Wednesday, September 20, 2017

First MALAS Social Hour, Fall 2018--At Eureka!

Greetings MALASheads, Faculty, staff, graduate students and alumni are invited to our first MALAS Social Hour of the semester--this is a great chance to meet and chat with your colleagues and professors in an informal setting. While the intellectual dimension of graduate school life is apparent (think about the three-five books you have to read this week), the social dimension is no less important and no less vital as you learn to engage and share ideas at a higher level.

3:30 to 5:30pm
Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

New Fall 2017 MALAS Seminar: WMNST 570 Gender, War, and Peace with Dr. Huma Ahmed-Ghosh!

Fall 2017 | WMNST 570

Gender, War, and Peace

Dr. Huma Ahmed-Ghosh                                                                                                                                                      

Office hrs. Mondays 4.00---6.40 p.m.                                    Class room: SH 216        
& by appointment                                                                    Office: AL 342                

This course is an interdisciplinary study of women’s relation to war, peace and militarism, the theoretical debates over women as “essentially” maternal and therefore more pacific; dependence of military policy on notions of masculinity and femininity; war and militarism providing women’s greater opportunities for advancement and equality; relationship between war, militarism, gender inequality and racism; similarity and difference between personal violence against women and state supported violence; relationship between feminism and peace activism.  Through the lens of feminist understandings of peace and conflict, we will address the above issues. This course will be facilitated by guest speakers, films, and food.

Goals of the course

·      Analyze the larger context of war and its gender implications

·      Identify issues of power created through cultural constructions of

masculinities and femininities

·      Summarize the role of women’s movements in nationalist and liberatory


·      Examine the gendered consequences of war

·      Critique the assumptions about maternalism and pacifism in women’s peace activism

New Fall 2017 MALAS Seminar! Literacy, Technology, and Rhetoric with Dr. Jenny Sheppard

Literacy, Technology, and Rhetoric
Dr. Jenny Sheppard

Course Overview

This course is about looking closely at what people say and do in digital spaces and how they make meaning with the different communication resources at their disposal. We’ll investigate the social, communicative and rhetorical strategies they use and the impact this has on our broader culture. Through a lens of literacy studies, we will explore the everyday reading, writing, and communication practices people engage in online and the ways in which this impacts identity, social relationships, and participation in public spaces.  We will also draw on rhetorical perspectives to better understand audience, persuasion and the use of digital tools to create rhetorically effective texts in online environments.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course, students will be able to:
  • identify a range of effects digital technologies have on contemporary literacy and rhetorical practices
  • demonstrate an understanding of how multimodality changes conceptions of literacy, meaning making, and persuasive practices
  • explore critically a range of digital tools to understand their affordances and constraints for various contexts
  • utilize theory, research, and analytical practices for investigating the implications of digital technologies on literacy and rhetoric in specific online spaces

Hi, my name is Jenny Sheppard and I am a faculty member in the Rhetoric and Writing Studies department at San Diego State University where I serve as the Associate Director of the Lower Division Writing Program. Previously, I was an Associate Professor of Rhetoric and Professional Communication in the English Department at New Mexico State University (NMSU). I regularly teach courses in rhetoric of popular culture, visual rhetoric and communication, technical, scientific, and professional communication, and composition. I also developed and ran the Design Center at NMSU from 2004-2014, where students engaged in hands-on development of digital and print media for campus and community clients.

I earned my PhD Rhetoric and Technical Communication from Michigan Technological University in 2003. My dissertation examined the design and development of a science-based multimedia website for middle school students. My research interests include multimodal writing, visual rhetoric and design, and professional and workplace communication, but I am most passionate about these areas when thinking about how to bring theory into classroom practice. I am privileged to work with a diverse population of smart, interesting students and at levels from first-year undergrads to those seeking a master’s.

I am co-author of Writer/Designer: A Guide to Making Multimodal Projects, as well as several articles in journals such as Computers and Composition, Hybrid Pedagogy, and the Journal of Literacy and Technology, and book chapters in collections such as  Designing Texts: Teaching Visual Communication and RAW: Reading and Writing New Media. I am also a contributor to the MLA  Commons project on Digital Pedagogy in the Humanities.

