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English Faculty Awarded National Research Grants

October 21, 2013

English Department recipients of 2013 SSHRC Insight Development Grants

Professors Jason Boyd, Colleen Derkatch, and Andrew O'Malley have each been awarded a SSHRC (Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council) of Canada Insight Development Grant. Combined, the total value of these grants is just over $157,000.

In the 2012 competition, Ryerson University was awarded ten Insight Development Grants, half of which were awarded to Arts faculty. The Department of English led the Faculty of Arts with three of these grants.

“I and the rest of the English Department are thrilled with the amazing success rate of our faculty in the SSHRC Insight Development Grant competition this year," says Dr. Nima Naghibi, Interim Chair. "This is a sure sign of the Department’s thriving research culture and its commitment to excellence in research.”

Dr. Boyd’s “The Texting Wilde Project: Developing Computer-Assisted Methods for the Analysis of Life Writing” will explore and develop computer-assisted methodologies to reveal intertextual and narrative connections and patterns in a substantial corpus of early biographical texts on Oscar Wilde.

Dr. Derkatch's "Rhetorics of Wellness: Discourse-Mapping in an Illness-Oriented Culture" examines the ways in which the idea of wellness—a self-perception of the absence or opposite of illness, encompassing physical, psychological, social, and spiritual domains—is framed in public discourse as a form of incipient illness. The project will particularly focus is on dietary supplements, such as high-dose vitamins, echinacea, and ginkgo, and the discursive activities surrounding their marketing and use.

Dr. O'Malley’s project, "Comic Books, Children's Culture, and the Crisis of Innocence 1940-1954," will produce a digitally curated, critical exhibition on the crisis of childhood precipitated by anxieties over comic book reading and juvenile delinquency. Drawing on materials from the CDH’s Children’s Literature Archive, the exhibition will seek to present a multi-faceted picture of a contested childhood innocence that preoccupied the popular imagination in the period.