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Two Notre Dame faculty elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Author: Josh Weinhold

Categories: Faculty News, Research, and General News

Two faculty from Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters — Declan Kiberd and Dianne Pinderhughes — have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, one of the nation’s oldest learned societies and independent policy research centers. They are among more than 200 members of the 239th AAAS class, which includes former first lady Michelle Obama, author Jonathan Franzen, gender theorist Judith Butler, former Indiana governor Mitch Daniels, NPR host Michel Martin, and neuro-oncologist Robert B. Darnell.

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Political science and economics alumnus Carlos Lozada wins Pulitzer Prize

Author: Dennis Brown

Categories: Faculty News, Alumni, and General News

Notre Dame faculty member and alumnus Carlos Lozada, the nonfiction book critic for the Washington Post, is the recipient of a 2019 Pulitzer Prize for criticism, journalism’s highest honor. In announcing the award April 15, the Pulitzer jurors cited Lozada “for trenchant and searching reviews and essays that joined warm emotion and careful analysis in examining a broad range of books addressing government and the American experience.”

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Film professor emeritus receives lifetime achievement award from Society for Cinema and Media Studies

Author: Josh Weinhold

Categories: Faculty News, Research, and General News

Donald Crafton — a Notre Dame film, television, and theatre professor widely considered the pre-eminent scholar on early animation — received the Distinguished Career Achievement Award from the Society for Cinema and Media Studies last month. “Don Crafton’s work has set a high standard for historical scholarship and also has contributed vitally to the study of animation within our field,” said Heather Hendershot, an MIT professor of film and media, in her introduction of Crafton at the awards ceremony.

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Carter Snead, director of de Nicola Center for Ethics and Culture, to deliver Harvey Lecture at Georgetown

Author: Kenneth Hallenius

Categories: Faculty News, Centers and Institutes, and General News

O. Carter Snead, the William P. and Hazel B. White Director of the de Nicola Center for Ethics and Culture, will present the 16th Annual John Collins Harvey Lecture, hosted by the Pellegrino Center for Clinical Bioethics at Georgetown University on April 25. His talk is titled, “Remembering the Body: Towards a More Human Public Bioethics,” based on the themes of his book manuscript by the same name.

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American studies professor awarded Whiting Public Engagement Fellowship to support work on Latinx murals of Pilsen

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Faculty News, Research, and General News

Chicago is home to hundreds of works of Latinx public art that are both captivating and politically provocative. But there’s no good place to go for comprehensive information on where they are, who made them, or how they reflect the Latino experience in Chicago. Jason Ruiz is changing that. Ruiz has been awarded a Whiting Public Engagement Fellowship to create a set of walking tours and digital tools to explore Pilsen — the changing neighborhood at the heart of Chicago’s Latinx community — through its vibrant, historic murals.

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English professor’s novel named finalist for PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction

Author: Josh Weinhold

Categories: Faculty News, Research, and General News

Azareen Van der Vliet Oloomi, an assistant professor of English at Notre Dame, has been named a finalist for the 2019 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction, the country’s largest peer-juried prize for novels and short stories. The honor is for Van der Vliet Oloomi’s second novel, Call Me Zebra, which follows a young heroine as she leaves New York and retraces the path she took with her father from Iran to the United States. Literature is at the heart of the novel — the protagonist, Zebra, considers books central to her identity, has personal literary theories, and at times literally devours certain pages of books.

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The Good Class: How an innovative Notre Dame philosophy course gets undergrads excited about contemplating — and constructively debating — life’s big questions

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Faculty News, Catholicism, Research, Undergraduate News, and General News

An innovative Notre Dame course, God and the Good Life, is not only transforming the way students are introduced to philosophy — it is changing their perspectives, trajectories, and lives. Nearly 1,200 students have enrolled in the course since philosophy professor Meghan Sullivan launched it two years ago, and for many, it has become a defining experience in their undergraduate education. It's also drawn an array of prominent guest speakers — including an upcoming appearance by Michael Schur, creator of the philosophy-focused NBC comedy The Good Place.

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Study finds breastfeeding may play a protective role for newborns whose mothers experienced prenatal violence

Author: Colleen Sharkey

Categories: Faculty News, Centers and Institutes, Research, and General News

How infants adjust in their first months of life depends on many factors, including what their mothers experienced while they are in utero — 1 in 4 women in the U.S. will experience intimate partner violence in their lifetime, and that risk increases during pregnancy, but surprisingly few longitudinal studies have been conducted on the effects of IPV during pregnancy. William J. Shaw Center for Children and Families Assistant Professor of Psychology Laura Miller-Graff led a novel study examining the role of breastfeeding as a potential protective factor against detrimental outcomes for infants associated with IPV during pregnancy. 

