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Darkness on the Edge of Town: An International Symposium – Friday, April 13

Friday, April 13

8:00am – 4:00 pm, Pozycki Hall Lobby

Conference Registration

9:00am – 9:45am, the Great Hall

Conference Opening Remarks, Ken Womack and Monmouth University President Grey Dimenna

9:45am – 10:00am

Break/Transition to Breakout Sessions

10:00am – 11:30am

Breakout Sessions, Monmouth University

Bruce Springsteen: Desolation, Depression and Bruce’s Road to the Darkness on the Edge of Town, Dan Roberts

How Depression Drives Darkness on the Edge of Town, Sam Sciarrotta

The Darkness Within: The Landscape of Depression in the Works of Bruce Springsteen, Anthony Henley

The Darkness Era: An Overview, Arlen Schumer, Marywood University

Darkness on the Edge of Town Will Always Be Springsteen’s Greatest Album. Here’s Why, Jin Thindal, Simon Fraser University

Bruce Springsteen and the Feminine Universe, Patrizia De Rossi

The Blood Rushes In: Sex and Masculinity in “Candy’s Room” and “Prove It All Night”, Katie Kapurch, Texas State University, and Walter Everett, University of Michigan

Where Dreams Are Found and Lost: Themes of Rebellion, Power, and the Working Class in Springsteen’s ‘Darkness of the Edge of Town’ and the Images of Five Contemporaneous Films, Adam Aresty

Bruce Springsteen and Don DeLillo: Darkness on the Edge of the Silver Screen, Luca Ferrando Battista, Université Paris 7 Diderot

Noir, Westerns, and The Crusader in ‘Streets of Fire’: Springsteen’s Song and Walter Hill’s Film, Brian Brems, College of DuPage

First-Person Narratives on Darkness on the Edge of Town: Creating Identity, Ernie Sandonato, Drew University

“The Poets Down Here Don’t Write Nothin’ At All”: Springsteen and Metaphor, Frank Fury, Monmouth University

Reading “Racing” as Literature: One Song Seen Through an Official Archive as Key to An Album, Gary Leising, Utica College

Tunnel of Love: A 5-Ticket Ride—The Narrative Arc of Album Arrangement, B.J. Ward, Warren Community College

Awakening Student Activism: Springsteen and the Pedagogy of Protest Songs, James Kelly, Carlow University

Land of Hope and Dreams: Teaching American Literature and Culture in Japan via Springsteen’s America, Kotaro Nakagaki, Senshu University

Trends in Springsteen Scholarly Research: Born to Research Revisited, Denise Green, CARLI

AMST 105—Springsteen: Studies in Social Justice, Patricia Hillen, Penn State Brandywine

Summer’s Fall: Springsteen at Seventy, James Cullen, Ethical Culture Fieldston School

The Promise of Darkness: The Album That Could Have Been,
Stephen Allen, Rider University

Why Bruce Springsteen Matters, June Skinner Sawyers

11:30am – 11:45am

Transition to Lunch

11:45am – 1:15 pm, Pozycki Hall Auditorium

Lunch with Dick Wingate (interview with Joe Rapolla)

1:15pm – 1:30 pm

Transition to Breakout Sessions

1:30 – 3 PM

Breakout Sessions

Juliana Illiano, Monmouth University
Stephanie DeLaat, Monmouth University
Michael Achimov, Monmouth University
Samantha Papa, Monmouth University

Springsteen, Wall Street & Working on a Dream, Mark Zarrilli

Springsteen and Parenthood, Graeme Delf, Leabold Financial Management, Ltd.

Synchronizing with Springsteen: Sharing Our Stories, John Massaro

Darkness on the Edge of Cape Town: Bruce, New Jersey, South Africa and Back Again, Chris Scanlon, Plaid Jacket Records

Proof of Life: Springsteen’s Garage Workshop on Broadway, Stevan Weine, University of Illinois at Chicago

“My Magic Trick”: Bruce Springsteen and Mythical Discourse in His Born To Run Memoir and Springsteen on Broadway Performances, Scott McMillan, Volunteer State Community College

The Poetics of Bruce, or Bachelard on Broadway, Mark Bourdeau, Suffolk County Community College

