Recent Submissions

  • “Presence into absence”: the production of national identity in The Emperor’s Babe and Girl, Woman, Other

    Sobiesk, Lizzy (2023-05)
    Bernardine Evaristo's artistic project includes establishing, uncovering, inventing, and expanding a Black British literary canon. While growing up, Evaristo did not encounter any Black British women "who were born or raised here and writing our stories from this perspective" (72). Instead, Evaristo's literary inspirations "came from African Americans: Audre Lorde, Toni Morrison, Gloria Naylor, and Alice Walker were foremost among them, and of course Ntozake Shange…These were the writers who foregrounded black women's lives and in so doing gave me permission to write" (72). This canon of African American feminist and womanist writers informs the purposeful tensions in Evaristo's novel, such as the struggle between collective power and individual subjectivity, and universality and particularity. Although these authors provide that foundation for Evaristo, their presence also denotes a significant absence of representations of Black British women in novels…Faced with the dismissal of her own experience, Evaristo is conscious that her writing must unsettle the difference between how the literary market conceives of Black British readers and how Black British readers interact with fiction. To address the precarious presence of Black British writers in the British literary market, Evaristo foregrounds activism in her writing career.
  • Ann Radcliffe's female counter-publics

    Hill-Caruso, Elizabeth (2023-05)
    We know so little about Ann Radcliffe's life that it is difficult generate a complete image of who she was. We can, however, situate the few facts of her life within the context of her gender, class, and historic moment. First, while Radcliffe achieved notoriety and influence within the dominant, male-centered, bourgeois public sphere, she began and ended her life in country retirement. Her fiction, often contrasted with the "low" Gothic of Matthew Lewis, features smaller public spheres of women--what I will call counter-publics--that speak to her real-life subject position as a woman writer of the middling class. Unlike other scholars, who restrict their critical frames to categories such as male/female or horror/terror Gothic, this thesis will turn its attention to the nuances of Radcliffe's work, examining the ways in which the women of these counter-publics engage in education, commerce and politics--all in opposition to the patriarchal public. When we examine these counter-publics outside of the binary constructions that have come to dominate literary criticism about the Gothic, new readings of Radcliffe can emerge. In particular, the marriage plots of A Sicilian Romance and The Italian begin to look less stereotypical and more political, linking women's happiness to alternative communities made possible only by the unique dynamics of Radcliffe's counter-publics.
  • From John Reed to Jane Addams: or what time will it be when the last El crashes? Nelson Algren’s proletarian roots, the FWP, and the granular naturalism of Never Come Morning

    Gallagher, William D. (2023-05)
    As a literary figure, Nelson Algren draws small change. While there is certainly a modestly respectable drip of scholarship that flows down through the decades since the height of his success in 1949, with the publication of his magnum opus, The Man with the Golden Arm, it rarely emits more than the babble of a backyard brook. Algren himself, in a 1963 interview with H.E.F. Donahue, referred to his legacy as that of “the tin whistle of American letters” (Donahue 151). It comes as no surprise then that his work pre-The Man with the Golden Arm receives all the attention due to a squeaky penny whistle. While Algren’s first two novels, Somebody in Boots from 1935 and Never Come Morning from 1942, received their share of plaudits and support from critics and authors that traveled similar political and literary circles, the timing of their publication did the author no financial favors – one arriving amidst the Great Depression, and the other during a paper shortage resulting from America’s participation in World War II.
  • “This Image of My Humiliation”: writing and reading embodied illness in John Donne’s Devotions upon Emergent Occasions

    Boss, Erin (2023-05)
    The great paradox of illness is that embodied suffering is an inevitable shared experience of mortality, but at the moment suffering occurs, the embodied experience appears unshareable. Sickness is profoundly ordinary, in the sense that any one of us will experience it in multiple iterations, many times over, but each experience of sickness is unique and particular to the perceptions and interpretations of its host. When the sick patient attempts to communicate their experience, language mediates and transforms the experience. In spite of the distance created between the experience of illness and the experience of witnessing another’s illness, however, many writers turn to sickness as a motivating theme of personal narratives, as does John Donne in his prose work, Devotions upon Emergent Occasions. Donne’s Devotions constructs a container of one speaker’s isolating experience of illness that transports the reader, through formal moves that create an extended present tense to reflect the consuming effect of illness on the body, as close as possible to the experience of illness itself.
  • Do time perspectives moderate the link between Covid-19-related anxiety and excessive smartphone use?

