Graduate Students


Olivia (Liv) Abram (PhD Program)

Olivia (Liv) Abram is a settler doctoral student in the English department at the University of Saskatchewan whose research focuses on ethical reading practices in Indigenous literatures and Indigenous-settler relations. Her dissertation examines and develops strategies for ethical settler listening, reading, and viewing of Indigenous works of Turtle Island in academic, educational, and public spheres. Through her work, she explores the potential value found in slow, humble, and self-reflective engagement with works in which the reader is not the primary audience, highlighting the importance of self-location and relational reading. Liv is co-supervised by Dr. Kristina Bidwell (NunatuKavut) and Dr. Jenna Hunnef.


Elyn Achtymichuk-Hardy (PhD Program)

Elyn is interested in culture and gender in both literature and film. Her current research is on the legacy of Cold War anxiety on the James Bond franchise, with respect to the way the "Bond formula" has evolved—or not—in terms of fear, sexuality, and racial representations. Her theoretical apparatus makes use of affect in relation to a kind of catharsis of anxiety which is achieved through the expression and production of societal fears. She has also delivered papers on the economics of Lord of the Rings and gender in Harry Potter. If she had spare time, she might coach high school debaters, collect vinyl records, or perhaps watch Lethal Weapon repeatedly (read: obsessively).


Amanda Burrows (PhD Program)

Amanda is interested in medieval literature with a focus on Middle English romances. She received her B.A. from the University of Toronto and her M.A. from Wilfrid Laurier University.

Mabiana Camargo (PhD Program)

Mabiana Camargo is interested in Canadian Speculative Fiction, Women’s literature and Feminisms. Her research focuses on ideas of space and gender in Margaret Atwood’s speculative writing. She works as a Research Assistant for Professor Dr. Wendy Roy, who is also her supervisor. Mabiana comes from Brazil. 


Tara Chambers (PhD Program)

Tara is a U of S Teacher-Scholar Doctoral Fellow, and SSHRC Doctoral Fellow specializing in Renaissance literature. Currently she is a Sessional Instructor at Thompson Rivers University, her undergraduate Alma Mater, in Kamloops British Columbia. Tara received her M.A. from the University of Saskatchewan for her work on the "Februarie Eclogue" of Edmund Spenser's The  Shepheardes Calender . Tara’s doctoral research, under the supervision of Ron W. Cooley, Professor Emeritus, focuses on John Milton’s republican poetics and the politics of  Paradise Lost.



Alyson Cook (PhD Program)

Alyson is a PhD student who holds both an MA and a BA (Hons.) in English from the University of Saskatchewan. Her research interests include 20th century British and Commonwealth Literature written by women in interwar period, with a special focus on works by Katherine Mansfield, Virginia Woolf, and Mary Butts. Supervised under Dr. Ann Martin, Alyson’s current research is exploring the ways in which modernity and materiality intersect in these authors’ short stories and in how these narratives critique interpersonal relationships in interwar British society, namely the interactions between authoritative male figures and women as they often occur within and in relation to domestic space.


Miguel Dela Pena (MA Program)

Miguel is a M.A. project student who received their B.A. (Honours) in English from the University of Saskatchewan. Currently, they are interested in continuing their study of the Country House poems and expanding their comparison of Aemilia Lanyer’s “The Description of Cooke-ham” to Ben Jonson’s “To Penshurst” (presented for the English Honours Colloquium 2021) to the rest of the genre to explore its gendered use of myths, spaces, and images.

They are also a research assistant on the Digital Ark project led by Dr. Brent Nelson and a writing tutor with the USask Library.


Mark Doerksen (PhD Program)

Mark is an instructor and Ph.D. candidate in the department, having received his M.A. in Medieval Studies from the Centre for Medieval Studies at the University of Toronto. His area of study includes Anglo-Saxon eschatological texts and the theological implications of philology in Anglo-Saxon religious poetry. He is currently working on his dissertation under Saint Thomas More College's Dr. Michael Cichon on the philological relationship between Anglo-Saxon eschatological poetry and the Germanic mythic tradition.


Shane Farris (PhD Program)

Shane is a Ph.D. candidate who studies medieval literature and medievalisms past and present. His current research focuses on blending narratology with the digital humanities to study the narratives of the Middle Ages, specifically Middle English outlaw tales. His other research interests include literary theory, codicology and paleography, translation, and semiotics. His dissertation is currently supervised by Dr. Peter Robinson.



Dara Gerbrandt (MA Program)

Dara focuses on drama and literature from the early modern period. She tends to keep to a historical approach having had a double minor in CMRS and History. She received her BA here at the U of S.


