English


Un-telling “The Eugenist’s Tale”: Early 20th Century Deaf Writers on A.G. Bell and Eugenics

ID: 4111
School: School of Language, Education, and Culture
Program: English
Status: Completed
Start date: August 2020
End Date: August 2021

Description

Abstract: In Memoir Upon the Formation of a Deaf Variety of the Human Race (1883), Alexander Graham Bell proposed several preventative eugenic measures to reduce the transmission of deafness, including oralism, or the pedagogical approach for the exclusive teaching of speech and lipreading, and the reduction of deaf-deaf intermarriage. In answer, writers in Deaf community publications made appeals for autonomy embedded within hegemonic social norms related to race, class, gender, and able-bodiedness. Because marriage autonomy was often conflated with labor and class rather than treated as one of several interwoven strategies in Bell’s eugenic argument, it has been argued that Deaf community leaders underestimated the threat they faced from rising nativist beliefs merged with eugenics in the post-bellum era on into early 20th century America. However, in their fiction, Deaf creative writers of this era, namely Douglas Tilden, Hypatia Boyd, Guie Deliglio, and Howard Terry, complicated, reinscribed, and countered these ideologies.

Principal investigators

Priorities addressed

Approved Products

2021

• Harmon, K. (2021). "Un-Telling 'the eugenist’s tale': early twentieth-century deaf writers on A. G. Bell and eugenics." Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies, 15, (2), 151-168. DOI: https://doi.org/10.3828/jlcds.2021.12


Women Writers Buried in Virginia

ID: 4067
School: School of Language, Education, and Culture
Program: English
Status: Ongoing
Start date: June 2020
End Date: November 2021

Description

Research on women writers buried in Virginia. Forthcoming publication- November 15, 2021. Book description: America has an array of women writers who have made history--and many of them lived, died and were buried in Virginia. Gothic novelists, writers of westerns and African American poets, these writers include a Pulitzer Prize winner, the first woman writer to be named poet laureate of the Commonwealth of Virginia and the first woman to top the bestseller lists in the twentieth century. Mary Roberts Rinehart was a best-selling mystery author often called the "American Agatha Christie." Anne Spencer was an important figure in the Harlem Renaissance. V.C. Andrews was so popular that when she died, a court ruled that her name was taxable, and the poetry of Susan Archer Talley Weiss received praise from Edgar Allan Poe. Professor and cemetery history enthusiast Sharon Pajka has written a guide to their accomplishments in life and to their final resting places.

Principal investigators

Priorities addressed

Approved Products

2021

Pajka, S. (2021, October 7). Episode 53 - happy One Year anniversary ordinary extraordinary cemetery podcast! The Ordinary, Extraordinary Cemetery. Retrieved October 12, 2021, from https://www.theordinaryextraordinarycemetery.com/episode-53-happy-one-year-anniversary-ordinary-extraordinary-cemetery-podcast/.

Women Writers Buried in Virginia


Scholarship and creative activity

2021

Pajka, S. (2020). Notable Women Authors: Their Writing Gave Voice to Women’s Suffrage. A Gateway into History, 11(2), 6–8.

Pajka, S. (2021, June 24). Women Writers Buried in Virginia Cemeteries. In Association for Gravestone Studies Virtual Conference.

Pajka, S. (2021, June 3). Nevermore to Visit: Shockoe Hill Cemetery’s most famous non-resident, Edgar Allan Poe. In American Culture Association, PCAACA.