    Akhmadi, Ferdaus (2023-05)
    The COVID-19 pandemic forced a major shift in how we use technology. During the early context of lockdown, many of students' social and academic activities predominantly took place online, with laptops and smartphones becoming indispensable tools in navigating daily life. The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns had given rise to a significant increase in social media use, particularly during the early stages of the crisis. Weekly screen time has shown a notable rise from pre-pandemic levels, with platforms like Twitter, YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram accounting for a big chunk of daily use. The emerging behavioral patterns associated with excessive social media use have raised concerns among researchers investigating the psychological impact of Covid-19 in young adults. Although the threat of COVID-19 has been diminished due to vaccines and rapid testing, this research aimed to explore the prevalence of Covid anxiety and assess whether this residual anxiety can lead to an increased dependence on social media platforms as a means of alleviating such distress. By investigating the relationship between COVID anxiety and overreliance on social media, this research aimed to shed light on the coping strategies individuals employ and their reliance on digital platforms in response to COVID-related anxiety.
  • The self-care experiences of Chinese music therapy graduate students in the United States: a thematic analysis

    Ou, Huan (2023-05)
    This research aimed to explore the self-care experiences and emotions of Chinese graduate students studying music therapy in the United States. Through thematic analysis of interviews, the researcher identified various benefits associated with self-care. Participants reported a sense of pleasure, release, and venting during the self-care process, as well as feelings of support and vitality. Moreover, some participants were motivated to further develop their own self-care strategies through the interview process. The research also highlighted the stress and challenges faced by these students, including academic pressures, internships/fieldwork, and cultural and language barriers. The findings clearly demonstrated the effectiveness of self-care as a coping strategy, which can take diverse forms based on individual preferences. Engaging in self-care activities facilitated self-awareness, catharsis, and a sense of calm and support. Furthermore, participants found that practicing self-care enabled them to differentiate between their personal and clinical lives, allowing them to focus more effectively on their clinical responsibilities. Self-care also played a significant role in fostering personal identity and breaking cultural barriers, providing opportunities for self- reflection, personal growth, and progress. Recognizing international music therapy students as valuable assets to the profession, it is essential for the field to become more aware of their challenges and implement the research's recommendations for practical improvements. Collaboration and mutual understanding among international students, educators, supervisors, and administrators are crucial to achieving this goal. Overall, this study emphasizes the importance of self-care as a valuable tool for Chinese graduate students studying music therapy in the United States, enabling them to navigate the challenges of their academic and personal journeys while promoting overall well-being and professional development.
  • The neural effects of music on anxiety: a rapid review with implications for music therapy practice

    Ye, Keqian (2023-05)
    The use of music as a therapeutic tool for reducing anxiety has been extensively studied. This rapid review includes forty studies that provide neural evidence for the effects of music on anxiety-related brain structures, specifically the amygdala, hippocampus, and insula. The results indicate that to relieve anxiety, music therapists can tailor their musical selection to the client's preferences, focus on music with a steady rhythm to engage the clients, ensure musical continuity and integrity for each session, utilize instrumental improvisation to shift clients' perspectives, avoid dissonant and unexpected sounds when incorporating voices, and combine music with physical exercise.
  • Music and mindfulness: a rapid review of music and music therapy’s implementation with mindfulness practice

    Cohen, Matthew L. (2023-05)
    The modern practice of mindfulness has been used to clinically treat stress, active depression, depression relapse, addiction recovery, and eating disorders, and to promote self-awareness and acceptance. Mindfulness skills and mindfulness meditation have been used in conjunction with theoretical applications, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectic behavioral therapy, and positive psychology, as well as creative arts therapies, such as dance/movement therapy, Insight Improvisation, and art therapy, to affect change. Though mindfulness has also been used with music and music therapy to achieve similar goals, a minimal amount of literature exists that directly discusses this. This rapid review summarizes the quantitative research published between January 2012 and July 2022 investigating the implementation of music with mindfulness practice. Recommendations for research are also included.
  • Music-based stress reduction for undergraduate students: a program proposal

    Wolfson, Andrew (2023-05)
    The proposed 8-week resource-oriented psychoeducational music therapy program intends to support undergraduate students in managing stress and promoting wellness. The program aims to teach undergraduate students at SUNY New Paltz through music therapy based stress reduction methods, such as music-assisted relaxation, song discussion, songwriting. The program is resource-oriented and psychoeducational. This program has the potential to improve the SUNY New Paltz undergraduate student population's mental health and well-being.
  • Music therapy in the PICU: an integrated synthesis of the literature and recommendations

    Mueller, Lauren (2023-05)
    There is an expansive amount of music therapy literature that discusses how music therapy may alleviate adult pain, but there is limited research dedicated to pediatric pain management and music therapy. Even more scarce is how, why or when music therapy is provided for patients in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) suffering with chronic or acute pain. An integrative review was conducted to create a synthesis of the literature on music therapy being conducted for pediatric pain in the PICU. A total of 7 research articles and 3 book chapters met the authors’ search criteria for final analysis. These articles discussed specific circumstances where music therapy was utilized, with some examples being biopsies, ultrasounds, dressing changes, cardiac care, and utilization of mechanical ventilation. This integrative review demonstrated that music therapy may be helpful in regulating and managing pediatric pain for patients in the PICU. Music therapists and medical professionals must continue researching how music therapy can be utilized for PICU patients experiencing pain in order for these patients to receive the highest quality of evidence-based care.
  • An exploration of second-stage recovery through song collage: an interpretative phenomenological analysis

