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Achievements

Purdue's Comparative Literature Program is very proud of its graduate students. Below are several who have won prestigious awards and grants for the 2013-2014 academic year.

Fellowships and Awards

  • Lynn Fellowship
    Zihan Wang
  • PRF Research Grant
    Natalia Fontes de Oliveira
    Slaney C. Ross
  • Bilsland Dissertation Fellowship
    Simone Aguiar
  • PRF Summer Research Grant
    Joanna Benskin
    Tulin Ece Tosun
    Christian Weiler

Purdue's Comparative Literature Program is very proud of its graduates, some of whom have gone on to become professional academics, while others have pursued different careers. Here are some of our students who have submitted information about their time here at Purdue and their current careers.

Carolina Andrade
Carolina earned her M.A. in Comparative Literature in August 2009.

Monica Arnett
Monica earned her M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2007.

Manuel Apodaco-Valdez
Manuel earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2006. His dissertation is entitled "Ritualistic Hybridities: A Comprehensive Study of Mexico's Costa Chica Devils Dance".

Tatjana Babic Williams
Tatjana earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2011.  Her dissertation is entitlted "'La Storia conta e pesa': The Ghosts of Colonial Past in Igiaba Scego's Writings".  Tatjana teaches Italian language and culture as a Continuing Lecturer at Purdue.  She lives in West Lafayette with her husband Pat and two lovely daughters, Maia and Emma.  She has recently started training to become a certified instructor of BodyFlow - an athletic blend of Tai Chi, Yoga, and Pilates.

Maura Bergonzoni
Maura earned her M.A. in Comparative Literature in August 2007.  Maura teaches English at Liceo Manfredo Fanti in Carpi, Italy, where she is in charge of international exchange programs.  Every year she goes to the Netherlands and every other year to  San Francisco with honor students.  She has co-edited a book, In Living Memory (New Academia, 2009), with Professor Benjamin Lawton on the Italian director and writer Pier Paolo Pasolini.  She has also published articles and reviews on Italian documentary films by directors Alina Marazzi and Pippo Delbono.

Tracy Bradenburg
Tracy earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in December 2002. The dissertation was entitled "Beyond Words in Oaxaca: Journey to the Center of Visual Thought".

Simone Caroti
Simone earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2009. His dissertation was titled "Theater of Memory Against a Background of Stars: The Generation Starship Concept from 1934 to 2002."  Simone is an adjunct faculty member in the Communications Department at Brevard Community College, Cocoa campus, Florida.  He is also the Director of Public and Educational Outreach for the Astrosociology Research Institute.  His revised dissertation has been published as a book, The Generation Starship in Science Fiction: A Critical History, 1934-2001.

Ya-Chen Chen
Ya-Chen earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2005. The dissertation was entitled "The Chinese Feminism Which is Not One".

Melissa Coburn
Melissa earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in December 2002 and her dissertation was titled "The Creation of Color Changing Valuations of Race in Italian Women's Writings since Unification".

Lynn Cornell
Lynn earned an M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2005. Her dissertation is titled "Destrutive Rebellion: The Bacchae and Its Impact on The Blithedale Ramance and Quicksand"

Hiromi Dollase
Hiromi graduated in December 2003 with a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature. Her disseratation was "Mad Girls in the Attic: Louisa May Alcott, Yoshiya Nobuko and the Development of Shojo Culture".

Jose Dos Santos
Jose earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in December 2001. His dissertation was "Probing the Limits of Mind and Knowledge: A Study of Selected Short Stories by Ambrose Bierce and Machado de Assis".

Roberto Ferreira
Roberto earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2011.  His dissertation is entitled "Staging Black Freedom through Media & Mind"

Catalina Florescu
Catalina successfully defended her Ph.D. dissertation in August 2007. Her dissertation was entitled "Transacting Sites of the Bodily Liminal Spaces."  Since graduation, Catalina has held teaching appointments near her home in Hoboken, New Jersey, at Rutgers University, St. Peter's College, Stevens Institute of Technology, and Hudson County Community College, where she is presently in the English Department.  She is developing a literacy and writing program for Hudson County.  Her first book of non-fiction, Inventing me/Exercitii de retrait was recently published in Romania.  Her revised dissertation, Transacting Sites of the Liminal Bodily Spaces is available as a book at www.amazon.com and at www.borders.com.  She is an MLA Bibliography fellow, appointed to index articles about Romanian literature and culture.

