Alumni Dissertations

 

Alumni Dissertations

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  • La poética del cuerpo en la obra de Carmen Cecilia Suárez

    Author:
    Luz Betancourt Aduén
    Year of Dissertation:
    2013
    Program:
    Hispanic & Luso Brazilian Literatures & Languages
    Advisor:
    Elena Martínez
    Abstract:

    In this Dissertation I reflected on the Poetics of the Body in the work of Carmen Cecilia Suárez, a contemporary Colombian writer and poet. I examined the literary influence of Un vestido rojo para bailar boleros (1988), which exposed the cultural patriarchal fabric that originates the colonized feminine subject in Colombia; and, in the achievement of this exposition, outstanding feminist literary critics of this country, such as María Mercedes Jaramillo, Angela Inés Robledo, Betty Osorio and Helena Araújo, were true sources of inspiration. We approached the notion of Woman focusing on the processes that favor the body as a "space of empowerment", especially acknowledging the birth of the Butterfly Woman, main metaphor of self-representation of the author; in the literary fashion of Hélène Cixous, we analyzed the struggles of hers `to speak otherwise'. Thus, Lilith became the icon whom other feminine figures depart from; the icon constitutes the core of the "aesthetics of disobedience" that in this Dissertation stems from the Argentine literary critic Susana Reisz; among those figures we literalized the Witch Woman and the Prostitute Woman. I have structured my study, with what I called the Centripetal Poetics (or the feminine individual body) and the Centrifugal Poetics (or the feminine social body); from the perspective of the first, we illustrated the "ethical conception" that resembles the philosophical approach to literature of Luce Irigaray, where the heterosexual couple becomes a "metaphor of sexual difference". It was staged in "La casa azul" of El séptimo ciclo (1992) and "Cuento de amor en cinco actos" of Cuento de amor en cinco actos (1997); in these analysis as well as the travesty performance of "Anorexia", we included important insights of Judith Butler. From the perspective of the second, we accomplished "the epic feat" of consolidating the multistratified (multifaceted-multispatial-multitemporal) Feminist Feminine Subject, called the Nomadic Woman (or in terms of our writer the New Woman); we valued the literary feminist theory of Rossi Braidotti which reflected in our exploration of several short stories of La otra mitad de la vida (2001). In the Poetics of Secret Spaces, where the author continued elaborating the postmodern condition (poscolonial, posthuman, postgender) of that Feminist Feminine Subject , we came closer to several poems of Espacios secretos (2002) and Poemas del insomnio (después del vino) (2005); we enter the field of the Cyborg Woman and the Simulacrum Woman respectively. In Retazos en el tiempo (2010), the New Butterfly Woman was born; parting from the poem "Zen", Zen was examined as an aesthetic fiction based on the "semiotics of the mandala", a formalization of a "dream of multiple dimensions" of the writer, where she continued developing her art of erotic invention, as the Poetics of Yin-Yang.

  • Being, Doing, Knowing, and Becoming: Science and Opportunities for Learning in the Out-of-School-Time Setting

    Author:
    Bronwyn Bevan
    Year of Dissertation:
    2010
    Program:
    Urban Education
    Advisor:
    Anna Stetsenko
    Abstract:

    This dissertation addresses the question of how structured out-of-school-time settings, such as afterschool programs and summer camps, are positioned to support children's engagement and learning in science. This study addresses a gap in the research literature that does not fully specify the nature of the out-of-school-time (OST) setting and that generally does not position learning and development in relationship to one another, instead focusing on one or the other. As a result of an incomplete conceptualization of the OST setting as a site for learning and development, the OST field is becoming increasingly academicized, and its developmental qualities and benefits for children are under siege. A transformative activist stance (Stetsenko, 2008) guides my goals in undertaking this study - to produce knowledge that can inform the design and implementation of OST science programs - and it also guides my analysis of what constitutes learning in OST science. A transformative activist stance is a perspective on cultural-historical theory that understands individual development as occurring through agentive, goal-directed efforts to change one's self and one's world. These goals and actions are always developed and enacted in cultural-historical context. Learning, which occurs through the appropriation of cultural tools and schema to achieve one's purposes, and which leads human development, is understood broadly, as entailing processes of being, doing, knowing and becoming (see Herrenkohl & Mertl, in press). I also draw on bioecological theory (Bronfenbrenner, 1979) to analyze the proximal processes that support and sustain children's participation in the OST setting. In this study, I analyze the structural, developmental, and conceptual features of three different OST science programs to understand how they create opportunities for learning and engagement in science. The contributions of this study are to better specify the nature of the OST science program setting and to better conceptualize how learning and development relate to one another in the context of OST science. I draw on my analysis to make recommendations for ways in which OST science learning can be expanded and enriched for more children in more settings.

