April 7-9

Conference Registration:
Thursday, April 7
8:00 - 9:00 a.m.
Bryan Hall, Faculty Lounge
(coffee & pastries provided)

GradCon 2022 Program

GradCon 2022 will be a hybrid event, meaning that we will offer panels and events with in-person and virtual components. Be sure to check out our Eventbrite hub to register for events. See below for Events at a Glance, as well as for detailed schedules for each day of the conference, and a complete list of panels .

April 7 - Opening Talk
April 7 - Community Roundtable
April 7 - Community Dinner at Soul Food Joint, registration required
April 8 - Keynote Talk
April 9 - Wikipedia Hack-a-Thon, registration required
April 9 - Documentary Viewing at Light House Studio, registration required

8: 00 a.m - 9: 00 a.m.
Registration & breakfast
coffee & pastries provided
Faculty Lounge, Bryan Hall
9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.
Welcome & opening comments
Faculty Lounge, Bryan Hall
9:30-10:30 a.m.
Opening talk with Sandhya Shukla
Faculty Lounge, Bryan Hall / Hybrid
"An Introduction to Harlem: The Theory, Method, and Material of Cross-Cultures"This presentation will elaborate on the conference theme by proposing that Harlem illuminates “networks” of peoples, ideas, cultures, forms and modes. I suggest that this legendary place has been made by encounters between various formations of Blackness, Puerto Ricanness, Italianness, and more. A cross-cultural perspective, alive to intimacies and frictions when differences come together, challenges how urban space has previously been conceived of and helps us understand more deeply the experience of race in the modern world. I explain the theoretical terms and methodology for the Harlem I want to make accessible, and closely read texts which are simultaneously haunted by an anxiety of disappearance and pointing to possibilities for a collective and solidaristic future.1:30 - 2:00 p.m.
Informal lunch
Newcomb Hall, Conference Room, 389
2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Community Roundtable
Hybrid, Newcomb Hall, Conference Room, 389
"Ethical Community Engagement and the University"
Robin Patton and Gloria Gilmore, co-founders, One Shared Story
Edwina St. Rose and Bernadette Whitsett-Hammond, Preservers of the Daughters of Zion Cemetery
Rose Cole, Madison House
Lisa Goff, Associate Professor of English and American Studies, Director of Institute for Public History, author of Shantytown, U.S.A.: Forgotten Landscapes of the Working Poor
This roundtable will feature both members from the larger Charlottesville community and UVa who would speak to the idea of "the university as part of the community." We know universities, especially UVa, have particularly vexed relationships with the broader communities they are situated in, and this roundtable is a way to get people in a room together to talk about these dynamics, how our pedagogical and knowledge production practices and partnerships can be altered to better engage with these dynamics, etc. The primary question to be engaged with: How do we form an equitable, ethical partnership between UVa and the Charlottesville community?6:00- 9:00 p.m.
Conference Dinner
Soul Food Joint, 300 E. Market St.
Join us at Soul Food Joint to continue conversations from the roundtable and celebrate our Charlottesville community at one this local, minority-owned restaurant. Cville Weekly writes: "What you’ll get at the Soul Food Joint is crispy-battered fried chicken, fall-off-the-bone ribs, tender-as-a-lullaby pulled pork, simmered-to-perfection collards, boy-oh-boy baked mac & cheese, and deviled eggs better than the ones your grandmother made."
Free ticket for one drink and food item for the first 30 people! Register here!PANELS
Broad Network, Narrow Form
10:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Diasporic Networks
10:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
In-person, Newcomb Hall, Conference Room 177
Intertextual Networks of Reference and Citation
12:15 - 1:30 p.m.
Hybrid, Newcomb Hall, Board Room (376)
Rebellious Networks: Resistance, Counterculture & Empowerment
12:15 - 1:30 p.m.
Network Ecologies
3:30-4:45 p.m.
Hybrid, Maury Halll 113
Narrative Networks
3:30-4:45 p.m.
Networks of Catastrophe and Healing
5:00 - 6:15 p.m.
Hybrid, New Cabell Hall 389
Social Networks: Virtual and Actual
5:00 p.m. - 6:15 p.m.
Hybrid, New Cabell Hall 364

