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Communication Studies


Dr. Curtis Coats, Associate Professor of Communication Studies, joined the English faculty at Millsaps College in 2009 to help launch our communication studies major. He earned his doctorate in Communication from the University of Colorado in May 2008. In 2008, he was a post-doctoral research fellow at the Center for Media, Religion, and Culture at University of Colorado. His research explores media and religion in everyday life, with particular emphases on religious/spiritual tourism and the role of media and religion on gender identity. He is co-author of two books, forthcoming in 2015, Does God Make the Man?: Religion, Media and the Crisis of Masculinity and Practical Spirituality in a Media Age.

Dr. Henry Adam Svec, Assistant Professor of Communication Studies, earned his doctorate in media studies at the University of Western Ontario, where his dissertation explored the meaning of technology in the American folk revival. His research interests include popular music, celebrity culture, and media theory, and his work has been published in the Canadian Journal of Communication, the Journal of Popular Music Studies, Popular Music & Society, Celebrity Studies, and elsewhere. Dr. Svec is also active as a writer and a performer. His interdisciplinary projects The CFL Sessions and Artificially Intelligent Folk Songs of Canada have been presented in galleries and music venues across Canada; he has been an artist in residence at The Banff Centre, The Klondike Institute of Art & Culture, and Roberts Street Social Centre; and his fiction and criticism have appeared in The New Quarterly, Broken Pencil, C Magazine, and VICE's Noisey.

Dr. Laura Franey, Associate Professor of English, is a Southern California native with a Ph.D. in English from UCLA and an undergraduate degree in literature and history from UC San Diego. Since joining the Millsaps faculty in 1999, she has taught courses in nineteenth-century literature, post-colonial studies, eighteenth-century drama, and women’s and gender studies. She has published two books: Victorian Travel Writing and Imperial Violence (Palgrave Macmillan, 2003) and an annotated edition, with new introduction, of the first novel published in the United States by a person of Japanese descent, Yone Noguchi’s The American Diary of a Japanese Girl (2007, Temple University Press). Honored as the Millsaps Humanities Teacher of the Year by the Mississippi Humanities Council in 2008, Dr. Franey is presently working on a book-length study of women's modes of transportation as portrayed in Victorian prose fiction and art. She is also serving as Coordinator of the first-year interdisciplinary humanities program, Our Human Heritage.

Dr. Eric Griffin, Janice B. Trimble Professor and Chair of the English Department, hails from California's San Joaquin Valley. With current research on The Geopolitics of Thomas Kyd's Spanish Tragedy forthcoming from Arden, his recent publications have examined the continuing influence of the anti-Spanish "Black Legend" and Shakespeare and Immigration. Griffin's 2009 book, English Renaissance Drama and the Specter of Spain: Ethnopoetics and Empire (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press), explores Anglo-Hispanic literary and cultural relations from the late fifteenth through the early seventeenth centuries, while additional work on England and Spain has appeared in such journals as Representations, English Literary Renaissance, CR: The New Centennial Review, and The Journal of Early Modern Cultural Studies. An essay on the colonial writing of Captain John Smith comparing English and Spanish colonial efforts in North America appeared in Envisioning an English Empire: Jamestown and the Invention of the North Atlantic World, Robert Appelbaum and John Wood Sweet eds. (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2005). Recognized by the Mississippi Humanities Council as Millsaps' 2012 Humanities Teacher of the Year, Professor Griffin teaches regularly in the Living in Yucatan Program and directs the Millsaps College Program in Latin American Studies. His current book project examines Anglo-Spanish literary and cultural relations during the Jacobean era, 1604-1624.

Dr. Anne C. MacMaster, Associate Professor of English, has teaching interests in modernist fiction, drama, and poetry, as well as the art of adaptation--turning fiction into film. Courses that she has offered recently include "Homer's Odyssey and Joyce's Ulysses," "Twentieth-Century African American Fiction," and "Faulkner, Film, and Social Justice," and authors whom she has published on include Wharton, Woolf, James, Keats, and Milton.

Dr. Michael Pickard, Assistant Professor of English, a 2004 graduate of Millsaps, holds an M.A. in Creative Writing from Boston University and a Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of Virginia. He offers classes in Creative Writing, British Romanticism, the history of poetry, and the history of the book. Pickard was the 2005-2006 Writer-in-Residence at St. Albans School in Washington, D.C. He is the co-editor of Online Humanities Scholarship: The Shape of Things to Come (Rice University Press, 2010). His work has appeared in Studies in Romanticism and The Helen Burns Poetry Anthology: New Voices from the Academy of American Poets University and College Prizes (2010). He has received grants from the Bibliographical Society of the University of Virginia and the Buckner Clay Endowment of the University of Virginia.