3rd HELAAS Young Scholar Symposium – Presentations

Testimonies of Wellness in a COVID-19 Period: Turning Grief into Creation

Despoina N. Feleki is Postdoctoral Researcher in the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece, and appointed School Educator. She completed her MA studies in European Literature and Culture and her PhD in Contemporary American Literature and Culture (AUTh). As a Fulbright Scholar, she has been awarded educational and travel grants. Feleki teaches undergraduate and postgraduate courses and organizes workshops on fiction and pedagogy, focusing on the intersections between textuality and digitality, and on how these affect literary and educational practices. Her research interests include Contemporary Anglophone Literature, World Literature, Popular Culture, Fandom, and Videogame Studies. Feleki is a member of the Multimodal Reading and Research Group (AUTh), served as the Young Scholar Representative of the Hellenic Association for American Studies (HELAAS) (2014–18) and is currently its Treasurer (2019–23). Her monograph, Stephen King in the New Millennium: Gothic Mediations on New Writing Materialities, was out by Cambridge Scholars Publishing in 2018. She is the co-editorof the Special Issue of the HELAAS ExNa journal “Popular Culture in a New Media Age: Trends and Transitions” (2020). Other published articles appear in WiN, GRAMMA: Journal of Theory and Criticism: Digital Literary Production and the Humanities (AUTh), Writing Technologies (Nottingham Trent University), and Authorship (University of Ghent).

Towards a Medical Theatre: Staging Breast Cancer Trilogy
by Catalina Florina Florescu

Zafiris Nikitas teaches theatre at the Theatre Department of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki andholds a PhD in Theatre Studies. He studied Law and Theatre at the Aristotle University completing graduate and postgraduate studies in both disciplines. His scientific interests focus on the “cultural poetics” of American and European Theatre, as well as Minority Theatre. For his dissertation, he received an Excellence Grant by the Hellenic Foundation for Research and Innovation after being ranked first in Humanities at the Aristotle University. He has published articles in international and Greek peer-reviewed journals, and he has participated in multiple conferences organized by the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Frei Universität Berlin, Sapienza Università di Roma, etc. He takes part in the research project “Audience Research in Performances of Ancient Drama.” His first monograph, Representing the Nation: The Dramaturgy of Jannis Kambysis. is under publication. Lastly, he has published three literature books and one translation in collaboration with the Professor of Aristotle University and recipient of the Award of Academy of Athens for 2021 Dimitrios Z. Nikitas.

The Aesthetics of Grief: Exploring Sorrow in the Paradigm of Gris

George Vasilikaris holds a BA in English Language and Literature from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, where he also pursued his postgraduate studies, obtaining an MA in Translation and Conference Interpreting. Fascinated by intricate storytelling, he always wanted to find a way to implement his passion for video games in his studies and research the endless possibilities they provide, as well as their immense impact on pop-culture. A literature enthusiast, video game critic, localization specialist, and avid gamer, who would like to find a way to combine all his interests and bring games to the forefront of academic studies.

Advertising, Translation, and Gender: Testimonies of Pseudo-Wellness, Translational Dead Ends, and the Struggle for Equality

Stavroula (Stave) Vergopoulou is a PhD candidate in the Department of Translation and Intercultural Studies at the School of English, AUTh. Her PhD research, which addresses translation, gender, and advertising, is funded by the Board of Greek State Scholarships Foundation (IKY). Vergopoulou earned her BA (Hons) in English Language and Literature from AUTh and her MA in Translation from Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz, graduating with high honors on both occasions. For her postgraduate studies, she received a scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). From 2018 to 2020, she also taught in undergraduate courses at the School of English, AUTh.

Writing Rape after the #MeToo Movement: Resilience, Resistance and Community in Post-2017 Rape Memoirs

Isabel Marqués López is a predoctoral researcher at the Complutense University of Madrid. Her areas of interest include contemporary U.S. American (non)fiction, 21st century women’s writing, autobiography theory and affect theory. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in English Studies and a Master’s degree in Advanced Studies in Literature and Film in English, both from the University of Zaragoza. She is currently working on a PhD thesis on narratives and testimonies of sexual harassment after the #MeToo movement in U.S. literature and media, including works by Chanel Miller, Myriam Gurba, Carmen Aguirre, and Siri Hustvedt. Her doctoral research is funded by a Research Fellowship from the Spanish Ministry of Education.

Writing Correspondence as a Means of Healing and Reconciliation in Ocean Vuong’s On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (2019)

Kalliopi Fragkouli is a PhD candidate at the National Kapodistrian University of Athens. She holds a degree from the School of English Language and Literature of Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (2015). She completed her MA in English and American Studies at Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (2018). She has focused on African American fiction, particularly on Toni Morrison’s works, shedding light on black feminism and beauty standards. She has done research on African American poetry, focusing on the works of Claude McKay, Langston Hughes, and Paul Laurence Dunbar, and touched upon the issues of slavery, torture, lack of freedom, and sense of belonging. Her research interests include Contemporary American Literature, American Ethnic and Minority Literature, African American Novelists, Feminist Theory, as well as Race and Gender Studies.

Of Historical Amnesia and National (un)Wellness
in Octavia E. Butler’s Kindred (1979)

Panteleimon Tsiokos is a PhD candidate at the University of Western Ontario, Canada. He holds a BA (Hons, cum laude) in English Language and Literature and an MA in English and American Studies from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece. His research interests include issues of identity, immigration, assimilation, and acculturation and their representations in 20th- and 21st-century ethnic, minority, folk, African American, and Indigenous literatures/oratures of North America.

From Self to Cultural Recovery: The Power of Stories
in Leslie Silko’s Testimonial Writings

Chadha Brahem is a PhD Student at Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest. She holds an MA Degree in English Language, Civilization, and Literature from the University of Sousse, Tunisia. She received an ERASMUS scholarship to pursue her second year of the MA in English and American Studies at Aristotle University Thessaloniki, Greece (2016–17). Her research interests include Cultural Politics, Postcolonial studies, Gender studies, along with the examination of various forms of narratives ranging from literature and theatre to films and paintings. She had various teaching experiences in Italy 2014, Turkey 2015, Tunisia 2017–18, and Hungary 2020/21.

Smooth Sailing Through a Postgraduate Thesis? Why Not?

Anna Gkouva holds a BA Honors in English Language and Literature and an MA in English and American Studies from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece. She is currently teaching English as a foreign language in a private language school, and she is also a lecturer in the Department of English Literature of DEI College, Greece. Her research interests examine the emotional and affective dimensions and representations of the body in Performing Arts.

Ourania Zygouri received a partial academic scholarship of excellence by the School of English, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki to pursue a MA in English and American Studies (2017) and holds a BA Honors in English Language and Literature from the same institution (2016). A holder of CELTA certificate, she works as an EFL and ESP tutor specializing in Adult Education and Lifelong Learning. Her research interests examine issues of gender and sexuality in literary, visual, and scenic arts.

Chara Triantafyllidou is a first-year PhD Student and Gates Scholar at the University of Cambridge. She holds an MPhil with Distinction in Applied Linguistics from Trinity College Dublin (2020) and a 1st-class BA Honors in English Language and Literature from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (2018). She is a Student Mentor at PHYLIS AUTh, a Tutor at The Brilliant Club, and a Teacher of Modern Greek as a Foreign Language at Trinity College Dublin. Her research explores the role of prosodic skills and socioeconomic status in reading comprehension.