Student-published research journal focuses on liberal arts and human sciences
Philologia, an undergraduate research journal in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences at Virginia Tech, will roll out Volume 2 at a celebration on Monday, April 12 at 4 p.m. in the Owens Banquet Hall on campus.
Latin for “scholarship and love of learning,” Philologia is a 100-page, full-color magazine that contains research manuscripts, creative scholarship, and featured articles written by the student editorial board. Student-inspired and student-driven, this issue of Philologia was guided to fruition by senior editor-in-chief Caitlin Laverdiere, a dual degree English and economics major from Springfield, Va.
“Just as Philologia boasts a greater number of articles this year, the increase in contributions reflects sustained growth in research participation by undergraduates in the college,” said College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences Dean Sue Ott Rowlands.
During the last academic year, 79 percent of graduating seniors in the college engaged in at least one undergraduate research experience, the highest percentage of any college at Virginia Tech.
Philologia opens with a section on creative scholarship. Haley Dodd, a senior English major from Warrenton, Va., offers “Metastasize,” a poem that captures her passion for preservation, in this case in the form of memory of her mother, who suffered from cancer. Kathleen Desouza, a fall 2009 English graduate from Vienna, Va., shares “The Kaki Tree,” which reflects years of research on Brazilian culture and language, in dedication to her cousin who suffers from cerebral palsy. Inspired by case studies involving schizophrenia, Debra Houchins, a junior psychology and English double major from Danville, Va., wrote “Vampire in the Attic,” a short story about a fictional character battling the disorder.
The journal sports six research articles. Joshua Deal, a sophomore history and political science double major from Midlothian, Va., chronicled “The History of Tank Development in the United States,” which focused on World War II’s influence on the tanks’ modern construction.
Alexandria DiSeo, a senior classical studies major from Chesapeake, Va., studied how the Romans defined and explained the alcaic meter, and how it affects modern audience’s interpretations of Horace’s ancient texts in “Hearing Horace: Sound and Rhythm in the Soracte Ode.”
Wade Gelbert, a fall 2009 graduate in political science from Purcellville, Va., authored “Mental health in the Aftermath of Hurrricane Katrina: Problems and Policies,” which examines the criticisms with mental health care post-Katrina, and highlights some policy recommendations.
Kyle Fisher, a senior communication and history major from Forest Hill, Md., explored “How the Paintings of Jackson Pollock Displayed the Political Culture of Abstract Expressionism.” Fisher argues that Pollock’s artistic works and techniques reflect an antipolitical statement of returning to man’s primal past.
Kristin White, a senior religion and culture major from Fairfax Station, Va., submitted “Identity Politics as a Site of Women’s Historical and Migratory Struggles: The Case of Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Mexico.” White examines how the transnational historical contexts of these countries fuel the centrality that women give to identity as they find themselves and their communities migrating to the United States.
Elizabeth McLain, a senior music performance and history major from Covington, Va., published “Discourse and Soliloquy: Compositional Techniques of Olivier Messiaen Exhibited in His Work for Chamber Ensemble and Solo Piano, Oiseaux Exotiques” focuses on how the composer rejected traditional musical limitations and combined natural patterns and musical structures to form a new interpretation of birdsong, effectively binding together history, linguistics, and biology for his audience.
Laverdiere’s staff included associate editors:
- Keri Butterfield, a junior international studies major from Manassas, Va.;
- Katie Collins, a senior English major from Charlottesville, Va.;
- Carol Davis, a senior religion and culture major from Blacksburg, Va.;
- Logan Vidal, a sophomore environmental policy and planning and political science double major from Midlothian, Va.;
- Alexandra Orchard-Hays, senior English major from Centreville, Va.;
- Philipp Kotlaba, sophomore psychology and international studies double major from Danville, Va;
- Audra Vasiliauskas, senior literature and classics dual major from Smith Mountain Lake, Va; and
- Lauren Ruiz, junior communication and political science double major from Richmond, Va.
Several feature articles were written by the editorial staff. Butterfield and Vidal penned “Spain: The Renewable Energy Frontier,” which chronicles Olivia Gilmore’s travels to Spain and her research on the country’s efforts towards establishing renewable energy sources. Collins and Orchard-Hays follow Paul Hinson’s year-long creative process in filmmaking as he combines his writing, editing, filming, and lighting skills to create a product that reflects his experimentation in “Dynamic Storytelling in November.”
Davis follows Frank Waddell’s research into the use of documentary film to address social issues, particularly focusing on viewer’s attitudes towards white-collar crime. Kotlaba writes about Aimee Fausser as she investigates the rise of hate crimes in Modern Russia. Closer to home, Vasiliauskas documents Michelle Klassen’s research about oxycontin abuse in Southwest Virginia. Ruiz highlights seven undergraduate’s work in investigating children’s emotional development and how parental qualities play a role in emotional regulatory strategies.
Katie Stitt, a junior communication and English dual degree major, from Yorktown, Va., took on managing editor duties while Kate O’Conner, of Alexandria, Va., a sophomore architecture major in the College of Architecture and Urban Studies, was the layout editor. Phillip Murillas, a senior communication major from Fairfax, Va., served as Philologia’s Web editor.
Manuscripts for next year’s journal, which is sponsored by the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences Undergraduate Research Institute, must be submitted by Sept. 17, 2010, for peer review. Find submission guidelines online.