The longer Jack Bushnell teaches, the stronger his commitment to liberal education and particularly to collaboration across disciplinary boundaries. In his classroom and in his creative and scholarly work, he has made a career of exploring the ties between the arts, humanities, and sciences.
Jack received his Bachelor's degree in English and Russian from the University of Colorado in Boulder, and his Master's and Ph.D. in British romanticism from Rutgers University. He also worked for nearly a dozen years in advertising and marketing at two New York City advertising agencies (where he eventually became a Vice President) and at the corporate headquarters of Nabisco. His advertising clients included a manufacturer of agricultural products, the New York Zoological Society, and the Northrop Corporation, makers of the B-2 stealth bomber. Largely because of this eclectic background, he was hired by UW-Eau Claire in 1995 to teach courses in writing about science and technology. He regularly offers a range of classes in science and nature writing and the rhetorics of science, as well as baseball writing, introductory literature, and freshman composition. Because his playwriting and his children's books have received national recognition, he has also taught workshops in drama and children's writing. For the last ten years, he has contributed interdisciplinary classes to the university's Bachelor of Liberal Studies program and the University Honors program, as well as embarking on collaborative teaching initiatives with colleagues in Art, Music and Theatre, Physics and Astronomy, Psychology, and Geography and Anthropology.
Jack's creative and scholarly interests are a wide-ranging reflection of and an inspiration to his varied teaching interests. His academic articles have tended to focus on science or literature, and have appeared in such refereed journals as Technical Communication Quarterly, a/b: Auto/Biography Studies, Studies in Romanticism, The Wordsworth Circle, Popular Culture Review, and Studies in the Novel. His creative work crosses most of the major genres, from plays to fiction to creative nonfiction, including memoir and personal essays on nature and on baseball. His nonfiction has been published in a number of national literary magazines, notably The Gettysburg Review, Tampa Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, and Elysian Fields Quarterly, as well as in such regional magazines as Wisconsin People & Ideas and Wisconsin Natural Resources. He has four books for children, two from Morrow/HarperCollins, one from the Chippewa Valley Museum Press (in Wisconsin), and the most recent from Tanglewood Books. Circus of the Wolves (1994) won awards from the International Reading Association, Friends of American Writers, and Council for Wisconsin Writers. Sky Dancer (1996) was named a Best Book of the Year by the Children's Book Committee of Bank Street College. And Farm Crossing: The Amazing Adventures of Addie and Zachary (2004) won the Young Adult Children's Book Award runner-up from the Council for Wisconsin Writers. His fourth book, Night of the White Deer, was published in 2012.
Jack has been writing plays for the past three or four years. His first, The Infinity Monologues, was performed as a staged reading by the BareBones Ensemble Theatre in May 2014. It was subsequently named a finalist in the annual one-act play competition sponsored by the Arts Club of Washington (D.C.), going up against submissions from nearly every state in the U.S. and from Europe, including Greece, Ireland, and Great Britain. He is now in the revision process on two new plays: another one-act monologue drama, Sketching Zorro, and a full-length play, Sailing to Antarctica.