Most Americans are comfortable fixing a date (July 4) and an event (the signing of the Declaration of Independence) to a definitive moment when the United States separated itself from its colonial parent, Great Britain. But for University of Notre Dame historian Patrick Griffin, the revolution is better understood as a process—not an event.
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Geoffrey Layman, professor in Notre Dame’s Department of Political Science, has won the 2012 Jack Walker Outstanding Article Award for “Activists and Conflict Extension in American Party Politics,” published by the American Political Science Review in 2010. Bestowed by the Political Organizations and Parties section of the American Political Science Association (APSA), the award recognizes an article published within the past two years that has made a significant contribution to research and scholarship on political organizations and parties.
The U.S. Census Bureau’s method of calculating who is poor and who is not has been under fire by researchers for years because it doesn’t calculate the benefits of anti-poverty programs—such as food stamps and housing subsidies—into its formula. In response to the criticism, the Census Bureau released in the fall of 2011 the Supplemental Poverty Measure to more accurately assess poverty in America. Though the new supplemental measure uses a definition of income that is conceptually closer to resources available for consumption than pretax money income, a new study by University of Notre Dame economist James X. Sullivan finds that even the Supplementary Poverty Measure provides an inaccurate reflection of deprivation in this country.
“Pants on fire” isn’t the only problem liars face. New research from the University of Notre Dame shows that when people managed to reduce their lies in given weeks across a 10-week study, they reported significantly improved physical and mental health in those same weeks. The “Science of Honesty” study was presented recently at the American Psychological Association’s 120th annual convention.
Orlando Ricardo Menes, director of the University of Notre Dame’s Creative Writing Program, recently was named winner of the 2012 Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry for his manuscript, Fetish, which will be published by the University of Nebraska Press.
Notre Dame’s Ryan Geraghty ’12 has been named one of the top five graduating industrial design students in the nation, and his work will be featured at the Industrial Designers Society of America’s (IDSA) International conference in Boston August 15-18. Geraghty earned this opportunity by winning first place at the IDSA’s Midwest District competition in April. “For students, this is the highest honor they can receive within our profession and within our professional society,” says Assistant Professor Ann-Marie Conrado, “so that’s something that goes down in the record books.” Another record for the books: Geraghty was the fifth Notre Dame student in six years to take the title.
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is banking on the traditional Republican advantage in defense to help him defeat Democratic President Barack Obama this November. This Republican strategy of painting Democrats as soft on defense has a long pedigree in American politics. It certainly seems to have worked in the past. But will it still? “In my view, Romney shouldn’t bet on it this time,” says University of Notre Dame Political Science Professor Michael Desch, who specializes in foreign and national defense policies.
Notre Dame assistant professor Monika Nalepa has won the American Political Science Association’s 2012 Leon D. Epstein prize for Skeletons in the Closet: Transitional Justice in Post-Communist Europe (Cambridge University Press). This is the second win in two years for Nalepa. Skeletons in the Closet also won the 2011 Best Book Award from the APSA’s Comparative Democratization section.
University of Notre Dame Professor Christian Smith has won the 2012 Distinguished Career Award from the Altruism, Morality, and Social Solidarity section of the American Sociology Association (ASA). The accolade, presented at the ASA’s annual meeting in August, recognizes a senior scholar who has made significant contributions to the section’s areas of focus over an extended period of time. Smith, the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Sociology in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters, is a concurrent professor in the Department of Theology and director of both the Center for the Study of Religion and Society and the Center for Social Research, as well as College’s Science of Generosity initiative.
D’Arcy Jonathan Dacre Boulton, professor of the practice of medieval studies in the University of Notre Dame’s Medieval Institute and concurrent professor in the College of Arts and Letters’ Department of History, has been awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal by the Governor General of Canada. The medal honors Canadian citizens or permanent residents who have made significant contributions to Canada or brought “great credit” to Canada for outstanding achievement abroad.
