Past Projects

2019 Spring

Joelle Byars
Adviser: Gary Pak
Committee: Derrick Higginbotham

Zoe Sprott
Generation Liminal: Stories from the Cusp
Adviser: Shawna Ryan
Committee: Laurel Fantauzzo, Craig Howes

Jason Stancil
In the Garden
Adviser: Craig Howes
Committee: Ida Yoshinaga, Jim Caron

Alex Tungpalan
Challenging Post-Truth Rhetoric, Beginning in the Classroom
Adviser: Daphne Desser
Committee: Darin Payne

Danielle Woo
Making the Most of What We’ve Got: Understanding the Paradox of Postmodern Fictional Satire in the Works of Kurt Vonnegut and George Saunders
Adviser: Jim Caron
Committee: Nandini Chandra

2018 Fall

Angel Gardner
Contemporary Representations of Social Groups Surrounding the Case of Jack the Ripper
Adviser: Anna Feuerstein
Committee: Nandini Chandra

Serena Michel
Sonando con el amor negro (Dreaming Black Love)
Adviser: Shawna Ryan
Committee: Jack Taylor

2018 Spring

Ilana Buffenstein
Humor as Resistance: Understanding Issa Rae’s “Insecure” as Post-Soul Satire
Adviser: Jim Caron
Committee: Jack Taylor

Kevin Harrison
The Satiric Tragedy of “Doctor Faustus”
Adviser: Todd Sammons
Committee: Mark Heberle, Jim Caron

Margo Steines
Adviser: Shawna Ryan
Committee: Cindy Franklin

Krista Wang
Midnight Dreams: A Collection of Short Stories
Adviser: Cristina Bacchilega
Committee: Gary Pak

2017 Fall

Tani Loo, Ivywood Manor
Advisor: Shawna Ryan
Committee: Anna Feuerstein

2017 Summer

Michelle Huynh, The Virtue in Propaganda
Advisor: Glenn Man
Committee: Ruth Hsu, Markus Wessendorf, (Theater/Dance), Elizabeth Wichmann-Walczak (Theater/Dance)

2017 Spring

Angie Anderson, Grand Guignol: The Theatre of Horror, the Efficacy of Horrific Staging, and When MY Body Cried Out
Advisor: Todd Sammons
Committee: Markus Wessendorf, (Theater/Dance)

Brandy Dobson, A Murmur in the Weeds: A Memoir [Winner of a National Collegiate Honors Council Portz Prize for 2016]
Advisor: Cindy Franklin
Committee: Shawna Ryan, S. Shankar

Nicolette Smith, Spirituality in the Modern Woman
Advisor: Craig Howes
Committee: John Zuern

2016 Spring

Veronica Freeman, Panic! It’s Organic! The Most Desensitized Food Term in the United States
Advisor: Kristin McAndrews
Committee: Anna Feuerstein

Joanna Gordon, Stretch, Sag, Sing—Songs of Skin: Discussions on Womanhood, Body Image, and Eating Disoders
Advisor: Craig Perez
Committee: Ayu Saraswati (Women’s Studies)

Cindy Huynh, Remember Me
Advisor: Kate Beutner
Committee: Shawna Ryan, Frank Stewart

Tierra Mendez, Observing War Through Literature: The Effects of the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars on the Family Unit
Advisor: Mark Heberle
Committee: Todd Sammons, Susan Schultz

2015 Fall

Jon Omura, Queering the Gay/Christian Intersection: An Exploration of Celibacy, Ex-Gay, and the Christian Closet in Gay Christian Narratives [Winner of a National Collegiate Honors Council Portz Prize for 2015]
Advisor: Cindy Franklin
Committee: Candace Fujikane, John Zuern

2015 Summer

Jennifer Ciufo, Color Me In: A Novel
Advisor: Gary Pak
Committee: Kate Beutner, Susan Schultz

2015 Spring

Mary Campany, Motifs of Immortality in Osamu Tezuka’s Phoenix
Advisor: John Rieder
Committee: Cristina Bacchilega, Miki Ogasawara (Japanese)

2014 Fall

Sam Ikehara, Cultural Negotiations Through Romantic Love: Nation, Belonging, and Multiculturalism in The Namesake and Native Speaker
Advisor: Cindy Franklin
Committee: Candace Fujikane, S. Shankar

