Books Acquired Recently

Mandel, Emily St. John. Station Eleven. 2014. New York: Vintage Books, 2015.

I bought this book two days ago at my local Barnes & Noble because I recently read an interesting interview with Mandel in Poets & Writers and then saw a number of people on Twitter saying that Station Eleven describes a situation very similar to our current virus-laden one. I decided it would be worth reading as one way to help conceptualize the current moment, which is unlike anything I have experienced.

Wood, Elizabeth Anne. Bound: A Daughter, a Domme, and an End-of-Life Story. Berkeley, CA: She Writes Press, 2019.

I just received an exam copy of this book from the author. Its intersection of BDSM and disability intrigues me because of the role of these two subjects in my own work, so I am considering teaching it in one of my courses.

Published by danielshankcruz

I grew up in New York City and lived in Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Goshen, Indiana; DeKalb, Illinois; and Salt Lake City, Utah before coming to Utica, New York. My mother’s family is Swiss-German Mennonite (i.e., it’s an ethnicity, not necessarily a theological persuasion) and my father’s family is Puerto Rican. I have a Ph.D. in English and currently teach at Utica College. I have also taught at Northern Illinois University and Westminster College in Salt Lake City. My teaching and scholarship are motivated by a passion for social justice, which is why my research focuses on the literature of oppressed groups, especially LGBT persons and people of color. While I primarily read and write about fiction, I am also a devoted reader of poetry because, as William Carlos Williams writes, “It is difficult / to get the news from poems / yet [people] die miserably every day / for lack / of what is found there.” Thinkers who influence me include Marina Abramovic, Kathy Acker, Di Brandt, Ana Castillo, Samuel R. Delany, Percival Everett, Essex Hemphill, Jane Jacobs, Walt Whitman, and the New York School of poets. I am also fond of queer Mennonite writers such as Stephen Beachy, Jan Guenther Braun, Lynnette Dueck/D’anna, and Casey Plett. In my free time I’m either reading, writing the occasional poem, playing board games (especially Scrabble, backgammon, and chess), watching sports (Let’s Go, Mets!), or cooking (curries, stews, roasts…).

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