Professor Herman and student sin front of the Old Globe

News and Events

Upcoming Events


OCT 13-DEC 8
Tues-Thurs 12:00 - 4:00 p.m.
University Art Gallery

An exhibit featuring work by contemporary disabled artists, curated by Amanda Cachia.
Learn more about related events.

Meet and Greet

NOV 16
Meet & Greet
 12:00 - 2:00 pm
 Oggi's Pizza, SDSU Campus

All MA and MFA students, faculty and staff in the department are invited for meet and greet. 
Please RSVP to Mary Garcia at [email protected] by Nov. 14.


NOV 16
Living Writers' Series
 7:00 pm

Kevin Prufer will read from his most recent publications, including The Art of Fiction: Poems, which has been described as “phenomenal in both senses of the word.”

Poetry International

NOV 30
Living Writers' Series
 7:00 pm

Past and present poets, editors, and collaborators of SDSU’s beloved journal, Poetry International, will come together both in-person and via Zoom, to celebrate the 25th anniversary of its publication. Of this edition, Editor-in-Chief, Sandra Alcosser writes, “For this anniversary edition assembled during a pandemic, climate crises and world uprisings, it’s never been more important to have these shared conversations in verse and prose on the page.”


Recent News


National Center for the Study of Children’s Literature

New Certificate Cohort

Professor Daley is proud to announce the newest cohort of graduate students pursuing the Advanced Certificate in Children’s/Adolescent Literature:

  • Kade Gutierrez (M.A.),
  • Abigail Hora (M.F.A.),
  • Jorge Parra (M.A.),
  • Alan Pereda (M.A.),
  • Jessica Ramos (M.A.),
  • Spurgeon Thomas (M.F.A.), and
  • Kendell Wilkerson (M.A.).

In Memoriam

We are sad to share that Professor Emeritus Jerome “Jerry” Griswold passed away recently after a brief illness. Jerry was a professor in the Department of English and Comparative Literature for more than three decades, making important contributions to the study and teaching of Children’s Literature and to the development of the National Center for the Study of Children’s Literature at SDSU. He was a generous colleague and a fine raconteur, delivering stories with a warm wit and a twinkle in his eye. 

His family has created a memorial site for those who wish to share memories. Details of a future service will also be posted there. In lieu of flowers, his family suggests donation to the Elizabeth Hospice or Teri Inc

Critical Conversations in Children’s Literature 

Critical Conversations in Children’s Literature brings together authors and scholars to discuss critical topics brewing within the field.

Episode #1 features a conversation with Tae Keller, the 2021 Newbery Award, and Dr. Daley, an assistant professor in the Department of English and Comparative Literature, discussing the representations of girlhood presented in Keller's novel, When You Trap A Tiger. 

Episode #2 part two to Dr. Daley's conversation with middle-grade author Tae Keller, features Dr. Charlene Tung sharing her insights on the historical and theoretical context of When You Trap a Tiger. Tung, a professor of Women's and Gender Studies at Sonoma State University, specializes in gender and globalization, Asian American women's history/contemporary (im)migration, and gender and race-ethnicity in popular culture.

Episode #3 features Dr. Libby Gruner, the 2021-2022 President of Children's Literature Association (ChLA). ChLA is the largest organization of scholars, critics, professors, students, librarians, teachers, and institutions dedicated to studying children's literature. In this episode, Dr. Gruner considers the subtle and large ways that collaboration exists within the field.

Episode #4 features Lin Oliver, the co-founder of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). SCBWI is the largest organization of children's book industry professionals. In this episode, Oliver acknowledges that collaboration can often be a lesson in power negotiation. 

Episode #5 features our very own Newbery Award winning author, Matt de la Peña, along with New York Times bestselling illustrator, Loren Long. In this episode, they discuss their behind-the-scenes collaborative process for their 2018 New York Times bestselling picture book Love as well as their current project. 

Funded by the Department of English & Comparative Literature and an SDSU IRA grant and is in collaboration with the National Center for the Study of Children's Literature.


NOV 14
Book Talk: Julia H. Lee
 12:00 pm
 Art North 300B

Julia H. Lee, professor and chair of the Asian American Studies at UC Irvine will discuss her new book, The Racial Railroad.  The book highlights the surprisingly central role that the railroad has played—and continues to play—in the formation and perception of racial identity and difference in the United States.

