Comparative Literature Conference: Identity

52nd Annual Comparative World Literature Conference

California State University, Long Beach

Conference Schedule


Tuesday, April 11th: Anatol Center








Sign In and Refreshments




Opening Remarks

Paul Scotton, Chair of the Department of Comparative World Literature and Classics



Session I



Shifting Identities in Contemporary German Cinema

Moderator: Alexandra Petrus (California State University, Long Beach)


Carrie Collenberg-Gonzalez (Portland State University) “A Photographic Memory: Photographs in German Film and the Formation of National Identity”


Robert Blankenship (California State University, Long Beach), “Shifting Identities of East and West: Unification Films, the Syrian Refugee Crisis, and the Short Film Charda”


Jill E. Twark (East Carolina University)“The Neoliberal Working Girl in the German Comedies of Repulsion The Hairdresser by Doris Dörrie (2010) and Toni Erdmann by Maren Ade (2015)”



Session II



Representations of Identities in Contemporary Culture: Music, Graphic Novels, and Digital Spaces


Moderator: Vlatka Velcic, California State University, Long Beach


Sotonye Briggs (California State University, Long Beach ), “Connecting the Ties with Jazz”


David Bonilla (California State University, Long Beach ), “Personal Identity and Social Awareness Through Katy Perry’s ‘Chained to the Rhythm”


Emily Yea (California State University, Long Beach ), “Transitioning from Adolescence to Young Adulthood in Asano’s Solanin”


Mathew Pacheco (California State University, Long Beach ), “Formation of Identity in Graphic Novels”


Sabrina Williams (California State University, Long Beach ), “A Normal Lost Phone: Exploring Identity in Digital Spaces”



Session III




Lunch in the Anatol Center


Poetry Reading:

Moderator, Elizabeth Dahab (California State University, Long Beach)



Session IV




Keynote Speaker

Thuy Vo Dang (UC Irvine) “Belonging and Believing:

The Role of Archives in Shaping Epistemologies of Vietnamese American Identity”


Session V



Comparative and Intersectional Identities

Moderator: Amy DeSuza


Dejah Rodriguez (California State University, Long Beach), “From Baldwin to Adichie: The Dominant Narrative Still Divides”


Amara Graf, (The State University of New York College at Old Westbury ) “The Formation of African Feminist Identity in the Novels of Adichie and Dangarembga”


Kellie Ferguson (San Diego State University), “The Witness in Chimamanda Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun and Purple Hibiscus”


José I. Rodríguez (California State University, Long Beach), “ You are part of the problem. What do you choose to do?’: Identity to Agency in I am Not Your Negro


Diana Gander Ostrander (Anoka Technical College), “Romantic Transcendence in the Work of William Delafield Arnold and Frank Lloyd Wright: A Critical Application of Abraham Maslow’s ‘Theory Z’”



Wednesday, April 12th





Session VI


Anatol Center


What’s Opera Doc? German Literature, Opera, and Identity

Moderator: Tegan White-Nesbitt (California State University, Long Beach)


Sophia Clark (Vanderbilt University), “Justice on Stage: Mary Stuart in Friedrich Schiller’s Maria Stuart and Gaetano Donizetti’s Opera Maria Stuarda.”


Glen Gray (California State University, Long Beach), “Heinrich von Kleist, Ingeborg Bachmann, and Hans Werner Henze’s Opera Der Prinz von Homburg”


Jeffrey L. High (California State University, Long Beach), “Space Opera: Friedrich Schiller’s Don Karlos, Giuseppe Verdi’s Don Carlo, and George Lukas’ Star Wars”




Session VII




Old English Heroic Identity

Moderator: Ilan Mitchell-Smith


Justina Flack (California State University, Long Beach) “Gold Adorned Peace Weavers?: Feminine Identities in Beowulf”


Britt Radine (California State University, Long Beach), “Heroes Kill Monsters with Bare Hands: Beowulf’s Influence on the Formation of His Own Heroic Identity”


Dania Mohommad, (California State University, Long Beach), “The Collapsing Reality of Anglo Saxon Masculinity”


Session VIII


Anatol Center


Place, Body, Genre

 Moderator: Katherine McLoone (California State University, Long Beach)

Diana Molina, (Simmons College), “‘Impersonal Feminism’ in Toni Morrison’s Paradise: How the Body Cures Identity”


Miguel Isais Samano (Stanford University), “Crossing the Folk-Pop Border: Listening Practices in Langston Hughes’ ‘The Weary Blues’ and Nicolás Guillén’s “Guitarra”


Emerson Pehl (Simmons College), “Did a White Person Write This?”


