Below is a catalog of WKU English faculty who are available as guest speakers in the region’s Junior and Senior AP English Classes. We can schedule visits to Senior AP English Classes between October 24-December 16 and Junior AP English Classes between January 5 and May 12. Currently, we are piloting the program for the following school districts: Bowling Green City and Allen, Barren, Butler, Edmonson, Logan, Simpson, and Warren counties. We are also expanding our reach to the Nashville/Davidson County area. Our faculty are generally available to visit up to two individual classes per school visit. We can provide this service to an individual faculty member once each academic year.
Unless otherwise noted (or otherwise negotiated), speakers will expect to engage individual classes for 40 minutes, allowing time afterwards for follow-up interaction and a brief recruitment spiel.
Speaker requests should be made utilizing this web form. Please do not contact individual faculty directly.
Please plan ahead: Because our faculty have a variety of other duties, availability will be limited. Initial scheduling should be attempted at least three to four weeks in advance.
Dr. Lloyd Davies specializes in the literature of English Romanticism, with a particular love of the poetry of Wordsworth, Coleridge, Keats, and Shelley, and will be happy to spend a class period exploring some of their poetry. He also has very strong views on what constitutes good writing, and would be particularly interested in teaching students how to write good papers of literary analysis and interpretation. This includes an exercise on how to revise sentences and also specific guidelines on how to structure a formal paper. He has had a lot of experience as a reader of AP English Literature exams and can offer advice on how to do well on the essay portion of that exam.
Dr. Nikolai Endres has a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature and specializes in World Literature. He is willing to make presentations on Greek and Roman mythology, on gay and lesbian studies, on Oscar Wilde, or on whatever students find exciting. He can also lead classes on various texts of classical literature, British literature, or world literature.
Dr. Jane Fife studies contemporary rhetoric, argument, and writing processes and is willing to conduct class sessions on topics like developing visual and written arguments through metaphor, rhetorical techniques of contemporary satire, rhetorical analysis, and writing processes as well as discussions of specific texts, like Malcolm Gladwell’s “Offensive Play,” Nancy Sommers’ “I Stand Here Writing,” Peter Elbow’s “The Need for Care: Easy Speaking on to the Page is Never Enough,” or Barbara Tomlinson’s “Tuning, Tying and Training Texts: Metaphors for Revision.”
Dr. Rob Hale studies 19th-century British literature and is willing to make presentations on the Romantic Period, the Victorian Period, William Wordsworth, 19th-century art and British literature or lead classes on Wordsworth’s “We Are Seven,” Browning’s “Porphyria’s Lover,” Hemans’ “The Indian Woman’s Death Song,” or Rossetti’s “Goblin Market.”
Dr. Jerod Ra'Del Hollyfield studies Victorian Literature, Postcolonial Literature, and Film and is willing to make presentations on Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness, Charles Dickens, Great Expectations, Oliver Twist, masculinity in Victorian England, Kipling's poetry and prose, Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart, Salman Rushdie, overviews of 19th century British imperialism, Australian literature, film studies, and film adaptation. As a veteran AP English language grader, he can also provide talks on the test and maximizing exam success.
Dr. Ted Hovet studies film and American literature. He is willing to make presentations or lead class discussions on film adaptations of literary works (including but not limited to The Great Gatsby, novels/stories by Henry James, and Shakespearean adaptations by the Japanese director Akira Kurosawa), on general film history, on international cinema, and on trends in 21st-century media.
Dr. Tom C. Hunley is the author of several books of poetry. He is willing to lead poetry workshops, walking students through prompts from his textbook, The Poetry Gymnasium: 94 Proven Exercises to Shape Your Best Verse.
Dr. Angela Jones studies rhetoric and composition with an emphasis in professional and technical writing. She is available to lead discussions and provide workshops on the writing expectations of college teachers, the ways evidence is used to construct arguments in college disciplines, and how to analyze audience and purpose to write effectively in academic or workplace genres.
Dr. Alison Langdon studies medieval literature and offers presentations on the Anglo-Saxon hero, women in medieval literature, courtly love, and Old and Middle English. She is also happy to lead classes on Beowulf, the General Prologue of The Canterbury Tales, “The Wife of Bath’s Prologue,” “The Wife of Bath’s Tale,” or Sir Gawain and the Green Knight.
Dr. David LeNoir works with future high school and college English teachers. He is available to lead writing workshops, especially for invention strategies, or make presentations on speculative fiction (especially classic science fiction or dystopian fiction) or young adult literature.
Dr. Chris Lewis studies African American literature and is willing to conduct class sessions on broad topics such as the slave narrative, the Harlem Renaissance, black science and speculative fiction, and the relationships between black music and U.S. literature or lead discussions of specific texts, like Langston Hughes's "I, Too," James Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues," and Toni Cade Bambara's "The Lesson."
Prof. Mary Ellen Miller’s topics include “The Importance of History in Early American Literature,” “A Poem Is Not a Rorschach Test,” and “You Can Write Poetry: Some Exercises to Prove it.” She is especially enthusiastic about including a current WKU student in her visits.
Dr. Alex Poole is an applied linguist who studies prescriptive/grammar and first and second language reading. He is available to present on topics related to grammar, second language learning, and strategic reading.
Dr. Dale Rigby teaches Nonfiction Prose and is willing to coax friendly discussions/workshops exploring any number of subgenres--Creative Nonfiction, Memoir, Narrative Essay, Critical-Experimental Essay, Lyric Essay--in order to explore useful literary strategies for moving beyond formulaic “school” writing in favor of more organic and re-searched attempts/essays. Relevant models might include works of Montaigne, Virginia Woolf, George Orwell, James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Eula Biss, Lee Martin, or Leslie Jamison.
Prof. Walker Rutledge: Virtually anything in American literature. General topics could include these authors: Poe, Hawthorne, Melville, the Transcendentalists (Emerson, Thoreau, Whitman), Emily Dickinson, Twain, Stephen Crane, Hemingway, Faulkner, Arthur Miller, and Tennessee Williams. Also Realism, Naturalism, and Impressionism, and Characteristics of Bad Poetry. Specific topics that AP students might find engaging are The Scarlet Letter, Walden, Death of a Salesman, The Glass Menagerie, and “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” and “What Is Uniquely American about American Literature?”
Jessica Folk has an M.F.A. in Screenwriting. She writes scripts in both film and television, surrounding topics related to the representation of women and the LGBTQ+ community. She also has a background in Young Adult fiction and playwriting. She can lead discussions related to the art of writing scripts, plays, and YA fiction. She is also able to lead discussions surrounding queer cinema and women in the entertainment industry.
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