8:00 a.m.- 9:00 a.m.
Breakfast & coffee
Faculty Lounge, Bryan Hall
12:30 - 1:30 p.m.
Keynote Event
"An Afternoon in Conversation with Professor Rabbi Alameddine, with MFA student Derick Olson
Hybrid, Harrison/Small Auditorium, Special Collections LibraryGradCon 2022’s keynote event features a conversation with Professor Rabih Alameddine, a writer, a painter, and the Kapnick Foundation Distinguished Writer-in-Residence at UVA. Professor Alameddine has written six novels and a collection of short stories. He has also received a Guggenheim Fellowship, and his writing has achieved wide recognition and critical acclaim, winning the Arab American Book Award, the Lambda Literary Award for Gay Fiction, and a California Book Award.
Professor Alameddine will be reading from his most recent novel – which is a finalist for the 2022 PEN Faulkner Award for Fiction – The Wrong End of the Telescope, and conversing with MFA student, Derick Olson, about writing, books and more.
2:00 - 3:00 p.m.
Keynote Reception Lunch
Brown College Tent
Networks of the (Dis)embodied and (Un)grounded
9:00 - 10:15 a.m.
Networks in the Classroom
9:00 - 10:15 a.m.
Networks In and On the Fringe
10:30 - 11:45 a.m.
Lived Networks and the Quotidian
10:30 - 11:45 a.m.
In-person, New Cabell Hall 411
Panoptic / Paranoid Networks
3:30 - 4:45 p.m.
Algorithms, Systems, & Databases: Networks of Late Capitalism
5:00 - 6:15 p.m.

DAY THREE - SATURDAY, APRIL 9EVENTS9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Wikipedia Hack-A-Thon with breakfast & coffee - register here
Holloway Hall
417 Emmet Street South, Bavaro 116
The Wikipedia Hack-A-Thon is a two-part, hybrid event: an expert panel of scholars whose work involves the editing and analysis of the encyclopedic database, Wikipedia, followed by a workshop for both beginner and veteran "hackers" interested in making tangible interventions in public-facing knowledge production.The panel will feature UVA scholars Lane Rasberry, Molly Schwartzburg, Alison Booth, and Cherrie Kwok in conversation about Wikipedia best practices, information access, and the ethics of demographic profiling. After the panel, attendees will have the opportunity to put theory to practice in a "hack-a-thon," during which UVA library materials will be used to edit Wikipedia entries in real time.6:00 - 8:00 p.m.
Documentary Screening and reception - register here
Vinegar Hill Theater, Light House Studio, 220 W. Market St.
Słabe Jajko, a documentary by Eyal Handelsman Katz, UVa English PhD studentWhen Savta (Hebrew for Grandma) agreed to have a biographer help her write her life story in 2015 she did so because she recognized the importance of passing on her memories to future generations. This was not the first time she did something like this, having submitted testimony pages - twice, once in 1957, and again in 1999 - to the Yad Vashem Holocaust Remembrance Center. Each page documented how one of 26 members of her family were killed during the Shoah. Out of the 26 painful stories, 25 remained consistent from 1957 to 2015. But one was different.Setting out to understand how one memory can change, disappearing and reappearing across time, Słabe Jajko is a short documentary that explores the memories of a Holocaust survivor through the eyes of the very people that she remembered for: her family.Screening followed by a conversation between Eyal Handelsman Katz and Caroline Rody, Professor of English, UVa, author of The Daughter’s Return: African-American and Caribbean Women’s Fictions of History and The Interethnic Imagination: Roots and Passages in Contemporary Asian American Fiction.After the screening, there will be a rooftop reception at the theater from 7-8 PM. This event will be open to the first 60 registrants. We will keep a waitlist and open it up to those on it as spots become available!PANELS
Networks and the Dissolution of the Stable Subject
12:00 - 1:15 p.m.
Hybrid, New Cabell Hall 338
Queer Disseminations of the Self
1:30 - 2:45 p.m.
In-person, New Cabell Hall 485
Performing Queer Time and Space
3:00 - 4:15 p.m.

