Faculty Development Newsletter

2013-2014: issue #3 - October 1, 2013

Fac Dev Website

Faculty Corner

Hord, Into Africa, Being Black

By Fred L. Hord, Africana Studies

From the Foward by Haki R. Madhubuti,
"Here between these covers, printed on almost one hundred and eighty pages, transferred from the handwritten manuscript is a life's work in poems. Dr. Mzee Fred Lee Hord's poetry spans over forty years of a purposed and contemplative life. Though Into Africa, Being Black: New and Selected Poems is not an autobiography, in reading Dr. Hord's poetry, we read a history of well-defined literary, political, academic, and personal struggle.
. . .
"His articulation and founding of the National Association for Black Culture Centers in 1988 incorporated him into the history of our people, of our culture, and into America's consciousness. This was an extraordinary endeavor that demanded a commitment that few poets or artists of any discipline are willing to make, much less carry out. His journey has been extraordinary and demanding, requiring a critical part of his life and the life of his family. Let me be clear, to build Black institutional structures outside of the mainstream is actually an act of revolution to which few scholars of African Studies have given any serious thought. He forecasts his future in the poem "Black Time":
    when it comes my time
    to pray my time
    while the young I've taught scream
    and sing martial songs;
    I will not bide my time
    in warm rocking chairs
    or cool porch swings
    or sweet memories
"Dr. Hord's poetry is socio-political commentary as well as an emergency call to recognize the importance of Black/African culture; a conscious love song undeterred by his people's self hatred and ignorance. He views art of all genres as an answer and a question. His contribution to poetry and the poetic form is on serious display in this collection. In poems like "Wish I Were Your Perfect Rhyme," "Words," and "Quilting Races Together," we read a poet on course to cement his legacy of excellent writing within messages that honor his history, culture, and people. He is keenly aware of the downtime that African Americans are experiencing at this historical moment. He is intellectually cognizant of most of the statistics measuring our current decline. He is not a romantic, but a sensitive realist."

Reminder: Research/Creative Work and Conference Travel Funding Requests Due Today, October 1

Read Full Details and Find Application Forms Here

First Fridays @ 4: Jeff Grace - October 11 in the Round Room

The first installment in "Fridays @ 4," the faculty colloquium series, will feature Jeff Grace, Assistant Professor of Theatre, speaking on the topic "Coming Out at the Caffe Cino: A Turning Point in Gay Stage Visibility" on Friday, October 11 in the Round Room, CFA. Refreshments at 4 PM and talk at 4:15 PM.

A full announcement and description of the presentation are here. Please join us to experience and celebrate the work of our colleagues.

Midwest Faculty Seminar: Digital Humanities, Nov. 14-16 - Apply by October 7

Nominations for MFS: Digital Humanities are due to the Chicago office soon. This and all MFS seminars are outstanding opportunities to engage in the sort of serious intellectual exercise that is necessary to good scholarship. The themes and coversation are always thought-provoking and transdiscipliary. If you interested in participating, please contact facultydevelopment@knox.edu by October 7.

Read about this year's seminars and Knox policies here.

Applying for External Grants? -- File this form!

Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations Anne-Marie Berk, in cooperation with the Dean's Office, is pleased to announce the creation of a new Knox College Grant Authorization Form. This form, currently available on the Faculty Development page, will eventually be available from an updated Faculty Sponsored Programs webpage currently under development. The form's purpose is to coordinate sponsored program/fund-seeking activity and to ensure that relevant College offices, including the Dean's Office, are informed before proposals are submitted. Look for more news about sponsored program support in the months to come. In the meantime, contact Anne-Marie (apberk@knox.edu, x7793) with questions or for assistance with your sponsored program funding needs.

A direct link to the form is here and on the Fac Dev website.

Professional Development Funds in Religious Studies - Apply by October 29

Financial support is available for faculty projects in Religious Studies through a fund made possible by a gift from Knox Trustee Mary Kent Knight. Examples of fundable activities include designing or re-designing a course with a substantial religion component, research into topics related to Religious Studies, or other professional development to support religious studies education on campus. Fall Term deadline for proposals is Tuesday, October 29. Another call for proposals will be issued early in Winter Term 2014.

Details on supported activities and the application process are here..

Can Professors Change?: Chronicle Special Report on The Future of Higher Ed

The Chronicle of Higher Education has produced a special report on the future of higher education. From the intro: "Love it or hate it, welcome or fear it, innovation seems to be on everyone's agenda these days. But what does it really mean? This special report looks at colleges that are doing things differently-questioning the traditional degree, reinventing the academic calendar, 'flipping' the classroom or physically reconfiguring it, seeking new ways to evaluate what students know, and helping them navigate life after college." Topics include: can professors change, teaching entreprenuership, alternative academic calendars, and other issues at the center of our own discussions on academic strategic planning.

A direct link to the essays is here. (On campus or proxy login required.)