- Research Program Mentor
PhD Doctor of Philosophy candidate
American literature, Native American Studies, Colonial American Culture, Cinema Studies
Native American Storytelling
We know that storytelling is an important aspect of many Native American cultures. What can we learn by closely studying the details of one culture's storytelling tradition? What aspects of that culture's values and history are represented in their stories? And how does that storytelling tradition differ from others we might know? Students can focus on a particular group's tradition to explore how those stories can teach us about the culture and people.
From Charles Brockden Brown (in the 1790s) to Stephen King (starting the 1970s), American literature has been obsessed with the gothic. From murderous sleepwalkers to haunted mansions, the American landscape has been a scary place. What are the themes and preoccupations behind American gothic? Why does it keep coming back? Students can pick a particular work or author to analyze or look at a theme or commonality across different works.
Style in Cinema
From the very first silent movies to today's blockbusters, style has been an important part of film. We often like the films of certain eras or certain directors because of their style. But what exactly is film style? What are the elements that go into giving a film a particular style? Students can either track certain stylistic elements (camera movements, editing, use of color, etc.) or closely analyze a single film to explore the relationship between filmmaking and style.