Meagan Reyes, The Representation of Female Identity and Sexuality in Diane De Prima’s Poem “Loba” as a Significant Contribution to the Beat Literary Movement
Advisor: Jon Morse
Committee: Jim Caron, Linda Middleton

2014 Spring

Shelby Griese, Feasting in Fairy Tales
Advisor: Cristina Bacchilega
Committee: Glenn Man, Kristin McAndrews

Kailana Kahawaii, Internet Satire
Advisor: Jim Caron
Committee: Kristin McAndrews, Bob McHenry

Nicole Kurashige, Graphic Representations of the Unspeakable: Comics, Historical Mega-Trauma, and the Prevention of Closure
Advisor: Craig Howes
Committee: Jim Caron, Candace Fujikane

2013 Spring

Eva Avery, The Art of Expecting the Unexpected – A Young Woman’s Journey through Europe
Advisor: Kristin McAndrews
Committee: Frank Stewart, Carolina Sinavaiana

Kaili Britos, Scales Beneath My Skin
Advisor: ku’aloha ho’omanawanui
Committee: Candace Fujikane, John Zuern

Madison Brittingham, Box Car Door and Other Poems
Advisor: Caroline Sinavaiana
Committee: Susan Shultz, Steven Goldsberry

Joseph Han, The Extra: Stories
Advisor: Rodney Morales
Committee: Anne Kennedy, Craig Santos Perez

Andrea Hidano, Tracking the Exotic: Changing Representations of Hawaii Women from Paradise of the Pacific and Honolulu
Advisor: Craig Howes
Committee: Paul Lyons, Christine Yano (Anthropology)

Justin Koelkebeck, Innocence, in a Sense: My Life with Ev Callahan
Advisor: Susan Schultz
Committee: Jim Caron, Laura Lyons

Sarah Medeiros, Facing the Beast Within
Advisor: Cristina Bacchilega
Committee: Kristin McAndrews, Maile Gresham

Chelsea Sassone, ‘We’re all Stories in the End’: The Fair Tale as a Lexicon of Popular Culture
Advisor: Cristina Bacchilega
Committee: John Rieder, Todd Sammons

Maya Scimeca, Alice Neel and Other Poems
Advisor: Susan Schultz
Committee: Kristin McAndrews, John Zuern

2012 Fall

Tim Dominquez, When I Wake, A Novella
Advisor: John Rieder
Committee: Maile Gresham, John Zuern

John McClain, Ghosts, Robots, and Things, A Florilegium
Advisor: Rodney Morales
Committee: John Rieder, John Zuern

Corey Onerheim, Reunion (Short Film)
Advisor: Glenn Man
Committee: Jim Caron, Joe O’Mealy

Jenna Saito, Two Weeks to Live
Advisor: Glenn Man
Committee: Chris McKinney, Keith Kashiwata (KCC)

Cody White, Ars Comica: Comic Books, Literary Analysis, and Planetary
Advisor: Jill Dahlman
Committee: Craig Howes, Todd Sammons

2012 Spring

Rebecca Dew, Dostoevsky’s Greatest Revelation: Understanding Human Nature and the Role of Suffering in The Brothers Karamazov and Notes from the Underground
Advisor: Virginia Bennett (Russian)
Committee: Judith Kellogg, John Zuern

Karleanne Matthews, Improbable Realities, Improbable Art: The American Tall Tale and the Instability of Humor in Children’s Literature
Advisor: Jim Caron
Committee: Bob McHenry, Cynthia Ward

Tanya Oishi, Shake and Sway: A Memoir of the Tohoku Earthquake, 2011
Advisor: Cindy Franklin
Committee: Candace Fujikane, Greta LaFleur

Raindrop Wright, Strength and Struggle
Advisor: Rodney Morales
Committee: Craig Howes, John Zuern

2011 Spring

Marissa Chomko, Caring for Those Who Care: A Study of Japanese-Americans Caring for Their Elder Parents
Advisor: Christy Nishita (Center for Disability Studies)
Committee: Colette Brown (Social Work), Craig Howes

