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January 2010, Week 3


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Jeremy Butler <[log in to unmask]>
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Wed, 20 Jan 2010 19:21:24 -0600
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Forwarded from the University of Iowa's Department of Cinema and Comparative

Dear Friends of CCL,

An ad hoc committee called the Provost's Task Force on Graduate Education:
Selective Excellence has just recommended the elimination of the UI’s
comparative literature and film studies PhD degrees, and the comparative
literature MA degree. It has also recommended that the MFA in translation be
moved to a newly proposed Division of World Languages and Cultures and the
MFA in film and production be moved to a newly proposed Division of
Communications. These moves would in effect dismantle the current Department
of Cinema and Comparative Literature. Ours are not the only programs under
threat, but ours is the only department that would be eliminated if the
committee’s recommendations were followed.

The graduate programs in the department have long been recognized as leaders
in their respective disciplines. The department itself has fostered an
effective and supportive environment in which to research, teach and learn
for faculty, graduates and undergraduates alike. Each year, the department
and its graduate programs bring film festivals, workshops, celebrated
authors and directors to Iowa City while creating and hosting important and
innovative conferences and symposia at the University. The disbanding of the
department and the termination of its PhD/MA programs would be a loss for
former and current students, colleagues and the academic community as a

Please take a moment and write to Dean Linda Maxson ([log in to unmask]),
telling her about your experiences with CCL and asking her to reject the
Task Force’s recommendations. You can also write to Russell Valentino (
[log in to unmask]), the DEO of CCL, who is collecting personal
testimonials about the department for inclusion with his official response.
Finally, if you are currently in the Iowa City area, you can sign a paper
petition to the Dean that will appended to the official response. This
petition will be available from now until January 26th in the CCL mailroom.

Thank you for your support,

CCL Graduate Student Representatives

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