Living Writers' Series
 7:00 pm

Each semester, thanks to an endowment created by her family and friends, the Laurie Okuma Memorial Reading honors the memory of SDSU alumna, Laurie Matsueda Okuma. The fall 2022 Okuma Author, Angela Narciso Torres, will share poems from her most recent publications, including What Happens is Neither, which has been praised as “poems of intense reflection and loss, but also of rediscovery and delight.”

OCT 31
Horror, Gothic, and Monsters: A Graduate Children's Literature Research Symposium
 12:00 - 1:00 pm

Moderated by Dr. Phillip Serrato, graduate students Dani Nouriazad, Lauren Chun, and Lara Amin present on gothic and horror in children’s literature and media. 

OCT 24
A reading and discussion with German novelist Bernhard Schlink
 11:00 am
Scripps Cottage

Imagine Europe and Humanities in Action present:
Internationally acclaimed novelist Bernhard Schlink will read from his latest novel, "Olga."

OCT 19
Living Writers' Series
7:00 pm

Yuvi Zalkow will read from his most recent book, I Only Cry With Emoticons, which has been described as “A sly, forthright comedy about the intersection of love and technology…” and answer questions from attendees.

Living Writers' Series
7:00 pm

Lizz Huerta will read from her debut novel, The Lost Dreamer. Huerta has been celebrated as “a powerful new voice in fantasy.”

SEP 29
Digital Humanities Faculty Lightning Talk
 4:00 pm
LA-61 and Zoom

Featuring Lashon Daley, Assistant Professor, English and Comparative Literature

SEP 21
"Why There's No Such Thing as Free Speech, and It's a Good Thing Too: Part the Second"
 12:00 pm
AL-660 or Zoom

Stanley Fish will address recent controversies over academic freedom and freedom of speech that have swirled around college campuses.

SEP 14
Living Writers' Series
 7:00 pm

Richard Martin will read from his most recent book, Chapter & Verse, which has been lauded as “…required reading for the pandemic world.”

One Story, Three Scholars
 3:00 - 4:00 pm
 via Zoom

One Story, Three Scholars brings together one prominent children’s book author and three scholars to celebrate National Read-A-Book Day. This event features a 15-mintue reading and discussion from author Dinah Johnson, followed by short presentations from scholars Lashon Daley, Gloria Rhodes, and Avery Caldwell about Indigo Dreaming through the lens of each of their research. The event will conclude with a Q&A.

Statement of Solidarity

We express our solidarity with all those whose lives are impacted by Russia's invasion of Ukraine and support the calls for a swift and peaceful resolution.

Our friend and former colleague, Ilya Kaminsky, who was born in Odessa, taught us a great deal about the country, its creative artists, and its rich history during his twelve years in San Diego. For those interested in his thoughts on the relationship between poetry and politics, take a look at this essay on Ukrainian, Russian, and the language of war or read the New Yorker's multimedia excerpts from Deaf Republic. You might also like to consult his recent interview with Slate about his poem "We Lived Happily During the War."

We encourage you, too, to visit Poetry International, one of the department's international literary journals, which is featuring Ukrainian poets and writers on its website.

Outstanding Graduating Seniors

OSG 2022 Rochelle and SaraThis year’s Outstanding Graduating Seniors are Rochelle Vera Serrano for Comparative Literature (left in photo) and Sara Canelon for English (right in photo). 

Both students selected Dr. Clare Colquitt as their most influential faculty member. 

Congratulations to all our graduates!

MAY 13
 3:00 pm
 Viejas Arena
The College of Arts and Letters ceremony for students and their guests (tickets required).

MFA Graduation Reading
 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Scripps Terrace

Join us for readings from our 2022 MFA graduating students.

Digital Humanities Showcase and Electronic Literature Competition
10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Our annual DH Showcase and E-Lit student competition is back! Join us as we reunite in the DH Center and celebrate all of the creative digital work we created during the Pandemic. 

Service commémoratif: Laurie Edson
 12:00 pm
 Scripps Cottage

You are invited to attend an informal service to commemorate the long and distinguished career of Professor Laurie Edson, who passed away at the end of 2021. Several former students and colleagues will share short memories or readings, and others are welcome to do so too. 

Adaptive Performance of Brown Girl Dreaming
1:00 pm

Brown Girl Dreaming, Jacqueline Woodson’s lyric memoir about finding her voice as a young African American writer, will be collaboratively adapted for performance by the students in Professor Dani Bedau’s THEA 510 advanced Creative Drama course.