Kara Hisatake, “Nothing Says I Despise You Like a Blow Job”: Opening Queer Moments for Queer Spaces in Harry Potter Slash Fan Fiction
Advisor: John Zuern
Committee: Cristina Bacchilega, Cynthia Franklin

Laura Hui, Kahinihini‘ula, The Red-Haired Boy of Kailua, A Novel
Advisor: ku‘ualoha ho‘omanawanui
Committee: Ruth Hsu, Laura Lyons

Kelsey Inouye, Body Language: Words and Recovery in Anorexia Memoirs
Advisor: Miriam Fuchs
Committee: Jim Caron, Kelly Vitousek (Psychology)

Janelle Takesono, The Butterfly Effect: Stereotypes of Giacomo Puccini’s Madame Butterfly in History and on the Internet
Advisor: Candace Fujikane
Committee: Vernadette Gonzalez (American Studies), Jun Yoo (History)

2010 Fall

Eric Birkeland, Rope
Advisor: Uzma Khan
Committee: Cristina Bacchilega, Frank Stewart

Daniel Bogert, Ukranian versus Russian Nationalism in the Works of Nikolai Gogol
Advisor: Virginia Bennett (Russian)
Committee: Jill Dahlman, Jonathan Morse

Marissa Chung, Eternal Blinking: A Collection of Poems
Advisor: Susan Schultz
Committee: Candace Fujikane, Gary Pak

2010 Spring

Midori Hirai, American Girls: A Fictional Look at Racial Profiling from 9066 to 9/11
Advisor: Erica Clayton
Committee: Anne Kennedy, Todd Sammons

2009 Spring

Keslie Abing, Sushi King and Company
Advisor: Anne Kennedy
Committee: Uzma Khan, Ann Rayson

Gizelle Gajelonia, Stop Requested
Advisor: Susan Schultz
Committee: Candace Fujikane, Caroline Sinavaiana

Kristin Herrick, Renegotiating the Identity of Afghan Women: The Role of Orientalism and Traditionalism in the Construction of Afghan Female Identity
Advisor: Jim Caron
Committee: Laura Lyons and Aslam Syed (Center for South Asian Studies)

2008 Fall

Sharaya Llanes, Writing Transformations: Mediating the Effects of High Stakes Testing Through the National Writing Project
Advisor: Caroline Sinavaiana
Committee: Erica Clayton, Larene DeSpain

Cortney Silva, Nyctophobia and Counting
Advisor: Rodney Morales
Committee: Jim Caron, Susan Schultz

2008 Spring

Sheela Jane Menon, Bush and Bin Laden: The Rhetoric of Culture, Politics, and War
Advisor: George Tanabe (Religion)
Committee: Joan Peters, John Zuern

Patricia Wilson, Dana’s Night
Advisor: Craig Howes
Committee: Cristina Bacchilega, Jennifer Orme, Caroline Sinavaiana

2007 Fall

Laura Jenkins, Morocco’s Youth en Avant: A Presentation of Changing Perceptions on Self and Society in the Discourse of Marriage, Tradition, and Moudawana Reform
Advisor: Linda Middleton
Committee: Tamara Albertini (Philosophy), Ann Auman, (Communications)

Janna Plant, The Refinery
Advisor: Susan Schultz

Lourena Yco, Branching Down the Evolutionary Ladder and Exploring the Virgin Territory in Lost Race Fiction
Advisor: John Rieder
Committee: Reinhardt Frederich, Craig Howes

2007 Summer

Cora Puliach, Combat Zone of the American Imagination: Rhetorical Dimensions of an Ideology of Volunteerism
Advisor: Darin Payne
Committee: Jim Caron, Daphne Dresser

2007 Spring

Rachel Choy
Advisor: Craig Howes

2006 Fall

Jayci Roney, Queer Identities in Modern and Historical Polynesia: Reflections in a Broken Mirror
Advisor: Ruth Hsu
Committee: Albert Wendt, Reina Whaitiri

Paul Sakuma, The Tattored Knight
Advisor: Ian MacMillan
Committee: Reinhardt Frederich, Gary Pak

Marika Staff, Only A Few Days Bloomed
Advisor: Steven Goldsberry

2006 Summer

Sarah Myhre
Advisors: Steve Curry, Judith Kellogg

2006 Spring

Jonathan Callahan, Of Dreams and Waking
Advisor: Ian MacMillan
Committee: Cynthia Franklin, Paul Lyons

