarding itself as a racially and culturally inclusive nation. Ashley published an essay in Borders Undergraduate Arts Research Journal entitled “Grieving the Ungrievable: Negation and Recognition in Execution Poems” in 2012 and was nominated for the Associate VP Academic Teaching Assistant Award of Excellence in 2014.
Zahra Jafari, B.A and M.A (University of Isfahan), M.A (UWaterloo), is a PhD Candidate in the English Language and Literature Department at the University of Waterloo. Her areas of interest include Shakespeare, Cognitive Linguistics, Victorian Literature, Metaphor Studies, Film Studies and Audiovisual Translation.
Office: HH 261
Monique Kampherm, BA Administrative and Commercial Studies – Public Administration, Public Policy, and Political Science (Western University), MA Political Science (Western University), MA Multimedia Journalism – Television, Radio, and Online (Bournemouth University, England, UK), MA English – Rhetoric and Communication Design (University of Waterloo), is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Waterloo.
In combination with her diverse educational background, Monique’s past professional experiences as a policy advisor for the infrastructure and realty arm of the Government of Ontario, journalistic experience with Sky News Business and BBC Watchdog in England, and educational experience as a course director in the Writing Department at York University, partial-load professor in English at Seneca College, and partial-load professor in English at Sheridan, have helped shape her research interests.
Monique’s doctoral research focuses on rhetoric, digital media, and democratic engagement. She is examining the rhetorical influence of social networking in persuading democratic participation during elections.
Somayeh (Sam) Kiani
Office: PAS 2215
Sam Kiani completed her BA and MA in English Literature in Iran. She is currently working on her PhD dissertation under the supervision of Dr. Heather Smyth. Her research focuses on the dynamics of gender, sexuality, race, and diaspora in Anglophone Caribbean literature. Her interests include postcolonialism, Caribbean Literature, Diaspora studies, and women's writing.
Office: PAS 2213
Farzad Kolahjooei, BA & MA (English, Iran), a second year PhD student interested in film and literary theory.
Video games are everywhere now: in books, in film, on your TV, on your phone, in the classroom, in the workplace. I want to make sense of their impact on our lives. People today spend as much time playing games as they might have spent reading books fifty years ago. How does that restructure our cognition? McKenzie Wark summarizes that “Games are no longer a pastime, outside or alongside of life. They are now the very form of life, and death, and time itself." So "play" isn't just about play anymore. Play has become work.
I believe that it's essential to understand how we are using what we learn in games to approach challenges in our real lives. To plead ignorance is to allow external forces to co-opt those influences and manipulate them in their favour. Nick Dyer-Witheford and Grieg de Peuter warn that "video games are a paradigmatic media of empire." To this I ask: what is our alternative? How can we take this cognitive capital back from the gamified office and leverage it positively? Big questions. I can't answer them on my own. That's why I'm here at the University of Waterloo.
Office: PAS 2218
Mike Lesiuk, BA (Queen's University) and MA (University of Toronto), is interested in the nineteenth-century novel, especially in relation to questions about literary aesthetics, the role of narrative, and the peculiarities of serialized fiction.
Mike's personal website is the Refined robot.