Challen Gladman (MA Program)

Challen (they/them) is a second-year MA thesis student, an avid artist of many mediums, and an enthusiastic petter of cats. Having originally graduated with their BA (Honours English, French minor) from Vancouver Island University, BC, they now find themselves transplanted from Douglas to Treaty 6 Territory and the Homeland of the Métis to live and learn at USask -- and, as a settler scholar, they are grateful every day for the opportunity! They have particular interests in fiction, myth, story-telling, various literatures from the margins (notably those that speak to their own experiences as queer, non-binary, and neurodivergent), ethics, accessibility, and the overall pursuit of human happiness. Their present thesis work explores themes of landedness and place-thought as imbued into the alternative American settler-colonial narrative of Battlestar Galactica (2003-2009), beyond which they hope to expand into PhD studies next year and, eventually, become an English professor. They're curious to see what life brings next... but as long as it comes with tea and a good book, they have no doubt it will all be worth it in the end!

Stephen Hardy (PhD Program)

Stephen studies relationships between literature and music, and focuses on modern fiction. In 2017 he presented a talk on American author Richard Powers at the International Word and Music Studies conference in Stockholm, Sweden. In 2018 he will teach ENG 114.3 Reading Culture: Literature and Music. He is in his 5th year of the PhD program. His supervisors are Drs. Lindsey Banco and Ray Stephanson.



Nicole Jacobson (PhD Program)

Nicole is a PhD student. She completed her BA in English and German (double major) at the University of Regina and her MA in Applied Linguistics and Discourse Studies at Carleton University. She is interested in middlebrow modernism, especially detective and suspense fiction, and the linguistic and rhetorical construction of genre fiction more broadly. Her dissertation, which examines the intersection of genre and gender throughout Mary Stewart’s canon, is supervised by Dr. Ann Martin.

Nicole is also a research facilitator with the Department of Academic Family Medicine. She supports the development, revision, and administration of its research curriculum, assists residents in developing their clinical research skills, and contributes to the Department's qualitative and patient-oriented research efforts.


Vijay Kachru (PhD Program)

Vijay is in doctoral studies in English literature at the University of Saskatchewan. Her research area is comparative postcolonial literature from the Commonwealth countries, emphasizing women's writings.

Andrej Kiš (PhD Program)

Andrej studied for his undergraduate degree in English at Andrews University where he also obtained MA degrees in Education and English. 

After teaching abroad and working in educational administration, Andrej started his PhD at the University of Saskatchewan in 2018.  His doctoral thesis analyzes selected works by Flora Thompson and James Herriot to determine how their portrayals of the pastoral landscapes they inhabit reveal their senses of rootedness in the land.  He is supervised by Dr. Ella Ophir. 


Jade McDougall (PhD Program)

Jade's area of study is Indigenous Literatures. She is supervised by Dr. Nancy Van Styvendale and Dr. Allison Muri. 



Kai Orca McKenzie (PhD Program)

B.A., University of California
M.A University of Saskatchewan 

Kai is working to develop and expand the field of transgender literature by writing a PhD dissertation on Representations of Hunger and Fulfilment in Canadian Two-Spirit and Transgender Novels by Joshua Whitehead, Kai Cheng Thom, and Vivek Shraya. This year they are a visiting PhD student at the University of Victoria, getting support in transgender studies from Dr. Aaron Devor and other scholars there. Kai's two supervisors, Drs. Ann Martin and Marie Lovrod, have provided ongoing intellectual support for their studies, as well as inspiration and guidance.


Tricia Monsour (PhD Program)

Tricia’s research focuses on British Gothic literature by women writers from the nineteenth century. Supervised by Dr. Lisa Vargo, she is currently creating a scholarly edition of Jane Harvey’s Gothic historical novel The Castle of Tynemouth.  She completed her M.A. at the University of Saskatchewan and her B.A. Honours at King's University College at the University of Western Ontario. 

Ian Moy (PhD Program)

Ian is a Ph.D. candidate whose research focuses on families and cultural conflict in Canadian literature. He is supervised by Dr. Wendy Roy

Banjo Olaleye (PhD Program)

Banjo's area of study is Ignatius Sancho and 18th-century literature. He is supervised by Dr. Allison Muri. 


Jasmine Redford (PhD Program)

Jasmine is a Ph.D. student and teacher's assistant at the University of Saskatchewan whose research interests include Canadian literature, comics and visual culture scholarship, and the intersection of the two: Canadian comics scholarship.  Under the supervision of Dr. Wendy Roy, she defended her thesis entitled "Chasing Captain Canada: National Identity Challenged Through Superheroes in Canadian Comic Books."  She has obtained her B.F.A. with a major in visual art from the Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver and her B.A. (English Honours) and M.A. from USask.  In addition, Jasmine, who signs her work as Minjaz, is an illustrator and has recently finished over one hundred and twenty-nine pages of hand-painted artwork for the graphic novel Siegfried: Dragon Slayer (2022)--a four-year project that was undertaken alongside her academic work at USask.