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English professor receives Irish Ambassador Award from Massachusetts community

Author: Mary Hendriksen

Categories: Faculty News, Internationalism, Centers and Institutes, and General News

On St. Patrick’s Day weekend 2019, English professor received the Ambassador Award from the St. Patrick’s Committee of Holyoke, Massachusetts. The Ambassador Award is presented each year to a person or organization that has worked to promote the relationship between the people of the Republic of Ireland and the people of the United States. In announcing the award, the Holyoke organizers noted Fox’s leadership of Notre Dame’s Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies, which he co-founded with Seamus Deane in 1993 and led as director from 2001 through 2017.

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Video: Theologian Gerald McKenny on the ethics of biomedical technology

Author: Todd Boruff

Categories: Faculty News, Catholicism, Research, and General News

Gerald McKenny is Walter Professor of Theology. His research interests include moral theology, Christian ethics, and biomedical technologies. In this video, he discusses his interests in how human beings respond to vulnerabilities and limitations, issues he studies as an ethicist and theologian, and why it's important for humanities scholars to be involved in questions of biotechnology.

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Women Lead 2019: Historian Elisabeth Köll paints intricate picture of China's economic systems

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Faculty News, Internationalism, Research, and General News

Growing up in Germany, it wasn’t just unusual that Elisabeth Köll wanted to study Chinese. It was so rare for students at Bonn University to focus on it, there was even a term for it — an “orchid subject.” Nevertheless, Köll was fascinated by China, and her decision to spend two years as an undergraduate in a government exchange program at Fudan University in Shanghai deepened her interest in Chinese history — and launched her global career.

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Notre Dame psychologist elected chair of American Psychological Association’s Commission on Accreditation

Author: Josh Weinhold

Categories: Faculty News, Research, and General News

David A. Smith, a Notre Dame professor of psychology, has been elected chair of the American Psychological Association’s Commission on Accreditation. His term, which began in January, involves leading the 32-person commission, which is charged with the accrediting of nearly 1,200 doctoral, internship, and postdoctoral programs in clinical, counseling, and school psychology.

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Theology Ph.D. students to spend six weeks in Holy Land learning geography, history, and archaeology

Author: Brian Wallheimer

Categories: Faculty News, Internationalism, Research, General News, and Graduate Students

The Notre Dame Department of Theology is hosting an academic experience in the Holy Land this summer for graduate students in Christianity and Judaism in Antiquity and History of Christianity, adding a sense of place for those studying ancient scriptures. Abraham Winitzer, the Jordan H. Kapson Associate Professor of Jewish Studies, and Robin Jensen, the Patrick O’Brien Professor of Theology, will lead the trip for up to 10 students. They will spend four weeks at Notre Dame’s Jerusalem Global Gateway and Tantur Ecumenical Institute learning the geography and history of the Holy Land, then spend two weeks at a nearby archaeological site.

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‘Ways of seeing and changing the world’: Gender Studies Program marks 30 years of rigorous, interdisciplinary study and a commitment to social justice

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Faculty News, Alumni, Research, Undergraduate News, and General News

Three decades after its founding, the Gender Studies Program is thriving, with more than 70 students currently pursuing gender studies majors, supplementary majors, and minors at the undergraduate and graduate levels, as well as more than 50 associated faculty across campus. Hundreds of students have found a home in the program over the years — including Sarah A. Mustillo ’96, the I.A. O’Shaughnessy Dean of the College of Arts and Letters.

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Notre Dame among top producers of Fulbright students and scholars

Author: Erin Blasko

Categories: Faculty News, Internationalism, Research, Undergraduate News, General News, and Graduate Students

The University of Notre Dame is among just 11 institutions to be named a top producer for both the Fulbright U.S. Student and Scholar programs for the 2018-19 academic year, a first for the University, according to the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Of the 24 students to receive Fulbrights, 20 were College of Arts and Letters students and alumni. Arts and Letters alone produced more Fulbright student winners than Harvard, Columbia, Stanford, Emory, and Duke.

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Lost voices of slaves, sung and spoken, to be featured during London panel  

Author: Joanna Byrne

Categories: Faculty News, Internationalism, Research, and General News

On Feb. 14, Sophie White, associate professor of American studies at Notre Dame, together with a group of musicians, activists and academics, including the composer Odaline de la Martinez, will participate in a panel discussion at the London Global Gateway titled “Voices of the Enslaved: Tales of Love and Longing."

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Political scientist Guillermo Trejo continues push for transitional justice in Mexico

Trejo, an associate professor of political science and faculty fellow at the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, helped draft a major proposal for a truth commission that was presented to the federal government at a press conference in Mexico City on January 22. If implemented, the truth commission would investigate alleged human rights atrocities committed by the government or organized criminal groups during Mexico’s war on drugs between 2006 and 2018.

