Melissa Dinsman

Melissa Dinsman
  • York College
  • Assistant Professor of English
  • Affiliation During NDIAS Fellowship: University of Notre Dame
  • Graduate Student Fellow (2012-2013)
  • Radio at War: Literature, Propaganda, and the Emergence of New Modernist Networks during World War II

Melissa L. Dinsman is Assistant Professor of English at York College. Her research interests include literary modernism, specifically American, British, and German, and media studies. Her dissertation, entitled “Radio at War: Literature, Propaganda, and the Emergence of New Modernist Networks during World War II,” explores the national and transnational networks created by modernist writers via radio broadcasting during the Second World War. Through her analysis of the literary and cultural broadcasts of key authors such as George Orwell, Dorothy Sayers, Archibald MacLeish, and Thomas Mann, Ms. Dinsman challenges traditional characterizations of wartime radio broadcasting as nationalist propaganda. Instead, she argues that modern writers often facilitated networks with educational programming, which intentionally challenged national(ist) borders.

Ms. Dinsman is the author of “'A river is not a woman’: Re-visioning Finnegans Wake in Eavan Boland’s ‘Anna Liffey’” in Contemporary Women’s Writing, “Parody, Play, and Purposeful Deconstruction: A Discussion of Umberto Eco’s Hermeneutic Theory in Relation to his Parodic Practice” in Literature Interpretation Theory, and a chapter in the annual publication, The Brecht Yearbook. Additionally, Ms. Dinsman has presented her work at several major conferences, including the annual meetings of the Modernist Studies Association, the Northeast Modern Language Association, and the American Comparative Literature Association. She has taught courses at the University of Notre Dame focused on the modern novel, composition, and the German language. Most recently, she taught a capstone senior seminar course on twentieth-century Irish literature.

Ms. Dinsman has received several research grants, including a Mellon-ISLA Interdisciplinary Workshop grant (awarded jointly with another graduate student) for the upcoming workshop series “New Media: Literary Production from the Middle Ages to the Digital Age,” which will take place during the 2012-2013 academic year.