Author Archive

The Difference Between Reading Your Life & Writing It

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Here is the speech I wrote for Honors Convocation, under the guidance of Dr. Macchi and Dr. McGinty. I was thrilled when a young woman told me after the ceremony that my speech… Continue reading

Grad Student to Full-Time Academic: A Transformation

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by Sheldon Gaskell On May 30th, 2017, my birthday, I packed my truck and left Macomb, Illinois, vowing to never return. The 5:00AM sky was clear until the upper troposphere where a layer… Continue reading

Why I Study—and Teach—Literature

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By Dr. Zachary Dilbeck Zac Dilbeck earned his PhD in English and English Education at Idaho State University (2015), where he wrote a dissertation titled “Middle-earth, Middle-margins: Seeing Dwarves in the Shadows of… Continue reading

The MLA Convention: The Journey of a First-Time Attendee

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By Daniel W. Holst I proudly graduated in May 2018 from WIU-QC in May 2018 with a Master of Arts in English Studies—I feel heartfelt gratitude to my Thesis director Dr. Malachuk and… Continue reading

Jerry Hansen Retires

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    When Jerry Hansen arrived at WIU in 1984, he had no idea he’d stay 34 years. Here in WIU’s English Department, Jerry found his home. He immediately immersed himself in the… Continue reading

Letter from the Chair — Reading Beyond the Present Moment

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This Spring my undergraduate mentor, Dr. Jeffrey Skoblow, retired from teaching. Jeff Skoblow will always be the embodiment of “English” for me. A deeply read Marxist theorist, specializing in William Morris and Victorian… Continue reading

Huizinga on Lateness: 10th Annual Magliocco Lecture with Dr. Birger Vanwesenbeeck

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By: Sheldon Gaskell Late winter, 11:30 am, Tuesday, March 7th一the calm, sunny morning after tornado sirens and harsh, relenting winds beat the Macomb streets a shade of twigs and leaf buds—my fellow graduate… Continue reading

A Magical Experience: Harry Potter Study Abroad

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By: Haley Helgesen I first read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone when I was eleven years old. Staying up past my bedtime, reading by lamp light, I never imagined the series would… Continue reading

Interview with Barbara Harroun

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, By: Brittany Douglas I had the privilege of interviewing one of the creative writing professors here at Western Illinois University, Barbara Harroun. Initially, Harroun’s educational path lead her down the road to… Continue reading

A Letter from the Chair – A Major that Matters

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I have been thinking a lot this year about the courses our students take and what they learn when they come to Western. I have concluded, maybe not surprisingly, that the English Major… Continue reading