  • Points of Canonical Height Zero on Projective Varieties

    Author:
    Anupam Bhatnagar
    Year of Dissertation:
    2010
    Program:
    Mathematics
    Advisor:
    Lucien Szpiro
    Abstract:

    Let k be an algebraically closed field of characteristic zero, C a smooth connected projective curve defined over k, K =k(C) the function field of C. Let Y be a projective K-variety, L a very ample line bundle on Y and α : Y &rarr Y a K-morphism such that α *<\super>L = L × d. We prove that a projective integral C-scheme Y is isotrivial when it is covered by a projective integral k-scheme X= X0<\sub> × C, where X0<\sub> is a k-scheme. This result provides a setup for a conjecture of L. Szpiro on parametrization of points of canonical height zero of the dynamical system (Y,L, α).

  • Points of Canonical Height Zero on Projective Varieties

    Author:
    Anupam Bhatnagar
    Year of Dissertation:
    2010
    Program:
    Mathematics
    Advisor:
    Lucien Szpiro
    Abstract:

    Let k be an algebraically closed field of characteristic zero, C a smooth connected projective curve defined over k, K =k(C) the function field of C. Let Y be a projective K-variety, L a very ample line bundle on Y and α : Y &rarr Y a K-morphism such that α *<\super>L = L × d. We prove that a projective integral C-scheme Y is isotrivial when it is covered by a projective integral k-scheme X= X0<\sub> × C, where X0<\sub> is a k-scheme. This result provides a setup for a conjecture of L. Szpiro on parametrization of points of canonical height zero of the dynamical system (Y,L, α).

  • Interfacial Transport Processes Involved in the Surfactant Facilitated Wetting of Liquids on Solid Surfaces and Non-wetting on Superhydrophobic Surfaces.

    Author:
    Nikhil Bhole
    Year of Dissertation:
    2011
    Program:
    Engineering
    Advisor:
    Charles Maldarelli
    Abstract:

    The control of the wetting properties of aqueous solutions on surfaces is critical to the implementation of many industrial technologies. Aqueous solutions are often required to rapidly wet hydrophobic solid and liquid (oil) surfaces. Surfactants, dissolved above the critical micelle concentration, are useful in quickly reducing aqueous/solid and aqueous/oil tensions to facilitate spreading. In other applications, aqueous droplets are required to roll over surfaces, and surfaces engineered with textures which trap air between grooves as the drop moves over the surface retain large droplet contact angles and reduced friction, which causes rolling. The first part of this dissertation studies the transport of surfactant from an aqueous micellar solution to an oil phase, initially without surfactant, which is placed in contact with the water. Surfactant monomer diffuses and adsorbs from the aqueous phase onto the interface, and subsequently desorbs into the oil. The decrease in the surfactant monomer concentration in the vicinity of the surface disturbs the monomer-micelle equilibrium causing the micelles to break down to replenish the sublayer with monomer. The increase results in a more rapid reduction in interfacial tension. However, when the micellar concentration is too low, the micelle diffusion flux required to replenish the monomer underneath the surface cannot be achieved, and a zone is formed (just underneath the oil-water interface) from which micelles completely disappear. This micelle-free zone, which retreats from the surface, represents a barrier to the enhanced surfactant flux to the surface. A fluorescing dye is trapped in the micelles to provide a fluorescence contrast so that the micelle-free zone can be located. A Confocal Laser Scanning Microscope is used to spatially resolve the micelle-free zone, and measure the movement of the zone from the interface. A diffusion limited transport model is also developed which predicts the location of the micelle-free zone as a function of time, and compares well with the experiments. Part two of the dissertation focuses on studying the (superhydrophobic) non-wetting behavior demonstrated by aqueous droplets on surfaces consisting of a periodic array of micron-sized posts. Boundary integral hydrodynamic solutions for the two dimensional, inertialess, gravity-driven movement of a droplet over this microtexture are obtained to understand the flow on the length scale of the topography. Two regimes are identified: In one, the advancing line spreads relatively easily over the top of a post, sticks to the back of the post, develops increasing curvature and finally jumps to the next post. This cycle repeats until the drop becomes tethered to the back of a post and achieves equilibrium. In the second, the advancing line again cycles between wetting, sticking and jumping, but penetrates the grove between the posts before jumping. This behavior, which precedes the full wetting regime, occurs when the contact angle of the post material is reduced or, the pitch between posts becomes large.

