The Dr. Katherine Maren Sorensen Award for Excellence in the Study of the Novel
The Katherine M. Sorensen Award for Excellence in the Study of the Novel recognizes a
student in Literary Study II: Prose Fiction, whose presentation reveals him or her
to be a superior reader of the novel, exhibiting in his or her reading, writing, and
delivery Katherine's characteristic virtues: A precise intelligence and wit, a capacious
imagination, and a humane learning. The student will receive an award funded by the
Katherine M. Sorensen Memorial Fund.
Katherine Sorensen began her 20 year teaching career at the University of Dallas in
1981. She had previously taught at Yale University, where she earned her Ph.D., and
at Albertus Magnus College, the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, and Carleton
Dr. Sorensen's field of specialization was the Victorian Period, and her dissertation
was "Drama in George Eliot: A Model for Imaginative Expression."
In addition to her teaching courses in the Literary Traditions sequence, the senior
course Lit Study II: Prose Fiction, and Victorian and British Literature, Dr. Sorensen
was Chair of the English Department from 1989 - 1990, directed numerous Ph.D. and
M.A. theses, and served on many committees both within and outside the university.
She published numerous articles in the Victorian Institute Journal, The Victorian
Newsletter, and The Sewanee Review. She was a founding member of the University of
Dallas chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, and a King-Haggar Scholar. She was married to S.
Michael Simpson, an English Professor, and they have two children, Hannah and Stephen.
Professor Sorensen maintained a positive attitude with her diagnosis with cancer in
1997. Speaking openly and directly to her students and colleagues about her illness,
she went forward with grace and dignity.
Dr. Sorensen taught her last class, on George Eliot, in Fall 2000, and died peacefully
at home in February, 2001, at the age of 49.
Past Sorensen Award Recipients
2001 Anthony King
2002 Kathleen Mahoney
2003 Frances Maureen (Horan) Benes
2004 Elizabeth Fischer
2005 Rachel Elizabeth Faber
2006 Margaret Alexis Abbott & Andrew James Junker
2007 Robert C. Hamilton & Katherine S. Ramsay
2008 Sarah Marie Papania
2009 Mary Patricia Jones & Julia Anne Fahy
2010 Sidonie P. Blanks
2011 Teresa Marie Amador & John Carl Corrales
2012 Kevin P. Mooney
2013 Deandra Bari Lieberman
2014 Vallery Laurette Bergez
2015 Alec Eason Wallace
2016 Anne Katherine Ryland
2017 Victoria Christi Nelson