Kyle Malashewski, BA (English, Western U) and MA (English, McMaster U), The metaphorical association between the body and body politic has a long, rich history that continues well into the eighteenth century. In this period, the healthy body politic is typically characterized by social order, economic growth, and political stability, and the threat of social ?disease? accordingly shapes many of the debates about how best to guarantee this virtuous state. In the literature of the eighteenth century, the ?undeserving? or ?idle? poor, who do not work, who drain the public coffers, and who lack appreciation for social hierarchies, are charged with promoting immorality, vice, and general disorder, and are consistently identified as the primary threat to achieving this goal. My dissertation interrogates the relationship between both medical and metaphorical conceptions of disease and the labouring poor. I demonstrate the importance of the evolving understanding of disease to both policy-based responses towards and public opinion on ?the poor,? a term which did not signify a precise, well-defined segment of the population so much as a broad array of emerging, interconnected social, economic, and political problems. I argue that representations of the labouring poor offer a latent critique of the mounting problems associated with economic growth and urban expansion under capitalism, including chronic underemployment and the inadequate regulation of the urban environment. These representations make increasingly legible the poverty of moral explanations concerning the roots of social disorder, and draw our attention to the importance of the role of poverty in fashioning the limits of eighteenth-century subjectivity. To this end, I focus on the overlap between eighteenth-century medical theory, urban reform, and poor law administration to inform readings of literary characters who reside on the margins of society: the deserving and undeserving poor men of Daniel Defoe?s A Journal of the Plague Year (1722); the fallen women of the anonymously written The Histories of the Some of the Penitents in the Magdalen House (1760); the eponymous orphan of Tobias Smollett?s The Expedition of Humphry Clinker (1771); and the poor protagonist of William Godwin?s Caleb Williams (1794).
Office: PAS 1059
Tommy Mayberry is a PhD candidate in English Language and Literature at the University of Waterloo. He holds a Joint Honours BA in English Literature and Fine Arts: Studio, with Dean's Honours, from the University of Waterloo and an MA in English and Cultural Studies from McMaster University. He has been the recipient of two Ontario Graduate Scholarships, and he is currently a recipient of a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Doctoral Fellowship. His dissertation, "The Gaga Academy: Drag Bodies as/in Subjective Scholarship," focuses transhistorically on drag (queen/king) culture as he mixes clothing, wigs, and make-up with his academic writing to embody his research.
Houman Mehrabian, BA and MA in English, is a PhD candidate at the University of Waterloo. His dissertation explores the complex relationship between emotions and the construction of character - between pathos and ethos - in Aristotle's rhetorical, ethical, and poetical theories; William Shakespeare's plays; and Friedrich Nietzsche's oeuvre.
Office: PAS 1061
Phil Miletic, BA and MA (Brock University), is interested in reading practices and literary communities in twentieth-century American literature. His research explores how certain new media, such as radio and the internet, foster communities of readers and facilitate readers' participation with the text, and traces this thought of a participatory text through the means of a technologic medium in American writing.
Devon Moriarty completed her BA (Psychology) and MA (English - Rhetoric and Communication Design) at the University of Waterloo. She is now a first-year PhD student and total nerd who is obsessed with the rhetoric of popular culture, and is also the recipient of a UW Provost Graduate Scholarship (2015-2016). Particularly interested in exploring the political implications of how the new media landscape of the Western world has created more dynamic power relations between media producers and consumers, and institutions and citizens, Devon spends the majority of her time perusing the “most viral” pages of Reddit and Imgur in search of interesting artifacts that illuminate the evolving way in which hegemonic ideologies are reinforced and challenged. Other research interests include cultural communication studies, cognitive science, and Canadian literature.
R. Travis Morton is a game studies scholar pursuing his PhD at the University of Waterloo, Ontario, studying collective identity-building online through ostention and legend-tripping. He is also an online journalist, writing articles for Lost Hemisphere and other online periodicals.
Dhruba Neupane I am a PhD candidate writing my dissertation that explores translingual-transliterate practices of a South Asian immigrant population in Southern Ontario. Drawing primarily on immigrants’ own literacy practices and on new literacy and composition studies, postcolonial theories, transnational and diaspora studies, with a special attention to non-western rhetorical traditions and communicative practices, this study will expose various strategies, often unnoticed or elided in academia, that immigrant writers adopt as they participate in and challenge the standard literacy.
I have my MA from University of Louisville, where I took courses in Rhetoric and Composition that I developed into my current study and research. I have presented in Conference on College Composition and Communication, Watson Conference, and a few others. In addition to writing dissertation, I am teaching undergraduate courses at uWaterloo’s English, and writing papers. One such paper titled “The Net Work of Diaspora Network as a Learning Community” looks at how labor and victim diasporic subjects teach themselves, making unique choices and challenging established codes, primarily from their exposure to social media. My upcoming presentation at 4Cs titled “The Importance of not Meaning: Linguistic Others and a Critique of Intention” reevaluates existing understandings of agency in writing studies to include a complex site of agency—from the other of linguistic others.
