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English Graduate Student Involvement

Saint Louis University’s graduate program in English provides multiple ways that you can get involved on campus.

English Graduate Organization

Contact: Geoff Brewer
Each year, English graduate students elect a board of officers to act as representatives of the English graduate student community within the department and at the University level. EGO promotes the advancement of English graduate students as scholars, professionals and educators in organizing workshops, events and lectures on pedagogy, conferencing, publication and research. In addition to holding monthly board meetings open to all English graduate students throughout the academic year, EGO officers advocate graduate student welfare as representatives to the graduate committee, undergraduate committee, research committee, Department of English faculty meetings, and Saint Louis University's Graduate Student Association (GSA).

EGO contributes to the Department's research colloquium series, Textual Revolutions, in selecting speakers for and chairing each semester's graduate student sessions. The organization supports the Athenaeum, Woode-Walkers, Rhetorica, and South Asian/Postcolonial Literature reading groups; and assists with the promotion of the graduate department and the recruitment of prospective students. Likewise, EGO coordinates and sponsors social events, including the Welcome Picnic each fall, "Kudos" celebrations of graduate student achievements at each semester's close, and an annual graduate student humanities mixer - all to strengthen ties between graduate students, faculty and staff in the Department of English and between English graduate students and their peers in the College of Arts and Sciences.


Graduate English Reading Groups

Athenaeum: 19th-Century British Literature Research Group

Contact: Natalie Monzyk, Carolyn Hogan-Downey or Blanca Santonja-Gonzalez
Anthenaeum is a collection of graduate students interested in British and American literary and nonfiction works of the period, central theorists and the critical conversation surrounding these various works. The group welcomes all interested graduate students, as well as post-doctorates and faculty. This network also functions as an area for exploring issues of professionalization by conducting workshops pertaining to the state of the academic field, grant writing, job talks, etc. In addition, the group is cognizant of the need to conference and publish, and will hold mock conferences, readings/reviews of each others' work, and sponsor settings for individuals to discuss works and ideas in progress. The group holds bi-monthly meetings, with one meeting focused on a reading and the other meeting focused on professionalization; days and times will accommodate members of the group.

South Asian/Postcolonial Literature Reading Group

Contact: Alex Ocasio or Kathryn Polizzi
The South Asian/Postcolonial Reading Group is open to all genres, time periods and geographic regions within South Asian or postcolonial literature. The group examines issues relevant to race, ethnicity, class, gender and sexual orientation within this cultural matrix. It typically meets two or three times a semester and welcomes students and scholars from all disciplines.

 Contact: Lauren Terbrock or Byron Gilman-Hernandez
The Rhetorica reading group is a bi-weekly gathering of students and faculty interested in reading and discussing significant theoretical and historical texts as well as contemporary rhetorical artifacts in politics and culture. The reading discussion is led by one member of the group, rotating responsibility throughout the semester. In addition to reading conversations, we discuss professionalization and developments in the field, including upcoming conferences, publishing opportunities and current debates. Rhetorica also hosts monthly writing group meetings and occasional social events.
Welsh Reading Group

Contact: Anessa Kemna
The Welsh Reading Group is a group dedicated to the learning and translation of Middle Welsh. The group does so by reading and translating Welsh texts, primarily the Mabinogi, and other selections from the medieval Welsh canon. While the group's focus is medieval, no official academic affiliation with that period is required. Prior knowledge of the language is also not required, as the group is all learning together. Each member of the group is assigned a small set of lines every week, and the group meets and works through the translations, acquiring grammatical knowledge, vocabulary pronunciation. Translation is a collaborative effort as group members are all relative beginners, and all trying to learn from each other. The group meets weekly, on a date agreed upon by the members.

The Woode-Walkers Medieval Reading Group

Contact: Amy Nelson
"He moste needes walke in woode that may not walke in toune." 
(The Tale of Gamelyn, line 672)

The Woode-Walkers Medieval Reading Group is comprised of graduate students interested in medieval literature, as well as critical and theoretical approaches to these texts and to the field of medieval studies more broadly. This group thus reads a variety of both literary and historical texts in addition to current critical theory, and will often refer to the two medieval doctoral reading lists when selecting literary readings as a way to prepare for the M.A. and Ph.D. exams. Regular writing/research workshops also take place throughout both semesters for the reading and review of individual members' works in progress. The group meets for bimonthly sessions, typically on an alternating schedule of reading-based discussions and research workshops, and is open to any interested graduate students. They take their name from a 14th-century English romance, in which Gamelyn must take to the woods while living the life of an outlaw.