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Calvin Olsen

Graduate Student

Ph.D. in Communication, Rhetoric and Digital Media

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Calvin Olsen is a second-year doctoral student in Communication, Rhetoric, & Digital Media. He has teaching appointments in the First Year- and Professional Writing Programs, and he is a Graduate Research & Instruction Assistant at the Hill Library Innovation Studio. His research interests include electronic literature, poetics, visual rhetoric, haptic ekphrasis, and the intersections between Medical and Digital Humanities (to name a few).

In addition to his research and teaching, Calvin is also an internationally-published poet and translator. His work has appeared in AGNIThe London MagazineThe National Poetry Review, and Poet Lore, among many others. He is also the poetry editor for The Carolina Quarterly.


Olsen, Calvin. antiBODY: An Anthology of Poetry & Medicine. MA Thesis Project. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2018.

Olsen, Calvin. “The Writing Process.” Tar Heel Writing Guide, edited by Todd Taylor, Tiffany Friedman, & Jennifer Larson, Macmillan Learning Curriculum Solutions, 2017, pp. 11–26.


Selected Conference Presentations

“Ways of Seeing: Visual Wellbeing in Hospital Settings,” Association for Medical Humanities Conference: Making Space, Limerick, Ireland, 2021

antiBODY: An Online Poetry Anthology Constructed on the Scalar2 Platform,” Conference on College Composition & Communication Digital Praxis Poster Session, Milwaukee, WI, 2020

“A Sneaky Trick: Visual Wellbeing in Barnett & Klassen’s Shape Trilogy,” UNC–Charlotte’s [YOUR NAME HERE] Graduate Conference, Charlotte, NC, 2020

“’It Became a Thing’: The Absence of Clinical Empathy in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein,” – International Health Humanities Consortium Conference Poster Session, Stanford, CA, 2018

“’Without Eyes or Hair’: Addressing the Ambiguous ‘You’ in Alberto de Lacerda’s Exílio,” CUNY Graduate Center’s Peripheral Matters Conference, New York, NY, 2017

Selected Invited Readings

Keynote Presentation – “Poetry Incarnate” – The Health Humanities Journal of UNC–Chapel Hill New Issue Exhibition Night, 2018

“Poetry and Healing” Panel Reading & Discussion – West End Poetry Festival (Carrboro, NC), 2016

“American Poetry Today” – TEDxNewEngland (Boston, MA), 2012



MFA Creative Writing (Poetry) Boston University 2011

MA Literature, Medicine, and Culture The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 2018