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Students publish article in literature journal
Monday, December 15, 2008

Howard Rambsy at SUNY Fredonia
Above, Howard Rambsy presented a guest lecture on the American author Richard Wright during a visit to campus. Dr. Emily VanDette sponsored a series of activities celebrating Wright's centennial last semester. A classroom project led to a published work by her students in the journal, "Paper on Language and Literature."
From work done last spring semester with Dr. Emily VanDette (English), three students collaborated on a piece that was published this month in a special issue of the journal, Papers on Language and Literature. Gary Baier, Kyle Georger, and Owen Reilly wrote the article, "From Here to Fredonia."

The students collaborated on the writing project for Dr. VanDette's course, "Realism and Naturalism in American Literature." They were inspired by Richard Wright's book, "12 Million Black Voices," which is a work of history that uses a lyrical, collective voice and poignant images.

Dr. VanDette said, "The idea of the collective folk history approach of the piece inspired my students to work on a critical/creative piece that explores the history of Fredonia folks." 

The authors surveyed students to collect stories about their journeys to Fredonia, and then compiled the stories into a coherent narrative reflecting a collective record of the journey "from here to fredonia," which ended up being the title of their piece.

The article appeared in a special issue of the journal that focused on Richard Wright in honor of the centennial of his birth. Its editor, Howard Rambsy of Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, included the Fredonia project as an example of Wright's legacy.

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