Some exciting news about Unflattening and a trio of interviews!

I’m thrilled to pass on the Call for Proposals for “Unfurling Unflattening” – an edited collecting on teaching with Unflattening across disciplines and educational contexts! As described by editors Amanda Latz, Janine Utell, and Andrea Kantrowitz – this book “is meant to generate openings – to catalyze the unfurling of myriad possibilities – related to Sousanis’s work.” The book idea grew out of an AERA session this year organized by Andrea – and I’m thrilled that it has blossomed into this and grateful for these three for making it happen. It’s an amazing thing to have something you worked alone on for years be read by anyone let alone taught, and now, turned into a book about all the different approaches to teaching with it! And I think what most excites me is that the book is not about teaching Unflattening, it’s teaching with it, which means using Unflattening as a jumping off point for students to explore in their own ways and ask their own questions. I’m always geeked to see what students have done with it, and that always brings to mind UMBC student Alexia Petasis’s choreographing a dance in response to it (which was documented here), and I look forward to seeing the different approaches others will bring to it.

Proposal abstracts are due August 30, and, reflective of the diverse settings Unflattening has found itself in, they welcome participation from a wide range of educational contexts and levels! Please share with anyone you think might be interested!

We moved across town last week, and on that very day, weirdly three interviews that I’d done sometime in the last half year or so, all appeared on the same day. First up is a lengthy podcast interview with sketchnote legend Mike Rohde! I use Mike’s Sketchnote Handbook with my students and intrigued by the intersections between comics and sketchnoting, so it’s always fun to talk with him. We had a wonderful discussion – I rarely can listen to myself in interviews, and this time, I not only listened carefully, I felt I learned about my own thinking along the way – which is the sign of a great conversation. Among other things, we delved into how I came to do this work, how I approach using comics and visual thinking in my classroom, my process, and more. Really enjoyed the whole thing and it’s a good record for me articulating my thoughts at this point. It’s online on the Sketchnote Army site here.
Also that week, SFSU’s alumni magazine did a feature interview getting into what goes on in our new Comics Studies minor at State. It’s a good overview of what we’re up to and where we hope to go in the future, with words from students, a look at our archive, more. it closes with this passage from me, which I think sums it up well: “And for many, comics will become a new outlet to help make sense of their lives.” You can read it in its entirety online on SFState’s site here. Finally, the Brazilian academic journal Revista de Língua e Literatura included an interview with me (in English) in its most recent edition. Edited by professor Renata Mancini – it’s a packed issue with a lot of great authors and subjects, worth a look (many are in English if you don’t read Portuguese). The full issue is here, and the direct link to my interview can be found here.
Lastly, I did a rare twitter thread documenting a very short talk I gave at my university. It gives a little insight into how I got into this and where the work is headed next. The thread starts here – and features all the slides with commentary and some additional links… Work continues on the followup to Unflattening, code-name Nostos (a bit of which you can see in the Twitter thread)Stay tuned! – N