Gwen Rose (PhD Program)

Gwen Rose (she/they) is a PhD candidate at the University of Saskatchewan. Gwen's research interests include modernism and the lived experience of marginalized peoples. Her dissertation combines these interests, examining the representation of transgender characters within literary modernism. Gwen is supervised by Dr. Ella Ophir. 

Joel Salt (PhD Program)

Joel is ABD, specializing in 17th-century Literature. He is supervised by Dr. Brent Nelson. His dissertation will examine liminality in the prose and poetry of John Donne.


Sheheryar B. Sheikh (PhD Program)

Sheheryar B. Sheikh (Shero) is ABD, and under Dr. Lindsey Banco’s supervision he is researching post-9/11 American novels and the occlusion of Muslims. Shero has an MFA from Notre Dame, two published novels from HarperCollins India (2017 & 2019). He is currently completing his dissertation, teaching creative writing at the U of S, and writing his third novel, for which he has received research and creation grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Saskatchewan Arts Board.


The Still Point of the turning World

Call Me Al: The Hero’s Ha-Ha Journey


Megan Solberg (PhD Program)

Megan is a PhD student who holds a B.A. (Honours) in English from the University of Saskatchewan and an M.A. in Literature from the University of Westminster (U.K.). Supervised by Dr. Ann Martin, her research examines the intersection of creative practice, marginalization, and suffering in the works of Katherine Mansfield, Dorothy L. Sayers, and Jean Rhys. 


Tristan B. Taylor (PhD Program)

B.A. English (Calgary), M.A. Medieval and Early Modern Studies (Kent) 

Tristan examines evidence of generic convention and rhetoric in late-medieval hagiographic texts. His current work is on the Life of Thomas Becket as it appears in the South English Legendary. His areas of interest are: codicology, medieval reading practices, saints’ literature, devotional and mystical literature, and digital humanities. He is a Research Assistant for Dr. Yin Liu’s Medieval Codes project. 

Supervisor: Dr. Yin Liu 




Alexander Torvi (MA Program)

Alexander Torvi is a first-year Master’s (Thesis) student who had previously completed a Bachelor of Arts Honours degree in English and a minor in Computer Science at the University of Saskatchewan. His area of interest lies in a synthesis of New Media, the Digital Humanities, and Media Studies. As of now he plans to write his Master's Thesis on his continued research regarding the potential video games have for creating connections through digital storytelling.


Heather Torvi (MA Program)

Heather is a Master’s thesis student who is working in 18 th Century literature. Currently she is a Research Assistant for the Grub Street Project under her supervisor Dr. Allison Muri. When she is not working she enjoys spending time working on her memory books.


Gideon Umezurike (PhD Program)

Gideon Uzoma Umezurike is a English PhD student and Dean’s scholar at the University of Saskatchewan. He has a BA in English and Literary Studies (2015) and an MA in Comparative Studies in Literature (2019), both from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. His research straddles postcolonial literature, black Atlantic and diaspora studies, transcultural studies, critical disability studies, existential-phenomenological criticism, the phenomenology of the environment, and the works of Martin Heidegger.

Adam A. Vazquez (PhD Program)

Before Adam's Canadian adventure, he received his undergraduate and M.A. degrees at the UNAM in Mexico. He is interested in medieval literature and Digital Humanities.

Rodrigo Pablo Yanez (PhD Program)

Rodrigo’s research interests include Restoration/Eighteenth Century Literature, Spatial Theory and Literary Cartography/Geography, Digital Humanities, and Game Studies. He has published papers on Ivanhoe and its remediations, and on the function of diegetic music in the video game Bioshock. Rodrigo’s PhD dissertation uses digital mapping to examine how a self is constructed in relation to space in James Boswell’s London Journal 1762-63.


Hamid Yari (PhD Program)

Hamid is a Ph.D. student (September, 2022) from Iran. Currently, he focuses on Iranian Film Studies in the 21st century, as well as Iranian Diasporic Literature, and he is supervised by Prof. Jerry White. He is a graduate teaching assistant at the U of S. Hamid had his B.A. and M.A. from Iran, where he was a part-time lecturer at the University of Kurdistan. Before joining the Dept. of English, he taught "General English" (Reading and Composition) to undergraduate students for two years. He has published an article, translated a book (unpublished), and submitted two manuscripts to peer-review journals.