Melinda Ponder

Professor, English
Haldan Hall 115
617-731-7139
ponderme@pmc.edu

Education

  • Ph.D., English and American Literature, Boston College
  • M.A., American Studies, Boston College
  • M.Ed., Salem State College
  • B.A., Wellesley College

Current Position

  • Professor of English, Pine Manor College, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts
  • Coordinator, English B.A. Program

Positions Held

  • Professor of English and Josephine Abercrombie Professor of Writing, Coordinator of Women's Studies, Director of College Composition, Pine Manor College, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts

Courses Taught

  • Pine Manor College, 1987-present
    American Literary Traditions, American Literature I and II, Images of Twentieth-Century America: Innovation in Literature from Hemingway to Morrison, American Girls and New Women: American Literature 1870-1930, African-American and Caribbean Literature, Female Voices of Diversity: Studies in Contemporary Literature, New England Literature: A Sense of Place (Includes tours of Boston area authors' homes and haunts), Shorter American Fiction, Writing Their Stories: Women Immigrants to the United States, British Literary Traditions, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Women in Shakespeare, Shakespeare II, Interpreting Shakespeare, Drama and Theatre in London (An on-site course in London exploring the historical development of British drama and its current theatre life), Theatre in Boston, Plays Past and Present: Images of Women in Drama, Modern Plays: British and American, Modern Plays: European, Mythology and Literature, Experience of Literature, The Art of Advanced Prose Writing, College Composition I and II, Methods and Curriculum in English Instruction, Defining Women: Introduction to Women's Studies, Director of Senior Essays: Post-Civil War American women writers; Virginia Woolf’s early novels, Director of Independent Studies: Women Writers of the Harlem Renaissance; Flannery O’Connor and Eudora Welty, Oral culture and folklore in Caribbean literature; Women and Religion; Women writers and nineteenth-century periodicals, Director of Internship which created a Women's Center and produced The Women's Studies Newsletter
  • Boston College Evening and Summer School, 1984-l987
    Survivals: Themes in American Literature, The Short Story, Introduction to College Composition
  • Boston College, l983-l984
    Major American Writers I, Critical Reading and Writing

Academic Honors

  • Wean Fellowship, Pine Manor College, 2005-2006
    An award given annually to one senior faculty member for outstanding work of one semester’s leave from teaching to use for scholarly research
  • Josephine Abercrombie Chair in Writing, l999-2002
  • North East Modern Language Association Summer Fellowship, l999
  • Wean Fellowship, Pine Manor College, l998-1999
  • Kellogg Fellowship, Pine Manor College, 1993-1994, for outstanding service to the College
  • Lindsey Professorship, Pine Manor College, l991-l992 (An award given annually to one junior faculty member for outstanding academic performance and scholarly promise, of one semester's leave from teaching)
  • Wellesley College Horton-Hallowell Fellowship, l986-l987
  • Faculty Development Grants from Pine Manor College: l988, l989, l990, 1993, 1994-1995, l997, l998-1999, Summer 1999, 2003-2005
  • Alpha Chi Honor Society, Honorary Membership, Pine Manor College
  • Alpha Sigma Nu Honor Society, Boston College
  • Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, Salem State College

Current Research

  • Katharine Lee Bates: From Sea to Shining Sea
    This biography describes how the young graduate of Wellesley College’s second class (1880) developed into the poet of the beloved “America the Beautiful,” and then continued to define her nation’s possibilities in her career as both an educator and as a writer of fiction, poetry, essays. With interwoven selected excerpts from Miss Bates's out-of-print but lively fiction, poetry, travel essays, literary criticism and feminist writings, my narrative gives its readers a sense of an extraordinary woman’s life of letters and the classroom in turn-of-the-century Boston, New England, and America.

