Standing on Shoulders — In 1676 Sir Isaac Newton wrote, “If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” Since then the phrase “standing on the shoulders of giants” has taken on a life of its own. It is now used to acknowledge and appreciate the work of of those who came before us. I often think of this phrase when I reflect on my role in the history of our English Department. When I arrived at UNC Charlotte in August 1984, many of the department’s early faculty members were still teaching. I feel fortunate that I got to know most of the faculty members who built the English Department from its beginnings in the mid-1960s through the pivotal years of the 1970s and early ’80s. I truly believe that the current strengths of the English Department can be traced back to the hard work and visionary thinking of the people who came before us.
For the aforementioned reasons, I am very pleased to announce that Alan Rauch has completely updated the “Emeritus Faculty” section of our department website. He has located photographs of nearly all of these faculty members. I urge everyone to take a look at this section of our website, and I thank Alan for taking the time to locate and post photographs of these former faculty members. Here is the link: http://english.uncc.edu/people/emeritus-faculty
Quirky Quiz Question — Sir Isaac Newton was not an early member of the English Department, but he was a professor. Does anybody know the name of the university where Newton taught mathematics?
Last week’s answer: Dream a Little Dream of Me
The title of Bryn Chancellor’s debut novel is Sycamore. This title reminds me of the following line from a song recorded by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong: “Birds singing in a sycamore tree.” Does anybody know the name of this classic song?