Department of English, College of LAS, University of Illinois

Illinois Department of English Blog


Welcome to the Department of English blog.

My name is Vicki Mahaffey and I took over as
head of the department on July 1, 2016. I'll be using this site to post updates and information of interest to our faculty, students, and alumni,
along with reflections about our discipline(s) in particular and the humanities in general. As anyone who has ever worked or studied here knows, the Department of English is a vibrant place. If you have something you'd like to see posted here, or if you want to contact me about the content of this blog, drop me an email at

Friday, May 28, 2010

Undergraduate Essay Prize winners

The immediate purpose of this short post is to announce and congratulate the winners of our two undergraduate essay prizes. The larger purpose, of course, is to brag on behalf of my department about the terrific work undertaken and completed by our most ambitious students.

So, without further ado...

The Donald Smalley prize goes to Debra Walsh, for her essay " 'That Strange, Wild-Looking Girl': Oliver Wendell Holmes's Elsie Venner and the Nineteenth-Century Conception of Female Mental Health." This project was completed under the direction of Justine Murison.

The Carol Kyle prize goes to Michael Gastiger, for his essay "Violent Dreamworlds: The Logic of Conspiracy in Don DeLillo's The Names," which was completed under the direction of Anustup Basu.

Way to go!

I'd also like to use this post to thank Justine and Anustup, again on behalf of the department, for their admirable work in fostering the creative rigor of our talented students.

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