Publications

  • Books
    • Hawthorne and Women: Engendering and Expanding the Hawthorne Tradition. (Co-Editor). Amherst: The University of Massachusetts Press, l999.
      This book brings to light the many women reviewers, critics, and writers who played a part in establishing Nathaniel Hawthorne's career and creating the ongoing Hawthorne tradition. It includes early reviews by women and essays about women writers and critics whose work responds to and revises Hawthorne’s work.
    • Hawthorne's Early Narrative Art: Its Origins in Eighteenth-Century Anglo-Scottish Aesthetics. Lewiston, New York: The Edwin Mellen Press, l990.
      This book explores the roles which various 18th-century theorists played in shaping Hawthorne's first theories of art, his conception of himself as a writer, and his formal creation of short narratives, culminating in the l837 edition of Twice-told Tales.
  • Articles and Reviews
    • “On Sabbatical in Egypt: ‘I Long to be an Egyptologist’” in The Pine Manor College Bulletin, Summer, 2007 (Vol. LVI, No. 1), 16-17.
    • “Spain: ‘A Garden of Delight’: Researching the Life of Katharine Lee Bates in Spain” in The Pine Manor College Bulletin, Summer, 2004 (Vol. LIV, No. 2), 14-15.
    • “Oh, To Be in London, Now that Theatre Time is Here!: Teaching EN/TH 272: Drama and Theatre in London” in The Pine Manor College Bulletin, Winter, 2001 (Vol. LI, No. 1), 12-13.
    • “Katharine Lee Bates: Hawthorne Student, Teacher, Critic, and Respondent” in Hawthorne and Women: Engendering and Expanding the Hawthorne Tradition, edited by John L. Idol and Melinda M. Ponder. Amherst: The University of Massachusetts Press, l999, 204-216.
    • "Gender and the Religious Vision: Katharine Lee Bates and Poetic Elegy," in Seeing Into the Life of Things: Essays on Religion and Literature, edited by John L. Mahoney. New York: Fordham University Press, 1998, 171-194.
    • “The Thrill of the Chase: From Basement Archives to Louisa May Alcott’s Orchard House,” in The Pine Manor College Bulletin, Winter, l999.
    • “How Are We Revitalizing the College Classroom for the 21st Century?” in The Pine Manor College Bulletin, Winter, l996-97.
    • "Hawthorne Student, Teacher, Critic, and Respondent: Katharine Lee Bates" in Hawthorne and Women: Engendering and Expanding the Hawthorne Tradition. Amherst: The University of Massachusetts Press, l999, 204-216.
    • "Majestic Lyrics," Chicago Tribune, July 4, l993.
    • "From Cover to Cover: Hawthorne's The Blithedale Romance," The Essex Institute Historical Collections, Vol. 127, 1 (l990), 50-68.
    • "Katharine Lee Bates as Hawthorne Critic and Scholar," The Nathaniel Hawthorne Review, XVI, 1 (l990), 6-11.
    • "Drama Comes Alive in London," Pine Manor College Bulletin, XXXI, 2 (l990), 13-15.
    • "Echoing Poetry with History: Wordsworth's Duddon Sonnets and Their Notes," Genre, XXI (l988), 157-178.
    • "Hawthorne and Raymond, Maine," The Nathaniel Hawthorne Review, XII, 2 (l986), 4- 10.
    • "A Walking Tour Through Hawthorne's Boston," The Nathaniel Hawthorne Society Newsletter, XI, 1 (1885), 8-10.
    • Review of The Literary Pilgrimage of Nathaniel Hawthorne by Noburu Saito in The Nathaniel Hawthorne Review, Vol. 23, No. 2 (Fall, l997), 17-18.
    • Review of New Essays on Hawthorne's Major Tales edited by Millicent Bell in The Nathaniel Hawthorne Review, Vol. 20, No. 1 (Spring, l994), 36-40.
    • Review of Aesthetic Headaches: Women and a Masculine Poetics in Poe, Melville and Hawthorne by Leland S. Person, Jr., in The Nathaniel Hawthorne Review, XV, 1 (l989), 28-29.
    • Review of Nathaniel Hawthorne's Tales: Norton Critical Edition in The Nathaniel Hawthorne Review, XIII, 2 (1987), 20-21.
    • Review of Farewell, Dresden by Henri Coulanges in The Christian Science Monitor, April 5, l989.
    • Review of Balm in Gilead by Sara Lawrence Lightfoot in The Christian Science Monitor, January 23, l989.

Media Interviews

  • Boston Community Network channel, March 29, 2006, on “Literary Limelight”: a half- hour interview about writing the biography of Katharine Lee Bates.
  • Monitor Radio (International short-wave station), July 22, l993, "Origins of 'America the Beautiful."
  • Arts and Entertainment National Cable channel, July 4, l993, "Composing 'America the Beautiful."

