Mississippi College Alumni Magazine | Summer 2011

Faculty Spotlight

MC Professors Shine

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Bringing the World to Campus

Bombs pound Libya. Japan struggles to recover from the triple hit of an earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear disaster. United States soldiers battle in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Professor Glenn Antizzo’s mission is to help MC students understand these events as more than just news clips. After 14 years of teaching at Nicholls State University in Louisiana, Antizzo joined the Mississippi College history and political science department faculty in August 2010. A specialist in international relations and the author of three books, Antizzo helps his students explore and understand how events a world away impact citizens around the globe. The professor is also in demand among members of the news media interested in his take on history-making developments.

A native New Yorker and 1985 graduate of Cornell University, Antizzo received his master’s degree at the University of Georgia and his doctorate in political science from Louisiana State University. The professor’s latest book, U.S. Military Intervention in the Post-Cold War Era, focuses on U.S. military actions in Panama, Iraq, Somalia, and Kosovo, and looks ahead to provide insights on future American international policy.

Hitting a Personal Note

Mezzo-soprano and Mississippi College music professor Viola Dacus has wowed concert goers from Mississippi to the Holy Land. Dacus gave one of her most heartfelt performances last March at a Mississippi Symphony Orchestra chamber concert in Jackson, where she sang pieces composed

by retired MC music professor James Sclater. The award-winning Sclater spotlighted Dacus’s youth in Yazoo City, Mississippi, with his songs, collectively titled “Reflections in the Mirror of Childhood.” The songs touched on Dacus’s experiences growing up in the Mississippi Delta, including exploring a cemetery, visiting a country store, discovering a china doll, and spending time with her younger sister.

“The audience response was tremendous,” Dacus said of the highly personal concert. “They all seemed to be as touched as I was.”

Dacus’s career highlights include a December 2007 Christmas performance at Bethlehem’s Manger Square, as well as performances with the Baton Rouge Opera, Mississippi Opera, Ohio Light Opera, and the Manhattan Philharmonic.

While her fan base extends beyond Mississippi’s borders, Dacus is not neglecting her hometown of Clinton. Upcoming events include a recital at Mississippi College this fall.

The Cruel, Cruel Worlds of Faulkner and Dickey

Professor James “J. B.” Potts’s passion for the works of renowned Southern authors William Faulkner and James Dickey has led to recognition for Potts’s own writing.

The MC English professor’s essay on these two literary giants appeared in the spring 2011 edition of the prestigious literary journal The South Carolina Review. Titled “Faulkner’s Influence on Dickey and the Sadistic Thesis,” Potts’s essay explores the connections between the works of Mississippi’s Faulkner, a Nobel Prize-winning novelist, and South Carolina’s Dickey, a poet and novelist best known for his chilling novel Deliverance. Potts’s essay focuses on both authors’ use of cruelty as an issue or theme in their works.

Currently in its 40th year of publication, the Clemson University-based South Carolina Review publishes fiction, poetry, essays, and reviews about and by well-known and aspiring authors.

“Dr. Potts is writing in one of America’s premier literary journals. That puts him in very good company,” Jonathan Randle, chairman of the MC English Department, said. “J. B. is a prolific writer and one of Mississippi College’s flagship scholars.”

© Alina Ng

Once an area limited primarily to literary works, copyright law now extends to software, movies, the Internet, and virtually any other venue in which ideas are expressed.

MC Law Professor Alina Ng first became intrigued with laws protecting ideas as a doctoral candidate at Stanford Law School. This fall, Ng’s book on the subject, Copyright Law and the Progress of Science and the Useful Arts, will be published in the United Kingdom and in the United States. According to Ng, the book evaluates the copyright system “from a moral and ethical vantage point.”

A member of the MC Law faculty since 2007, Ng’s areas of expertise include cyberspace law, intellectual property law, and economics property law. A native of Malaysia and a graduate of the University of London with a master of law degree from the University of Cambridge, Ng received a prestigious Fulbright Scholarship, which helped pay for her law school studies in the United States. She also holds a master’s degree and doctoral degree from Stanford Law School.

The Price of Tea in China

MC Vice President for Academic Affairs Ron Howard is polishing the final draft of his book East Wing Rising – China, the United States and the New World Order. Howard expects the book, a culmination of his years-long fascination with China and that country’s impact on the rest of the world, to be published in 2011. The book examines China’s relationship with the United States, primarily from the 19th century forward to the 2008 Olympics in Beijing and the economic headlines of the present day.

Howard’s interest in China has further increased as a result of MC’s growing Chinese student population. The majority of MC’s 220 international students are from China.

“The book is written with the American reader in mind, but also offers insights to Chinese students and laymen,” Howard said. “The relationship between China and the United States is fundamental not only to the U.S. and China, but to the peace and prosperity of the entire world. The better Americans understand the Chinese, and vice versa, the better chance we have for peaceful resolution of disputes and international cooperation on worldwide problems.”

 

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