Inaugural Lecture

9th Annual English Inaugural Lecture to Feature Edward Cahill

Nine years ago, Edward Cahill suggested to the department chair that we should organize an inaugural lecture each year, at which a Fordham English faculty member would present his or her work to interested faculty, graduate students, and others. It was a great idea, and the annual inaugural lecture has become a beloved tradition. It opens the academic year with a discussion of intellectual substance, but it is also a festive occasion, at which new faculty and graduate students are welcomed to the department, transitions are marked, and delicious food and beverages are consumed. 

This year, on Wednesday September 14th at 4pm, Professor Cahill himself will deliver the Inaugural lecture. His talk is titled “Striving and Rising in the American Plantations," and it will take place in the  O'Hare Room on the 4th Floor of the Walsh Family Library on Fordham's Rose Hill campus. All are welcome to the lecture, and to the reception that will follo. 


Hoffman Profiled in Fordham News

Fordham English Professor Anne Golomb Hoffman, who will be delivering the English Department's 2015 Inaugural Lecture (see related post in English Connect) was profiled in Fordham News this week.  The story, titled "Other Passions: Professor Fuses Literature, Psychoanalysis, and Art," highlights the way Hoffman has been increasingly linking her literary scholarship, her artistic practice, and her engagement with psychoanalytic theory (she chairs the Richardson Research Seminar in the History of Psychiatry at the DeWitt Wallace Institute for the History of Psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medical College). 


So, check out the article. It will give you all the more reason to come to the 2015 Inaugural Lecture on Wednesday, September 30 at 4pm in the O'Hare Room on the 4th Floor of Walsh Family Library, where Hoffman will present a talk titled "Words and Pictures, Bodies and Books." 




Maria Farland on Emily Dickinson and Rural Progress

On September 10, the Fordham University English Department hosted its seventh inaugural lecture, featuring Professor Maria Farland.  Students, faculty, and friends of the department filled the O’Hare Special Collections room in Walsh library to hear Farland’s discussion of Emily Dickinson’s rural poetry, entitled “Invisible Architecture: Plants and Rural Progress in Emily Dickinson’s Poetry.” 

By foregrounding Dickinson’s interest in rural culture, Farland reverses a long trend of what she calls “metro-normative” Dickinson scholarship.  Farland’s talk blends archival research with new formalist readings of Dickinson’s poetry, showing that subtle breaks in Dickinson’s poems register the dislocation of the rural life her family fiercely advocated.  Culling examples from seven Dickinson poems, family correspondences, newspaper articles, and scientific diagrams from the period, Farland convincingly portrays the poet as “immersed in agendas of rural progress.”

Following Farland’s lecture, attendees enjoyed a lively Q&A and gala reception.

The English Department’s annual inaugural lectures spotlight the research of faculty members and has previously featured speakers including Frank Boyle, Lenny Cassuto, Mary Erler, Chris GoGwilt, Connie Hassett, and Larry Kramer.  These lectures have represented a range of periods and areas of study, from Medieval literature to contemporary study of the university.