Graduate Alumni Stories

Raul Ariza-Barile, ’07

Dartmouth was great for two things. First, of course, working with Monika Otter was a pleasure, and I feel fortunate to remain her friend and colleague. Her work has influenced my own scholarship in countless ways. The second was that it helped me realize how much of a comparatist I am: although I'm housed at an English department, my weird interests often drive me away from English (and England). (I should probably add a third one: I miss Baker Library enormously).

Jennifer Rowell '08

Since graduating from the COLT Master's program in 2008, I have done several things. Immediately afterwards, I attended Middlebury's Summer Language Schools where I studied Portuguese after receiving the Kathryn Wasserman Davis Fellowship for Peace. Later, I taught English in Mexico, served as the Secretary/Treasurer for the Young Democrats Abroad of Mexico City, and survived swine flu thanks to good friends and a stock of masks. More recently, I accepted a position as a Junior Specialist (aka Editor) for a company called MacroSys that works for the U.S. Department of Transportation in Cambridge, MA. Thanks for keeping in touch, Jennifer

Scott Wilson '03

 live in Brooklyn with my wife, Shelly, and our 5 month old son, Rheinhart (we call him Hart). I teach Latin, English, and History at Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School in Manhattan. The courses I've taught over the past few years include Latin 1-5, AP Latin Literature, AP Latin Vergil, an English Elective on Classical Mythology, and a History Elective on Roman History.

My English and History courses are interdisciplinary in many respects, and I often draw from my training as a Comparative Literature student when designing curricula and lesson plans.  I try to incorporate literary theory into lessions in the mythology class (Barthes, Levi-Strauss, Psychoanalysis) whenever appropriate.

So yes, I put to practice much of what I learned as a Comp. Lit. graduate student at Dartmouth on a daily basis.  I am certainly grateful to Dartmouth and the Comparative Literature Master's Program for preparing me well.

Allison Cook '06

I am an Editor at Pearson Prentice Hall in Boston, a textbook publisher. I work mainly on Language Arts anthologies but also on Social Studies (primarily Government and Geography) and World Languages texts. My degree in Comparative Lit helps me tremendously in my work because of its very interdisciplinary approach: one day I might be editing a chapter on the history of government in Russia and the next day working with audio files for a beginner Spanish lesson. My time at Dartmouth helped me to be a better reader and my time as a teaching assistant improved my skills working with other people's writing, both of which are crucial in my job. I just bought a house just outside of Boston and am getting married in September.

Helen Pilinovsky '02

Helen Pilinovsky, '02, continued her education at Columbia University, graduating in 2007 with the completion of her dissertation, “Fantastic Emigres: Translation and Acculturation of the Fairy Tale in a Literary Diaspora.” She is currently employed as an assistant professor at California State University, San Bernardino‚ English department, where she teaches courses on children‚ and young adult literature, fairy tales, folklore, and fantasy. She has guest-edited issues of Extrapolation and The Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts, has reviewed for Marvels & Tales, has published in Realms of Fantasy and The Journal of the Mythic Arts. She is the co-founder and academic editor of Cabinet des Fees, and she has articles forthcoming on postmodern fairy tales and retellings of Alice in Wonderland.

Lan Dong '01

Lan Dong is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of English and Modern Languages at the University of Illinois Springfield. She was recently named Louise Hartman Schewe and Karl Schewe Professor in Liberal Arts and Sciences. The Comparative Literature program at Dartmouth inspired her to become a teacher-scholar. Graduated from UMass in 2006 and is now teaching at the University of Illinois in Springfield. For her profile online, go to

Mary Brown '98

I'm still in the PhD program in Comp. Lit. at Berkeley, though I am not physically there at the moment. After passing my qualifying exams in 2003 and taking a year to put together a dissertation project, I am now spending a year in Paris on a Chateaubriand fellowship, researching and writing my dissertation on the exchanges between courtly poetry and the medieval encyclopedia at the end of the 13th century.