Dr. Adcharawan Buripakdi’s qualitative study examined the differences between “standard” English as defined by England and the United States and the derivative spoken by the people of Thailand. For her research she interviewed twenty Thai professional writers in Bangkok, Thailand from November 2007 to January 2008. She found that the Thai perceptions of the English language and its variations conformed to a colonial, hierarchical viewpoint which privileged the types of
English spoken and written within the U.S. and Great Britain and denigrated spoken and written Thai English. This study clearly indicates the political nature of teaching English and calls for a reexamination of teaching practices in countries where English is not the native language.
Ms. Sheri Ann Denison’s research examined postcolonial gothic novels and how they challenge Eurocentric and imperial practices in colonized areas. Specifically Ms. Denison approaches the novels through the theoretical lenses of postcolonialism and feminism. The primary texts of her research are arranged topically instead of chronologically. She employs heavy use of secondary research and theoretical concepts from theorists such as Gayatri Spivak to illustrate how the gothic genre is used in postcolonial areas to create narratives of resistance and boundary crossing. The study of postcolonial gothic texts is very new, and Ms. Denison’s dissertation adds a great deal to the field.
Ms. Pamela Rodgers’ (center) qualitative study focused on the connection between the fragmented female ethnic body and the fragmented postmodernist narrative and writing style. Utilizing primary texts from African American, Asian American, Latina American, American Indian, Jewish American women writers, Ms. Rodgers employs feminist, postcolonial, postmodernism, and various 20th century critical cultural theories to create a substantial argument about the importance of scarring in multiethnic women’s literature as both a symbol of oppression and empowerment and connects it to the fractured writing style employed in postmodernism.
Mr. Brandon Stroup’s (center) ethnographic research examined student life in two different types of residence halls: traditional and suite-style. Specifically, Mr. Stroup was interested in how residents in both types of halls reacted to rule-breaking. His research demanded that he do on-site field work requiring him to spend weeks observing and interviewing residents during the Fall 2008 semester. The findings of his research add greatly to Travis Hirschi’s theory of social control, and Mr. Stroup concluded that the architecture of the different dorm styles impacted on how students enacted social control.
Dr. Cathleen Wierzbowski’s (center) research focuses on new health care issues which have arisen from the increase number of geriatric Americans, specifically the increase in need for family caregivers. She examines the issues that family caregivers face and the health care industry’s push to increase the cases of homecare and the various policies and services it has enacted to accomplish this goal. During the course of the study she conducted a series of three in-depth interviews with six family caregivers. Dr. Wierzbowski concludes that in order for both family caregivers and the health care industry to effectively care for elderly patients at home, healthcare professionals should provide family caregivers with health education, safety information, coordination of care, and social support, and that new policies along those lines must be implemented by the industry.