10:45-noon – Broad Network, Narrow Form (Zoom)
Moderator: Hannah Loeb
Bethany Swann, University of Pennsylvania: ”Diasporic Metapoesis: Lyric Potential & the Virtual”
Maria Rossini, University of Virginia: “Presentation and Representation in Elegy”
Pia Bakshi, Ashoka University: ”The Dead Among the Living: Obituaries in the Pandemic World”
10:45-noon – Diasporic Networks (hybrid)
Moderator: Professor Nasrin Olla
Jinyao Zhang, Columbia University: ”Analyzing Asian-Hate”
Stephanie Couey, Long Island University Post: ”Transnational and Transgenerational Networks of Violence: Sugar in the Works of Toni Morrison and Kara Walker”
Ashley Canter, University of Massachusetts Amherst: Title Pending
12:15-1:30 — Intertextual Networks of Reference and Citation (hybrid)
Moderator: Sherri Brown
Julie Wilson, University of Notre Dame: "'To My Wife': Citing, Dedicating, and Publishing Beowulf in Nineteenth-Century America"
Nicole Skalenko, Rutgers University, Camden: ”Intellectual Influences: The American Enlightenment and the Cultivation of Identity in Founding Fathers’ Personal Libraries”
Noah Terrell, UW-Madison: "Posthuman Adaptation: David Cronenberg and Typewriting Naked Lunch"
12:15-1:30 – Rebellious Networks: Resistance, Counterculture & Empowerment
Moderator: Professor Jennifer Greeson
Omari Averette-Phillips, UC-Davis: “"Let the coloring of his mind and heart be the test": Southern Black Knights of Labor and the Politics of Labor Organizing”
Michaela Corning-Myers, Northwestern: "Black American Abolitionism in the Nineteenth-Century: Activism, Transcendentalism, and Interpersonal Connection"
Leah Delaney, Georgia State University: ”Refusing the Binary: Towards an Abolitionist Approach to Healing from Sexual Violence in Hari Ziyad's Black Boy Out of Time”
F. Tyler Elrod, Georgia State University: "Atomik Aztex, Gloria Anzaldúa, and the Possibilities of Being"
3:30-4:45 Network Ecologies (hybrid)
Moderator: Sam Jacob
Alexis Draut, University of Kentucky: ”Shale Play’s Artistic Portrayal of Pennsylvania Fracking Fields as Catalyst for Environmental Dialogue”
Sarah Lawler, Indiana University Bloomington: "Intimate Loss: The Importance of Language Specificity for Climate Justice in Elizabeth Rush’s Rising"
Eduardo Hazera, University of Texas at Austin: ”La Perspectiva Ecocéntrica: A Formal Analysis of the Natural-Cultural Terms in Colombia’s Rights of Nature Rulings”
3:30-4:45 – Narrative Networks (Zoom)
Moderator: Jess Swoboda
Blythe Lewis, NYU: “Song’s Eternity: Oral Traditions and Making Time in the Poetry of John Clare”
Alyssa Quinn, University of Utah: "Hyperstories: Some Proposed Features of Network Fiction"
Courtney Klashman, Duke University: "The Mathematization of Narrative Logic in the Postmodern Novel"
5-6:15 Networks of Catastrophe & Healing (hybrid)
Moderator: Olya Feldburg
Chris Liggett, University of Colorado Boulder: "The Power of Human Connection: Decentralized Networks and the Afghan Evacuation."
Tara Kennette, Temple University: "Webs and World-Endings: Surviving Apocalypse through Network-Based Narratives"
Carolyn Lau, Columbia University: ”Mutual Aid, Art & Activism: Resilience in New York’s Chinatown during COVID-19”
Susan Harris-Gamard, University of Buffalo: ”Post-Apocalyptic Shakespeares: Trauma, Memory, and Performance in Station Eleven (2014)”
5-6:15 – Social Networks: Virtual & Actual (hybrid)
Moderator: Annyston Pennington
Salma Fayez, Columbia University: ”Scraps of Networks, Selves and Papers”
Xingyu Wang, New York University: "Chinese Earthy Fashion Images: Occidentalism, Aesthetics, and Rurality within the Class Imagination”
Pranav Menon, Columbia University: “Planetary Showing and Telling: The Provocations of a Geologic Transpacific”
9-10:15 – Networks of the (Dis)embodied and (Un)grounded (Zoom)
Moderator: Professor Chris Krentz
Brandon Sward, University of Chicago: "How to make site-specific art when sites themselves have histories: Whittier Boulevard as Asco's 'camino surreal'"
David Advent, Florida State University: “Sitting Pretty in an Ableist World: Using Foucault and Deleuze to Reconfigure the Social Model of Disability”
Marissa Herzig, University of Virginia: “Posthumanist Possession(s): The Dybbuk’s Deconstructions of Selfhood”
9-10:15 – Networks in the Classroom (Zoom)
Moderator: Professor Kate Kostelnik
Mary Lawrence, : "Beyond Polls and Emojis: Promoting Student Engagement and Connection through Critical Digital Literacy in the Composition Classroom”
