Department of Languages and Literature


Dr. Rafael Iglesias

Professor (Spanish);
Department Chair

Languages & Literature

Phone: (630) 829-6268  |  Send Dr. Iglesias an Email  |  Office: Kindlon 219B


Ph.D., Florida State University | 1999

M.A., Florida State University | 1994

Licenciature, Universidad Complutense de Madrid | 1991

Research and Teaching Interests

Spanish Golden Age literature; literature and political philosophy of Early Modern Europe; lying and deception as literary topics; simulation and dissimulation; Machiavellianism and anti-Machiavellianism; Francisco de Quevedo; Federico García Lorca.


Selected Publications

"Francisco de Quevedo como practicante de la disimulación defensiva en Cómo ha de ser el privado y El chitón de las tarabillas." La Perinola 17 (2013): 69-106.

"Cómo ha de ser el privado de Francisco de Quevedo y la tradición española antimaquiavelista de los siglos XVI y XVII." La Perinola 14 (2010): 101-127.

"Las fuentes literarias y no literarias de Cómo had de ser el privado de Francisco de Quevedo." Bulletin of the Comediantes 57.2 (2005): 365-405.

"Cervantes y la Inglaterra de los Estuardo." 1605-2005: Don Quixote across the Centuries Conference: Wooster, OH (April 2005). "El imposible equilibrio entre el encomio cortesano y la reprimenda política: Hacia una nueva interpretación de Cómo ha de ser el privado de Quevedo." Perinola: Revista de Investigación Quevediana 9 (2005): 267-98.

"Una posible nueva interpretación de los poemas de Quevedo de principios del reinado de Felipe IV relativos a fiestas de toros y de cañas." Calíope: Journal of the Society for Renaissance & Baroque Hispanic Poetry 10.2 (2004): 73-93.

"Un ejemplo de la influencia de las relaciones de sucesos en la literatura del Siglo de Oro: El romance de don Miguel Venegas de Granada relativo a las fiestas de toros y de cañas de agosto de 1623." Selected Proceedings of the Pennsylvania Foreign Language Conference (2002). Ed. Gregorio C. Martín. Pittsburgh: Duquesne University, 2003. 73-86.

Visit Professor Iglesias's profile at (opens in new window).

Dr. Zubair S. Amir

Associate Professor (English Language & Literature)

Languages & Literature

Phone: 630-829-6256  |  Send Dr. Amir an Email  |  Office: Kindlon 219A


Ph.D., Cornell University | 2005

M.A., Cornell University | 2000

B.A., St. Mary’s College of Maryland | 1997


Research and Teaching Interests

Professor Amir’s areas of specialization include Victorian literature, nineteenth-century fiction, and the novel as genre. His scholarship focuses on the representation of class and social mobility in Victorian fiction, particularly novels of the 1860s and 1870s, as well as the complex relationship between gossip and narrative.



“‘Welcome (Back) to the Brotherhood’: Nostalgia, Masculinity, and the Selling of the Mitchum Man.” Utopian Images and Narratives in Advertising: Dreams for Sale. Eds. Luigi Manca, Alessandra Manca, and Gail Pieper. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2012. 69-78.

“‘So Delightful a Plot’: Lies, Gossip, and the Narration of Social Advancement in The Eustace Diamonds.” Victorian Literature and Culture 36.1 (2008). 187-204.


Selected Presentations

"'When You Read Their Writings': Disrupting Shelley's Frankenstein."Twentieth Annual Association for Core Texts and Courses Conference, Los Angeles, CA (April 2014).

“‘An Unauthorized Intruder’: Social Mobility and the Challenging Talk of Gaskell’s Wives and Daughters.” Biennial Women’s Research Conference (“Women and Challenge”), University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD (March 2011).

“‘Tormented with… Forgiveness’: Power and Pardon in Trollope’s Can You Forgive Her?” Third Global “Forgiveness: Probing the Boundaries” conference, Mansfield College, Oxford, UK (July 2010).

“‘The Mind Prefers… Conjecture to History’: Hardy’s The Hand of Ethelberta, Gossip, and the Romance of Social Mobility.” Red River Conference on World Literature: North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND (April 2009).

“‘Drawn Almost into Frightful Neighborhood’: England, France, and the Problem of National Identity in Wordsworth’s Sonnets.” Midwest Modern Language Association convention: Chicago, IL (November 2006).