Interests: Trasnation, Translation, Translanguage; Diaspora, Immigration; Literacy, Rhetoric and Writing Studies; Postcolonial Studies; Body, Affect and Lifewriting; Ethics and Politics of Representation; Practice and Agency
If you have questions about my experiences at uWaterloo’s English (as an international student), and if you are interested in collaborating on book projects, online journals, and sharing ideas, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Office: PAS 1238
Graeme Northcote, homo sapien sapien (occasionally living up to the name), BA Honours (English and Philosophy, University of Guelph), MA (North American Literature, the University of Guelph), is a second-year PhD student here at the University of Waterloo, with a dual specialty in rhetoric and media studies. When he isn’t referring to himself in the third person, he is working to apply ecocritical and semiotic systems of analysis to discussions of modern technostructures. His research aims to explore the mythological rhetoric of communication and transportation infrastructures.
Specifically, he seeks to critically engage with how these technologies operate as highly concentrated symbolic matrices that encode powerful and pervasive cultural narratives of what it means to be human and our place in relation to non-human animals and the rest of the living world.
Office: HH 261
Patricia Ofili, MA, Rhetoric and Communication Design, (Waterloo, Canada), MA, English Language, (Unilag, Lagos, Nigeria), Masters in Public Admin, (LASU, Lagos, Nigeria), and BA, (English, Ekpoma, Nigeria). Recipient 2011 CIGI (Center for International governance Innovation) Graduate Research Grant, with a publication on the rhetorical/language dimensions of conflict on CIGI website. Her research interests include rhetoric of conflict/conflict resolution, and the examination of rhetoric as a tool for interrogating ideologies surrounding politics, gender, race and culture in literature, films, folktales and socio-political interactions. Her doctoral project will study Mandela’s subtle rhetoric as a peculiar cross between Augustinian and Quintilian rhetorical models, the framing and reframing of his identity over the decades, and his strategic employment of legal logic to unsettle apartheid ideologies.
Office: HH 261
Alexandra Orlando, (BA and MA, English and Film, Wilfrid Laurier University), is a PhD student at the University of Waterloo specializing in game studies. Her research interests includes the intersection between film theory and game cinematics, e-sports, and East Asian game studies. She is also the associate commentaries editor for FirstPersonScholar.com and a researcher at The Games Institute. For more information on her current projects, visit www.alorlando.com.Joannis Ouzas.
Jack is a third-year Ph.D candidate specializing in 20th-century
American literature and whose interests also include rhetoric, ethical
criticism, and literary theory. His dissertation will explore the
work of maverick American writer William T. Vollmann (pictured) from a rhetorical perspective influenced by the work of Kenneth Burke, Wayne Booth, and Bakhtin.
Office: PAS 1064
Meredith Powell, BA (Wilfrid Laurier University) and MA (Wilfrid Laurier University), has research interests in gender studies, digital media theory and design, and post-colonial theory and literature. Her Ph.D. dissertation research embraces all three areas in a study of children and digital technologies.
Jay Rawding, BA (University of New Brunswick, Saint John) and MA (University of Toronto), has interests in Canadian literature and ecocriticism. His research analyzes existing literary works that have originated from, and are about, northern Alberta. By studying how the land, history, and culture have previously been represented in texts, he establishes connections with contemporary narratives that characterize this highly contested region. Other interests include romanticism, postcolonial literature, and American literature.
