Images of published books by Sarah Florini, Elizabeth Horan, Jenny Irish, and Matthew Prior

Happy ‘pub’ days: Florini, Horan, Irish, Prior


Kristen LaRue-Sandler

Four Department of English faculty members are celebrating new and forthcoming books and journals that showcase a wide array of research and creativity. Their output includes a monograph on black digital networks, a selection (in Spanish) of edited letters, a collection of short fiction, and a journal issue on multilingual storytelling.


Beyond Hashtags: Racial Politics and Black Digital Networks (New York University Press, 2019)

Sarah Florinis monograph on how black Americans use digital networks to organize and cultivate solidarity appears in NYU press’s Critical Cultural Communication series. From the publisher:

Unrest gripped Ferguson, Missouri, after Mike Brown, an unarmed black teenager, was shot and killed by Officer Darren Wilson in August 2014. Many black Americans turned to their digital and social media networks to circulate information, cultivate solidarity, and organize during that tumultuous moment. While Ferguson and the subsequent protests made black digital networks visible to mainstream media, these networks did not coalesce overnight. They were built and maintained over years through common, everyday use.

Beyond Hashtags explores these everyday practices and their relationship to larger social issues through an in-depth analysis of a trans-platform network of black American digital and social media users and content creators. In the crucial years leading up to the emergence of the Movement for Black Lives, black Americans used digital networks not only to cope with day-to-day experiences of racism, but also as an incubator for the debates that have since exploded onto the national stage. Beyond Hashtags tells the story of an influential subsection of these networks, an assemblage of podcasting, independent media, Instagram, Vine, Facebook, and the network of Twitter users that has come to be known as “Black Twitter.” Florini looks at how black Americans use these technologies often simultaneously to create a space to reassert their racial identities, forge community, organize politically, and create alternative media representations and news sources. Beyond Hashtags demonstrates how much insight marginalized users have into technology.

Florini is assistant professor of English in film and media studies at ASU.


Preciadas Cartas (1932-1979): Correspondencia entre Gabriela Mistral, Victoria Ocampo y Victoria Kent (Editorial Renacimiento, 2019)

With Carmen de Urioste Azcorra and Cynthia Tompkins, Elizabeth Horan edits this correspondence between Gabriela Mistral, Victoria Ocampo, and Victoria Kent, which appears as part of Biblioteca de la Memoria, Serie Menor. From the publisher in Seville, Spain (English translation provided by Horan):

La presente colección de cartas representa la amistad de tres mujeres excepcionales a lo largo de cinco décadas. Comienza poco después de los primeros encuentros de sus protagonistas en el Madrid de la Segunda República y termina en 1979 con la muerte de Ocampo. Las autoras del epistolario son Gabriela Mistral (1889-1957), Victoria Ocampo (1890-1979) y Victoria Kent (1882-1987). Proceden de tres distintos países, pero encarnan un mismo interés común en el desarrollo político y social de las sociedades que transitaron. La correspondencia supera las barreras del tiempo y del espacio debido a la distancia física sufrida como resultado de guerras, enfermedades, exilio y encarcelamiento. La relación de amistad transatlántica evidenciada a lo largo de las cartas abarca un amplio recorrido. Un libro imprescindible para establecer la historia LGBTQ y revelar cómo el género y las identidades sociales se entretejieron en las redes humanitarias durante la Guerra Civil española y el posterior franquismo.

[This collection of letters bears witness to the friendship between Gabriela Mistral (Chile, 1889-1957), Victoria Ocampo (Argentina, 1890-1979) and Victoria Kent (Spain, 1882-1987), which spans across five decades. Their letters begin shortly after these exceptional women first meet in the Madrid of the Second Republic and ends in 1979 with the death of Ocampo. The authors of the epistolary come from three different countries, but they reveal a common interest in the political and social development of the societies in which they lived. Their correspondence overcomes the barriers of time and space, wars, illnesses, exile and imprisonment. Their transatlantic camaraderie -- evidenced throughout these letters -- encompasses a long historical journey of decisive events for their respective countries. This book makes a critical contribution to LGBTQ history and reveals how gender and social identities were interwoven in humanitarian networks during the Spanish Civil War and subsequent Franco regime.]

Horan is professor of English in literature at ASU.


I Am Faithful (Black Lawrence Press, 2019)

This fiction collection by Jenny Irish is her second book with Black Lawrence Press. From the publisher:

Fiction. From reviewer Nickole Brown: "What is it to be poor Discovering an ATM's smallest withdrawal is more than the little left in your account? Counting out food stamps or working phone scams? Living in a bleak rental or a house made of 'shiplap and tarpaper and corrugated tin?' Or is it something far more subterranean and corrosive, like the backwards kindness of a grandfather who guns down stray dogs? Or is it women who, with their bodies as their only asset, believe it 'better to have a husband who beat you bloody than to be single?' And what of their daughters, of their perceived competition, such as a little girl shining 'like a scrubbed apple' before her body is found locked in ice? The question of privilege – of what it can buy, really – demands uncomfortable, often violent answers, and Jenny Irish's unflinching collection, I Am Faithful, holds steady aim, writing the truth, bitter as it may be, that few understand but everyone needs to hear. Reader, witness: here, in burnished, exquisite prose, is a precise telling of class in America, a portrait of those who must compromise to survive, who scrape and save, and though acting out of the grim fury misery provides, they never, under whatever circumstance, deserve to be called 'trash.'"

Irish is assistant professor of English in creative writing at ASU.


Categorization in Multilingual Storytelling. Special issue of Pragmatics and Society 10:3 (2019)

Matthew T. Prior and Steven Talmy guest edit this journal special issue, which brings together studies by international researchers investigating “the dynamic intersections of categorization and storytelling.” From John Benjamins, which publishes the journal:

Pragmatics and Society puts the spotlight on societal aspects of language use, while incorporating many other facets of society-oriented pragmatic studies. It brings together a variety of approaches to the study of language in context, inspired by different research perspectives and drawing on various disciplines, for instance, sociology, psychology, developmental and cognitive science, anthropology, media research, and computer-related social studies. It is concerned with how language use and social normativity influence and shape each other, for instance, in education (the teaching and acquisition of first and second languages), in political discourse (with its manipulative language use), in the discourse of business and the workplace, and in all kinds of discriminatory uses of language (gender- and class-based or other). Finally, it pays special attention to the impact that our increased dependency on the computer is having on communication and interaction (especially as seen in the social media), as well as to the role of pragmatics in guiding social and racial emancipatory developments.

Prior is associate professor of English in linguistics and applied linguistics at ASU.

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