Despite the defections of two high-ranking Syrian officials in the past week and the apparent unraveling of Syria’s government, the fall of President Bashar al-Assad still is not imminent, according to University of Notre Dame Political Science Professor Michael Desch. “There’s no doubt that the Assad regime is under siege, as Wednesday’s defection of the Syrian Ambassador to Iraq once again ighlights,” says Desch, an expert on international relations and homeland security.“But we need to be cautious in overestimating how much trouble Assad is in.”
Rev. Daniel G. Groody, C.S.C., associate professor of theology and director of the Center for Latino Spirituality and Culture at the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Latino Studies, has received two awards for recent publications from the Catholic Press Association (CPA). The awards, one for Father Groody’s book Gustavo Gutierrez: Spiritual Writings, and another for an article titled “A Theology of Migration,” which Father Groody wrote for America magazine, were announced last month at the CPA’s annual meeting in Indianapolis.
Every six years, Mexicans go to the polls to elect a new president, and students erupt in protest, says University of Notre Dame historian Jaime Pensado, a fellow at the University’s Kellogg Institute for International Studies. An expert on Mexican youth culture and student movements, Pensado says this year has been no different, as tens of thousands of students organized through social media took to the streets in the “Yo Soy 132” movement.
The International Criminal Court yesterday sentenced former Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga to 14 years in prison for using children as soldiers in his rebel army—the first sentence handed down by the world’s only permanent war crimes tribunal. “The criminal prosecution of Lubanga does not go far enough for international justice,” according to Daniel Philpott, associate professor of political science and peace studies at the University of Notre Dame.
University of Notre Dame economist Joseph Kaboski has been awarded the 2012 Frisch Medal for a paper evaluating the impact of microfinance, widely used as a tool to fight poverty in developing countries. First awarded in 1978, the Econometric Society presents the Frisch Medal biennially for the best empirical or theoretical applied paper published in Econometrica within the previous five years. The Frisch medal is not only one of the top three prizes in the field of economics but also the most prestigious “best article” award in the profession, says Rich Jensen, Gilbert F. Schaefer Professor of Economics at Notre Dame and chair of the Department of Economics.
The University of Notre Dame has entered into a historic partnership with the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) that aims to improve learning for Indiana children. Rev. Timothy R. Scully, C.S.C., of the University of Notre Dame, and Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. Tony Bennett announced the partnership at a press conference in South Bend. This new research partnership will allow scholars at Notre Dame’s Institute for Educational Initiatives and others from around the country to conduct independent research to inform policymakers as they seek strategies to improve educational quality in Indiana.
In the first two years following the death of a child, there is a 133 percent increase in the risk of the mother dying, a new study from the University of Notre Dame shows. Researchers William Evans, a health and labor economist at Notre Dame, and Javier Espinosa of the Rochester Institute of Technology studied 69,224 mothers aged 20 to 50 for nine years, tracking the mortality of children even after they had left the household. It is the first study of its kind using a large, nationally representative U.S. data source.
Most of us assume that confidence and certainty are preferred over uncertainty and bewilderment when it comes to learning complex information. But a new study led by Sidney D’Mello of the University of Notre Dame shows that confusion when learning can be beneficial if it is properly induced, effectively regulated, and ultimately resolved. The study will be published in a forthcoming issue of the journal Learning and Instruction.
Sabine MacCormack, Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C., Professor of Arts and Letters at the University of Notre Dame, died Saturday (June 16) after suffering a heart attack while gardening at her home in South Bend. She was 71. MacCormack, a historian and classicist who taught and wrote about religion and culture in ancient Rome and colonial Latin America, was unusual among her international colleagues for the prominence of her scholarship in those two very different areas. She also was among Notre Dame’s most popular and affectionately regarded teachers.
Anne García-Romero, an assistant professor at the University of Notre Dame, has been accepted to the prestigious Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights Conference this summer. One of just eight playwrights selected out of nearly 1,000 applicants, García-Romero will spend the month of July at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center in Connecticut, working with acclaimed theatre professionals to workshop her play Provenance. Also among the honorees is Notre Dame English alumna Theresa Rebeck ’80, an award-winning playwright and creator of the television show Smash.
