Welcome to NEPCA Fantastic, the official blog of the Fantastic (Fantasy, Horror, and Science Fiction) Area of the Northeast Popular Culture/American Culture Association (a.k.a. NEPCA), a regional affiliate of the Popular Culture Association and the American Culture Association. Founded in 2008 and online since 2010, we seek to provide both a resource to potential presenters and a gateway to furthering the study of the intermedia traditions of the fantastic in all their varied forms.
PANEL THIRTEEN | LIBRARY LL01 | SCIENCE FICTION, FANTASY &
LEGEND: HORROR AND THE FANTASTIC
CHAIR: Faye Ringel, United States Coast Guard Academy
1. “ ‘You’re a Trickster Singular, Rachel Morgan’:
Collective and Individual Magic in Kim Harrison’s The Hollows Series”
Amie Doughty, SUNY – Oneonta
Amie Doughty is Associate Professor
and Chair of the English Department at SUNY Oneonta and a three-time presenter
in our area. Her primary area of research is children’s and young adult
fantasy, and she is author of the books Folktales
Retold: A Critical Overview of Stories Updated for Children (2006) and “Throw the book away”: Reading versus
Experience in Children’s Fantasy (2013), both published by McFarland. Amie
is also the Area Chair of the Children's Literature and Culture area of the
Popular Culture Association.
2. “Just Desserts: NBC’s Hannibal
and the Evolution of Cultural Morality”
Douglas Howard, Suffolk County Community College
Douglas L. Howard is Academic Chair
of the English Department on the Ammerman Campus at Suffolk County Community
College and a newcomer to our area. He has published and presented on
literature, film, and television. He is also the editor of Dexter: Investigating Cutting Edge Television and the co-editor of The Essential Sopranos Reader. His paper
today looks at another cult television program and is called “Just Desserts:
NBC’s Hannibal and the Evolution of
3. “ ‘Monstrosity Will Be Called For’: Holly Black and
Melissa Marr’s Urban Gothic Fairy Tale”
Rhonda Nicol, Illinois State University
Rhonda Nicol also makes her first
appearance in our area this year. She is an instructional assistant professor
of English and Women’s and Gender Studies at Illinois State University. Her
research focuses upon issues of gender, power, and identity in contemporary
fantasy, and she has published essays on works such as Harry Potter, Twilight, Supernatural, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
4. “Horrific Science and the Great Unseen in the Fiction of
Sabrina Starnaman, University of Texas at Dallas
Sabrina Starnaman, another newcomer
to our area, is a literary studies professor at The University of Texas at
Dallas. Her work focuses on Progressive Era (1880-1930) texts that involve
women, urbanism, and disability, and today’s paper arises from her interest in
the history of science and women writers who are doing things they aren’t
supposed to—like writing dark horror fantasy stories in 1919.
Saturday, 25 October
SESSION IV, Saturday, October 25, 9:00–10:30 am
PANEL TWENTY-FOUR | HARKINS 104 | SCIENCE FICTION, FANTASY
& LEGEND: CREATURE FEATURES
CHAIR: Kristine Larsen, Central Connecticut State University
1. “Dracula: Monster of Masculinity”
Michael Paul Pecora, Worcester State University
Michael Paul Pecora is a recent graduate
of Worcester State University, receiving his master’s degree in 2014. He has
worked as a teacher in the Worcester Public School system and will be pursuing
his Ph.D. in English Literature beginning in 2015. His primary scholarly
interests are Early Modern English Literature, as well as Contemporary
Fantasy/Sci-fi, where he focuses his studies on gender, society, and
masculinity. Aside from his work in the scholarly field, Michael is also a poet
and writer of fiction, as well as a classical guitarist and music instructor.
