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College of Arts News and Events, March 24, 2023


◾ Congrats to Professor Norman Smith on the recent Russian translation of his monograph, Intoxicating Manchuria. The  translation has been named by one of Russia’s top literary organizations as one of ten “Books by and about China” for 2023. Others in the list include some very famous Chinese writers: Pu Songling, Mo Yan, Liu Zhenyun, Zhang Yueran.


 ◾ In hiring news, we are excited to welcome Ann Vandergust to the College of Arts! Ann will be joining us as the Manager, Facilities and Operations. She completed both her BSc and MSc here at Guelph and is no stranger to the COA. She completed a minor in German Studies during her undergrad and joined the Department of History in 2020 as their Academic Programs Assistant. More recently, she’s been an Administrative Officer in the Department of Chemistry. She is delighted to be (re)joining the College of Arts and sends her regards as she is looking forward to meeting you all – both old friends (Hi Matthew et al.!) and new colleagues. She considers coffee acceptable currency for bribery 😊

 ◾ Rosario Gómez is pleased to announce that the Canadian Hispanic Latin-American Virtual Museum www.chlavm.ca has been awarded funding by the Digital Access to Heritage – Museum Assistance Program from the government of Canada https://www.canada.ca/en/canadian-heritage/services/funding/museums-assistance.html .  This grant will help develop the Virtual Museum whose mission is to present, curate, and display in Presential, Digital, and Immersive Virtual formats all the contributions of the Hispanic-Latin American community in Canada to areas in the arts, culture, academia, science, literature, theatre, sports, entertainment, social work, media, among others. Rosario is a founding and leading member of the Virtual Museum’s Executive team. 

 ◾ Stephen Henighan (SOLAL/ Spanish and Hispanic Studies) recently contributed a chapter to Cambridge University Press’s new five-volume history of Latin American literature.  One section of the chapter Stephen contributed to Volume Four  was originally developed in his SPAN*4410 seminar. Latin American Literature in Transition 1930–1980 Cambridge Core – Latin American Studies – Latin American Literature in Transition 1930–1980


On March 11, The New York Times published a feature profile of Mozambican writer Mia Couto.  This profile mentioned Sea Loves Me, the collection of Couto’s best short stories that Stephen selected for the Biblioasis International Translation Series, and whose translation from Portuguese to English he curated and edited.


 ◾ Spontaneously Occurring (Painting III and IV) opens Monday, March 27th in Zavitz Gallery. Please join us for the opening celebration from 6 – 8 pm that evening.

Sight Unseen (Painting IV) runs from Monday March 27th until Saturday April 1st at Lalani Jennings Contemporary Art (60 Ontario Street). Join us for the opening reception on Thursday, March 30th from 6 – 8 pm. 

◾ “Truth or Treason? Sources for the Study of the Jacobites” was curated by two experiential learning History classes taught by Kevin James on the curation process  in Fall 2022 and me on the design, installation, and promotion of the exhibit  in Winter 2023.  Students in these classes were introduced to rare pamphlets, manuscripts, and artifacts in the outstanding collection of Jacobite materials in the Scottish holdings of Archival and Special Collections, which are the focus of the exhibit. The two classes exposed students to the interpretation of primary sources, selection of themes for the exhibit cases, label writing, fabrication of the labels, development of design elements, promotion of the exhibit, and planning the launch.


◾ The University of Guelph Choir presents Voices of Hope on Saturday, April 22nd at 8pm at Harcourt Memorial United Church.  Registration is available on Eventbrite:  https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/voices-of-hope-tickets-594732991387 

◾ Title: Thinking Spaces: Marsha Hinds Myrie, “Improvisation, Plantation Societies, and Difficult Conversations” Date: Wednesday, March 29, 2–4 pm, Location: In-person at MacKinnon 103, University of Guelph

Marsha’s talk puts Critical Studies in Improvisation in conversation with Caribbean women’s organizing strategies, which have drawn on theatre arts to focus and engage women and the general public since the 1970s. Particularly drawing on the National Organization of Women of Barbados’ reactivated connection between women’s social justice organizing and theatre art, this talk will invite partnership and mutual sharing to imagine applications and expansion in plantation societies. Marsha will also be referencing her work with Barbadian film producer Russell Watson to discuss the question of art as an advocacy tool.

Marsha Hinds Myrie is a Barbadian/Canadian citizen with an ancestral, cultural, and intellectual home in Africa. Her work unfolds at the intersections of activism and education, with research being a forced endeavour to maintain the grace of the academy. Marsha is the President’s Gender Equity Committee postdoctoral fellow at the University of Guelph, with a focus on women’s leadership, and is the immediate past president of the National Organization of Women of Barbados.

 Registration is required to attend: Sign up now!

Title: Is Your Synthesizer Really Necessary?

◾ Date: Thursday, March 30, 5:30 PM, Location: ImprovLab, MacKinnon 108

14 years in electronic music history: a song-o-graph presented and performed by Aimee Copping

◾ On Thursday March 30 at 7 pm the University of Guelph Music Program jazz ensemble is giving a concert at 7 pm in Mackinnon 113. Compositions and arrangements by Duke Ellington, Wayne Shorter, Charles Mingus, and Canada’s own Rob McConnell, as well as by our own students will be performed. In addition to the big band, there will be some smaller ensembles as well as singers performing pieces from the Great American Songbook. For further information feel free to contact Howard Spring at hspring@uoguelph.ca

◾  The Music program will be hosting its first STUDENT RELEASE PARTY on Monday, April 3rd @ 8:00 p.m. The show will be held in MacKinnon Building, Rm. 108. Come check out 9 new tracks written, recorded, and performed by students in the first-year music industry class. Space is limited, but the vibe is endless.

Eventbrite registration can be found here:


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