English Department

Recent Thesis Titles

2022 Graduates

Edi Kim, Diplopia

William Knight, Extended gutters : sequencing space and the narrative power of the panel in Watchmen

Tyler Kwon, A nut and the dream within

Lydia Hoyt Mead, [Some sentences & phrases I wrote once]

Rafael S. Monkarsh, Imagining Africa : representations of colonialism in Heart of darkness and the river between

Charlie Parker, It's a bitch being butch : finding a home for masculine lesbianism in 20th century narratives of development

Amelia Pillifant, "That while she lived she was a true lover, and therefore she made a good end" : conflicts of love and duty in the Arthurian romance

Ellie Pobis, Disrupting nature and narrative patterns : coming-of-age in Where the crawdads sing and the Morgesons

Dan Primka, Betrayal within : family drama as microcosm for the Irish civil war in Juno and the paycock

Anjali Alla Reddy, The power of the novel : recognizing the subaltern in the Ramayana

Eliza Brooks Vizard, "A woman's thinking and no mistake!" : differing perspectives on female agency in the Old IrishTáin bó cuailnge and Remscéla

Allison Devins Wallace, Per astra ad automata : three stories

Kelly Wenzka, Tumultuous listening : tone of voice in Elizabeth Bishop's poetry


2021 Graduates

Brian Blum, Stories About Storytelling: An Analysis of the Power of the Spoken Word in Beowulf, its Capabilities, and its Presentation


Lindsey Calderon, The Honor Principle: Examining Revenge Tragedies of Early Modern England

Allison Dennis, An American Revelation: The Need for a Historical Reckoning in Tony Kushner's Angels in America

Jordan Hennessee, "Is this love to come from out there?": Self-love as an Act of Defiance in Adrienne Kennedy's Plays

Isabel Lafky, Queer Wests, From Cather to Proulx

Gabrielle LaFratta, What is your substance, whereof are you made?: Gender, Sex, Bodies, and Love in Frankenstein and FranKISStein

Ethan Lambright, The Radical Doubt of the Four Branches of the Mabinogi

Sara Metzger, Woman Divided: An Analysis of Dichotomous Female Archetypes in Dickens’ Great Expectations

Faye Parks, F***ed Up Beyond All Recognition: The Challenge of Representing Trauma in Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five and Bluebeard

Caleb Saussy, Ars Memoria and Heteroglossia in Christine de Pizan’s Book of the City of Ladies

Elise Tangedal, Desire! Decay! Depravity!: Expressions of Decadence in Federico Fellini's Films of the 1960s

Aidan Walker, On Online Lines: The Place of the Reader in Web 1.0 Electronic Literature

Caleb Weil, A Boggy, Soggy, Squitchy Picture: The Ambiguity and Anxiety of Capitalist Discourse in Moby Dick


2020 Graduates

Jacey de la Torre, Ghost stories: discovering and disintegrating homespace

Jilian de la Torre, I felt myself a phantom: spacemaking and radical self-representation in the literature and filmmaking of homeless Bay Areans

Ella Fisher, Laughing at some fucked up shit: an investigation into the relationship between trauma and stand-up comedy

Parker Matias, The matter of citation:historical materialism and The Arcades Project

Miranda McGough, Lifting the "enigmatic veil": uncovering the artist figure in the life and writings of Mary Butts

Maya, Nesbitt-Schnadt, Hear

Hadley Parrish-Cotten, Alligator dreams

Zia Pollis, How to eat a woman

Karley Quadros, Watershed

Kashaf Qureshi, The self as text: Augustinian reading and the legible corpus in Donne and Milton

Chloë Thompson, Bobo and the poems

Drew Veltrop, Meursalt's linguistic metamorphoses

Analisa Venolia, Let's do a makeover!: an examination of the modernization of Jane Austen in Clueless and The Lizzie Bennet diaries

Alan Yang, Painbird: a poetic thesis on coping with vague anxieties and particular sorrows

Jonathan Zisk, Intermittently studden to be alive :Jewish American authorial reincarnation in Philip Roth's The ghost writer and Nicole Krauss' Forest dark


2019 Graduates

Emma Adest, Occidental murder: Agatha Christie's critique of enabling crime through British trans-locational hierarchies

Ginger Bell, America's got problems: how (literary) vampires expose American culture

Maya Broder, To die as lovers may :the predatory lesbian gothic

Josh Dassa, Enough, alright!