Sabrina Favors, Daughters of the Flame
Advisor: Ian MacMillan
Committee: Robert Onopa, John Zuern

Shelby Furukawa, Courtly Love in the Arthurian Tradition: Discussion and Fiction
Advisor: Judith Kellogg
Committee: Todd Sammons, Susan Schultz

Alphie Garcia, Heaven and Earth
Advisor: John Zuern
Committee: Stephen Canham, Robert Onopa, Todd Sammons

Dawn Nakagawa, Female Lawyers in Hollywood Movies: The Price She Pays to Practice Law
Advisor: Susan Schultz
Committee: Susan Hippensteele (Women Studies), Marie Hara, Peter Britos

Jade Sunouchi, Mouth to a Wall
Advisor: Robert Sullivan
Committee: Susan Schultz, Ruth Hsu

Kristine Wada, Searching for Japan in four Generations of Family Recipes
Advisor: Miriam Fuchs
Committee: Steve Curry, Ruth Hsu


Sherie Char, Snow White and Her Fairy Tale Sisters: Poems about Women’s Bodies, Beauty, and Boundaries.
Advisor: Susan Schultz

Annie Fukushima, Yobo: Conceptualizing the ‘Korean Bargirl’ in Hawai‘i Literature
Advisor: Candace Fujikane

Christine Hong, Claptrap DOD: The Dead We Know
Advisor: Robbie Shapard

Natasha Loo, Between Swallowing and Bruising
Advisor: Stephen Canham

Heidi Sakuma, The Best That Money Can Buy
Advisor: Rodney Morales

Leah Young, Beyond Platform 9 3/4: Race, Class, and Gender in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter Series
Advisor: David Baker

Lauren Esposo, I Don’t Remember
Advisor: Craig Howes
Committee: Miriam Fuchs and Cynthia Franklin

Jayci Roney, Queer Identities in Modern and Historical Polynesia
Advisor: Caroline Sinavaiana
Committee: Albert Wendt and Reina Whaitiri


(to be added)


(to be added)


Alison Izawa, As Spring Comes
Director: Robbie Shapard

Naomi Long, Serial Walker: Poems and Photographs
Director: Morgan Blair

Susan Sanger, Snapshots: Images of a Life
Director: Craig Howes

Caitlin Yamamoto, Understanding a Contentious ‘Local’ Literary Community: The Controversy over Lois-Ann Yamanaka’s Blu’s Hanging
Director: Ruth Hsu


Candice Nii, Upon the Brink of Believability: Gothic Literature and Fairy Tales
Director: Reinhard Friederich

Jeremiah Boydstun, Stomping Grounds and Common Ground: Train Whistle Guitar, the Blues Hero, and Translation at the Crossroads
Director: Jeff Carroll

Christy Wong, Facets of Recommendation in Adoption: Three Stories
Director: Phil Damon

Shereen El-Kadi, The Sultan’s Daughter: A Historical Fiction
Director: Ian MacMillan

Georganne Nordstrom, Educational MOOs: Exploring the Potential
Director: John Zuern


Louisa Lam, Reading Donald Duk: A Conversation with Frank Chin
Director: Craig Howes

Teri-Ann Shiroma, Arguments Against Capital Punishment in Literature and Law of the New Era
Director: Craig Howes

Tia Ballantine-Berger, Spring Loaded: A Book of Fiction
Director: Craig Howes

Melissa Uchimura, Jane Austen’s Appeal
Director: Beth Tobin


Jennifer Hamada, Living with the Wold
Director: Roger Whitlock

Alison Ikeda, Establishing the Picara as a Distinct Archetype: Some Observations and Conclusions
Director: Todd Sammons

Lisa Lum, Appetite Lost: A Creative Exploration of Bi-Lingual Identity
Director: Cristina Bacchilega

Kirstie Morikawa, Home Court Advantage: Local Literature in the Schools
Director: Susan Schultz

Charlene Tran, My Mother’s Story: A Collection of Journeys Through Cambodia and Vietnam
Director: Craig Howes

Mark Vega, One Good Eye: Vision and Testimony in Art Spiegelman’s Maus
Director: Rheinhard Friederich