“Interpreting the Interpretive Impasse of Hopkins’s ‘Spring and Fall.’” Annual conference sponsored by the Centre Interdisciplinaire de Recherches sur les Langues, les Littératures, la Lecture et L’Élaboration de la Pensée (“The Plurality of Interpretation”): Université de Reims, Champagne-Ardenne, Reims, France (March 2006).

Invited panelist, “Graduate Student Teaching and the Future Professoriate.” Cornell Consortium for Writing in the Disciplines: Ithaca, NY (June 2003).

“‘Not Much of an Explanation’: Victorian Onomastics and the (Mis)naming of the Middle-Class Woman in Gaskell’s Wives and Daughters.” Modern Language Association convention: Washington, DC (December 2000).

Dr. Wilson C. Chen

Associate Professor (English Language & Literature)
Assistant to the Provost for International Affairs

Languages & Literature

Phone: (630) 829-6288  |  Send Dr. Chen an Email  |  Office: Kindlon 267


Ph.D., University of California, Irvine | 2003

M.A., University of California, Irvine | 1995

B.A., University of California, Berkeley | 1991


Teaching and Research Interests

Dr. Chen teaches U.S. literature, African-American literature, and rhetoric/composition. His research has focused on such topics as Edwidge Danticat's fiction and concepts of diaspora; Paule Marshall's contributions to black feminist intellectual history; African-American literary responses to U.S. empire in the early twentieth century; and the pedagogical challenges of interreligious studies in U.S. multicultural studies. Since 2009, Dr. Chen has also served as Assistant to the Provost for International Affairs in the context of Benedictine University's international education/global learning initiatives.


Selected Publications and Presentations

"Religious Difference and Multiculturalism in the Liberal Arts: Reading Eboo Patel Reading Core Texts and Courses." The Quest for Excellence: Selected Papers from the Seventeenth Annual Conference (2011) of the Association for Core Texts and Courses. Eds. Dustin Gish, Christopher Constas, and J. Scott Lee. University Press of America, Inc. Forthcoming.

"Narrating Diaspora in Edwidge Danticat's Short-Story Cycle The Dew Breaker." LIT: Literature Interpretation Theory. 25.3 (2014): 220-241.

"Religious Difference, Cultural Pluralism, and Eboo Patel's Pedagogical Challenge to U.S. Multicultural Studies." Annual Conference of The Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States (MELUS): Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (March 2013).

"Autobiographical Performance and the Global South: James Weldon Johnson's Inter/National Subject in Along This Way." Annual Conference of The Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States (MELUS) jointly with the Conference of the United States chapter of the Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies (USACLALS): San Jose, CA (April 2012).

"Teaching the American Protest Novel: Meridel Le Sueur's The Girl and Its Pedagogy of Protest." Annual Conference of the Association for Core Texts and Courses (ACTC): WI (March 2012).

"Figures of Flight and Entrapment in Edwidge Danticat's Krik? Krak!" The Rocky Mountain Review of Language and Literature: The Journal of the Rocky Mountain Modern Language Association. 65.1, 2011.

"Caribbean Daughters of the Diaspora: From Paule Marshall to Edwidge Danticat." The 24th Annual Symposium on African American Culture and Philosophy, "(Re)Visioning the Black Caribbean: Spaces, Places, and Voices," Purdue University: West Lafayette, IN (November 2008).

"Diasporic Vernaculars: Teaching African-American Literature in the Context of Global Studies." Annual Conference of the Global Studies Association of North America: New York (June 2008).

"Rethinking African American Literary Studies through Edwidge Danticat's Fiction." Program in Louisiana and Caribbean Studies at Louisiana State University, "Black Diaspora in the South and the Caribbean" conference: Baton Rouge, LA (March 2007).

"C. L. R. James, Cultural Studies, and Composition: Vernacular Knowledges and the Hybrid Spaces of Student Writing." Conference on College Composition and Communication: San Francisco, CA (March 2005).

Dr. Steven Day

Assistant Professor (Chinese)

Languages & Literature

Phone: (630) 829-6290  |  Send Dr. Day an Email  |  Office: Kindlon 149


Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles

M.A., University of Colorado, Boulder

B.A., University of Minnesota


Research and Teaching Interests

Modern Chinese literature, culture, and cinema; literary and cultural theory; history and historiography



Translation of Wang Weilian 王威廉, “Listening to the Sound of Salt Forming.” (anthology of Post-80s writers edited by Geng Song and Qingxiang Yang. Beijing: Renmindaxue chubanshe, forthcoming 2014)

Translation of Liu Zaifu 劉再復 , “The End of Modern Chinese Revolutionary Literature.” (anthology edited by Howard Choy. MerwinAsian, forthcoming 2014).

