As a former Arts One student, I’m excited to return to the program, and hope to make the learning experience for my students as challenging and stimulating as it was for me. The critical thinking skills that Arts One nurtured continue to influence not only my approach to learning but also my pedagogical philosophies and methods.
My research and teaching interests focus on the interrelationship of literature, the human sciences and visuality. I have published articles on a variety of subjects in literatures and cultures ranging from fairy tales as political pamphlets in the court of Louis XIV, to the transformation of Mu-Lan from Chinese folk heroine to Disney damsel, to how Victorian theories of reading informed and shaped emerging sites of scientific knowledge.
I have taught lectures and seminars on a wide range of topics both at Brown University, where I received my Ph.D (2008), and here at UBC, where I have been teaching in the English department. My goal in teaching is for students to see the many different, yet equally compelling, readings that a single text can generate. As students gain confidence, I push them to examine the larger historical and critical questions at stake in their readings, creating a forum of exchange that not only allows them to feel comfortable, confident, and excited by their abilities as critical readers and writers, but also to understand why these abilities matter. In creating these environments, I also benefit from the energy and creativity of my students, who help me refine and reconsider my own critical questions and assumptions.
When I’m not reading, I enjoy hiking, swimming, kayaking, cross-country skiing, and playing with my dog, Joey.