UR’s English Department hosts English Week annually to promote the research and projects of the University’s less buzzed-about departments. The week provides several opportunities for students to become acquainted with the faculty and works of the English Department.
English Week is organized in conjunction with the Undergraduate English Council.
The week began with a LOGOS launch party. LOGOS is an SA-recognized organization that compiles artwork and literature submitted by students into an annual journal published every spring.
LOGOS was not featured as part of English Week in the past, but proved to be a fun start to the week, during which attendants received free copies of their newest publication.
“Most who attend are those who have had their work featured in the journal. It’s our chance to show off how talented the students here at the [UR] are,” senior Cat Sbeglia commented.
Sbeglia is President of the Undergraduate English Council and one of the main organizers for the event.
Tuesday continued the literary festivities with a faculty spotlight on Professor Sarah Higley, whose primary research delves into the literary conditions of the Medieval Age, emphasizing linguistics and poetic structure. Her work has evolved into research-oriented explorations of medieval concepts of magic and fantasy.
Her most recent publication, “Hildegard of Bingen’s Unknown Language: A Translation, Interpretation and Discussion,” explores the invented language of Hildegard of Bingen, a famous yet understudied medieval writer.
Tuesday wrapped up in the Gamble Room, where students shared their works of poetry and fiction.A faculty meet-and-greet began Wednesday at 11:00 a.m.
At noon, attendees had the opportunity to listen to UR Senior Lecturer and former speechwriter for President George H.W. Bush Curt Smith, who introduced them to internship opportunities with News 8-WROC TV and the Rochester Red Wings.
The day ended with a showing of UR’s theatre production, Shakespeare’s “The Taming of the Shrew.”
The play features a largely-male cast, and is “an interpretation of Shakespeare’s brilliant work that explores and challenges ideas about sex, marriage, identity, social roles and freedom in revolutionary ways,” according to the event’s description.
Thursday began with a Ferrari Lecture entitled “Against Teleology: On the Passions of Nymphs and Barbarians,” by Lynn Enterline, a distinguished professor from Vanderbilt University and an authority in the literary academic community.
Professor Lynn received her B.A. in Literae Humaniores from Oxford University and a Ph.D. in English Language and Literature from Cornell University, among others. She is the most recent in a series of renowned authors to keynote UR’s annual Ferrari Symposium. Thursday finished with another showing of The Taming of the Shrew.
The week ended on Friday with another showing of “The Taming of the Shrew.”
The show will end Sunday, April 25 after more than two weeks of shows.
Sbeglia reflects that “it is important for a school like ours, one that is heavy on the sciences, to set aside a week to celebrate a field like English.”
Certainly, the week establishes itself as a valuable aspect of Rochester academia.
It demonstrates the power of the written and spoken word and reminds us that communication is the ultimate foundation of collaborative progress, making the English Department essential to the meliora spirit.
Ely is a member of the class of 2018.