Wang Zengqi 汪曾祺 entry, Dictionary of Literary Biography: Chinese Fiction Writers, 1949-2000. Ed. Thomas Moran. Bruccoli Clark Layman, 2012.

Shi Tuo 師陀 entry, Dictionary of Literary Biography: Chinese Fiction Writers, 1900-1949. Ed. Thomas Moran. Bruccoli Clark Layman, 2006.

Translation of Liu Zaifu 劉再復 , “Farewell to the Gods: Contemporary Chinese Literary Theory’s Fin-de-siècle Struggle.” In Chinese Literature in the Second Half of a Modern Century: A Critical Survey. Eds. Pang-yuan Chi and David Der-wei Wang. Bloomington: Indiana UP, 2000.


Selected Presentations

“Faux-Epistolary: Shi Tuo’s Shanghai Correspondence and the Aesthetics of Literary Montage in Accounts of Wartime Shanghai.” Panel on Representations of Shanghai in Literature and Film. Rocky Mountain Modern Language Association Regional Conference: Boulder, CO (October 2012).

Round-table discussant, “Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language: Character Issues and Other Considerations,” Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs. Western Michigan University (September 2012).

“Ending Difference and Different Endings: (En)gendering Narratives of the Cultural Revolution in Yang Yanjin’s The Alley.” Panel 15, “The Rhetoric of Renewal and Revolution.” Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs Conference. OSU (October 2010).

Panel Chair and Discussant for Modern Chinese Literature Panel, Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs. St. Olaf College (October 2008).

Panel 7 (Modern China) Chair and Discussant, International Junior Scholars Conference on Sinology. Swarthmore College (March 2008).

Audio-Voice Communication Technologies panel presenter. CMS panel presenter. Poster session presentation on iMovie and PulpMotion. NITLE Symposium on Technology-Assisted Approaches to Teaching Chinese. Southwestern University: Georgetown, TX (November 2007).

“Do You Moodle? An Introduction to Alternative Course Management Software for Educators.” Technology and Chinese Language Teaching IV Conference. Columbia University (spring 2004).

“In Formation: Re-imagining Modern Chinese Literature and the National Forms Debates, 1938-1942.” Panel 76. “War and Modernity: Remapping Chinese Aesthetics and Politics, 1937-1945.” AAS Annual Conference: San Diego, CA (spring 2004).

“Not in the Name of the Father: Wang Zengqi’s ‘Revenge’ and the Modern Chinese Short Story Unbound.” Panel 201, “Alternative Voices: Modes of Literary Deviation in Modern Chinese Wartime Literature (1937-1949).” AAS Annual Conference (spring 2002).

Dr. Jean-Marie Kauth

Associate Professor (English Language & Literature)
Director, Writing Program

Languages & Literature

Phone: (630) 829-6272  |  Send Dr. Kauth an Email  |  Office: Kindlon 220


Ph.D., University of Michigan | 1995

M.A., University of Michigan | 1991

B.A., University of Iowa | 1990


Research and Teaching Interests

Medieval and Renaissance literature, literature by women, Dante, science and literature, and environmental studies.


Selected Publications and Presentations

"Silko's Ceremony as a Core Text: Natural and Unnatural Worlds." Engaging Worlds: Core Texts and Cultural Contexts: Selected Papers from the Sixteenth Annual Conference of the Association for Core Texts and Courses. Eds. Robert D. Anderson, Molly B. Flynn, and J. Scott Lee. Forthcoming.

"Women and Children in a Fragile Utopia." Utopian Images and Narratives in Advertising: Dreams for Sale. Eds. Luigi Manca, Alessandra Manca, and Gail Pieper. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2012. 47-68.

"Barred Windows and Uncaged Birds: The Enclosure of Woman in Chrétien de Troyes and Marie de France." Medieval Feminist Forum 46.2 (2011).

"Who Are We?: Integrating Institutional Core Texts into First-Semester Composition." The Association for Core Texts and Courses (ACTC) Fourteenth Annual Conference: Plymouth, MA (April 2008).

"Beatrice and Pearl." Substance, Judgment, and Evaluation: Seeking the Worth of a Liberal Arts, Core Text Education – Selected Papers from the Twelfth Annual Conference of the Association for Core Texts and Courses, Chicago, Illinois, April 6-9, 2006. Eds. Patrick T. Flynn, Jean-Marie Kauth, John Kevin Doyle, and J. Scott Lee. Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 2010. 55-60.