Raquel Diaz, Love you for 10,000 years: how Wong Kar-wai contextualizes love and desire in three films

Pauline Fleming, An absurd idea

Sadie Harmon-Pierce, Austen and emotional cataclysm :feeling and connection in Persuasion

Jossalyn Holbert, Filial and sisterly love :the anatomy of family in Jane Austen's Pride and prejudice, Emma, and Persuasion

Quincy Kitson, Peculiar stains

Anna Ladohkin, Sharing imagined space with Shakespeare

Clementine Morse, The still, sad music of humanity :towards a critical aesthetics in Wordsworth and Keats' odes

Naomi Nabahe, Paradise driven

Siena Nesbitt-Fox, Barriers to diversity in the high school literature curriculum :the structures in place and why we need to tear them down

Kieran Nugent, An allegorical reading of theories of language in William Faulkner's As I lay dying

Claire Pask, In search of Katherine Mansfield's gardens

Natasha Perrino, Death becomes her?: politics of mourning, illness and the autobiographical I "in Joan Didion's autopathographies"

Joshua Pasterik, Alarums to truth :paradox in John Donne's Devotions upon emergent occasions

Joel Staudinger, The common breath

Claire Stevens, I just have to say: there's been a death in the family

Isabelle Sullivan, I am not a nice day

Samantha Timms, Poison apples and fruits of knowledge: the moral education of the female subject in Phillip Pullman's His dark materials and Angela Carter's The bloody chamber

Santiago Valencia, Say tomorrow

Jordan Witt, The fabric of identity: resistance and clothing in the modernist Bildunsroman


2018 Graduates

Zachary Laurent Beauregard, The once and prior king : an analysis of King Arthur in medieval literature as a representative of the inaccessible past

Mia Burcham, His own live body : embodied authority in the literature of the american civil war

Joshua Nicholas Byron-Cox, Where Neely and Mosley meet : tracing a genealogy of the black detective persona

Erika Enge, The defeat of the translator

Sarah Gelvin, The promise and perils of changing forms in two works by Angela Carter

Clara Gross, Cuckoo : a study of madness in Ken Kesey's One flew over the cuckoo's nest observed through R.D. Laing's The politics of experience

Duncan Herb, Wandering signifiers in traditional literature

Michael Kaplan, Machines of loving grace

Gwynne Leavitt, The Mars trope in twentieth-century science fiction : identity and society on a blank red slate

Emmet Martin, Unspoken

Caroline McCulloch, Letting bones dance : 're-membering' specters of slavery in Southern gothic literature

Alexander Moses, My house is constructed of dream-fabric : desire in selected short fiction by Zora Neale Hurston, Jessie Fauset, and Dorothy West

Serena Offenbaker, Belly up, then float

Aaron Posner, Jews in space : instability and security of diasporic place, space, and home in Jewish-American literature

Jenna Routenberg, Patchwork : essays

Antonia Silva, La lotería

Elizabeth Stallings, The crises of our times : an examination of the two-worlds model in A confederacy of dunces by John Kennedy Toole

Allison Tardio, The meticulous mockery : the critical use of mock-gothic in Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey and Lemony Snicket's A series of unfortunate events

Olivya Veazey, Unenclosures

Olivia Wetzel, Loving land : the environmental ethos in American nature poetry


2017 Graduates

Lucas Willie Mayer Binion, A Finely Orchestrated Paradox

Hayden Ellsworth Bunker, This cell's my court: Mimetic Fictionality, Reader-Character Engagement, and the Generation of the Possible Worlds in Shakespeare's The Tempest

Christopher Reid Creech, Human Weakness and its Exposure: The Ethical Model of The Master and Margarita

