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New Scholars Bring New Energy

New Faculty Members Bring Skills, Artistry to UC Riverside

Twenty New Faculty Members Join the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences

(October 20, 2003)

RIVERSIDE, Calif. ( — New faculty members at UC Riverside include 20 new professors in the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences who have wide-ranging interests, from hip-hop theater to Native American Studies, to Southeast Asian Studies, to writing award-winning fiction.

“Our already stellar faculty has enabled us to recruit the very best scholars in the country and the world,” said CHASS Dean Patricia O’Brien. “We have an excellent cross-section of very experienced people and newly minted professors and I’m very excited about the superb teaching and research excellence we will see coming from these new members of the College this year.”

Among the new professors is Rickérby Hinds, a leader in the hip-hop theatre movement whose innovative work has been performed at the Mark Taper Forum; Victoria Bomberry, who studies indigenous people and has received the Sankofa Award from the California Arts Council for lifetime contributions to arts and culture; and Dana Johnson, who won the Flannery O’Connor Prize for short fiction for her first collection of short stories.

Among the established researchers is Hendrik Maier, appointed Director of Southeast Asian Studies, a program that combines performing arts with literature and culture, an area that of high priority for the college.

“The addition of Prof. Maier promises to move UC Riverside to the top of the rankings in the area of Southeast Asian Studies,” O’Brien said. “He is one of the most prominent and respected scholars of language, culture, and politics in the international community of Southeast Asian scholars and scholarship. His presence at UC Riverside is a jewel in our crown.”

Lane Hirabayashi, also a senior recruitment this year, is a national leader in the field of ethnic studies and interdisciplinary studies, bringing additional strength to the College’s initiatives in these important areas.

A full list of new faculty follows:

Susan Antebi
Assistant Professor of Hispanic Studies
Ph.D., 2003, Harvard University

Professor Antebi's research focuses on works of late twentieth century Spanish American prose narrative, with an emphasis on the presence of the corporeal monster in that literature. This "freak" character is described in terms of his or her ability to subvert the authoritative structures which conventionally divide the normal from the monstrous or the oppressor from the victim. Professor Antebi's approach is based on a combination of psychoanalytic, economic and post-colonial critique. Professor Antebi hopes to expand her work beyond a specifically Hispanic context in order to pursue the question of dialogue between languages and literatures of different regions of the Americas. She currently is “faculty in residence” at Pentland Hills, a residence hall at UC Riverside. She is the first faculty member to live at a residence hall in the campus’ 50-year history, part of a pilot program to help honors students have more informal access to a faculty member.

Veronica Benet-Martinez
Assistant Professor of Psychology
Ph.D., 1996, University of California, Davis

Professor Benet-Martinez's research is guided by the following broad social questions: How do culture and ethnicity shape our identities and personalities? As people of varying cultures and ethnicities, how are we different and how are we alike? How do individuals who have internalized more than one culture develop a cohesive multicultural identity? How is culture created and enacted in people’s everyday activities? More specifically, using survey, experimental, and ethnographic methods, Professor Benet-Martinez studies biculturalism - contextual and individual processes involved in the integration of two or more cultural identities; culture and personality structure - identification and measurement of indigenous and universal personality constructs; and culture and social symbols - how cultural meaning is carried and institutionalized by everyday social tools.

Victoria Bomberry
Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies
Ph.D., 2001, Stanford University

Professor Bomberry received her Ph.D. in Modern Thought and Literature from Stanford University in 2001. Her specialties in this interdisciplinary program were Literature and Anthropology. Her dissertation titled "Indigenous Memory and Imagination: Thinking Beyond the Nation" is a study of the development of a hemispheric consciousness among indigenous people in the Americas and the ways in which indigenous women are contributing to this phenomenon. From 2001-2003 she was a UC President’s Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Native American Studies at UC Davis. In 2001, she received the Sankofa Award from the California Arts Council for lifetime contributions to arts and culture. She is a past recipient of the Charles Bannerman Fellowship, a national award, for her contributions to community organizing.