Gina Mingoia, Long Island University Post: "The Invisible Triangle: An Exploration of Students' Experiences with Academic Writing through COVID-19"
10:30-11:45 – Networks In and On the Fringe (Zoom)
Moderator: Dr. Rachel Kravetz
Abigail Drach, Columbia University: “What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank”: Whiteness, Girlishness, and Biopolitics
Govind Narayan, Northwestern University: "Scruples of Conscience: Tea and the Limits of Sympathy in Elizabeth Gaskell's Cranford"
Iris Zheng, Boston University: “What Is At Issue When We Say Subjective Or Objective”
Kelsey Quinn, University of Utah: “Cream in the Dog’s Tea and Lace in the Cat’s Stomach: Animals as Community Members and Class Markers in Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford”
10:30-11:45 – Lived Networks & the Quotidian (In-person)
Moderator: Professor Susan Fraiman
Wenxi Li, Indiana University - Bloomington: "How to Crack a Black Walnut: Boundary, Renarration, and Neural Plasticity"
Emily Foister, New York University: "Ordinary Miracles: Margaret Tait's Verdant Vernaculars"
Byron Miller, University of Connecticut: “Mayor Pete meets Piers Plowman: Magical Thinking and the Politics of Labor”
Lisu Wang, University of Leicester: “Breaking the borders: a discussion of Elizabeth Gaskell’s ‘French Life’”
3:30-4:45 – Panoptic/Paranoid Networks (Zoom)
Moderator: Professor T. Kenny Fountain
Amy Sailer, University of Utah: "'Wardens of the World to Come': Sexual Selection in Edward Bellamy's Looking Backward”
Saar Shahar, University of Southern California: “Among the Antivaxxers: L.A.'s Biggest New Age Expo Reopens for the First In-Person Show Since Covid”
MacKenzie Patterson, Boston University: “Network Security Versus Networks of Affect in Ex Machina”
Jennifer Alpers, University at Buffalo: “Paranoid Networks: America First, Infiltration, and the International Jew”
5-6:15 Algorithms, Systems, & Databases: Networks of Late Capitalism (Zoom)
Moderator: Dr. Brandon Walsh
Tom Williams, University of Virginia: “Algorithms and Literary Criticism: A Recipe for Disaster?”
Sarah Sgro, University at Buffalo: “Swipe for a Surprise: Photo Dumps and the Performance of Digital Waste”
Kaylen James, University of Minnesota - Twin Cities: "Indigeneity & the Rehumanization of Networking Systems”
12-1:15 – Networks and the Dissolution of the Stable Subject (Hybrid)
Moderator: Professor Debjani Ganguly
Becca Young, Columbia University: "Serial Gazes: Looking for Selfhood in the Internet Age"
Wenona Jonker, Indiana University: “‘The Ocean’d Earth’: Tenuous Transbodily Networks in Amitav Ghosh’s Gun Island”
Rachel Tay, Duke University: "The Streaming Metaphor: Rethinking Cognition, Interface, and Atmospheric Media" (virtual)
Alejandro Beas Murillo, University of Massachusetts Amherst: "I Walk Where I Like: Black and Racialized Geographies in K. Sello Duiker's Thirteen Cents"
1:30-2:45 – Queer Disseminations of Self (In-person)
Moderator: Mary Ruth Robinson
Samantha English, Northwestern University: "sam(e): on homophily and redundant women in the age of always-on computing”
Sriya Chakraborty, Florida State University: "‘Where Two Souls Meet and Do Nothing But Breathe': O'Hara, Levinas, and the Poet(h)ics of Breath”
Matthew Helm, University of Iowa: “Dissemination and the Angelic Network in John Rechy’s City of Night (1963)”
3-4:15 – Performing Queer Time & Space (Zoom)
Moderator: Professor Kwame Otu
Summer Cardarelli, Boston College: "Queer Performances of Family and the Individual in Paris is Burning"
Michael J. Harrington, Princeton: "Wild West Fringe: Queer Hermeneutics, Lil Nas X, And the Cowboy as Gimmick”

Contact Us

Questions about the Con? Email the conference Co-Chairs:Tarushi Sonthalia - [email protected]
Annyston Pennington - [email protected]

GradCon 2022 Community Engagement Statement of Intent

This is a living document subject to change as we further plan this conference. Edits and additions will be noted with time markers. Please click through the following link to read the live Google Doc.We acknowledge the Monacan Nation, the traditional custodians of this land who were forcibly replaced from it by colonization and are still here: we pay respect to their elders past, present, and emerging. We acknowledge and pay respect to the enslaved Africans, enslaved laborers, and the free Black laborers who built the University of Virginia, as well as their descendants.We recognize that honoring those networks requires ongoing learning, commitment, and work and that whatever we do at this conference must be part of that work.