Candace Lebron-Williams, a member of the Robinson Community Learning Center (RCLC) Shakespeare Company, took top honors at the fourth annual Shakespeare at Notre Dame Regional Monologue Competition held December 10 at the Robinson Center.
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Margot Fassler, Keough-Hesburgh Professor of Music History and Liturgy and co-director of the Master of Sacred Music program at the University of Notre Dame, has won the biennial ACE/Mercers’ International Book Award. The award from Art and Christianity Enquiry (ACE) recognizes Fassler’s 2010 book The Virgin of Chartres: Making History Through Liturgy and the Arts as “an outstanding contribution to the dialogue between religious faith and the visual arts.”
After co-editing Form, Power, and Person in Robert Creeley’s Life and Work, Notre Dame English Professor Stephen Fredman was awarded $125,000 to support the purchase of Creeley’s library, total cost of which tops $600,000. “This will really help put us on the map as a holder of a major poet’s materials,” Fredman says. “People will come from around the world to look at it.”
Hip-hop and boxing are not just entertainment for Notre Dame’s two new Moreau Academic Diversity Postdoctoral Fellows, Brian Su-Jen Chung and Jesse Costantino; they’re fertile ground for academic research. Chung, in the American studies department, and Costantino, in English, joined the College of Arts and Letters in fall 2011 as part of a University effort to enhance cultural awareness and diversity within the campus community.
Molly Lipscomb, assistant professor of economics at the University of Notre Dame, and Laura Schechter and Jean-François Houde, economists at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, hope to increase the accessibility of sanitation technology in poor neighborhoods in Dakar, Senegal. Their two-year research project is supported by a more than $1 million grant to Innovations for Poverty Action from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
In July 2012, scholar, conductor, and interdisciplinary artist Carmen-Helena Tellez will join the University of Notre Dame as a professor in the Department of Music and in the Master of Sacred Music program in the Department of Theology. She comes to the College of Arts and Letters from Indiana University Bloomington, where she was the director of graduate choral studies in the Jacobs School of Music
The Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe fell on December 12, 2011 agreeably apposite to recent activities of Notre Dame’s scholars and administrators.
David Murphy, former president and chief executive officer of Better World Books, a for-profit social venture initially created and spun out of the University of Notre Dame, has been appointed associate dean for entrepreneurship for the Colleges of Science and Engineering and director of Notre Dame’s Engineering, Science, and Technology Entrepreneurship Excellence Masters program. Murphy graduated from Notre Dame with a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1980
A new, unprecedented national survey of African American Catholics by University of Notre Dame researchers reveals several significant insights into individual religious engagement and identifies several notable demographic trends facing the church. Notre Dame social scientists Darren W. Davis and Donald B. Pope-Davis, who co-authored the report, set out to test the validity of anecdotal accounts that African American Catholics were becoming increasingly disengaged from their religion.
Can a newly minted constitution help revive a people devastated by war? Can it produce a deliberative democracy and respect for human rights? Can it provide a foundation for political loyalty and facilitate the reunification of a divided nation? These are questions University of Notre Dame political scientist and legal scholar Donald Kommers seeks to answer in his study of the creation, maintenance, and legitimacy of Germany’s postwar constitutional order, for which he has been awarded a yearlong Emeritus Fellowship from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Students in Notre Dame’s Department of American Studies recently got an inside perspective on the complexities of creating and maintaining Native American museum collections in a course called Collecting Indians. The fall 2011 class was taught by Scott Stevens, a member of the Akwesasne Mohawk Tribe and the director of the D’Arcy McNickle Center for American Indian and Indigenous Studies at the Newberry Library in Chicago.
A competition developed by a team of University of Notre Dame experts, including sociologist David S. Hachen, Jr., uses concepts from open sourcing and crowdsourcing to help propose and assess new civil infrastructure systems for developing countries. The Shelters for All Competition: A Call to Deliver Safe, Affordable Housing to the World’s Poor challenges participants to design low-cost and safe housing that fits the cultural context of the communities in which the homes will be built.
University of Notre Dame faculty and students recently joined colleagues at an inaugural symposium on Compassion in Global Health, which featured the premiere of a new documentary on the subject. Highlighting the experiences of notable participants as shared in a meeting last year at the Carter Center in Atlanta, the film includes perspectives from President Jimmy Carter, global health champion Paul Farmer, smallpox eradication hero Bill Forge, Earth Institute founder Jeffrey Sachs, former U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher, and Notre Dame theology professor Lawrence Sullivan, as well as other physicians, experts and patients from around the globe.
From the moment they’re born, babies are highly attuned to communicate and motivated to interact. And they’re great listeners. New psychology research from the University of Notre Dame shows that during the first year of life, when babies spend so much time listening to language, they’re actually tracking word patterns that will support their process of word-learning that occurs between the ages of about 18 months and two years.
Hannelore Weber, an associate teaching professor in Notre Dame’s Department of German and Russian Languages and Literatures, recently received the Goethe-Institut/American Association of Teachers of German Certificate of Merit. Presented to just four people nationally each year, the award acknowledges educators who have significantly furthered the teaching of German in schools around the United States.
Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York will inaugurate the University of Notre Dame’s Project on Human Dignity with a lecture titled “Modern Questions, Ancient Answers: Defining and Defending Human Dignity in Our Time” on Tuesday, December 6, at 7:30 p.m. in Notre Dame’s McKenna Hall auditorium. Ann Astell, professor of theology, and Gerald McKenny, Walter Professor of Theology at Notre Dame, will give responses to Archbishop Dolan’s lecture, which is free and open to the public.
Electronic music roars and pulsates throughout the theatre. On stage, a blind man paces, struggling to escape the ring of steel bars that confine him. Meanwhile, a stern figure in a sleek suit and sunglasses stands guard. When the lights dim and dialogue begins to flash above the stage from an overhead projector, one thing is clear: This production of John Milton’s Samson Agonistes is far from ordinary.
Julia Douthwaite, professor of French in Notre Dame’s Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, is organizing a series of events to honor Swiss philosopher and writer Jean–Jacques Rousseau’s 300th birthday and stimulate a cross–disciplinary discussion on social justice and human dignity. The project, called Rousseau 2012: On the Road to DIGNITY, will be part of the curriculum for more than a dozen courses throughout the College of Arts and Letters and the Law School and will feature both guest lectures and an Amnesty International photography exhibit on poverty and human rights that includes portraits from Mexico, Egypt, Nigeria, India, and Macedonia.
University of Notre Dame students were awarded 13 Fulbright grants for the 2011-12 academic year, placing the University among the top universities in the nation. Eleven of the 13 are from the College of Arts and Letters. The U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program, Fulbright recently announced the complete list of colleges and universities that produced the most 2011-2012 U.S. Fulbright students.
Political science graduate student and former Kellogg Dissertation Year Fellow Olukunle Owolabi has a unique personal connection with the subject of his research—the differences in development and governance between countries with a history of plantation slavery and those with a history of colonial occupation.
Guillermo O’Donnell, professor emeritus of political science and senior fellow of the University of Notre Dame’s Kellogg Institute for International Studies, died November 29 in Buenos Aires after a long struggle with cancer. He was 75 years old. A native of Argentina, O’Donnell is internationally renowned for original and influential scholarship on Latin American authoritarian regimes, the democratic transitions undergone by many of them, and how modernization and democracy affect each other.
She’s already mastered English, French, and, of course, her native Spanish. Now Natalia Baeza, a graduate student in Notre Dame’s Department of Philosophy, is clearly on her way to conquering German. Recently awarded a prestigious German Academic Exchange Service fellowship, Baeza is completing her doctoral work at Frankfurt’s renowned Institute for Social Research.
Graduate students across the University will now be able to participate in an experiential learning course previously offered only to master’s in divinity students in Notre Dame’s Department of Theology. The Common Good Initiative program (CGI), formerly called the Pastoral Leadership Practicum, combines direct involvement in disenfranchised and impoverished communities with coursework in Catholic social teaching and multidimensional poverty analysis.
Professor Robert Norton, chair of the Department of German and Russian Languages and Literatures at the University of Notre Dame, recently received the Ungar German Translation Award for his English edition of Ernst Bertram’s Nietzsche: Attempt at a Mythology, which originally appeared in German in 1918.
Anjan Chakravartty, a distinguished philosopher of science and metaphysics, is joining the University of Notre Dame as a professor in the Department of Philosophy and the John J. Reilly Center for Science, Technology, and Values. “This is a signal hire for the Notre Dame philosophy department, the History and Philosophy of Science graduate program, and the Reilly center,” says Don Howard, director of the center and a a professor of philosophy. “Chakravartty is a rapidly rising star who brings not only a distinguished record of scholarship but also a record of academic leadership.”
We’ve all experienced it: The frustration of entering a room and forgetting what we were going to do. Or get. Or find. New research from University of Notre Dame Psychology Professor Gabriel Radvansky suggests that passing through doorways is the cause of these memory lapses.
According to a new study by University of Notre Dame economist Kasey Buckles and graduate student Elizabeth Munnich, siblings spaced more than two years apart have higher reading and math scores than children born closer together. The positive academic effects of greater spacing between children were seen in older siblings, but not in younger ones, according to Buckles.
University of Notre Dame Professor Kent Emery, Jr., and his team have been awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) grant to produce the first critical edition of a key work by medieval theologian and philosopher John Duns Scotus. The 3-year, $300,000 grant was one of the largest awarded by the NEH this year, according to Emery, a professor in the College of Arts and Letters’ Program of Liberal Studies (PLS) and the Medieval Institute.
Evaluating basic reading and math skills among American students is a common and expected way to expose deficiencies and highlight exemplary programs. But what about training students in democratic citizenship? Can the effectiveness of civic education be measured among schools? Are some schools better than others at teaching civics?
The first Sunday of Advent is the first day of the Catholic liturgical calendar, which this year falls on Nov. 27. Throughout the English-speaking world, that Sunday Mass will begin, as usual, with the sign of the cross, and the priest’s customary greeting to his fellow worshipers, “the Lord be with you.” And then, not as usual, the congregation will be expected to reply, “and with your spirit.” That change of liturgical wording is only one of several in the third edition of the Roman Missal, whose new translations from the ancient Latin texts will, from this Advent on, be in standard use for all Masses in English.