Sunday, February 19, 2017

Interdisiplinary Approaches to Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse and Other Zombie Matters

Early in the term, I received via e-mail an invitation to submit a paper to a conference on  Interdisciplinary Approaches to Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse

At the convention at Windsor University, I asked the organizers about the many academics who

submitted papers. As matters turn out, they searched the internet and other venues for people who taught and/or who published about zombies. I was flattered to find myself in this group.

As the schedule underscores, many interesting people submitted proposals and presented at the conference--and all the papers presented will get published this May, including my contribution, Compulsion and Desire in Colin, Fido, and Otto; or Up With Dead People.

My panel started matters off on Saturday, and I went first, which
made me more than a tad nervous--each presenter was supposed to limit his/her/their offering to fifteen minutes. The panel on which I served wasPanel One: Zombies in Popular Culture. 

In enjoyed my paper just sent in a formal draft.

took pictures of all the panels, taking time out from one to visit a workshop on zombie makeup. The photographs appear on the Facebook Page for the conference.

The conference videographers also made a short film about the conference that features around 40 of my photographs:

In October, the college did a great and flattering announcement about the publication of my article about Robocop and the zombie film Fido that got published in The Last Midnight: Essays on Apocalyptic Narratives in Millennial Media.

Peru, Nebraska- Dr. Bill Clemente, professor of English at Peru State College, has a new essay published in The Last Midnight: Essays on Apocalyptic Narratives in Millennial Media. His essay is titled “Corporate Abuse and Social Inequality in RoboCop and Fido.” writes about “The Last Midnight,” “Visions of an apocalypse began to dominate mass media well before the year 2000. Yet narratives since then present decidedly different spins on cultural anxieties about terrorism, disease, environmental collapse, worldwide conflict and millennial technologies.”

“This collection of new essays explores apocalyptic themes in a variety of post-millennial media, including film, television, video games, webisodes and smartphone apps.”

Clemente’s essay explores these issues, “’RoboCop’ draws on distress triggered by diverse issues, from the militarization of the police to the unholy alliance of wing-nut media and global corporations.“

“And ‘Fido’ references multiple issues that continue to plague the country, from soaring corporate profits made through perpetuating fears about security, to the growing disparity between the powerful super rich and the ever diminishing political influence of the middle class and the poor.”

“The Last Midnight” is Clemente’s second publication in 2016 following his article on the Cuban zombie film “Juan of the Dead,” “Zombies along the Malec√≥n” appearing in the Spring 2016 edition of the “Hungarian Journal of English and American Studies.”

Clemente will also present at the upcoming Zombie Apocalypse conference in Windsor, Canada, about an in-progress essay, “Do Zombies Smoke After Sex? Desire and Compulsion in three Zombie films, Fido, Colin, and Otto.

Clemente’s most recent other publication is “Panem in America:  Crisis Economics and a Call for Political Engagement” in “Of Bread, Blood and The Hunger Games: Critical Essays on the Suzanne Collins Trilogy.” An avid photographer and bird watcher, Clemente has also published an article about birding in “The Prairie Fire.”

Over the past few years, Clemente has created new classes for Peru State that include The Graphic Novel, Science Fiction Literature and Film, a class devoted to Zombie films, and a Children’s Literature course on Young Adult Dystopian Fiction.

“The Last Midnight” was edited by Leisa A. Clark, Amanda Firestone and Mary F. Pharr with series editors Donald E. Palumbo and C.W. Sullivan III.

Work on Zombie material continues. My essay Zombies Along the Malecon, as the PSC press release indicates,  got published this summer in the Hungarian Journal of English and American Studies.

And in January of this year, 2017, that essay got republished in an anthology of essays in Displacing the Anxieties of Our World, about which I am very excited.

In early May, I will travel to Hungary to deliver another zombie-related paper, Poll-Dancing Zombies: Sex, Sexuality, and Gender in Zombie Strippers and Zombie Stripper at a conference:

Gendering the Urban Imaginary: Fantasy, Affect, Transgression International Conference

12-13 May 2017, University of Debrecen, Hungary

In addition, I received an invitation to give a two-hour workshop about Zombies to graduate students at the Institute of English and American Studies at the University of Debrecen, which publishes HGEAS in which selected essays from the convention will appear.