Lyle Robert Daniel, Materialist Poetics in Stein and Armantrout

Juliet Grace de la Huerga, Behind Closed Doors: The Use of Public and Private Information in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice and the World of Lizzie Bennet

Sandra Esmeralda De Anda, The Construction of the Self through a Gendered Discourse in Ingmar Bergman's Films

Poppy Rae Ellard, "The country is diseased": Richard Fariña's Use of the Coming-of-Age Narrative as a Cultural Critique in Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me

Hannah Catherine Erhart, bb girl's catalog of things otherwise forgotten

Alexander Pierce Girkin, This Whole Black and Brown World Heaving Upward: Reading the Land in Jean Toomer's Cane

Connor Arthur Greer, Glow

Sierra Faith Hill, Headwater: Poems

Peter Phillips House, Stop/Go: Time, Music, and Photography in Jennifer Egan's A Visit from the Goon Squadand W.G. Serbald's Austerlitz

Naima Medelia Karczmar-Britton, Mythologies

Hayden Dana Kinney, "An Abstraction Blooded": Reading as Embodied Thought in the Poetry of Wallace Stevens

Alexis Rose Leonetti, Cold War Life and Confederate Literature: Luce, Faulkner, and O'Connor as Voices of Mid-Century America

Louis Wilson Mendes, Narrative Poetic Form in Relation to Fideistic Epistemology in the Middle English Pearland Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

Grace Elena Moon, The Language of Space and the Space of Language: How Diction and Form Create Virtual Topographies in Nonlinear Electronic Fiction

Alexandra Kirsten Parker, One out of Many: Singleness and Community in Christopher Isherwood's A Single Man

Daniel Michael Pogust, The Imitator's Garden: Four Varities of Mimesis in John Steinbeck's East of Eden

Taylor Jackson Pope, Mansplaining with Joyce: Queering Ulysses

Calyx Boden Reed, Some Author: E.B. White as an American Nature Writer

Noah Alexander Samel, Reconciling the Religious and Political in Graham Greene's The Quiet American

MaryAnn Elizabeth Shnell, Jane Austen Reception in the Victorian Period: Realism, The Social Problem Novel, and the Sensation Novel

Henry Cole Smith, Crab Canon

Nico Nicolas Villarreal, Creating an Identity

Jasmine Tintut Williams, Searching for Sayagyi: A Study of Anglo-Burmese Literature

Priscilla Shuk-Yeeng Wu, Weaponizing the Words of The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston: Empowering Language, Myth, and Chinese American Feminist Identity


2016 Graduates

Zahra Booth, "it's words, unprintable but the tune, irresistible:" Continuity Subversion and Creation in Mumbo Jumbo 

Lauren Alyssa Cooper, The Key to Rebecca: Genre, Gender, and the Question of Heroism in Ivanhoe

Henry Cordes, Frisco 

Max Levy Diamond, The Programatic Approach to Interpretation

Grace Browning Fetterman, Father Welsh. Walsh. Welsh.: Character Confronting Caricature in the Dramatic Work of Martin McDonagh

Sage Alexandra Freeburg, Rotations

Hannah Hua Ying Fung-Wiener, Sounding Lines

Julie Laura Gourinchas, Homo Puellae Lupus (Man is a Wolf to Girl): Mapping the cultural influence of Nabokov's Lolita on the child-woman myth

India Rae Hamilton, Toothless: A Collection of Short Stories

Lily Dolores Harris, "A Uo Penn Byt Pont": The Politics of Magical Transformation in the Four Branches of the Mabinogi

Kasie Nicole Henderson, The Almost Nameless Contour: Space and Place in Modern and Contemporary Poetry

Benjamin Hemenway, The outer turmoil's veil : an analysis of Samuel Beckett's Novellas 

Eric Chen Pei Ho, The Once and Future Chivalry: The Emergence of the Individual from Arthurian Legend

Erika E. Hurth, Zen, Jung, and the Poetics of John Cage

Luomeng Helen Liu, The Motif of Flowers in "Penelope" of Ulysses and "The Song of Burying the Fallen Flowers" in The Story of The Stone