Sohelia Ghaussy
My name is Sohelia Ghaussy and I graduated in 2001 with a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature. I specialized in diasporic cultural productions by women. Currently, I am employed as a full-time faculty member at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore. I find that this position perfectly matches my training and my interest. MICA was looking for someone eclectic, someone who was interested in a variety of disciplines and who had an interest in theory. They also wanted an interdisciplinary person who could relate to the art-based curriculum that dominates the art institute. Throughout my studies, I was drawn to visual cultures and film in addition to textual production and theory. My personal experience of up-rootedness and diasporic wandering may have influenced my choice of engaging with disciplines such as postcolonial studies and feminist theory; at Purdue, I found the vocabulary to express my interest and tie some of the myriad strings together. At MICA, I have the chance to design courses that closely reflect what I studied. I am teaching an upper-level course called "Gender and Film," and another upper-level course entitled "Third World Women Writers." Next year, I will teach a graduate course called "Psychoanalysis and Film", and three upper level courses, "Colonial Literature"; "From Women's Novels to Men's Films"; and "Body Discourses".

Ana Gomez-Laguna
Ana earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in December 2002 with a dissertation entitled "Defleshing Jealousy, an Ideological Device in Shakespeare, Cervantes and Zayas".

Jason Lotz
Jason was awarded the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2014 with a dissertation entitled "Against Babel: A Comparative Model of Tragedy."

Steven C. Gooch
Steven earned his M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2009. He will continue to the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2009.

Tara Hines
Tara earned her M.A. in Comparative Literature in December 2009.

Benjamin Howland
Benjamin earned his M.A. in Comparative Literature in August 2010.

Yuhan Huang
Yuhan Huang earned the M.A. in Comparative Literature in August 2012.  Her thesis is entitled "Western & Chinese Traditions of Reality: Plato to Baudrillard".

Martina Witt-Jauch
Martina earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2010. Her dissertation is entitled "Gothic Villains and Criminal Detectives in Theodor Fontane, Anna Katharine Green and Arthur Conan Doyle".  Martina is currently a full-time Lecturer in English and E-Learning at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts, Hildesheim, Germany.  At the same time, she is completing a book project, on the comparative analysis of trauma and terror novels since the French Revolution, at the University of Goettingen as part of her postdoctoral qualification (Habilitation).  Martina was married in February 2011.

Lei Jin
Lei Jin earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2009 with a dissertation titled "Gardens of Good and Evil: Chinese Supernatural Tales and American Gothic Stories".  Lei Jin is assistant professor of Chinese language, literature, and cinema at the College of Charleston, South Carolina. Her article, "Poe's Landscape: Dreams, Nightmares, and Enclosed Gardens," has been accepted by Forum for World Literature Studies.  Her book length translation Zhongguo gudai yuzhoulun yu zhengzhi wenhua, Cosmology and Political Culture in Early China (by Aihe Wang, published by Cambridge University Press, 2000) has been accepted by Shanghai guji chubanshe.  Lei Jin's current research focuses on Chinese documentary films.  Working with a poet and fisherman, she is also engaging a translation project about classic Chinese fishing poems.

Jinhua Li
Jinhua Li earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2011.  Her dissertation is entitled "Transnational Remakes: Gender & Politics in Chinese Cinemas & Hollywood (1990-2009)".

Jason Lotz
Jason earned his M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2008. He continued on to the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2008. 

Mahmoud Mohamed Gewaily
Mahmoud earned his Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2007. His dissertation was entitled "Explication and Implication in the English Translation of Mohamed Choukri's For Bread Alone: Linguistic and Pragmatic Losses."  Originally from Egypt, Mahmoud is now teaching in Adelaid, Australia, where he is currently on study leave.  He has published several articles on Choukri and Nawal El Saadawi's Woman at Point Zero.

Maria Hadjipolycarpou
Maria earned her M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2005.

Sirene Harb
Sirene earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2002. The dissertation was entitled " Metissage, Memory and Resistance in Postcolonial Narratives".

Tso-Wei Hsieh
Tso-Wei earned a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2005. The dissertation was entitled "The Rhetorical Strategy of Travel Narrative in Li Ruzhen's Jinghua Yuan and Herman Melville's Mardi."

Yuwen Hsiung
Yuwen earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2007. Her dissertation was entitled "Exressionism and Its Deformation in the Contemporary Chinese Theatre." Yuwen is now teaching at Vassar College.

Chung Kuang Hu
Chung Kuang earned an M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2005.

Numsiri Kunakemakorn
Numsiri earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2005. The dissertation was entitled "Threatening Young Ladies: Re-Inscribing National Borders through Images of Adolescent Women in Twentieth-Century Mexican, Brazilian, and Ethnic North American Novels"

Yilin Liao
Yilian Liao earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2010. The dissertation was entitled "What is in the Well? A Search of Wells in Chinese Literature and Cinema, 1980-2003."

Tatyana Lyaskovets
Tatyana earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2009. Her dissertation was entitled "Temporal & Visual Narrative Structures in Bely, Nabokov, Robbe-Grillet and Resnais."