2. “Nature Selects the Horla: Darwinian Influences on Guy de
Maupassant’s Horror Tale”
Sharon Yang, Worcester State University
Sharon Yang is a longtime supporter
of our area. She is a Full Professor in the English Department at Worcester
State University and teaches courses in Renaissance literature,
nineteenth-century British literature (including the Gothic), and Film and
Literature. Sharon has published and
presented in these fields, including her book Goddesses, Mages, and Wise Women:
The Female Pastoral Guide in Sixteenth- and Seventeenth-Century English
Drama (2011) and her collection The
X-Files and Literature: Unweaving the Story, Unraveling the Lie to Find the
Truth (2007). She is currently
working on editing a collection of essays with Dr. Kathleen Healey called Gothic Landscapes: Changing Eras, Changing Cultures, Changing
Anxieties, which will include a more in-depth version of her paper today on
3. “Like Lovecraft for the Little Ones: ParaNorman’s Gothic New England”
Faye Ringel, US Coast Guard Academy & Jenna Randall,
Combing efforts, Faye Ringel, the founder
of our area, and newcomer Jenna Randall offer insight into a recent film. Faye is
Professor Emerita of Humanities, U.S. Coast Guard Academy, and taught English
there for over 25 years. She is the author of New England’s Gothic Literature: History and Folklore of the
Supernatural and many articles in reference books and scholarly journals on
this subject. Faye is especially knowledgeable about the works of Rhode
Islander H. P. Lovecraft, and she has it on good authority that she is the
reincarnation of his wife Sonia. (Don’t believe this? Ask Faye.) Her
co-presenter, Jenna, gets paid to listen to audiobooks all day. When she’s not
doing that, she’s chasing her 3 sons around. And when she’s not doing that, she’s
conspiring with Faye to take over the world, one paper presentation at a time.
4. “Cyborgs in Western Science Fiction: Triumphs and
Tribulations in Human-Machine Relations”
Petra Vannucci-Henkel, University of Denver
Vannucci-Henkel has had to withdraw her paper.
1. “Harvesting the Little Sisters: Sexualization and
the Exploitation of Children in the BioShock Series”
Ashley Barry, Independent Scholar
Ashley Barry currently works at a
publishing house in Boston and recently earned a Master’s degree in children’s
literature at Simmons College. Having written a number of Facebook posts about
complex narratives in video games, her favorite professor from her undergraduate
institution reached out and encouraged her to present at the NEPCA conference.
2. “Scopophilia and
Ocular Mutilation: Kelly Sue DeConnick’s Vision for Pretty Deadly”
Katy Rex, Independent Scholar [ADDED]
Don Vescio is a member of Worcester
State University’s Department of English, where he teaches courses in critical
theory and rhetoric. Prior to this, Don served, for ten years, as Worcester
State’s Vice President of Information Technologies; he then became Vice
President for the newly formed division of Enrollment Management. Don’s
research interests include the connections between contemporary critical theory
and data networks, information design, and predictive analytics in the
4. “The Cosmic Gaze: Polyocularity in H. P.
Lovecraft-Related Visual Culture”
Nathaniel Wallace, Ohio University
Our final presenter this afternoon
is Nathaniel Wallace, a PhD candidate at the Ohio University school of
Interdisciplinary Arts, where his focus is on the visual arts and film. His academic
credentials also include an AAS in interactive media from Columbus State, a BA
in political science from the Ohio State University, and an MA in political
science from Ohio University, where he concentrated on international relations.
Nathaniel’s recent work centers on the writings of Rhode Island author H. P.
Lovecraft and their afterlives, and he is currently finishing his dissertation,
“H. P. Lovecraft’s Literary Supernatural Horror in Visual Culture,” and working
on related creative projects, including a video game adaptation of Lovecraft’s
unpublished novella “The Dreamquest of Unknown Kadath”. Nathaniel’s presentation today is entitled “The
Cosmic Gaze: Polyocularity in H.P. Lovecraft-Related Visual Culture”.
CHAIR: Sabrina Starnaman, University of Texas – Dallas
1. “Identifying Frankenstein’s Creature in Nature”
Janna Andrews, Arcadia University
Janna Andrews was originally born
and raised in San Antonio, and she is currently a sophomore at Arcadia
University, where she is pursuing a double major in creative writing and
graphic design. Fascinated with the created world around us, she holds a
passion for nature and expresses that love through words and images. An
illustrator, writer, and coffee aficionado, she is working towards a career in
book design and travel writing.
2. “ ‘I Miss Science Class’: Emasculating Scientists in The Walking Dead”
Kristine Larsen, Central Connecticut State University
Kristine Larsen, a six-year veteran
of our area, is Professor of Astronomy at Central Connecticut State University,
and her research focuses on the intersections between science and society, including
science and popular culture. She is the author of Stephen Hawking: A Biography and Cosmology 101 and co-editor of The
Mythological Dimensions of Doctor Who and The Mythological Dimensions of Neil Gaiman.
