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TAMIU’s Professor Klein Presents at Conference Posted: 3/31/16

TAMIU’s Professor Klein Presents at Conference

 

Dr. Ula E. Klein
Speaking at an academic conference might appear as an intimidating experience to some, but not to Dr. Ula E. Klein, Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) assistant professor of English, who will not only present twice, but also co-chair a workshop session at the American Society for 18th Century Studies Conference, Thursday, March 31-Sunday, April 3, in Pittsburgh. “I look forward to the intellectual stimulation of the Conference, which I have been attending for five years now,” said Dr. Klein. All the major thinkers and writers in 18th Century studies attend and present at the Conference. They share the newest and most innovative approaches to studying the 18th Century. “These new ideas and approaches stimulate my research,” said Klein.  

Speaking at an academic conference might appear as an intimidating experience to some, but not to Dr. Ula E. Klein, Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) assistant professor of English, who will not only present twice, but also co-chair a workshop session at the American Society for 18th Century Studies Conference, Thursday, March 31-Sunday, April 3, in Pittsburgh.

 “I look forward to the intellectual stimulation of the Conference, which I have been attending for five years now,” said Dr. Klein.

 All the major thinkers and writers in 18th Century studies attend and present at the Conference. They share the newest and most innovative approaches to studying the 18th Century.

“These new ideas and approaches stimulate my research,” said Klein.

 Her research, “Female Cross-Dressers as the Category of ‘Lesbian’ in the 18th Century,” examines the classic issues of gender and sexuality in literature.

“My paper on cross-dressers and the lesbian in the 18th Century examines the figure of the female cross-dresser and her many representations in 18th Century literature and culture. I consider how and why the cross-dresser reveals moments of lesbian desire while also drawing our attention to issues of gender and sexuality,” Klein said.

 “I argue that representations of the female cross-dresser represent her gender as fluid, and that this representation opens up multiple interpretive possibilities for scholars of lesbian historiography,” she added.

 Klein’s second presentation, “Adapting the 18th Century: Pedagogies and Practices,” shows the unexpected connection between the 18th Century “Pamela,” written by Samuel Richardson, and E.L. James’s “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

 “When I was teaching ‘Pamela’ I was surprised that students suggested the connection between ‘Pamela’ and ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ right away. They seemed to dislike the characters in ‘Pamela,’ and yet several of them professed that ‘Fifty Shades’ was their favorite novel,” said Klein.

 She continued, “We discussed how these two novels share certain commonalities that hearken back to fairy tales like Beauty and the Beast and Cinderella. As a class, we were able to look at ‘Fifty Shades’ as an inadvertent adaptation of ‘Pamela,’ and in doing so, the students were able to understand how and why ‘Pamela’ was a bestseller in its own time period.”

 Klein will also co-chair a workshop session, “18th Century Camp,” at the Conference.

“The exchange of ideas is really what I look forward to the most, as well as the collegiality. Eighteenth-centuryists are really a wonderful, compassionate and encouraging group of scholars,” Klein said.

It’s not just the intellectual stimulation that Klein anticipates.

“Since I’m Polish, I’m looking forward to eating lots of pierogi (Polish dumplings) in Pittsburgh,” she added.

 Klein received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Maryland, master’s degree from CUNY Brooklyn, and her Ph.D. from Stony Brook University.

For more information, contact the Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at prmis@tamiu.edu or 326.2180 or visit offices in Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library, room 268.

Office hours are 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday – Friday.