  • Synthesis and characterization of Lanthanide Aluminotungstates and Rhenium Polyoxometalates: Potential Application in Molecular Information Storage Devices

    Author:
    Fang Bian
    Year of Dissertation:
    2011
    Program:
    Chemistry
    Advisor:
    Lynn Francesconi
    Abstract:

    Abstract Synthesis, speciation, and application of Polyoxometalates: Redox Molecular Information Storage Device Pre-research and Rhenium Chemistry By Fang Bian Adviser: Professor Lynn C. Francesconi Polyoxometalates (abbreviated as POMs) are metal-oxide clusters with frameworks built from group 5 or 6 transition metals linked by shared oxide ions. The Keggin structure is one of the most famous structural forms of POMs. Keggin anions have a general formula of [XM12O40]n-, where X is a p-block atom and M is a transition metal atom such as W or Mo. Upon removal of one MO4+ unit from the Keggin anion, the monovacant structure [XM11O39]n- is formed. Those POMs that have lost one or more metal center are called lacunary POMs, which are very nice building blocks for the fabrication of coordination polymers. My research focuses on two facets of POM chemistry: 1) Lanthanide chemistry of aluminum tungstate monovacant Keggin and 2) Rhenium chemistry of aluminum tungstate Keggin and Wells-Dawson POM a1-P2W17O61. In lanthanide POM research area, we obtained the following results: 1) The starting material aluminum tungstate monovacant Keggin α-K9AlW12O39 was synthesized. Its single crystal was firstly identified by multinuclear NMR and X-ray crystallography. Its redox properties on the nano-scale solid state were determined by Conducting Electrostatic Force Mode (EFM) probes. It is well known that for POMs, a number of varies redox states are normally stable and reversible. Thus we estimated that POMs can potentially be used in molecular information storage applications, which we refer to as "redox disk drives". 2) Eight lanthanide aluminum tungstate Keggin complexes were synthesized. In their molecular structures (identified by multinuclear NMR and X-ray crystallography), each α-AlW11O39 is connected by lanthanide (III) cations to form 1D and 2D networks. All AlW11O39 Keggin POMs are regularly aligning on a flat plane. Microscopic data also verified that there is layer-by-layer morphology in this series of compounds. Overall, we postulate that aluminum tungstate Keggin POMs are a very promising materials for making future information storage device because they have several stable redox states and can be reduced by adding voltage in solid state, The Keggin POMs can be regularly aligned on a flat plane, 3) In rhenium chemistry research area, we successfully synthesized rhenium complexes of the [a1-P2W17O61]10- and α-K9AlW13O39. The structure info of [ReVO(a1-P2W17O61)]7- was identified by multinuclear NMR and X-ray crystallography. The cyclic-voltammetry of [ReVO(a1-P2W17O61)]7- has also been measured and compared to the [ReVO(a2-P2W17O61)]7- isomer. A rhenium derivative of α-K9AlW11O39 also has been synthesized. Multinuclear NMR gives structure information. After oxidation in air, this compound can aggregate to form insoluble nanoparticles.