    Isles, Brandon K. (2023-05)
    Addiction continues to be a pervasive issue worldwide. Research indicates that music therapy is a promising treatment modality for individuals who struggle with addiction. However, most of the current music therapy and addiction research focuses on short-term interventions in early phases of recovery. Music therapy is uniquely suited to address the emotional, psychological, and spiritual needs that often emerge later in the recovery process. The purpose of this study is to achieve a clearer understanding of one individual’s experience of the phenomena of creating a song collage, a specific music therapy intervention design, that was representative of his process of long-term recovery. This individual was interviewed about his retrospective experience of this process, which was then analyzed using Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis. The results revealed four main themes: Process, Role of the Music, A Musical Artifact, and Relationship. The results indicate that this intervention design facilitated a profundity and depth of experience that is not well represented in the literature and a sustained perceived benefit to the participant. It appears that song collage is well suited to address the needs of later recovery, has potential to address other phases as well. The results are discussed along with implications for music therapy practice and recommendations for future research.
  • Metamorphose: a chapbook

    Zimmerman, Samantha (2023-05)
  • How childhood nature exposure can influence well-being and connection to nature in adulthood

    Bonk, Cheyenne (2022-12)
    The current study examines the impact of exposure to nature on well-being, and the possible moderating effects of childhood nature experiences (CNE) and adult connection to nature (CN) upon this relationship. The study is a two-group experiment, in which participants were randomly assigned either to a control group (spending 10 minutes in an outdoor space with little green space) or a nature exposure group (like the control group but surrounded by nature).
  • Strongheart: honor among thieves (thesis excerpts)

    Kissel, Demetri (2022-12)
    Dip's Bar and Inn was the center of the town of Westpond. The town was settled four hundred years ago by elves fleeing war across the sea - people who had nothing when they arrived, people who could only take the damp clay around them and mold a new community together. The foundation that became the bar was already there when they arrived. They said the bar had to have been built first, though it might not have always been one, because it was near enough to the water's edge for the rest of the town to rise up around it. As Westpond grew, the old homes nearest the pond became known as the Eastside. The houses were crammed together, the oldest right along the lip of the water, often rebuilt or patched haphazardly after crumbling from poor and hasty construction. The worst of them were rough-looking and made of clay, like mounds molded by giants' hands. The best often housed three or four families to a room, and the entire Eastside, right up to Dip's door, smelled, tasted, felt: damp- like the swampy pond.
  • Singular a novel-in-progress

    Battersby, Jeffery (2022-12)
    Josiah Bentman, née Lenny Sargent, is about to die. Bentman is the leader of the largest right-wing, white supremacist organization in the world. He is anonymous, off the grid, lives under the radar, and has hundreds of thousands of followers the world over. Though he is not a public persona, he has more power than any political figure on the planet, which he has used to build an army of devoted followers. For decades, while building his cohort, he has only communicated via documents dropped in a secret mailbox and more recently via a private internet server. These documents are referred to as The Missives, which are transcribed by a chosen few then published online. Now he’s communicating with his followers directly. Singular details the rise of Lenny Sargent—a boy once untethered, angry, uncertain of his heritage, estranged from humanity, consumed by his anger—and how he becomes the man, Josiah Bentman.
  • Music therapy for adults with dementia and their caregivers rapid review

    Ai, Shixuan (2022-12)
    The purpose of this thesis is to explore the effectiveness of music therapy in the care of person with dementia (PWD) and their caregivers by reviewing the results of research published from 2017-2021.
  • CNN classification with blending mode data augmentation

    Curry, Michael (2022)
    Convolutional neural networks (CNNs) have revolutionized the task of image classification, a frequently occurring computer vision problem. Progress in network architecture has been the leading factor in this advancement, with the evolution of deeper networks with fewer parameters. Alongside CNN network advancements, dataset augmentations have been implemented to expand the learnable data the network can model from. Limited dataset size is a major issue in building neural network models, particularly due to the problem of overfitting, which arises from models fitting training data too well, at the expense of capturing general trends in data, leading to large test errors. In this thesis, we augment available image data by implementing blending modes to expose the full tonal range contained in each training image. Additionally, we implement a horizontal flip transformation to create mirror versions of training images. These data augmentations are shown to reduce overfitting in CNN models. We explore different combinations of blending mode layers to maximize the validation accuracy of the network model.
  • Malina

    Zubarava, Hanna (2022-12)
  • Modern garbage: an eco-critical perspective on trash, art, commodities, and Duchamp's Readymades

    Gaudiana, Joseph (2022-12)
    In the twentieth century, trash was drastically re-invented to become a daily fixture of modern life. Art became increasingly difficult to define, while objects and commodities were produced like never before. Most of what I'm about to discuss in this thesis has to do with objects: whether categorized as trash, art, or commodity

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