Living Writers' Series
 7:00 pm
via Zoom

Award-winning poet, Atsuro Riley will read from his latest publications and answer questions from attendees.

APRIL 21-22
Omni Echo Event
 10:00 am

The Omni Echo is an immersive synthesizer, an augmented reality experience that stretches sounds in time. Chris Warren, Assistant Professor of Digital Composition and Sound Design, Music Recording Technology and Audio Design Area Coordinator in the School of Music and Dance, will lead this immersive exploration.

Faculty Book Celebration
 12:00 pm
AL-266 or Zoom

Join us as we celebrate recent faculty book publications.

Living Writers' Series
7:00 pm
On Zoom

Maurice Carlos Ruffin will read from his most recent publications and answer questions from attendees. 

NCSCL Visiting Scholar's Lecture
4:00 - 5:30 pm

This year's NCSCL Visiting Scholar's Lecture: "A 'Damn Mob' of Scribbling Girls: From Jo March to Starr Carter" by Maria Tatar.

Warner Innovation Lecture
12:00 - 12:50 pm

 Assistant Professor of English and Comparative Literature Diana Leong will discuss her in-progress book manuscript, Against Wind and Tide: Toward a Slave Ship Ecology, which situates environmental justice within abolitionism to reveal how modern racial slavery shapes our understanding of what it means to be free within an environmentally-just world. 

Living Writers' Series
7:00 pm

Conversations in Children’s, Middle Grade, and Young Adult Literature: A Reading and Discussion featuring Award-winning Authors and Scholars, Chris Baron, Lashon Daley, and Matt de la Peña.

Bad Air, Built Environments, and the Brookes
10:00 am
On Zoom

Diana Leong will present her current research during the IEPA Faculty Work in Progress Lecture Series. 

Living Writers' Series
7:00 pm
On Zoom

Elisabet Velasquez will read from her debut novel, When We Make It, and answer questions from attendees.

Introduction to E-Lit
11:00 am - 12:00 pm
On Zoom

Join Brent Ameneyro for an introduction of his new position and a brief exhibition and discussion of Electronic Literature. 

New Faculty/Staff Lightning Talks
4:00 - 5:00 pm
On Zoom

Lashon Daley - Assistant Professor of English andComparative Literature
Romain Delaville - Digital Humanities Center ProgramsSpecialist.
Dustin Edwards - Assistant Professor of Rhetoric and WritingStudies
Kylie Sago- Assistant Professor of French in the Department of European Studies.

Living Writers' Series
 7:00 pm
On Zoom

The Laurie Okuma Memorial Reading presents, Award-winning Author and Utah’s Poet Laureate, Paisley Rekdal.

Indigenous Digital Storytelling
 4:00 - 5:00 pm
On Zoom

“Mite Achimowin (Heart Talk): Indigenous Women’s Expressions of Heart Health & Decolonizing Research Methods through Community-Based Digital Storytelling” with Dr. Lorena Sekwan Fontaine, Associate Professor, Human Rights, University of Winnipeg and SDSU Fulbright Scholar in American Indian Studies. 

In Memoriam: Laurie Edson

It is with a heavy heart that I share the news that Laurie Edson, Professor of English and Comparative Literature, passed away 29 December.  Laurie was an acclaimed scholar of the political, cultural, social, and economic issues facing women in postcolonial cultures, with her works drawing together literary and visual media to critique traditional methods of knowledge production. In addition to scholarly books on Henri Michaux and the Poetics of Movement and Reading Relationally, Laurie guest-edited special collections of several journals, translated Jeanne Hyvrard’s Mother Death, and published more than 30 book chapters and essays. 

Laurie joined SDSU as an Associate Professor of French in 1988, after appointments at Harvard, Stanford, and UCLA, and moved to the Department of English and Comparative Literature as a full professor in 1993, serving in multiple important roles over the course of her career. She introduced students to the works of writers such as Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Tsitsi Dangaremba and was recognized as the Most Influential Faculty member on three separate occasions (1989, 2012, and 2017). She also received Mortar Board’s Outstanding Faculty Award in 2012 and Phi Beta Kappa’s recognition for excellence in teaching in 2002. Throughout, she drew attention to the lives of the marginal and marginalized, and championed the importance of comparative and interdisciplinary approaches to the study of literature.