  • The Thief of Paradise: Milton and Seventh-day Adventism

    Author:
    Ian Bickford
    Year of Dissertation:
    2010
    Program:
    English
    Advisor:
    Joan Richardson
    Abstract:

    This dissertation has two protagonists. One is John Milton. The other is Ellen Gould White, prophetess of Seventh-day Adventism and among the most overlooked, by ratio to her scope and impact, of American nineteenth-century theological writers. Their relationship, White's to Milton, Milton's to White, is not untroubled. It includes moments of uncertainty, of evasion, of occasional deception, moments when the record of their rapport disappears and threatens not to reappear. Yet the curve of this relationship, because broken, indicates something not only of Milton's surfacing in America but, to adopt a term from Henry James, the "abysses" from which he surfaces - and into which at times he recedes. I will demonstrate that Seventh-day Adventism comprises not only one of the most extensive absorptions of Milton into American religious, political, and literary life, but also one of the most important - which is to say, White's encounter with Milton instantiated more than a garden-variety literary appropriation, but an appropriation with ripples, ripples amplifying to waves. If we are to believe Carlos Martyn's suggestion in the first American book-length biography of Milton that "it may, in some sense, be said that religious and political America sprang from Milton's brain," we must then understand White's prophetic writings to be a crucial platform for the acrobatics of that event. The platform is ever more crucial, moreover, as Adventism continues to expand in membership at an enormous rate and as that expansion acquires an international emphasis: America, having sprung from Milton, then springs a distinctively American version of Milton into a global milieu. I hope to describe why White's Miltonic appropriation matters, hence to open within Milton studies as well as American studies an expansive new field of application and significance for Milton's avowed ambition that "I might perhaps leave something so written to aftertimes, as they should not willingly let it die."

  • The Thief of Paradise: Milton and Seventh-day Adventism

    Author:
    Ian Bickford
    Year of Dissertation:
    2010
    Program:
    English
    Advisor:
    Joan Richardson
    Abstract:

    This dissertation has two protagonists. One is John Milton. The other is Ellen Gould White, prophetess of Seventh-day Adventism and among the most overlooked, by ratio to her scope and impact, of American nineteenth-century theological writers. Their relationship, White's to Milton, Milton's to White, is not untroubled. It includes moments of uncertainty, of evasion, of occasional deception, moments when the record of their rapport disappears and threatens not to reappear. Yet the curve of this relationship, because broken, indicates something not only of Milton's surfacing in America but, to adopt a term from Henry James, the "abysses" from which he surfaces - and into which at times he recedes. I will demonstrate that Seventh-day Adventism comprises not only one of the most extensive absorptions of Milton into American religious, political, and literary life, but also one of the most important - which is to say, White's encounter with Milton instantiated more than a garden-variety literary appropriation, but an appropriation with ripples, ripples amplifying to waves. If we are to believe Carlos Martyn's suggestion in the first American book-length biography of Milton that "it may, in some sense, be said that religious and political America sprang from Milton's brain," we must then understand White's prophetic writings to be a crucial platform for the acrobatics of that event. The platform is ever more crucial, moreover, as Adventism continues to expand in membership at an enormous rate and as that expansion acquires an international emphasis: America, having sprung from Milton, then springs a distinctively American version of Milton into a global milieu. I hope to describe why White's Miltonic appropriation matters, hence to open within Milton studies as well as American studies an expansive new field of application and significance for Milton's avowed ambition that "I might perhaps leave something so written to aftertimes, as they should not willingly let it die."

