Beth Plank

Beth Plank
  • Graduate Teaching Assistant

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My primary interests of study can be found in two areas. If I am not looking into the arc of Shakespeare’s career and teasing out his themes, then I am likely exploring early 20th century American literature and its connections to cultures past and present, specifically the family representation.

During my undergraduate program we read Madame Bovary and The Awakening back-to-back, comparing their parallel story line against the male versus female authorial point of view. This activity led to my love of making textual connections between works and became a lens through which the stories I now read are viewed. The relationship and connections between writings provides a rich understanding of where we have been, where we are, and where we are going as a society. When able to use rhetorical analysis and historical contextualization, tools which complement my interests, I find that my literary world feels complete.

In 2021-2022 I experienced the influence the editing process has on a piece of writing through working alongside Dr. Darius Salter on his book Amasa Stone andThe Ashtabula Bridge Disaster. I transcribed his work then edited the chapters we worked on together. The importance of the correct word choice and placement of punctuation taught me about effectively communicating an author’s vision. Currently I am working on my own story based on a box of letters my grandparents wrote to one another in the 1930’s. I find the nuance of reading between the lines of their communication paired with family lore that has been passed down for multiple generations to be a story that needs to be shared. It is my belief that at the intersection of history and literature there is a portal to stories yet to be told, I want to be a part of that pilgrimage.


B.A. in English (minor in Ministry), MidAmerica Nazarene University


Beth Plank is an MA student in Literature. Her research interests are Shakespearean themes through the retelling of story for secondary students, and early to mid-20th century American literature’s representation of the family unit.