Words Work Blog

Posted on January 4th, 2024 in Blog, Events, Faculty, Featured, Students by Sydney Bielefeld

By Estela Ene & Sydney Bielefeld

Festival 451

writing workshop that genesis ledwriting workshop that genesis ledFestival 451indy is a celebration of the humanities – a campaign that will encourage lifelong learning through a variety of public programs, collaborative workshops, performances, and other events throughout Indianapolis. The event is organized by the Ray Bradbury Center in the School of Liberal Arts at IUI, with the help of a team led by Jason Aukerman, Clinical Assistant Professor of English.

Sarah Layden’s author talk at Festival 451The English Department made several appearances during the festival. Sarah Layden, Assistant Professor of English, and the author of Imagine Your Life Like This, Trip Through Your Wires, The Story I Tell Myself About Myself, led the Shelf Indulgence Book Club at Centerpoint Brewing. The student editors of genesis, mentored by Prof. Layden, participated in a writing workshop.

multi-lingual read-aloud multi-lingual read-aloudAnother notable appearance was made by Prof. Karen Kovacik and Estela Ene at the Multilingual Read Aloud of Poetry and Prose at Indy Reads. Fun fact: Kovacik was the Indiana State Poet Laureate from 2012 to 2014!


Spirit and Place Festival

The English Department co-sponsored More Than Words: Nourishing the Myaamia Community through Language and Cultural Revitalization featuring Daryl Baldwin, founding director of Myaamia Center at the Spirit and Place Festival. He was introduced by the School of Liberal Arts’ own Kayla McVeigh! Kayla is a Linguistics major with a double minor in Philosophy and Japanese studies set to graduate this academic year. Go Kayla!

ICIC International Conference on Intercultural Discourse and Intercultural Rhetoric 

Many English faculty and students from the TESOL program participated in the 9th Intercultural Rhetoric and Discourse Conference hosted by the International Center for Intercultural Communication (ICIC) at IUPUI. “The conference served as a melting pot of diverse perspectives, fostering a rich dialogue on the multidisciplinary aspects of intercultural communication. Scholars, practitioners, and experts from various academic disciplines, including rhetoric, health communication, business, and philanthropy, came together to explore the multifaceted dimensions of intercultural rhetoric and discourse” (Maddox, 2023).

Flyover Food: Fifteen Dishes that Fed the Midwest

Eng Faculty Reading Dec. 2023Eng Faculty Reading Dec. 2023Terry Kirts presented a unique perspective on the history of Midwestern foods. He highlighted his recent research and kitchen experiments for his upcoming collection of essays and recipes, due out in 2025 from Red Lightning Press, an imprint of Indiana University Press. He handcrafted samples of Southern Illinois chowder, Burmese green tea salad, beef laab, and Missouri-style cashew chicken as part of our department’s holiday celebration!

Eng Faculty Reading Dec. 2023Eng Faculty Reading Dec. 2023“While it may be the land of casseroles and back-of-the-box, stick-to-your-ribs fare, the Midwest has long been a land of immigrants, who have brought their most cherished dishes to surprising culinary pockets from Spiceland, Indiana, to Springfield, Missouri, with stops in Appleton, Wisconsin, for Hmong raw laab and Dearborn, Michigan, for spinach pies. 
Accompanying those dishes are stories of courage and resilience, as refugees escaping poverty, persecution, and genocide remade their lives in urban neighborhoods and rural towns, often adapting their identities and their dishes as the landscape demanded” (Kirts, 2023).