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Fewer unintended pregnancies contribute to all-time low U.S. fertility rate, new research says

Author: Colleen Sharkey

Categories: Faculty News, Research, and General News

The U.S. birth rate has been decreasing for the last decade, reaching a historic low in 2017. New research from a team of economists suggests that much of this decline is due to reductions in unintended births. Kasey Buckles, the Brian and Jeannelle Brady Associate Professor of Economics at the University of Notre Dame, and her co-authors found that the number of births that were likely unintended has fallen 16 percent since 2007. This drop accounts for more than a third of the overall decline in births in the U.S. over that period, and is driven by declines in births to young women.

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Anthropologist’s exploration of migration, music, and poetics wins trio of book awards

Author: Brian Wallheimer

Categories: Faculty News, Internationalism, Centers and Institutes, Research, and General News

Notre Dame anthropologist Alex Chávez’s first book, Sounds of Crossing: Music, Migration, and the Aural Poetics of Huapango Arribeño, has certainly caught the eye of his peers. The in-depth look at Mexican migrants’ cultural expression through music has earned three prestigious awards in the fields of anthropology and ethnomusicology.​​​​​​Chávez’s work has earned the 2018 Society for Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology Book Prize and 2018 Association for Latina and Latino Anthropologists Book Award, and now the Alan P. Merriam Prize from the Society for Ethnomusicology. 

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Historian Paul Ocobock awarded American Historical Association prize for book on the role of age in Kenyan violence

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Faculty News, Internationalism, Research, and General News

Kenya has been troubled by ethnic violence for many years, especially surrounding elections, and most histories of the country focus on the issue of ethnicity. But there is another factor that is just as important, Paul Ocobock argues — age. He was awarded the 2018 Morris D. Forkosch Prize for his exploration of the centrality of age and masculinity in the lives of young men in his book, An Uncertain Age: The Politics of Manhood in Kenya.

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In memoriam: Donald Kommers, 86, the Joseph and Elizabeth Robbie Chair in Government and International Studies

Author: Josh Weinhold

Categories: Faculty News and General News

Donald P. Kommers, the Joseph and Elizabeth Robbie Chair in Government and International Studies and a concurrent professor emeritus of law, died Dec. 21 at his home in Holy Cross Village. He was 86. A member of the Notre Dame faculty since 1963, he was a renowned scholar of German and American constitutional law. 

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Book club, led by A&L majors, ‘elevates’ language for Spanish-speaking Catholic middle-school students

Author: Erin Blasko

Categories: Faculty News, Internationalism, Undergraduate News, and General News

Every Thursday, Notre Dame junior Julia Cogan drives the six minutes from campus to Holy Cross School, a Catholic school on South Bend’s near northwest side. There the sociology major leads a heritage book club for middle-school students in Clare Roach’s introductory Spanish class. The students speak Spanish at home — easily conversing with Spanish-speaking family members — but struggle to read and write in Spanish because it is not the traditional language of education in South Bend.

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In memoriam: Gary Knoppers, John A. O’Brien Professor of Theology

Author: Josh Weinhold

Categories: Faculty News and General News

Gerald “Gary” N. Knoppers, the John A. O’Brien Professor of Theology at the University of Notre Dame, died Dec. 22 from pancreatic cancer. He was 62. Knoppers’ research specializations included Hebrew scriptures, ancient historiography, ancient Near Eastern and biblical law, inner-scriptural exegesis, textual criticism, and the history of early Jewish and Samaritan relations.

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Three faculty awarded NEH fellowships, continuing record funding for humanities research

Author: Amanda Skofstad

Categories: Faculty News, Research, and General News

Three University of Notre Dame faculty members — Rebecca Tinio McKenna, Sarah McKibben, and Vincent Phillip Muñoz — have been offered fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities in the 2018 award cycle. With 65 total awards, scholars in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters have received more NEH fellowships any other private university in the United States since 1999. 

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Emergency financial assistance reduces homeless shelter entry and violent crime, Notre Dame economists find

Author: Colleen Sharkey

Categories: Faculty News, Centers and Institutes, Research, and General News

Homelessness in the U.S. is a persistent and complex problem. Each year more than 2.3 million people experience homelessness, 7.4 million people live “doubled up” with friends or family for economic reasons, and many more are on the brink of homelessness. A new study conducted by researchers at the Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities shows that emergency financial assistance for people facing homelessness not only reduces shelter entry, but also reduces criminal behavior.

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For musicologist studying the ‘middlebrow,’ interdisciplinary opportunities make PLS the perfect home

Author: Emily McConville

Categories: Faculty News, Research, and General News

For Christopher Chowrimootoo, there’s nothing unusual about a musicologist teaching in the Great Books program. That’s because, like his research, the Program of Liberal Studies is fundamentally interdisciplinary. He primarily tries to bring music into wider conversations about the “middlebrow” in literature, film studies, and cultural history. This originally pejorative term implied cultural aspiration, using “highbrow” art to achieve a higher social and aesthetic status. 

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