Parents who fight in front of their kindergarten-aged children could be setting them up for depression, anxiety, and behavioral problems as adolescents, according to new research from the University of Notre Dame. A new longitudinal study finds that the impact of destructive marital conflict on children in their kindergarten years is long-lasting and can lead to emotional problems and difficulties in adolescence.
Gabriel Said Reynolds, Tisch Family Associate Professor of Islamic Studies and Theology at the University of Notre Dame, will be co-director of an international consultation to develop a plan for the formation of an independent association of Quranic scholars. The three-year initiative, sponsored by the Society of Biblical Literature (SBL) with a $140,000 grant from the Henry Luce Foundation, will bring together scholars of the Quran to discuss the potential establishment of a Society for Qu’ranic Studies (SQS) to foster scholarship in an expanding and increasingly diverse academic field.
A ridership survey designed and implemented by University of Notre Dame sociology students will yield valuable information for TRANSPO, South Bend’s public transportation system, says Jeanette Pancoas, TRANSPO marketing manager. “Not only do we have more comprehensive information about our riders, but the presence of the students surveying riders on the bus conveyed a genuine concern for customer feedback.”
In the first study to measure the temporary impact of highly skilled immigrants on native populations, University of Notre Dame economist Abigail Wozniak and Fairfield University’s Thomas J. Murray—a former Notre Dame graduate student—found that when highly skilled immigrants move to a city or town, the U.S. natives in that area who are also highly skilled tend to move away. However, the study found that the same immigrant group’s presence decreases the chances that low-skilled natives would leave.
The board of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) has responded to a Vatican assessment reprimanding the organization for “serious doctrinal problems” and announcing plans to place it into a sort of “receivership” overseen by three American bishops. According to Kathleen Sprows Cummings, associate director of the University of Notre Dame’s Cushwa Center for the Study of American Catholicism, the response of the LCWR, which represents most of the nation’s Catholic nuns, “will surprise no one who is familiar with how sisters operate.”
The 2012 Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival (NDSF) will run July 14 through August 26, highlighted by the Professional Company’s production of Hamlet, directed by David H. Bell. Other performances include A Midsummer Night’s Dream, presented by the Young Company at outdoor spaces throughout the Michiana region; Beyond the Stage, a performance-based lecture series, which will be presented at select venues in July and August; and ShakeScenes, which will open the festival with performances at historic Washington Hall on July 14 and 15.
Notre Dame Assistant Professor Michael (Tzvi) Novick has been appointed Abrams College Chair of Jewish Thought and Culture in the College of Arts and Letters’ Department of Theology. Novick holds both a Ph.D. and a J.D. from Yale University. His scholarship ranges across a broad spectrum of themes and genres in late antiquity: from rabbinic law and ethics, to liturgical poetry, to narratological analysis of biblical and Second Temple Judaism texts.
Notre Dame Professor Jon T. Coleman is interested in the truths that hide in lies. In his new book, Here Lies Hugh Glass: A Mountain Man, A Bear and the Rise of the American Nation, the historian uses a whopper of a story to explore not how the west was won but how its image was built.
Though the social barriers of race and gender were largely overcome during the last U.S. presidential campaign, religious affiliation (in this case, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, or Mormonism) is still a significant hurdle, according to a new study by University of Notre Dame Political Science Professor David Campbell and colleagues from Brigham Young University and the University of Akron.
Grant Mudge has been named the Ryan Producing Artistic Director of the Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival. Mudge succeeds Jay Paul Skelton, who departs after the conclusion of 2012 season of the Festival to pursue a research degree in England. “We chose Grant after an extensive national search,” says Peter Holland, associate dean for the arts in the College of Arts and Letters at the University of Notre Dame. “His success in building the Richmond Shakespeare Festival shows that he has the track-record and the talent to help us take the Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival forward to an ever more exciting future.