Walter Clark
Professor of Music
Ph.D., 1992, University of California, Los Angeles

Professor Clark comes to UCR having taught at the University of Kansas from 1993 to 2003. His research deals with the music of Spain and Latin America from 1800 to the present. He is the author of numerous articles, reference entries, and reviews, as well as several books: Isaac Albéniz: A Guide to Research; Isaac Albéniz: Portrait of a Romantic, recently published in Spanish translation by Turner in Madrid; and a forthcoming companion biography, "Poet of the Piano: Enrique Granados and His World." Professor Clark is the editor of From Tejano to Tango: Latin American Popular Music, and is currently working on a textbook on Latin American Music. Since his early teens, Professor Clark has cultivated a passion for Spanish and Latin American music as a classical and flamenco guitarist. In fact, he has Bachelor's and Master's degrees in performance, studying classical guitar with Pepe Romero at UCSD and flamenco with Ricardo Modrego in Madrid.

Kevin Esterling
Assistant Professor of Political Science
Ph.D., 1999, University of Chicago

Professor Esterling's research and teaching interests focus on information and lobbying in American national politics. He is the author of "The Political Economy of Expertise: Information and Efficiency in American National Politics" (University of Michigan Press, forthcoming 2004). He has published in The Journal of Politics, Rationality and Society, Judicature, and the Journal of Theoretical Politics. Esterling was previously a Robert Wood Johnson Scholar in Health Policy Research at the University of California, Berkeley and a postdoctoral research fellow at the Alfred A. Taubman Center for Public Policy and American Institutions at Brown University.

Michael Foster
Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Foreign Languages
Ph.D., 2003, Stanford University

Professor Foster's studies of Japanese folklore and literature complements departmental interests. He has taught courses at Stanford on "Sacred Myth to Urban Legend" and on "Gods, Ghosts, and Goblins." Foster’s interdisciplinary research displays breadth, depth, and notable originality. Conversant with critical and anthropological theories, he uses them critically and judiciously.

Rickerby Hinds
Assistant Professor of Theatre
MFA, 1996, University of California, Los Angeles

Professor Hinds is an accomplished playwright whose works have been developed and performed by the Mark Taper Forum, The Royal Court Theatre, ASK Theater Projects, The Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Imua! Theater, and Arena Stage. He has received commissions from Cornerstone Theater, The GeVa Theater, Showtime Television, and the Mark Taper Forum. As a leader in the Hip-Hop Theater movement, his works explore issues surrounding race, gender, and culture and their function in a multi-cultural, interconnected world. His plays and screenplays include: Keep Hedz Ringin’, Birthmark, Blackballin’, One Size Fits All, and Straight From Tha Underground. Hinds, an award-winning playwright, is also a screenwriter. He was commissioned by Showtime Network to adapt his play Birthmark into a screenplay in 1999. Born in Honduras, he grew up in South Central Los Angeles and received his bachelor’s degree from UC Riverside

Lane Ryo Hirabayashi
Professor, Department of Ethnic Studies
Ph.D., 1981, The University of California, Berkeley

Professor Hirabayashi received his Ph.D. in Socio-cultural Anthropology at U.C. Berkeley, and has taught for over twenty years at campuses including UCLA, UC Santa Barbara, San Francisco State, and the University of Colorado, Boulder. The author of eight books and anthologies, Professor Hirabayashi's interests are strongly rooted in Asian American and Ethnic Studies and the intersectionality of racial formation theory with other theories of difference having to do with class, gender, and sexuality.

Jim Isermann
Assistant Professor of Art
MFA, 1980, California Institute of the Arts

Professor Isermann is known internationally for eye-catching pieces that stands at the forefront of the cross-fertilization of art and design. His most recent project consists of a 5 pendant, 40-foot chandelier, custom carpeting, and furniture selection commissioned for the atrium of UCSF's Genentech Hall. Professor Isermann comes to UCR following visiting appointments at Occidental College and UCLA.