So more zombie excitement in store for the near future.

Busy Days at PSC

 Brain Trust: On December 2,  I dropped in on this fall's Brain Trust and met fun-filled students who enjoy various instructional and entertaining activities. I am glad that Gina Bitner reminded me! The youngsters made snow, inflated balloons, and enjoyed other activities.

And as the photographs suggest, everyone involved, from PSC students to elementary-school visitors, enjoyed their visit. To download large files, see this album on Flickr.

After Orlando, December 1: I did not record the individual presentations but hope that the photographs capture some of the excitement and emotion these multiple presentations generated. Congratulations to all who took part in this most special event.

Concert Band and Hoyt Street Jazz: On December 4, the afternoon's concerts by the Concert Band and the Hoyt Street Jazz Band offered a wonderful break from end-of-the-semester tensions for one and all. The students performed with gusto on an otherwise gray and dull day. You can download large files from Flickr. Unfortunately, my movie camera would not cooperate, but I will get video the next time around during the spring term.

Friday, December 9, 2016

The semester draws to a hectic conclusion, and Thursday night provided a special respite from the term's busy burdens.

I attended the 4:30 presentation of the PSC Christmas Choral Concert that featured the Women's Choir, Prestige Show Choir, and the Concert Chorale. 

Three stellar performances in the Band Room in Fine Arts. 

I uploaded a series of photographs on Flickr from the late-afternoon's fanfare and fun.

In addition, please enjoy the following recordings.

Women's Choir performs, Magnificat

Prestige Show Choir performs Mary, Did You Know?

Concert Chorale performs Glow.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Andrea Hariston and Pan Morigan Return to PSC

Andrea Hariston and Pan Morigan will offer at least three presentations on their return trip to Peru State College.

For a look at what the two accomplished the last time around, check out the blog page devoted to their exciting 2011 autumn visit.

Sponsored by Peru State College, The Creative Writing Series, and Alpha Chi Honor Society, on Tuesday and Wednesday, December 6 and 7, Andrea and Pan will give a total of three presentations.

Andrea is an accomplished and internationally-recognized dramatist and the author of Mindscape, the award-winning Redwood and Wildflower, and her most recent novel, Will Do Magic for Small Change.  She also penned Lonely Stardust: Two Plays, a Speech, and Eight Essays

She also serves as Artistic Directory of Chrysalis Theater and the Louise Wolff Kahn 1931 Professor of Theatre and Afro-American Studies at Smith College. For more information about her numerous awards, read more on Andrea's homepage.

Pan Morigan is an awarding-winning musician, song writer, producer, and vocalist. She also serves as the Music Director for Chrysalis Theater.

Take the time to listen to selections from her CD Blue.

Tuesday at 12:30 in the Fine Arts Recital Hall: Pan will accompany Andrea's dramatic reading from the first two chapters of Andrea's highly-praised new novel: Will Do Magic for Small Change.

Wednesday at 11:00 in the Fine Arts Recital Hall:  Pan will accompany Andrea's dramatic reading.

Wednesday at 2:00 in the Fine Arts Recital Hall: Pan will showcase her voice and musical talents.

I look forward to seeing many of you at the performances. And on Tuesday and Wednesday, feel free to join us for lunch in the student cafeteria.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Peru Prestige

This year, I could not find the time to make more than one visit to the Show Choir Festival that brings annually many, many schools for the two-day gathering.

But at 11:30 on Tuesday, I rushed over to the
theater to see the Peru Prestige open their "season" at the festival where they performed four times over two days.

They looked and sounded great, and I look forward to taking photograhps and video at their next presentation.

Enjoy the photographs and the video.

Peru Prestige Part One, Opening Number:

Peru Prestige Part Two, Closing Number:

Hall of Fame Dinner and Game

Once again, I enjoyed both the Hall of Fame Dinner and the Hall of Fame Game. And given the number of tags and shares on Facebook for both events, other did as well.

I posted photographs for one and all to enjoy of the Hall of Fame Dinner and the Hall of Fame Game.

I will eventually list all the winners, from a great Volleyball Team to a tremendous Volleyball Player, a baseball player and two people connected with football.

Alas, one of these days I will actually remember to keep my program!