Amir Sharifi (California State University Long Beach) and Ali Ashouri (San Diego State University), “The Enigma of Kermanshanhi Persian and Hybrid Identity: Kurdified Persian or Persianized Kurdish?”


Session IX




Querying Identities through Middle English Texts

Moderator: Ilan Mitchell-Smith (California State University, Long Beach)


Ashley Kolb (California State University, Long Beach), “Forsaking Riches and Burning ‘Heathens’: The Transformation of Proper Knighthood in Sir Isumbras”


Laura Simko (California State University, Long Beach), “Discourteous Discourse and Economical Marriage in Geoffrey Chaucer’s ‘The Wife of Bath’s Tale’ and ‘The Merchant’s Tale'”


Jessica Acosta (California State University, Long Beach), “And Then They Were Bros: Male Friendship (and Lack Thereof) in The Earle of Tolous”





Anatol Center


Session X


Anatol Center



Moderator: Pravina Cooper (California State University, Long Beach)


Krista Aldritch (North Dakota State University), “Embracing the ‘Dumb Blonde’: Navigating Identity in Anita Loos’ Gentlemen Prefer Blondes”


Kaitlyn Giblin (Marymount University), “‘To nobody belonging, by nobody was noticed’: Navigating the Bounds of Feminine Authority and Female Authorship in Frances Burney’s Evelina”


Jacky Bui (California State University, Long Beach), “The Anomaly of an Asian-American Woman in The 21st Century: Analyzing Intersectionality and Challenging Societal Norms in Mainstream Media”


Orla Siobhán Flock (Yale University), “A Riot. An Opera. A Meance. Identity, the Abject, and the Visual Artist in Siri Hustvedt’s ‘The Blazing World’”


Alejandra Lopez (California State University), “The Border is my Home”


Session XI




Representations of Cultural Identities and Contemporary Communities

Moderator: Vlatka Velcic (California State University, Long Beach)


Carolina Coguox (California State University, Long Beach), “Identity of God(s) in Mayan and Aztec Cultures”


Patrick Hudson (California State University, Long Beach), “Pantheons: Ancient and Contemporary”


Jennifer Torres (California State University, Long Beach), “Representations of Mexican-Americans in Popular Culture”


Bria Gordon (California State University, Long Beach), “Black Identity: Overcoming Oppression from Racist Ideas Entrenched in Western Society”


William Meyer (California State University, Long Beach,) “Depictions of Homelessness and Mental Illness”



Session XII


Anatol Center



Moderator: Katherine McLoone (California State University, Long Beach)

Jason Ivanovic (University of West Florida), “The Intersectionality of Homo/Trans sexuality and Prestige”


Brandon McDonald, “The LGBT Christian: Intersecting Identities, Allegories, Queering of 1 Samuel 18-20”


Rusty Rust (California State University, Long Beach), “From Dystopia to Utopia: Contemporary Media Representations of Gender Outside of the Binary”


Lee Gullickson (North Dakota State University), “Individuals, Interpellation, and ‘Fake’ News”




Session XIII





Identity in Graphic Novels and Anime

Moderator: Ray Waters (California State University, Long Beach)


William Vasquez (California State University, Long Beach), “Self in Anime”


Joelle Sabater (California State University, Long Beach), “Daytripper and Asterios Polyp”


Victor Wright (California State University, Long Beach), “The Role of the Narrator in the Personal Story”


Patrick Shaffer (California State University, Long Beach), “The Hedgehog’s Fistfight: Seeking Self-Identity and Human Connection in a Hostile World”


Steven Virgo (California State University, Long Beach), ““They Carried the Sky” : Deromanticizing the Glorification of the Soldier Identity”



Session XIV


Anatol Center


Identity in Conflict

 Moderator: Kathryn Chew (California State University, Long Beach)

Mark Benton, CSULB, “Cooperative Centralization?: The Evolution of Regional Identity in France during the High Middle Ages”


Tyler Bouwens, CSULB, “Enemy Mine: Caesar’s Construction of Self-Identity through the Characterization of His Enemies”


Daniel Maldonado, CSULB, “When Does a Roman Stop Being a Roman?: Language and Identity in the Post-Roman World”