Greetings from … Bruce Springsteen and Sufjan Stevens, Irwin Streight, Royal Military College of Canada

“Life and Stuff”: The Blue-Collar Narratives of Bruce Springsteen and Roseanne Barr, Michele DeVinney and Michael Kaufmann, Indiana-Purdue University Fort Wayne

Bruce Springsteen and the Mighty Sparrow (Slinger Francisco), Marianne Murawski, Stockton University

Raised on Promises: An American Girl’s Look into The Promised Land, Erin Kalbarczyk, University of North Carolina

Straight into the Storm: Growing Old in the Promised Land, Michael Kobre, Queens University of Charlotte

I Believe in the Promised Utopia, Kirstin Bews, The Humanities Research Institute at Brock University

Elvis Is Everywhere: Springsteen’s Darkness on the Edge of Town and The Promise, Ryan Hilligoss

From Badlands to the Promised Land: Bruce Springsteen as a Servant-Leader, Joseph Albert, Gonzaga University, and Larry Spears, The Spears Center for Servant-Leadership, Inc.

Reason to Believe: Bruce Springsteen, Resilience and the Darkness at the Edge of Town, Richard Grosse, Dominion Behavioral Healthcare of Chesterfield

Why the Dogs on Main Street Howl: Exploring the Dilemma of Mobility within Springsteen’s Darkness on the Edge of Town, Kevin Dooley, Monmouth University

3:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Time to Explore Asbury Park (Dinner on Own)

8:00 pm (doors open at 7:00pm)

Musical Event at Wonder Bar

Friday’s Performances

As part of the conference experience, attendees are invited to convene at the legendary Wonder Bar in Asbury Park, New Jersey, at 8:00pm (doors open at 7:00pm). Shuttle bus service will be provided.

Between 1968 and 1974, Vini Lopez backed Bruce Springsteen in several bands, including Steel Mill and the E Street Band. He also played on Springsteen’s first two albums, Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. and The Wild, the Innocent & the E Street Shuffle. After leaving the E Street Band, Lopez went on to play drums with numerous Jersey Shore bands, including The Lord Gunner Group. Since 2004 he has led his own band, Steel Mill Retro, which has performed and recorded original Springsteen songs from the Steel Mill era, as well as serving as mentor to emerging artists such as The Ries Brothers.

In April 2014, Lopez was inducted by Bruce Springsteen into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the E Street Band and is now an ambassador for the Rock Hall.

Gary Cavico has been playing guitar and singing blues and roots music at the Jersey Shore since the mid ’60s. He has been in several bands, including Stone Blue, and has written and recorded many songs since then.

Blue Hawk Records is the independent, student-run record label and music organization of Monmouth University. The group offers students a range of real-world music industry experiences, including record production, strategic marketing, and coordinating live events.

The Pat Roddy Band has been playing clubs along the Jersey Shore for over 20 years. On any given night you can hear Roddy and his band perform Celtic Rock, Americana, Folk, and the best of the Jersey Shore music scene. They have released three original CDs and recently won Best Song at the Garden State Film Festival for “Stuck in The Belmar Bars,” from the movie Marathon Mouth. Known for their live sound, the band enjoys a large following along the shore. Pat and his band will be rocking the Wonder Bar with songs from the Springsteen catalog including our featured album Darkness on the Edge of Town, as well as tunes by Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes among others.


Standard conference registration is $350 for presenters, as well as attendees interested in an all-inclusive rate. This price includes all conference meals, pre-conference activities, and admission to the Wonder Bar on Friday, April 13th.

Discount rates are available for members of the Monmouth University community. Undergraduate students can purchase tickets for $50. Tickets are available for $250 for graduate students, retirees, and emeritus professors. These special rates will be available at the registration table—valid ID must be presented for purchase.

Non-presenters are welcome to attend the sessions for a $20 daily fee. Meals can be purchased separately during the conference.

Non-presenters can also purchase entrance to the Wonder Bar for $10. The Wonder Bar show is a 21-and-over event—valid ID will be requested at the door.

Separate tickets are also available for the Rock & Roll Tour of the Jersey Shore. The four-hour Jersey Shore bus tour on Thursday, April 12th, will be $70. The two-hour walking tour of Asbury Park on Sunday, April 15th, will cost $40.