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News: August 2013

Novak's Presentation Featured at National Council of Teachers Conference

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A session by Bruce Novak (assistant professor, Department of English) for the upcoming 2013 National Council of Teachers of English Convention in Boston was selected as one of the 15 featured sessions" from the over 700 at the conference, and from among thousands of submissions.

Session Abstract:

“The True ‘Common Core’: How Centering the Teaching of English on the Personal and Social Growth of Students Can Help Us Leverage the Common Core Standards toward Both Meaning and Achievement”

What does it mean to be a unique and truly alive human being in meaningful intercourse with others? This question lies at the heart of our profession, but how do we explicitly make it the heart of what happens in our classrooms? Come join us for a passionate dialogue on these questions! Along with teaching materials and a source of ongoing support, you’ll receive an understanding of how helping our students find the “whys” of their own and others’ lives can give them the energy to tackle whatever “hows” they are confronted with, in school, the workplace, or life.

Department of English

Jimmy Stewart Writing Contest Announced

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From 1937–1946, director Frank Capra and actor Jimmy Stewart, two of the most talented individuals in Hollywood, produced three memorable films together: You Can’t Take it With You, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, and It’s a Wonderful Life. Now, IUP and the Jimmy Stewart Museum are inviting students to express their thoughts and interpretations about these films, Stewart’s life, and the museum itself through poetry and prose.

Who May Enter?

The contest is open to high school, college, and graduate students.

Prizes

Prizes will be awarded in each category.

  • First Prize: $150
  • Second Prize: $100
  • Third Prize: $50

What May You Write About?

Entries in any category can be inspired by any of the three Capra/Stewart films in the series, by the three films as a group, by Stewart’s life and career, or by the museum or any specific items or exhibits in it. 

Screening Times (at the Jimmy Stewart Museum)

Film Date and Time Discussion Leader
You Can't Take it With You 7:00 p.m., Thurs., Sept. 12 Thomas Slater
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington 7:00 p.m., Thurs., Oct. 10 Bruce Novak
It's A Wonderful Life 7:00 p.m., Thurs., Nov. 14 Megan Oldman

Where to Find Inspiration

You do not need to attend screenings of the film at the Jimmy Stewart Museum to submit entries; however, the film screenings will include discussions that could provide writers with ideas!

You can also ask questions and share thoughts about the movie at the IUP film studies blog.

How to Submit Your Entry

The deadline for submissions is Friday, November 30, 2013 at 5:00 p.m.

You should submit your entry as an e-mail attachment to Dr. Thomas Slater at tslater@iup.edu. Put your name only on the e-mail message; leave your name off your submission.

All prose entries must be typed in 12 pt. font and double spaced. Poetry must also be typed, but spacing is up to the poet.

Specific Guidelines by Genre

Poetry

Writers may submit up to five pages of poetry which may consist of a single poem or as many as five separate poems.

Creative Prose

High school writers should submit works of no less than two full pages. College and graduate students should submit no less than three full pages. These works can be fictional, personal writings that focus on experiences and reactions, or contemplative.

Essays

These works should assert a specific argument about any of above mentioned topics (all of the films, one of the films, Stewart’s life and career, or something else exhibited in or suggested by the museum) which is supported by examples drawn from the films, materials at the museum, or discussion at the films or online. They should not use other published, Internet, or film resources for support. High school writers should submit works of no less than three full pages. College and graduate students should submit no less than four full pages. 

Research Papers

These works should assert a specific argument about any of the relevant topics listed above which is supported by examples drawn from the films, materials at the museum, or discussion at the films or online. They must also use other published, Internet, or film resources for support. The paper should use at least three sources in addition to the film or other directly accessible materials. The sources should be clearly documented through either end notes or parenthetical citations and a Works Cited page. High school writers should submit works of no less than six full pages. College and graduate students should submit no less than eight full pages.

Sponsors

The organizers would like to thank the IUP Department of English and College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and the Jimmy Stewart Museum for their support of this contest.

Slater Interviewed by CNN for Article on First Female Film Director

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Thomas Slater, Department of English, was interviewed by CNN correspondent Todd Leopold for an article about Alice Guy-Blache, hailed as the world’s first female film director.

Slater, whose research and teaching of film and film history spans many years, contributes his expert appraisal of the artist to this article prompted by a new documentary about Guy-Blache’s life and legacy.

The article can be read on the CNN Entertainment website.

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