Office: HH 261
Meghan K. Riley (BA and MA, University of Michigan-Flint), a former high school teacher and tutor, is a PhD student at the University of Waterloo and is studying the intersections of race, class, gender, sexuality, and disability in speculative fiction. Her dissertation will attempt to answer the question of how these intersectional depictions can assist composition students in examining their own interpellation and write from multiple perspectives. Meghan also works part-time in the Student Success Office as a Student Leadership Program Facilitator. With support from the Graduate Studies Endowment Fund, Meghan recently founded Inters(p)ections, an interdisciplinary speculative fiction reading group. Meghan's other research interests include dialogic theory, poststructuralist continental philosophy more generally, feminist philosophy of science, situated identity theory, critical race theory, and neuroscience. Conference presentations include "'I Thought With You I Could be Myself': Passing and Empathy in Octavia Butler's Novels" at the Pacific Ancient and Modern Language Association, "Biology in/as Rhetoric in Octavia E. Butler's Science Fiction: A New Paradigm for Epistemology" at the Center for Cognition and Neuroethics, and "Representation ≠ Reproduction: Sterilized Renderings of Raced and Racialized Characters in Science Fiction Television, from Star Trek to Orphan Black" at the Science Fiction Research Association. Meghan's research has been generously funded by the Ontario Trillium Scholarship.
Office: HH 261
Samuel Rowland, (B.A., M.A. Trent University), is a first year Ph.D. student interested in synaesthesia studies, popular fiction and culture, queer theory, and literary theory. His MA thesis, “Stop Making Sense: Subjective Dissonance in Children’s and Young Adult Fiction,” focused on the emergence of the synaesthete coming-of-age story in fiction for young readers. As part of his Ph.D. research, he wants to compile a database of synaesthetes in order to investigate trends in personal and public perceptions of the synaesthetic mode.
Saeed Sabzian, BA and MA (Iran), is interested in the long-lasting dichotomy of logos/pathos, particularly a "rhetoric of emotions" that he is formulating through cognitive theory, rhetorical theory, literary theory, sound studies, and film theory. Saeed is working toward completion of his dissertation in film and novel under the supervision of Dr. Randy Harris.
Office: PAS 2215
Corrie Shoemaker, BSc and BA (Trinity Western University) and MA in Interdisciplinary Humanities (Trinity Western), is a PhD student currently writing her dissertation proposal on Canadian adaptations of Shakespeare with a focus upon Ontario’s Stratford Festival of Canada and British Columbia's Bard on the Beach. Her areas of interest include Early-Modern studies related to Shakespeare, Renaissance literature, Victorian literature and theatre application. Previous conference papers include "'The Knight's Tale': Chivalric Ideals and Unbridled Passion," at Waterloo University's 2010 Student Association for Graduates in English (SAGE) Colloquium, "Obsession with Possession: Control, Ownership and Release in A.S. Byatt's Possession," at Ottawa University's 2010 English Graduate Conference and "Anabella's Perverted Perception Through Unbridled Passion in John Ford's 'Tis Pity She's a Whore'," at York University's 2010 English Graduate Colloquium. Having previously worked with Bard on the Beach for her BA Honours thesis "From the Page to the Stage: Theory and Performance in Shakespearean Drama," a thesis case study of Bard's 2006 production of Measure for Measure, and the Stratford Festival for early graduate research, Corrie looks forward to expanding her understanding of Shakespearean adaptation with both renowned festivals. Her Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) supported MA thesis, entitled "'Rejecting a Religion of Extremes' Staging the Spiritual in the Merchant of Venice and Measure for Measure," dealt with Shakespeare's view of religious constrains and legalism with England's volatile religious environment.
Office: PAS 1238
Doug Sikkema, BA (Redeemer University College), MA (University of Ottawa), BEd (University of Toronto), is currently interested in religious rhetoric and ecocriticism. After being introduced to the writing of Wendell Berry in a course on Dante (of all things), Doug has turned his attention to notions of land use, place, and our interaction with the natural world and how religious frameworks shape such thinking. Doug is hoping to explore the writings of Gary Snyder, Marilynne Robinson, Annie Dillard, and Wendell Berry for his dissertation. Doug has presented some of his ideas at various conferences and is working on a paper on “Community: Mediator between Private and Public Interest” for the upcoming CAAS conference held at Wateroo.
