Dr. Jennifer Maier’s New Book of Poetry

May 22nd, 2014 § 0

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Senior Profile: Ashley Boucher

May 22nd, 2014 § 0

Ashley Boucher, from Beaverton, Oregon, is majoring in creative writing, focusing in non-fiction, and minoring in French. Though it took her a while to find her major, she settled on English because she always got good grades in this area (improving her graduate school options) and had always enjoyed English and literature.  Ashley says she is minoring in French because “Je suis francais and I love the culture and language.”

Since her time at Seattle Pacific University, her favorite classes have been Elements of Narrative with Dr. VanZanten because it is a chance to get into the “nitty-gritty”  of story-telling and Shakespeare with Dr. Reinsma because of the emotion and–“what else?–tension” created by the plays.

Outside school, you will probably find Ashley dancing, which she has been doing since she was 12.  For her, Ashley says, dancing “is a release, like writing can be, and I definitely could not live without it.”  Her dream job would be as traveling yoga instructor, writing about yoga retreats, and later editing either a fashion or a dance magazine, so she plans to move back to Portland  for the first step in that direction: training to be a yoga instructor.

Her advice to students, “It is important to balance being a student with being a person, which is surprisingly easy to do.”  She also recommends taking advanced grammar and to study abroad as many times as possible.  “Now is the time to go.  So GO!”

 

Reminder: Jennifer Maier Reads from Her Poetry

May 21st, 2014 § 0

Tomorrow, May 22, 3-3:50 p.m. in the Library Reading Room award-winning poet and SPU Professor of English Jennifer Maier will read from her latest book of poetry Now, Now. These poems are concerned with questions of time and memory: how our perceptions are shaped, moment by moment, within the continuous meeting of past and future—of what happened, and what has not yet happened, but will.

Senior Profile: Gabriel Carlo Much

May 21st, 2014 § 0

Gabriel Carlo Much is an English literature major and honors student, focusing on feminist literary theory.  He is from Brier, WA, and when he came to Seattle Pacific University, Gabe says, ” I had two goals for my education: to become a better musician, and to become a better writer.” So he joined the Gospel Choir and the Worship & Arts Ensemble and  decided to major in English. His favorite course has been the history of literary theory with Dr. Chaney because “it gave me an entirely new perspective on literature and even my own faith.”

Gabe continues, “It was a wild ten weeks, and will forever be a formative piece of my world-view.” His favorite memory of the English major comes from this course “when Dr Chaney demonstrated in a class on Modernity that rationality and reason (the commitments of Enlightenment thinkers and deep-seeded roots of our own thought as their intellectual children) were static forces, able to be paralleled with a metaphor of death. That moment, her writing a few words on a whiteboard in the window-less dungeon of Otto Miller, was a turning point for my faith.”  

His dream job would be a balance between freelance musician, teacher, and writer/academic, but next he plans on “playing as much music as possible, and pursuing various experiences along the way (a winter of skiing, a couple of summers backpacking, a year or two teaching English abroad, etc).”  

Gabe encourages other students to think about the skills they want to enhance or learn during college and choose a major accordingly–assuming  they don’t have a specific career in mind that requires a certain major.  He says, “Consider your four(ish) years the blessed space and time in which you can do just that, without (or with fewer of) the obligations of adulthood.”

Art Is

May 20th, 2014 § 0

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What is art?  Some of it is tangible, while some of it is not.  It has no limits except creation itself.  It is an inward feeling–an emotion–that builds up inside the artist, waiting to burst out.   Art is an expression, a method artists use to interpret the world and connect not only to fellow artists but all others.  Art creates opportunities.  It opens a space where anything goes and any experience is worthwhile.

Art is predominantly about understanding.  It is a way for us to understand each other, new cultures, and other ages.  In art we are able to try on different experiences, different passions, different beliefs.  We learn about our neighbor and our neighboring country.  We can better sympathize with them, and can realize that we all are not that different from one another. Art creates unity, a place where we can become one, all desiring the best for the world and discovering more about our individual selves in the process.

Creating art is a holy act: one that gives us the ability to see something from a new perspective; one that allows compassion where there had been only an emotional void.  Art is also prayer.  The art we experience and react to is us uttering a call that can only be answered by a divine creature.  We guess in our art, we attempt, and we mimic, but without the aspect of prayer art goes nowhere.

We love this, this communication that binds us together as one.  It allows us to see, to create, to be.  These are the things that make art special.  We need it.  Life without art lacks understanding.  It is action with no contemplation; reaction with no expression.

Art is, in its essence, us in our rawest form.

–Zoey Wilson, Senior & Creative Writing Major