"The Ancrene Wisse as Core Text." The Association for Core Texts and Courses (ACTC) Fourteenth Annual Conference: Williamsburg, VA (March/April 2007).

"The Shaping of Dante's Cosmos."  Medievalia et Humanistica: Studies in Medieval and Renaissance Culture 32 (2006). 7-24.

"Beatrice and Pearl." The Association for Core Texts and Courses (ACTC) Thirteenth Annual Conference: Chicago, IL (April 2006).

Dr. Sandra Gollin Kies

Associate Professor (linguistics, EAP, core/humanities)

Languages & Literature

Phone: (630) 829-6279  |  Send Dr. Kies an Email  |  Office: Kindlon 220A


Ph.D., Macquarie University | 2003

M.A., University of Sydney | 1989

LTCL (Licentiate Diploma in Teaching ESL), Trinity College | 1976

B.A., University of Queensland | 1973


Research and Teaching Interests

Dr. Gollin-Kies's training is in applied linguistics with a focus on TESOL. Her research centers on English for academic purposes and analysis of discourse in social contexts—in other words, how language both contributes to context and is shaped by it. She is particularly interested in researching the spoken and written genres of academia and the professional workplace.


Selected Publications and Presentations 


Gollin-Kies, S, Hall, D. & Moore S. "Language for Specific Purposes." London: Palgrave Macmillan. Forthcoming.

Burns, A., Joyce, H., Gollin, S. "I see what you mean" Analysing authentic spoken discourse in the classroom: a handbook for teachers. Sydney: NCELTR, 1996.

Peer-reviewed journal articles

"Methods reported in ESP research articles: A comparative survey of two leading journals." English for Specific Purposes Journal. Forthcoming, 2014.

"Accommodating generation 1.5 in the 21st century academy: New approaches to writing pedagogy." La Communicación escrita en el siglo XXI. Quaderns de Filologia Estudis Linguistics de la Universitat de Valencia. Vol. XVI. Pp. 105-128. (2011).

Book chapters

"Thematic development." In D. Rossen-Knil and T. Bakhmetyeva. Including Students in Academic Conversations: Principles and Strategies for Teaching. Theme-Based Writing Courses Across the Disciplines. Report of interview. New York NY: Hampton Press, 2011.

"Why? I thought we'd talked about it before: Collaborative writing in a professional workplace setting." In Writing: Texts, Processes, Practices. Eds. C. N. Candlin and K. Hyland. London: Longman, 1999.

Recent conference presentations

"Why don't they speak up?" an integrative model for facilitating more inclusive case discussion in graduate business programs. Symposium presentation at 16th World Congress of Applied Linguistics (AILA Conference), Beijing Foreign Studies University, Beijing. (August 23-28, 2011).

"Research Methodologies in Language for Specific Purposes" Writing Research Across Borders II. George Mason University, VA.  (February 17-20, 2011).

"Collaborative writing in an organization: reconciling competing ideologies in the recontextualisation process." VI Conference of the Latin American Systemic-Functional Linguistics Association-ALSFA. Fortaleza, Brazil. (October 5-9, 2010).

"The role of explicit instruction on Theme-Rheme and Given-New in developing texture in graduate student writing." Panel Member of invited colloquium: Writing through the lens of Systemic Functional Linguistic Theory at Symposium on Second Language Writing. Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ. (November 5-7, 2009).

"Balancing Power and Solidarity in the Discourse of Collaborative Writing." 14th World Congress of Applied Linguistics: Madison, WI (July 2005).

"The Neglected Cohort: Addressing the Language and Learning Needs of Masters by Coursework Students." Guest talk, Australian Catholic University Bi-Annual Conference: Sydney, Australia (October 2004).

Dr. Elizabeth Kubek

Professor (English Language & Literature);
Assistant Provost and Director, Inquiry and Core Curricula

Languages & Literature

Phone: (630) 829-6257  |  Send Dr. Kubek an Email  |  Office: Kindlon 268

Dr. Olga D. Lambert

Associate Professor (linguistics, writing program, EAP)
Coordinator, Intensive English Program

Languages & Literature

Phone: (630) 829-6291  |  Send Dr. Lambert an Email  |  Office: Kindlon 218


Ed.D., Harvard University | 2009

M.A., University of New Hampshire | 2001

B.A., Bates College | 1999


Research and Teaching Interests

Dr. Lambert's research focuses on relationships between students' beliefs, attitudes, and perceptions and their academic performance. She is especially interested in the teaching of academic writing (with a focus on students for whom English is not the first language).  She teaches first-year writing and English for Academic Purposes courses and served as Director of the University's Writing Program in spring 2014.