3. “Did Chris Carter Want to Kill His Franchise? A Feminist
Reading of The X-Files: I Want to Believe”
April Selley, Union College
April Selley, a Rhode Island native
and previous presenter in our area, received her BA in English at Providence
College and earned a PhD in English and American Literature from Brown
University. She now teaches American Literature and the Writing of Fiction in
the English Department at Union College in Schenectady, New York. She, also,
has been a Fulbright Lecturer in Portugal and in Japan. Her published work
encompasses scholarly articles on a variety of subjects, such as Poe,
Dickinson, fellow Rhode Islander Lovecraft, Fitzgerald, and Star Trek, and an impressive literary output,
which includes over forty poems and eight short stories, as well as creative
nonfiction and flash fictions, both in print and online. April has also delivered
many papers at regional, national and international Popular Culture Association
Conferences, mostly on the subject of Star
Trek, but, today, she turns her attention towards a different franchise and
asks: “Did Chris Carter Want to Kill His Franchise? A Feminist Reading of The X-Files: I Want to Believe”.
4. “Echoes of Frankenstein
in the Comics: Recasting the Story in Humor Comics”
Michael Torregrossa, Independent Scholar
Michael Torregrossa is also Rhode
Island born and bred and holds degrees in Medieval Studies from both Rhode
Island College and University of Connecticut (Storrs). A scholar of both the
medieval and the modern, he is the current Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror,
and Legend Area Chair, a position he has held since 2009. Michael’s present
research focuses on monsters, and he will present a paper entitled “A
Transylvanian Count in Camelot? Investigating the Draculas of the Modern Matter
of Britain” next month at Wheaton College as part of the 2014 Meeting of the
New England Region of the American Conference for Irish Studies.
One quick post for the night: CFP: Science Fiction and Fantasy: Science Fiction/Fantasy Literature
Location:New Mexico, United States
Call for Papers Date:2014-11-01 (in 13 days)
Announcement ID:216429 https://www.h-net.org/announce/show.cgi?ID=216429
CFP: Science Fiction and Fantasy: Science Fiction/Fantasy Literature (11/1/14; 2/11-14/2015)
Join us for the 36th Annual Southwest Popular / American Culture Association Conference: “Many Faces, Many Voices: Intersecting Borders in Popular and American Culture,” February 11-14, 2015 at the Hyatt Regency in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Area Chairs of the Southwest/Texas Popular Culture/American Culture Associations (www.swtxpca.org) invite paper or panel proposals about science fiction and fantasy literature.
Proposal submission deadline: November 1, 2014.
Any and all topics related to sci-fi/fantasy literature will be considered.
Submit 250-word paper or 500-word panel proposals to the 2015 SWPACA Presenter Database at http://conference2015.southwestpca.org. Choose the area “Science Fiction & Fantasy: Game of Thrones.” This online submission database will be available after July 1. If you are experiencing difficulties with the website, please follow the help prompts on the database page.
More about the SF&F Area:
With an average of 70+ presenters annually, The Science Fiction and Fantasy Area of the Southwest and Texas Popular Culture and American Culture Association is one of the most dynamic and well attended areas at the conference. Numerous book and article publications have originated from our panels.
The Area was founded in 1995 by Prof. Richard Tuerk of the Texas A&M University-Commerce (formerly East Texas State University) and author of Oz in Perspective (McFarland, 2007). The Area is currently chaired by Ximena Gallardo C. of the City University of New York-LaGuardia and co-author of Alien Woman: The Making of Lt. Ellen Ripley (Continuum: 2004); Rikk Mulligan of Longwood University, author of “Zombie Apocalypse: Plague and the End of the World in Popular Culture” (End of Days, McFarland 2009); Tamy Burnett of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, co-editor of The Literary Angel (McFarland, 2010); Brian Cowlishaw, Associate Professor at Northeastern State University, author of "No Future Shock Here: The Jetsons, Happy Tech, and the Patriarchy" (The Galaxy is Rated G, McFarland: 2011); Erin Giannini, independent scholar, who has presented and published work on series such as Dollhouse, Supernatural, and Mystery Science Theater 3000; and Susan Fanetti, Associate Professor at California State University Sacramento.
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