  • ENHANCING THE PERFORMANCE OF ACTIVE CONNECTIONS IN MANETS THROUGH DYNAMIC ROUTE AND POWER OPTIMIZATION

    Author:
    Zeki Bilgin
    Year of Dissertation:
    2010
    Program:
    Computer Science
    Advisor:
    Bilal Khan
    Abstract:

    In this thesis, we consider two significant problems that occur within active connections in mobile ad hoc networks (MANETs). These are: (A) degradation of path optimality in terms of hop count, and (B) failures on the constituents links of a path. Both phenomena occur over time because of node movement. Our investigation considers what can be done to minimize their occurrence of both, after the problem of initial route selection has been resolved by standard MANET routing protocols. In developing solutions to the aforementioned problems, we identified two broad and complementary approaches: (i) Variable topology, fixed power: These approaches assume that the transmission power of the nodes is kept fixed, but the topology of the connections is modifiable during their lifetimes. (ii) Variable power, fixed topology: These approaches assume that the topological structure of the connection must be kept fixed, but the transmission power levels used by constituent nodes is adjustable. Within approach (i), we developed (A) two new route optimization schemes that seek to shorten path lengths by eliminating inessential hops "on-the-fly", without relying on promiscuous mode of wireless cards, and (B) two new route maintenance schemes that circumvent impending link failures and heal broken links in an efficient way. We implemented our schemes in the ns2 packet level network simulator, as extension to the Ad hoc On Demand Distance Vector (AODV) routing protocol. Through extensive simulations, we show that our schemes are able to optimize path lengths, increase connection lifetime, reduce overall control traffic overhead, decrease end-to-end delay, and provide energy savings in packet transmissions. Within approach (ii), we developed (B) several new dynamic power budget distribution schemes. These were evaluated using a new model in which each connection is assigned a fixed power budget, and seeks to distribute this budget among its constituent nodes so as to increase the connection's lifetime. We implemented our schemes as a discrete event simulation. Through extensive simulation experiments, we showed that our schemes are able to consistently improve connection lifetimes without excessive additional control traffic overhead. The conclusions of both studies are seen to hold scalably as one varies situational parameters such as network size, number of connections, and node mobility levels.

  • ENHANCING THE PERFORMANCE OF ACTIVE CONNECTIONS IN MANETS THROUGH DYNAMIC ROUTE AND POWER OPTIMIZATION

    Author:
    Zeki Bilgin
    Year of Dissertation:
    2010
    Program:
    Computer Science
    Advisor:
    Bilal Khan
    Abstract:

    In this thesis, we consider two significant problems that occur within active connections in mobile ad hoc networks (MANETs). These are: (A) degradation of path optimality in terms of hop count, and (B) failures on the constituents links of a path. Both phenomena occur over time because of node movement. Our investigation considers what can be done to minimize their occurrence of both, after the problem of initial route selection has been resolved by standard MANET routing protocols. In developing solutions to the aforementioned problems, we identified two broad and complementary approaches: (i) Variable topology, fixed power: These approaches assume that the transmission power of the nodes is kept fixed, but the topology of the connections is modifiable during their lifetimes. (ii) Variable power, fixed topology: These approaches assume that the topological structure of the connection must be kept fixed, but the transmission power levels used by constituent nodes is adjustable. Within approach (i), we developed (A) two new route optimization schemes that seek to shorten path lengths by eliminating inessential hops "on-the-fly", without relying on promiscuous mode of wireless cards, and (B) two new route maintenance schemes that circumvent impending link failures and heal broken links in an efficient way. We implemented our schemes in the ns2 packet level network simulator, as extension to the Ad hoc On Demand Distance Vector (AODV) routing protocol. Through extensive simulations, we show that our schemes are able to optimize path lengths, increase connection lifetime, reduce overall control traffic overhead, decrease end-to-end delay, and provide energy savings in packet transmissions. Within approach (ii), we developed (B) several new dynamic power budget distribution schemes. These were evaluated using a new model in which each connection is assigned a fixed power budget, and seeks to distribute this budget among its constituent nodes so as to increase the connection's lifetime. We implemented our schemes as a discrete event simulation. Through extensive simulation experiments, we showed that our schemes are able to consistently improve connection lifetimes without excessive additional control traffic overhead. The conclusions of both studies are seen to hold scalably as one varies situational parameters such as network size, number of connections, and node mobility levels.