Selected Publications

"Learner characteristics and writing performance in a community college ESL course: Some unexpected findings." Community College Journal of Research and Practice (in press).

"Who Are Our Students? Measuring Learner Characteristics in Adult Immigrants Studying English." Adult Basic Education and Literacy Journal 2.3 (2008). 162-173.

"It's Not What You Signed Up For: Zen and the Art of Teaching Freshman English." What to Expect When You're Expected to Teach. Eds. A. Bramblett and A. Knoblauch. Portsmouth, NH: Boynton/Cook, 2002. 43-46.


Selected Presentations

"My Writing Needs More Beautiful Words: Using International Undergraduates' Beliefs About Academic Writing to Inform Classroom Practice." The 16th World Congress of Applied Linguistics: Beijing, China (August 2011).

"Learner Characteristics and Writing Performance in a Community College ESL Course: Some Unexpected Findings." Writing Research Across Borders II Conference: Fairfax, VA (February 2011).

"Why Are They Studying English? Assessing the Goals, Beliefs, Needs, and Attitudes of Adult Immigrants in ESL Programs." Adult Education Research Conference: St. Louis, MO (June 2008).

"Examining Adult Immigrants' Goals for Learning English, Their Self-Concept as English Learners, and Their Definitions of Successful Acquisition of English." Harvard Graduate School of Education Student Research Conference and International Forum: Cambridge, MA (February 2006).

"Teacher Feedback and Student Writing Development in an ESL Classroom." The 14th World Congress of Applied Linguistics: Madison, WI (July 2005).

Dr. Joaquin Montero

Associate Professor (Spanish)

Languages & Literature

Phone: (630) 829-6269  |  Send Dr. Montero an Email  |  Office: Kindlon 223

Dr. Beth Ransdell Vinkler

Professor (Spanish)
Director, Scholars Program

Languages & Literature

Phone: (630) 829-6264  |  Send Dr. Vinkler an Email  |  Office: Kindlon 221


Ph.D., University of Chicago | 1990

M.A., University of Chicago | 1984

B.A., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign | 1981

Research and Teaching Interests

Dr. Vinkler's research and teaching interests include twentieth-century Latin American literature in Spanish and Portuguese, translation and translation studies, and, recently, the scholarship of teaching and learning.

Selected Publications and Presentations

"A Learning Community Model to Support At-Risk First Generation College Students: Benedictine University's Emerging Scholars Learning Community Program." Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Academy, Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids, MI (May 2013).

"We Imagine Ourselves Differently: The Assertion of Countercultural Identities in Kiss of the Spider Woman by Manuel Puig and Poem in Twenty Furrows by Julia de Burgos." Association for Core Texts and Courses Conference (ACTC), Ottawa, Canada (April 2013).

"Así lo imaginábamos nosotras: A Comparison of the Image of the Feminine in Early Poems by Gilka Machado, Clementina Suárez, and Julia de Burgos." Louisville Conference on Literature and Culture since 1900, Louisville, KY (February 2012).

New Land, New Immigrants: A Study of Brazilian Immigrants in Massachusetts. Translation of a study by Ana Cristina Braga Martes. University of Florida Press, 2011.

"Bright Lights, Big City: Urbanization and the City as Metaphor in the Spanish American Vanguardia and Brazilian Modernismo." Louisville Conference on Literature and Culture since 1900: Louisville, KY (February 2008).

"Improving the Race: Eugenics and the Leite Criôlo Manifestos (1929)." DuPage Arts Life (2004), 26-29.

Bitita's Diary: The Childhood Memoirs of Carolina Maria de Jesus. Ed. Robert M. Levine. Trans. Emanuelle Oliveira and Beth Vinkler. Armonk, NY: M. E. Sharpe, 1998.

"Woman Scorned: The Silenced Woman of the Latin American Avant-Garde." Mester 27 (1998): 35-44.

"The Anthropophagic Mother/Other: Appropriated Identities in Oswald de Andrade's Manifesto Antropófago." Luso-Brazilian Review 34.1 (1997): 105-11.

When I was about eight, I decided that the most wonderful thing, next to a human being, was a book.

– Margaret Walker