David Thiessen, BA and MA (Waterloo), is interested in the intersections between neuroaesethetics, the interpretive role of the body in cognition, and late medieval artifacts and Middle English Literature. His research focuses on the medical, theological, and psychological models of subjectivity employed by late medieval authors and readers to better understand the process of linguistic interpretation in the period. He is currently preparing for his final comprehensive exam.
Masa Torbica completed her BA (Criminal Justice and Public Policy;English) and MA (English and Theatre Studies) at the University of Guelph. She is currently in her third year of the PhD program, specializing in Canadian literature and the history of rhetoric.
Strongly influenced by her interdisciplinary academic training, her dissertation examines affordances for decolonizing communication within contemporary Canadian society (specifically focusing on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, and the Idle No More movement). Her research is generously supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.
Jessica Van De Kemp
Office: PAS 1285
Jessica Van de Kemp, BA (Waterloo), BEd (Western Ontario), MA (Waterloo), is a third-year PhD Candidate specializing in martial rhetoric. Funded by an Ontario Graduate Scholarship, her dissertation engages with declassified government documents in order to explore how televised adaptations of information warfare position communication as an act of war. A member of the Ontario College of Teachers, Jessica is the winner of two TA Awards for Excellence in Teaching. She is also the author of the poetry chapbooks Spirit Light (The Steel Chisel, 2015) and Daughters in the Dead Land (Aldrich Press, 2017). Her poem, “Slant of the Girl,” was shortlisted for the 2015 Montreal International Poetry Prize. Twitter: @jess_vdk
Office: PAS 1238 and Games Institute
Elise Vist, BA and MA (English, Carleton University), is in her third year of her PhD, where she engages in fan studies. She focuses on small groups of fans who love television shows like Supernatural, Sherlock, or Hannibal. Her dissertation shows that intimate publics naturally develop in online fandoms, and the boundaries of those intimate publics are renegotiated or ruptured in contested spaces. Other interests include queer games and online activism.
Office: PAS 1238
Emma Vossen, BA and MA (Carleton University) is a second year PhD student at the University of Waterloo specializing in depictions of gender and sexuality in a variety of media and genres. She is especially interested in the ways that sexual interaction is depicted using constructed/fabricated (i.e. illustrated, written and/or digitally rendered) bodies in sexually explicit or pornographic comics and video games. She is a contributor to FirstPersonScholar.com and is a founder of the Games Institute Janes (GI Janes) an organization looking to bring those who identify as women together to play, make, write, and talk about games in safe and supportive environments. She has recently been published in the anthology Masked Mosaic: Canadian Super Stories and has two upcoming publications examining both The Walking Dead comic and the Fifty Shades of Grey phenomenon. She occasionally writes about her research at www.getsomeactioncomics.com.
Office: PAS 1087
Steve Wilcox, BA (University of Guelph), MA (University of Waterloo), is a PhD candidate. His research focuses on the intersection between disability studies and media studies. In particular Steve is interested in how various forms of media alter our perception of the world. He’s driven to answer the question: how can we better design technology to reflect innate and emergent changes in embodied perception from childhood through old age? In that respect Steve sees immense potential in videogames as a medium that can represent various forms of interaction. He’s the co-founder and editor-in-chief of First Person Scholar, a graduate student periodical that publishes weekly essays on games studies. Steve was also one of the five winners in the nation-wide SSHRC’s Storytellers: Research for a Better Life competition in 2013.
Office: PAS 1285
Benjamin Woodford, BA Dalhousie University, MA Queen’s University, PhD (History) University of Cambridge, UK, is a PhD student at the University of Waterloo. He is interested in seventeenth-century British literature, especially the prose and poetry of John Milton. He plans to explore Milton’s understanding of citizenship in terms of politics, religion, and nationality. His first monograph, Perceptions of a Monarchy without a King, was published with McGill-Queen’s University Press in 2013. He has also published three journal articles on seventeenth century print culture in historical and literary journals.