Michael Jayme
Assistant Professor of Creative Writing
MFA, 2001, University of California, Irvine

Professor Jayme's work focuses on the modern intersection of Mexican, American and Chicano cultures. His fiction, largely set in the predominantly Chicano working-class community of El Monte, California, addresses universal themes of love, loss, and alienation through realist, character-driven narratives. He publishes under the pen name Michael Jaime-Becerra, and his first collection of stories, entitled "Every Night Is Ladies' Night," will be released by Rayo/HarperCollins this winter. Novelist Ann Patchett describes the collection as "one of those wonderful books you'll want to give to everyone you know." An alumnus of UCR's undergraduate Creative Writing program, Jayme's early work was published as part of the Chicano Chapbook Series edited by Gary Soto. Jayme has led writing workshops in a variety of settings, most recently at the University of California, Irvine. He is currently at work on a novel about rural musicians in Mexico.

Dana Johnson
Assistant Professor of Creative Writing
MFA, 2000, Indiana University

Professor Johnson joins us from Indiana University, where she served as an Assistant Professor. Her first collection of short stories, Break Any Woman Down, was awarded the prestigious Flannery O'Connor Prize for short fiction, and has recently been issued in a paperback edition by Anchor Books. The stories in this collection explore such themes and topics as cross-cultural relationships and the importance of preserving one's ethnic identity in an increasingly homogenized society. Her current work-in-progress is a novel that charts the life and development of a young African-American girl growing up in a predominantly white, suburban community. The book explores such important issues as how children deal with racial tension and social peer pressure, and with the formation and strengthening of their own personal and linguistic identities, especially as they relate to gender.

Wei Li
Acting Assistant Professor of Economics
Ph.D. expected 2003, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Professor Li joins UCR after graduate studies at Harvard University and MIT. As an applied theorist, her background and research interests include information economics, organizational behaviors and applied game theory. Her dissertation, "Essays on Information and Incentives,” focuses on how interactions of individual incentives and private information influence organizations and social networks. Her current research topic is the role of informal communication in organizational design.

Charles Long
Assistant Professor of Art
MFA, 1988, Yale University

Professor Charles Long is an internationally exhibited artist who has been living and working in NYC since 1980 where he attended the Whitney Independent Study Program. Long studied sculpture at Yale University where he received his MFA in 1988. He has taught art at Harvard and Columbia and more recently in the Los Angeles area at California Institute for the Arts, Otis, and Art Center. A recipient of the Guggenheim Fellowship, The Pollock-Krasner Fellowship, The National Endowment for the Arts and The Louis Comfort Tiffany Grant, Long has had solo exhibitions at the St. Louis Museum of Art, Bonakdar Jancou Gallery, Shoshana Wayne Gallery, Sperone Gallery, Fundaçao Cultural do Distrito Federal, and Kunstalle Lophem. His work explores a range of artistic practice including conventional sculptural art objects, viewer interactive installations, and collaborations with musicians and dancers.

Margherita Long
Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Foreign Languages
Ph.D., 1998, Princeton University

Professor Margherita Long is at the forefront of gender-theory approaches to Japanese literature with her trail-blazing study of Tanizaki's novels. Her readings of Japanese modernity are original, and destined to take modern Japanese and comparative literary studies in a new direction. The feminist, psychoanalytic, and post-colonial modes of analysis she brings to her study have rarely been brought to bear in any integrated way on Japanese writers and never with the insight and acumen possessed by Professor Long in her work on Tanizaki. Her current book project, "Perversions of Intimacy: Tanizaki and the Sex of Prewar Japan,” is to be published by the Duke University Press Series entitled "Asia-Pacific: Culture, Politics, and Society."

Hendrik Maier
Professor of Comparative Literature and Foreign Languages
Ph.D., 1975 University of Leiden, Netherlands.

