Nineteenth-century British and American literature and culture; autobiography; museum studies; pre-Columbian culture; Atlantic studies; hemispheric studies.
Current project: A study of the history of British and American writing and pictorial imaging of the area now known as the Panama Canal. Before the Canal examines the history and literature of the place in the immediate aftermath of the gold rush in 1849, when thousands of miners and travelers flocked to the isthmus seeking a quick passage to California instead of taking the long route around Cape Horn. The project deals with the history of travel, US history, poetry, letter writing, and transportation and globalization.
Project Duration: 4/01/2014 - 4/01/2015
Desired number of student researchers: 1-2
Expected duration of student commitment: One semester
Expected weekly time commitment of undergraduate researcher: Between 2 and 5 hours per week
Description to tasks to be completed by undergraduate student researcher: Conduct library research using electronic databases; locate primary materials in archives and libraries beyond Detroit, using specialized finding aids; summarize articles and book chapters; develop annotated bibliographies.
Required skills, coursework, or experience: Basic familiarity with the WSU library; experience using MS Word; good writing and oral communication skills; good organization skills; analytic and curious mind.
Other important information: This is a humanities project, but social scientists and/or students with a strong interest in history and language are welcome, whatever their major. You will learn valuable research skills that will serve you well no matter what you plan to study or do.