School Staff and Faculty
Noonkester School of Arts and Letters
Mary Beth Breland
Breland’s interests are primarily in composition theory and practice, young adult literature, history of the language, and contemporary literature. She coordinates programs for language and literature at the Tradition campus, along with her work in Hattiesburg. She taught for a number of years at Hannibal-LaGrange College in Missouri, where she also served as department chair. She also serves as coordinator of Carey’s exchange programs with the University of Linyi, China, where she has worked as a visiting scholar for spring-summer terms during the last three years. In addition, she serves as liaison for Linyi faculty and students who are in residence at Carey.
A William Carey University alumna, Brookter recently completed her dissertation on academic literacy and writing standards at the University of Southern Mississippi. In addition to composition theory and practice, her academic interests include African-American literature, race theory and writing standards, and writing assessment. Along with her graduate study, she earlier worked and taught at Southern Mississippi and Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, and her presentations include the Conference on College Composition and Communication. She is currently working on plans to develop a writing center at Carey, in the broad context of her interests in writing across the curriculum.
Maqueda’s undergraduate education at Mobile College included living in Seville, Spain, where she became fluent in Spanish. She continues to return to Seville in summer terms where she teaches and works in Carey’s Spanish exchange consortium with Texas Tech and other schools. She received her M.A.T.L. with a concentration in Spanish from the University of Southern Mississippi. At Carey, Ms. Maqueda teaches all levels of Spanish, including upper-level classes for Spanish minors. Her related activities include mission work in Mexico and Chile as well as translation for Forrest General Hospital, Hispanic residents, the Salvation Army, and the International Student Organization at Carey. She is an active presenter and officer at various foreign language teachers’ conferences, including the MFLA.
Marsha Newman holds a Ph.D. in Modern British Literature from U. C. Berkeley, and she taught for a number of years at St. Mary’s College in California where she directed an interdisciplinary program in Liberal and Civic Studies. Her research interests include British Romanticism, with a focus on the work of William Blake. Her recent research explores the response of Romantic poets to the science of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Newman teaches a broad range of courses including composition, World Literature, British Literature, Literary Theory and Criticism, and literature of the Romantic era.
Watkins is an Associate Professor of Language and Literature who teaches a variety of graduate and undergraduate classes. Her research interests include Southern literature, African American literature, literary tourism, and American modernism. She is the author of William Faulkner, Gavin Stevens, and the Cavalier Tradition (2011) and has published essays in The Faulkner Journal, The Hemingway Review, Southern Studies, African American Review, The Mississippi Quarterly, The Southern Literary Journal, and Modern Philology. She is currently at work on a history of Mississippi’s literature for the University Press of Mississippi’s Heritage Series and reads for a variety of journals and textbook companies.
Williams serves the university in both the department of language and literature and the department of philosophy. His academic interests include comparative literature, and he teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in medieval literature, history
of the language, world literature and the novel. He is writing a doctoral dissertation examining a dialectic of cultures: specifically world literature and the shifting frame of hermeneutical perspective. The subject area involves defining "World Literature"
as a concept within a Heideggerian understanding of art and world. Other concerns touched upon in the dissertation are Post-colonial theory, Gadamerian Hermeneutics and Ricourean Hermeneutics.
Under the supervision of Lewis P. Simpson, Chestnut wrote a doctoral dissertation on Eudora Welty and Flannery O’Connor and the creation of the parable of the American South. Her scholarly interests include interdisciplinary studies in literature, religion and music, and she teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in comparative mythology, renaissance literature, drama, contemporary literature and creative writing. Her poetry and scholarly work has been published by and/or presented to the Conference on Christianity and Literature, the South Atlantic Modern Language Association, and the Mississippi Philological Association.
Richardson’s academic interests include American literature, especially Mark Twain and his contemporaries, and southern literature and culture. He has written on Cable, Twain, Styron, Larry Brown, Tennessee Williams, William Alexander Percy, and Shirley Ann Grau, among others. His work in literary history includes articles on local color and humor for the History of Southern Literature, the Encyclopedia of Southern Culture, and the Companion to Southern Literature as well as a chapter on Mississippi writers for Mississippi: Portrait of An American State, a textbook for high school use. He has worked at Southern Mississippi, Alabama, Auburn and Vanderbilt, in addition to Carey, where he teaches a broad range of courses in writing and literature and has served as department chair since 2005.
Rafael Sanchez-Alonso, a native from Spain, came to the University of Southern Mississippi's Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures in January 1981 where he has taught practically every Spanish course. He chaired the department from 1995 to 2004. He is Professor Emeritus of Spanish. In 2007 he retired from teaching but continued working part-time at USM's Office of International Programs, where he has been heavily involved in creating and running study abroad programs since 1994, both as Director of International Programs and, as Director of the Center for International Education. For many years he worked with the Mississippi Foreign Language Association in different capacities and served as its president in 1998-2000. He developed CATPRI (Computer Aided Total Physical Response Instruction), an interactive computer program to enhance foreign language learning. He also worked as director of Liturgical Ministries and of Hispanic Ministry at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, in Hattiesburg, MS. Before coming to the USA, he worked in Uganda as a missionary for twelve years, where he met his wife Patricia. They live in Hattiesburg and have four children.