Professor Maier held the world’s most prestigious chair in Southeast Asian Studies at Leiden University in Holland prior to joining UC Riverside. He has taught at Kyoto University, Cornell University, and UCLA as a distinguished visiting professor. He has been called one of the most creative thinkers in the world in Southeast Asian Literature. His book, In the Center of Authority (Cornell, 1988) has been an important study of how the tradition of studying Malay texts has developed and how oral and written literatures interact with each other. At UCR, Maier will director a program in Southeast Asian Studies, an interdisciplinary program that combines performing arts with literature and culture.

Robert Perez
Acting Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies
Ph.D. expected 2003, University of California, Riverside

Professor Perez received his Ph.D. in history from the University of California, Riverside. His research and teaching focus on developing a comprehensive understanding of the historical experiences of the aboriginal peoples of the vast region comprised of California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Sonora, and Chihuahua. His focus is on making historical connections between pre-colonial aboriginal societies, colonialism, and the modern situation. His dissertation is a study of Spanish colonialism and Aboriginal survival in what are now the states of Sonora, Mexico and Arizona. Professor Perez integrates oral histories, botanical knowledge, and traditional archival sources to present a more complete picture, as his work gives insight to the Indian perspective. He has published a book, A History of the Cabazon Band of Mission Indians: 1776-1876.

Kenneth Rogers
Acting Assistant Professor of Art History
Ph.D. expected 2004, New York University

In addition to teaching the history of photography, experimental film, video art, and new media at New York University for the past five years, Kenneth Rogers comes to UCR as the former director and head curator of the Maiden Lane Exhibition Space in lower Manhattan from 2000-2003 and is the co-founder of Chatham Arts, a new exhibition space in Pittsburgh, PA. His recent research reevaluates artists' film and video production in the U.S. between 1965 and 1975.

Andrew Winer
Assistant Professor in Creative Writing
M.F.A., 2000, University of California, Irvine

Professor Winer's expertise includes fiction and screenwriting. His nationally best-selling first novel, The Color Midnight Made, charts the coming of age of a color-blind white boy struggling to find meaning in a world divided by poverty and race. His novel-in-progress similarly explores issues of identity, race, and social injustice—but through the lens of a Jewish family living through, and in the wake of, the Holocaust. Professor Winer also co-authored an original screenplay, "Honky!" which sold to Fox/New Regency. Secondary areas of expertise and research include Jewish & Holocaust Literature, Exile Literature, 20th Century American Literature, Victorian Literature, African-American Literature, and Visual Art.

Haibo Yu
Assistant Professor of Theatre
MFA, 1989, St. Martins College of Art and Design, London

Professor Yu comes to UCR with a strong background and a broad range of skills. He has a BFA from the Central Academy of Drama, in China, an MA from the University of Leeds, in England, and an MFA equivalent from Central St. Martins College of Art and Design in London. He is a scenic and lighting designer who has worked in theatre, film, and television in Europe, China, Hong Kong, and the USA. His designs have been included in books and exhibitions and he was a co-author on Devised and Collaborative Theatre, which was published by Crowood Press Ltd., England, in 2002. Professor Yu is also skilled in the use of digital technology in theatre design and is a fine artist, skilled in painting.

Susan Zieger
Assistant Professor of English
Ph.D., 2002, University of California, Berkeley

Professor Zieger's dissertation, "Addictive Fictions: Medical Knowledge, Novelistic Form, and Habits of Mind in Britain, 1860-1914," a cultural and literary history of addiction, allows her to look at the broad expanse of nineteenth-century British literature from a new perspective. It is actively informed by her archival work at the London Centre for the History of Science, Medicine, and Technology. The history of medicine gives her study of addiction a clear foundation in clinical fact, and her interpretation of those facts makes her work theoretically compelling. After showing how the rhetoric of addiction emerged from the language of habit, alcoholism, and morphinomania, she looks at the representation of addiction in the fictions of Wilkie Collins, Richard Pryce, Robert Louis Stevenson, and Bram Stoker. This approach opens these works in a new way, and the results are exciting to literary and cultural historians alike.


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