Chloe Concetta Margherita, Connecting through the Unknown: Reading the Epistemology of Alterity in David Foster Wallace, Jorge Luis Borges and Italo Calvino

Nathan James Martin, Jimmy Corrigenda: Correction and Failure in a Great American Graphic Novel

Lauren Lollie Nelson, "The sweet snare of the flesh": Carnivalesque catharsis in Claude McKay's Banana Bottom

Perry Katharine Nelson, "The Theory of Narrative Causality": Metafiction and Carnival Humor in Terry Pratchett's Withces Abroad and Guards! Guards!

Brittany Lauren, Ohrt Friends and Flying Death: Dragons in The Hobbit and Dragonflight

Sterling Olson, Waning towers : problems of monarchy and chivalry in fourteenth century English poetry 

Anne Astrid Osenbaugh, Two Kings and a Governess: Death, Feminism, and Classical Underworld in Jane Eyre

India Rose Ragsdale, Illuminating the Ineffable: Metafiction and Magical Realism in Everything is Illuminated

David Antonio Satten-Lopez, Book2

Marin Soquelle Sklan, The Book of Giving

Blake Stewart, Bloomin' Onion

Charlie Clarence Wilcox, Overwriting Experience: The Social and The Textual in the American Academic Novel

Ryan Christopher Wright, Ludic Hermeneutics: Interpretation as Play in Shakespeare's As You Like It and Jonathan Blow's Braid


2015 Graduates

Sterling Olson, Waning towers : problems of monarchy and chivalry in fourteenth century English poetry

Demian Lee, Repeated deconstruction : a phenomenological reading of "The waves"

Alexandra Corey, A song of multitudes : the French reception of Walt Whitman

Lael Pollack, A changing world : British and American anxiety and the postwar novel

Gabriel Zinn, Writing eros : utterance and desire in James Joyce's "A portrait of the artist as a young man" and "Ulysses"

Benjamin Hemenway, "The outer turmoil's veil" : an analysis of Samuel Beckett's Novellas

Ashley Brandt, Triangulation : locating the reader in Vladimir Nabokov's "Lolita" and Humbert Humbert's Narration

Evan Filkins, "Mont Blanc" and Shelley's sublime dialectic

Della Green, "I had not minded--walls--" : perils, possibilities and metapoetics in Dickinson's depictions of boundaries

Danielle Juncal, Japanese American internment poetry : Lawson Inada and Mitsuye Yamada's re-mappings of memory and identity

Elise Ringo, Woe unto world's end : apocalypse in Tolkien's "Silmarillion"

Sam Sexton, Hearts and minds : genre displacement in Vietnam War literature

Alexandra Wood, "Pierre; or, the ambiguities" : Herman Melville's denunciation of truth in literature

Serra Shelton, The semi-dialogic novel : children's literature, Lewis Carroll, and the effects of humor

Jack Taylor, Going beyond the zero : an examination of Thomas Pynchon's "Gravity's rainbow" as a source of insight into our contemporary creative moment

Sinclair Hong, Evolving representations of the metropolis in literature

Brian Merson McPherson, Narcissism and trauma in the verse of Golding, Milton, and Shakespeare

Alexandra Rachel Boss, Native American and First Nations oral and written literature : the problems with transcription and the power of the autonomous voice

Natasha Lelchuk, The new woman and the little girl business : new girls in the novels of J. M. Barrie, Frances Hodgson Burnett, and Henry James

Amanda Rose Dempsey, Postmodernism for unbeginners : an exploration of the postmodern de/reconstruction of discourses of knowledge and metanarratives in literature

Jacob Krouse Strickland, About time : temporality and normativity in "Back to the future"

Sylvia Chase Randall-Muñoz, Clarissa Dalloway as the flâneuse : an exploration of the female sphere within the postwar metropolis

Kevyn . Tompkins de Garcia, Modern gothic literature of Joyce Carol Oates as a call to action