Instructors for 2012-13
David Edwards (Government) was born in Chicago, grew up in the Philadelphia area, went to Swarthmore College and Harvard for graduate work; In 1965, he moved to Austin to teach government at UT, where he has taught courses in American politics, international relations, and social theory here ever since. He has also developed and taught courses in conflict resolution and peace studies, the politics of love and altruism, on the future, and on the politics of health and healing. David has two children: Elisabeth, 22, just graduated from UT with a Spanish major; and John, 27, who graduated from UT three years ago in film, is a founder of the Food Is Free project here, placing small gardens in people’s front yards so neighbors can share fresh produce. David loves politics, cooking, and most of all, teaching. He is looking forward to being part of the Free Minds faculty this year.
Vivé Griffith (Creative Writing) has directed the Free Minds Project since 2007. A graduate of the Michener Center for Writers at UT, where she held a fellowship in poetry and fiction, she has taught poetry to everyone from kindergarteners to retirees. She is the author of the poetry collection Weeks in This Country and her poems, stories and essays have appeared in publications including The Sun, Oxford American, and Gettysburg Review, as well as at the Blanton Museum. In addition to her work with Free Minds, she also teaches poetry and creative nonfiction at ACC and works with veterans to help them share their stories.
Patty Hatcher (Humanities) is a Professor in the Department of Philosophy, Religion, and Humanities at ACC, where she teaches Humanities. She is also an award-winning copy editor and writer, a poet, and an experienced actress and director. She has directed and held lead roles in For Colored Girls who Have Considered Suicide, A Raisin in the Sun, Laundry and Bourbon, among other plays. She is currently working on an anthology, Anatomy Lessons, and as well as a work of fiction titled A Sip of the Summer’s Wine.Professor Hatcher specializes in identity studies and their connection to the arts, and the use of technology in the Humanities classroom. Her overall research interests include how to teach Humanities in mixed age and learning style classrooms. She enjoys painting and poetry in her leisure time.
Domino Renee Perez (Literature) is an Associate Professor at UT in the Department of English and the Center for Mexican American Studies, specializing in Chican@ Literature, American Literature, Popular Culture, Cultural Studies, and Film. Her book There Was A Woman: La Llorona From Folklore to Popular Culture examines La Llorona, the weeping woman, one of the most famous figures in US/Mexican folklore. Her current book project concerns Mexican American masculinity in literature and film. Her hobbies include watching movies, blogging, and reading young adult fiction. This is her third year teaching in Free Minds.
Laine Perez (Writing) is a PhD candidate in English at UT. Her research interests include late 19th/early 20th century American literature and children’s literature as well as exploring the relation between literature and the economy. Her dissertation examines at the connection between children’s literature and education philosophies and ideologies at the turn of the last century. Laine has a passion for teaching, and has taught four semesters of first year writing at UT. This is Laine’s second year teaching in the program, and she is excited about the opportunity to return as the Free Minds writing instructor.