Binnie Martin
Binnie earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2004. She is currently a lecturer in the Department of English at Purdue University.

Natasa Masanovic
Natasa earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2002 with a dissertation entitled "Sophocles and Shakespeare (Re) Visited: Bertolt Brecht, Heiner Mueller and the Issue of Adaptation in the East German Drama".

Yoshiko Matsuura
Yoshiko earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2010. Her dissertation title is "Behind the Mask: Rereading Tachihara Masaaki's Literary Works from Postcolonial Perspectives".

Lindsay Milkert
Lindsay earned her M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2008.

Liang Lu Miller
Liang successfully defended her dissertation in May 2011.  The title is "Western Myths & Construction of Cao Yu's Two Tragedies".  LIang is currently a Chinese instructor at DePauw University in Indiana.

Michael Mitol
Michael earned his Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in December 2002. His dissertation was titled "An Enlightened Sense of Virtue: Morals and Manners in Eighteenth Century American Periodical Literature".

Xianfeng Mou
Xianfeng earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2009. The dissertation was entitled "One Hundred Years of Solitary Light: Rites of Passage for Modern American and Chinese Women Writers, 1899-1996."

Jose Newton
Jose earned his M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2004. He is continuing his studies at Purdue University in the Ph.D. Program in Comparative Literature.

Teresa Nunes
Teresa earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in December 2006.  Teresa is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Hispanic Studies at the University of Houston where she teaches Portuguese and Spanish and is setting up a study abroad program to Brazil in conjunction with the Universidade Federal da Bahia in the Northeast region fo Brazil, where she is from.  She married Benjamin Cell, a History and Geography teacher. 

Stephen Pierson
Steve earned his Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2010. Steve is an Associate Professor of English at Onondaga Community College in Syracuse, New York.  In November 2010, Steve was elected to the Nominating Committee of the Two-Year College Association (TYCA) of the Northeast, a regional branch of the TYCA, an NCTE affiliate devoted to the professional development of English faculty at community colleges.  In March 2011, he gave a paper on ESL writing instruction at the annual SUNY Council on Writing Conference, held in Binghamton, New York.  In July 2011, he delivered a paper titled "The Monologic Imagination of Walt Whitman" at the 14th International Bakhtin Conference in Bologna, Italy. 

Laura Poggi
Laura earned her M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2006.

Kenneth Richard
Kenneth earned his Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in December 2006. "'O' ciclista': A Bicycle Perspective" was the title of his dissertation.

Siebel Sayili
Siebel earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in December 2005. The dissertation is titled "Falling Out of Paradisse and Cascading into an Amorphous Space: Processual Self, Truth and Meaning."

Brady Spangenberg
Brady earned the M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2006.  Brady also earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2011.  His dissertation was entitled "Civil Death in Early Modern Europe from Jack Cade to Luther, Hamlet, and Raleigh".

Peirui Su
Peirui earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2010. Her dissertation is titled "And Darkness Comprehended It Not - Epiphany in James Joyce and Fei Ming".  Her article "A Heap of Broken Images - A Comparative Study of Li he and T.S. Eliot" was published in the Journal of the Southwest Conference on Asian Studies (Summer 2011).

Buffy Turner
Buffy completed the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2014.  Her dissertation was titled "Force and Affliction in Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz and George Herbert".

Ashley (Tussing) Izzo
Ashley earned her M.A. in Comparative Literature in August 2010. Her thesis is entitled "Exploring Cultural Reflections Through Jules Verne's Around the World in Eighty Days."  After receiving her degree, Ashley was appointed as a Graduate Assistantship in the Collection Management department of the University of Kentucky's library system and began studying for the MLIS degree in Library and Information Science.  On May 28, 2011, Ashley married fellow Purdue alumnus Steven Izzo (BS AAE 2008) at St. Thomas Aquinas Church in West Lafayette.  Ashley and Steven are very happy together and had a wonderful time on their honeymoon to Costa Rica.

Luyang Wang
Luyang Wang earned her M.A. in Comparative Literature in May 2010.

Shaojing (Rita) Wu
Rita earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in August 2010. Her dissertation is entitled "A Verbal Paradise Visualized: An Ekphrastic Study of the "Daguanyuan" in Cao Xuetuin's Hongloumeng".

Bing Yan
Bing Yan earned her M.A. in Comparative Literature in August 2012.  Her thesis is entitled "Fathers & Sons in World Literature".

Cong Yin
Cong Yin earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2011.  Her dissertation was entitled "Un-concealing Vladimir Nabokov".  Cong is now in Shanghai with her husband and two sons, Emo and Leo Zhao.

Mei Zhu
Mei earned the Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in May 2006. The dissertation was titled "Our World, the Wasteland: American and Chinese Modernist Fiction in the Early Twentieth Century."