When I’m not working, I enjoy being outdoors and spending time with friends and family. Camping, going to the beach, gardening, and taking adventures with my partner, our six year old, and our dog are a few of my favorite things.

You can find out more about the courses I teach at


 Footnotes: 05 , ZL

New Fall 2017 MALAS Seminar in Conjunction with Religious Studies, SDSU: In God We Trust with Professor Bartel!

In God We Trust
Professor Rebecca Bartel
MALAS-600A 01 22167 IN GOD WE TRUST 3.0 Seminar 1600-1840 M HH-150 R. Bartel 8/8 Footnotes: 01 , ZL

Why is God on our money? Whose God is it? What does that tell us about the market? What does that tell us about religion? How can we think about religion and economics productively? This course explores the ways that religion and the economy are entangled. From Adam Smith’s “Invisible Hand” to the present moment of financial recovery, scholars have long been asking the question about religion and economy, morality and finance, and the ways these issues relate to each other. This course will introduce you to the theoretical foundations in anthropological and historical approaches to economics and religion, and illustrate these theories through specific case studies. The course will engage critical analysis from historical, post-colonial, gendered, and intercultural perspectives. The course also considers current events, financial markets, the credit industry, and debt as they are debated and discussed in the public sphere.     

New Fall 2017 MALAS Seminar (in Collaboration with Classics & Humanities, SDSU)! Specters of Modernity: Supernatural Fictions in the Age of Reason with Professor Raechel Dumas!

Specters of Modernity
Supernatural Fictions in the Age of Reason
Professor Raechel Dumas

MALAS-600A 03 22169 SPCTRS OF MDRNTY:SUPER FI 3.0 Seminar 1600-1840 T AH-2103 R. DUMAS 8/8 Footnotes: 03 , ZL

Who speaks for the past? After all, the project of modernity has centered largely on manufacturing a break with history, deploying the rhetoric of freedom, reason, and progress to suggest the possibility of liberation from religious and political authority, folk traditions, and cultural conventions. Nevertheless, specters continue to haunt the modern imagination, routinely surfacing as reminders that the repressed remains a vital force in the present, however much we might yearn to leave it behind. This course explores the phenomenon of haunting across modern literature, film, visual arts, and real-world geographical locales, with emphasis on how narratives produced at different historical moments and in different places across the globe similarly deploy specters to engage with significant historical phenomena and cultural developments. In particular, it focuses on counter-Enlightenment impulses in the transnational Gothic imagination; psychological repression and the spectral uncanny; specters of national trauma; and the postmodern horror trope of the “ghost in the machine.”  In considering these topics, students will evaluate and utilize diverse theoretical frameworks—provided by thinkers such as Michael Mayerfeld Bell, Sigmund Freud, Julia Kristeva, and Bracha Ettinger, among others—for thinking about the enduring place of specters in the collective imagination.

Monday, March 13, 2017

A MALAS Co-Sponsored Lecture by Bernhard Schlink author of The Reader

Bernhard Schlink
Monday, March 20, 2017, 2 pm
Donald P. Shiley BioScience Center Gold Auditorium
San Diego State University

Acclaimed German Novelist Bernhard Schlink will speak about his latest novel, The Woman on the Stairs, a powerful exploration of obsession, creativity, and love. Moving between West Germany in the late 1960s − the era of the student movement, anti-Vietnam War protests, violent domestic terrorist attacks − and contemporary Australia, the novel plots alternate pathways into the present rooted in the same turbulent moment in time.

Bernhard Schlink’s background as a former constitutional court justice and a legal scholar informs the clarity and incisiveness of his poetic language, as well as the moral questions he raises. Professor Schlink teaches law and legal philosophy at the Humboldt University in Berlin and at the Benjamin N. Cardoza School of Law in New York City. He is best known for his 1995 novel The Reader, a story of love and secrets, horror, and compassion, unfolding against the haunted landscape of postwar Germany. It became the first German novel to reach #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. The 2008 film adaptation, directed by Stephen Daldry, starred Ralph Fiennes and Kate Winslet, whose performance earned her an Academy Award for Best Actress.