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Miriam McEwen

Where to begin. I think it's pertinent to know right off the bat that I had no intention of coming to Clemson University. But I quickly became transfixed by Clemson English. Here was a community of professors and students who believed the written word to be a powerful tool in combating both social and political repression, and I wanted to add my voice. If I recall correctly, my first English class was World Literature with Allen Swords. Prior to that semester I had no conception that literature was open to my very personal and very individual interpretation. I thought meaning was predetermined. The idea that it is useful, even necessary, to critique is an empowering concept, and one that has served me well during my time within the major. For the last three years, I've been extremely fortunate to serve as a student director of the Clemson Literary Festival. Under the guidance of Keith Lee Morris and John Pursley III, I've been able to hone my organizational skills, as well as work closely with award-winning authors from across the country. This experience has informed my creative writing, as I've taken several workshops over the course of my undergraduate studies. Working with Dr. Thomas over the past year in both African-American literature and my senior seminar has been an enlightening and enlivening opportunity, one that has fostered a renewed sense of awareness in my life. Each professor within this department has an impassioned lesson to teach each student, from the work being done in Disability Studies to revisionist thinking on the Romantic poets. I'm filled with gratitude for my journey with these important thinkers, and I wish the same happiness on future students.

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Miriam McEwen