Presentations

  • "Katharine Lee Bates and the Woman Question" at the Falmouth Historical Society 150th Birthday Celebration in Falmouth, Massachusetts, August, 2009.
  • “Nathaniel Hawthorne and Robert Browning in Florence” at the Nathaniel Hawthorne Society Meeting, American Literature Association Conference in Boston, May, 2009.
  • “Katharine Lee Bates and her Inspirations for ‘America the Beautiful’: Its Roots in Falmouth, in Chicago, in Colorado and Beyond” at the Woods Hole Women’s History Month Lecture, March, 2009.
  • “Hawthorne and the Woman Question” at the Bicentennial Celebration of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Birth at Salem State College, March, 2004.
  • “Hawthorne and Women” at the Essex-Peabody Institute in Salem, Massachusetts, 2004, for the "Hawthorne in Salem" ("http./www.hawthorneinslaem.org") web-site.
  • “Popularizing the Poet: The Boston Poetry Scene of 1915-1925 at Its Transformation of the Poetry Marketplace” at the North East Modern Language Association Conference, April, 2002.
  • “Women Writers and their Publishers” at the North East Modern Language Association Conference, April, 2001.
  • “Walking Through Hawthorne’s Boston” at the Nathaniel Hawthorne Conference, Boston, 2000.
  • “The Environment as Catalyst in the Writing of Biography” at the North East Modern Language Association Conference, April, 2000.
  • “Visions of America: Katharine Lee Bates in Colorado Springs” at the National Trails Day dedication of the “America the Beautiful” Trails System in Colorado Springs, Colorado, June 5, l999.
  • “Women’s Literature in the 19th Century” Roundtable at the North East Modern Language Association Conference, 1999.
  • Hawthorne and Women: Engendering and Expanding the Hawthorne Tradition—Changing the Literary Landscape” at the Essex-Peabody Institute, l999.
  • “Katharine Lee Bates: The Bates Legacy and ‘America the Beautiful’” at the Bates Family Association, l998.
  • “‘Broad-minded, pure-hearted, and thoroughly wide awake’: Louisa May Alcott & the Publishing World of Family Periodicals” at the Summer Conversational Series, Orchard House, Home of the Alcott Family, l998.
  • “Katharine Lee Bates: From Village Scribbler to the Nation’s Poet” at the Falmouth Historical Society, Falmouth, Massachusetts, l998.
  • “Networked Women: Shaping the Nation in Nineteenth-Century Family Periodicals” at the North East Modern Language Association Conference, l998.
  • “Re-forming the Nation: ‘America the Beautiful,’ Regional Fiction, the Settlement House Movement and Community” at the North East Modern Language Association Conference, l997.
  • “Revitalizing the College Classroom: Organizing Faculty Seminars” at Conference on New Ways of Learning and Leading, l997.
  • "Encircling Death: Katharine Lee Bates's Revisionary Sonnet Corona 'In Bohemia'" at the North East Modern Language Association Conference, l994.
  • "Armchair Traveling in England: Nathaniel Hawthorne's Our Old Home and Katharine Lee Bates' From Gretna Green to Land's End" at the American Popular Culture Conference, York, England, l993.
  • "Katharine Lee Bates: Imagining 'America the Beautiful'" at the Wellesley Historical Society and Friends of the Margaret Clapp Library, Wellesley College, l993.
  • "The 'Alabaster Cities': The 1893 World Columbian Exposition in Chicago and 'America the Beautiful'" at the New England Popular Culture Association, l992.
  • "Katharine Lee Bates and Hawthorne: Enlarging Our Old Home" at the Philological Association of the Carolinas, 1992.
  • "Challenging 'Manly' Imperialism: Katharine Lee Bates in Spain" at the New England American Studies Association, l991.
  • "Authoring Hawthorne's Early Narrative Art" at the Boston Authors Club, l990.
  • "'Magnetic Idealism' and 'Flamboyant Sexuality'": Marketing Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Blithedale Romance" at the North East Popular Culture Association, l988.
  • "Flannery O'Connor and Hawthornean Romance: 'A Good Man Is Hard to Find' and 'Young Goodman Brown' at the North East Modern Language Association, l988.
  • "The First and Last Words on Hawthorne's The Blithedale Romance" at the Philological Association of the Carolinas, l988.
  • "Edmund Burke's 'Sublime' and Hawthorne's 'Young Goodman Brown'" at the North East Modern Language Association, l987.
  • "Hawthorne and Raymond, Maine" at the Nathaniel Hawthorne Society Conference, Bowdoin College, l986.
  • "Walking Through Hawthorne's Boston" at the Nathaniel Hawthorne Society Conference, Boston, l984.
  • "Wordsworth as Biographer: The River Duddon Sonnets and Their Notes" at the Wordsworth Summer Conference, Grasmere, England, l984.

