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9/12/14
Jody Kleinberg Biehl received the Honor Roll Award for her work with The Spectrum, UB’s student newspaper. The award is given by the National College Media Association which selects one college media advisor each year to honor. The award will be given at a reception for college newspaper advisers on November 2 in Philadelphia.
9/4/14
Andrew McConnell Stott, professor of English and dean of undergraduate education, will celebrate the U.S. publication of his new book, “The Poet and the Vampyre: The Curse of Byron and the Birth of Literature’s Greatest Monsters,” with a reading and book signing at 7 p.m. Sept. 11 at Talking Leaves … Books, 3158 Main St., Buffalo.

The book looks at the time Byron; his doctor, John Polidori; the Shelleys; and Mary Shelley’s step-sister, Claire Clairmont, spent together in Lake Geneva in the spring of 1816, and the far-reaching emotional and literary effects of the gathering.

The book launch is free of charge and open to the public. Those wishing to have a copy of the book signed by Stott are expected to purchase it from Talking Leaves.

Stott, who also serves as director of the Honors College, is the author of “The Pantomime Life of Joseph Grimaldi,” which won the Royal Society of Literature Prize and the Sheridan Morley Prize for Theatre Biography, and was a Guardian Best Book of the Year. “The Poet and the Vampyre” is his first book to be published in America.

In 2011, Stott was named a fellow at the New York Public Library’s Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers.
8/13/14
The National Endowment for the Arts announced that Douglas Basford has been recommended for an NEA Literature Translation Fellowship of $12,500. Basford is one of 20 recommended fellows for 2015. In total, the NEA plans to distribute $300,000 in this round to support the new translation of fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry from 12 different languages into English.
 
Domenico di Giovanni (1404-1449), known by his nickname Il Burchiello, trained as a barber-surgeon and opened his own shop in Florence, where the city’s literati and others gathered for impromptu sonnet matches in which barbed, versified insults were levelled by competitors. Burchiello was commissioned to write sonnets against the Medici by a competing family, the Albizzi, and when the Medici returned to power, he was forced into exile, first to Siena, where he became ill (and even more ill with ill-considered medical intervention) and spent time in prison for debts and insolent, violent behavior, writing sonnets to various authorities and patrons that move between pleading, rage, and gallows humor. His travels took him then to Venice and Rome, and he took to mimicking the accents from the various cities he visited.
 
His work is best known for its bizarre images piled up “alla burchia,” like the merchandise on river barges and boats. His sonnets offer a cross-section of contemporary life not found in his earlier forebears Dante and Petrarch, showing a great range of tonalities (bitingly satirical, despondent, earnest, bawdy, defiant, baffled, playful) and subjects (medical quackery, fortune-telling, pest-infested accommodations, the violence of jousting, bathing, clerical misbehavior, the bookish excesses of scholastics and grammarians). Although his sonnets, of which approximately 200 survive and which will form the basis for the anticipated book-length publication Oarless: The Sonnets of Burchiello, were to become widely imitated over the next two centuries, even by Lorenzo de’ Medici himself, Burchiello died, possibly from syphillis, in Rome in penury.
 
Douglas Basford, has been Assistant Director of Composition in the Department of English since 2008, having previously taught at Johns Hopkins University, Loyola University Maryland, and Goucher College. A poet, critic, and scholar of the history and rhetoric of science, he has published translations of poetry and prose in various journals—Poetry, Subtropics, Western Humanities Review, Two Lines, The Atlanta Review, Words without Borders, Formes Poétiques Contemporaines, and SubStance—and in edited collections—The FSG Book of Twentieth-Century Italian Poetry (Farrar, Straus & Giroux) and The Display of Art in Roman Palaces, 1550-1750 (Getty Research Institute). He co-edits the online journal Unsplendid, which specializes in poetry in received forms, and is the Italian language editor of Coeur Publishing, a new venture for book-length translations of world literature.
 
"The NEA's long history of supporting literary translation is one of the most important ways we can broaden our nation's perspectives while also making the work of these talented writers and translators more available," said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. "This recommended award will go a long way in fostering a sense of empathy and understanding for how people from different countries and cultures connect with each other and live their lives."
7/16/14
Carrie Bramen was selected for the Anne LaBastille Writers Residency at the Adirondack Writing Center in October 2014 (http://www.adirondackcenterforwriting.org/programs/twitchell-lake-residency). While in residence, she will be working on her book-in-progress, on American niceness. Bramen is one of six writers selected this year, and the only writer of academic prose.
6/30/14
Kristina Darling has received awards for her poetry from the Ucross Foundation and the Hambidge Center for the Arts and Sciences. She was accepted as a Visiting Artist by the American Academy in Rome for the Fall, 2014.