Presentations to Pine Manor College Alumnae

  • Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, 2008.
  • "Family Ties, Knots and Bridges: Women and Their Quest for Home and Self in The Wedding by Dorothy West and The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan, l995.
  • "Women and the West: O Pioneers!: Willa Cather's reply to Walt Whitman," l993.
  • "Mothers, Daughters and Literary Patterns: Sarah Orne Jewett's Country of the Pointed Firs," l992.

Other Professional Activities

  • Member, Pine Manor Trustees Committee on Enrollment, 2009-present
  • Member, Pine Manor Planning Committee, 2009-present
  • Member, Trustees’ Education and Community Affairs Committee of the Boston Athenaeum, 2008-2011
  • Member, Pine Manor Faculty Committee on Reappointment, Promotion, and Tenure, 2007-10.
  • Member, Boston Browning Society, 2005-present
  • Chair, “Hawthorne and Biography,” and “Hawthorne and Nature,” at the Nathaniel Hawthorne Society Conference, Bowdoin College, June, 2008
  • Chair, “Perspectives on The Marble Faun: Quests and Identities” and Chair, “Perspectives on The Marble Faun: Evil and Existence” at the Conference on Trans-Atlanticism in American Literature: Emerson, Hawthorne and Poe, Oxford, England, July, 2006
  • Chair, “Hawthorne and Philosophical Perspectives,” at the Bicentennial Conference of the Nathaniel Hawthorne Society, Salem, Massachusetts, July, 2004
  • Advisory Board Member, the “Nathaniel Hawthorne and Salem” Website of the National
  • Endowment for the Humanities (“http:www.hawthorneinsalem.org”), 1999-2004
  • Board of Directors, New England Foundation for the Humanities, l993-1995
  • Council member, New England American Studies Association, l991-l995
  • Chair, Teaching the Fourth Genre of Non-Fiction Prose, North East Modern Language Association, l999-2000
  • Chair, Maximizing the Use of Literature and Writing in Interdisciplinary and Multidisciplinary Studies, North East Modern Language Association, l998-1999
  • Chair, Future Directions of the College English Department, North East Modern Language Association, l997-1998
  • Chair, New Pedagogies in the College Literature Classroom, North East Modern Language Association, l996-1997
  • Chair, Literary Perspectives on Aging Section, North East Modern Language Association, l995-1996
  • Chair, "Rap, Fans and Universities: Cultural Extremes," Popular Culture: American Culture, Northeast Conference, l995
  • Secretary, Literary Perspectives on Aging Section, North East Modern Language Association, 1994-1995
  • Chair, American Romanticism Section, North East Modern Language Association, l993- 1994
  • Secretary, American Romanticism, North East Modern Language Association, l992-1993
  • Chair, Literature and Architecture Section, North East Modern Language Association, l992-1993
  • Secretary, Literature and Architecture Section, North East Modern Language Association, l992
  • Chair, Flannery O'Connor Section, North East Modern Language Association, l990
  • Secretary, Flannery O'Connor Section, North East Modern Language Association l989
  • Chair, Hawthorne Section, North East Modern Language Association, l989
  • Secretary, Hawthorne Section, North East Modern Language Association, l988
  • Chair, "Formative Friendships: Margaret Fuller, Lydia Maria Child, and Nathaniel Hawthorne," New England American Studies Association Conference, l995
  • Chair, "New Women, New Worlds," New England American Studies Association Conference, l994
  • Chair, "Literary Border Clashes," New England American Studies Association Conference, l992
  • Editorial Board, The Nathaniel Hawthorne Review, l988-l991
  • Executive Board, Nathaniel Hawthorne Society, l985-l988
  • Boston Authors Club, 1989-1991
  • Consultant to Downtown Productions for their film version of Hawthorne's The Blithedale Romance