As interest in cultural sociology has risen in recent decades, so too has Notre Dame’s investment in its faculty. “We’ve been growing over the past 20 years, but in the last five years it has all come together,” says cultural sociologist Lyn Spillman, an associate professor who has studied American political and economic culture. "We’re just about at a point where we are in the top handful of departments in cultural sociology.
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Discovering, collaborating on, and promoting new ideas in the humanities is the focus of the first-ever TEDx conference at Notre Dame, set for Friday, April 15, 2011.
Sudan has been torn by religious, social, and economic strife for decades. Seeking to ease these tensions, the Sudanese people voted to divide the country in two—north and south. But the referendum has left a host of unresolved issues in its wake. Through the Office of the U.S. Special Envoy to Sudan, Peter Quaranto ’06 is working with the African country’s residents to help reach a successful and sustainable resolution to the division.
Although talk of extinction is often focused on plant and animal life, graduate student Myles Beaupre is researching what it means when extinction applies to an entire race of people. Beaupre, a doctoral candidate in the Department of History, is studying government policies on Native Americans throughout the development of the United States—from the British Empire-controlled colonies to the mid- to late-1800s of the newly formed country.
American Grace: How Religion Divides and Unites Us has been named the Best Nonfiction Book by the Religion Communicators Council (RCC). David Campbell, John Cardinal O’Hara, C.S.C., Associate Professor of Political Science at Notre Dame, and his co-author, Robert Putnam of Harvard University share this 2011 Wilbur Award for “excellence in the communication of religious issues, values, and themes in the secular media.”
Even the most carefully planned humanitarian and development efforts are often stymied by the chaotic realities on the ground in war-torn zones such as Sudan and Northern Kenya. Notre Dame Economic anthropologist Rahul Oka aims to improve the success rate of these critical relief missions by studying how local trade networks are able to operate in the same areas with remarkable resilience and efficiency.
At a time when the battered economy caused many sociology programs to freeze hiring for a second consecutive year, the University of Notre Dame doubled down. “I am pleased to say that we hired four of the very best young scholars in the nation and each one will be joining us in the fall of 2011,” says Professor Rory McVeigh, chair of the Department of Sociology. “These scholars, as a group, not only build on our preexisting strengths but also help us to establish strength in some new areas of research.”
Trouble with algebra? Notre Dame Psychologist Nicole McNeil’s research shows that basic math may be to blame. The new study suggests that even though adults tend to think in more advanced ways than children do, those advanced ways of thinking don’t always override old, incorrect ways of thinking—especially in the domain of mathematics. The study was published in a recent issue of the Journal of Cognition and Development.
Exploring employment opportunities in nonprofit and public sectors is the focus on the ninth annual Making a Living Making a Difference program, to be held Tuesday, April 5, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in Geddes Hall at the University of Notre Dame.
The University of Notre Dame Department of Film, Television, and Theatre will host the fifth annual Notre Dame Undergraduate Film and Television Conference (formerly the Midwest Undergraduate Film and Television Conference) April 1 and 2 (Friday and Saturday) in the Browning Cinema of the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center.
Laura Dassow Walls, a distinguished scholar of 19th century American literature and culture, will join the Notre Dame faculty in fall 2011 as the William P. and Hazel B. White Professor of English.
To experience the full power of the 17th-century English masterpiece Paradise Lost, Notre Dame students and faculty will read John Milton’s 10,000-line poem aloud in one sitting on Friday, April 1, from 8:30 a.m. to approximately 8 p.m. in 221 O’Shaughnessy Hall.
The University of Notre Dame Department of Film, Television and Theatre (FTT), in partnership with the Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival, will present William Shakespeare’s The Two Gentlemen of Verona April 5 to 10 (Tuesday to Sunday) in the Decio Mainstage Theatre of the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center.
Deb Rotman is in a race against time. Rotman, director of undergraduate studies for Notre Dame’s Department of Anthropology, is keenly aware that the generation of Irish immigrants who can still share memories of the Irish Civil War and their experiences in early 20th century America will soon be lost forever. “Those generations have some really great stories that we’re trying to capture, but we can only do so much,” she says.
The University of Notre Dame has suspended its international undergraduate program in Nagoya, Japan. In a letter to the two Notre Dame students participating in the Japanese study abroad program, the University’s Office of International Studies described the decision as “very difficult,” but that suspension was the most prudent course of action “due to the deteriorating environmental conditions in the areas around Tokyo and ongoing uncertainty about the stability of the nuclear power plant.”
For decades, many predicted that religion’s influence on global politics would decline. As modern society embraced democracy, globalization, and new technology, the supernatural would give way to science and free thought would trump dogma—or so the argument went. But a new book co-authored by Notre Dame political scientist Daniel Philpott shows the opposite to be true: Bolstered by the same forces many expected to diminish it, religion’s influence on politics has increased on almost every continent during the past 40 years.
Ninjas, mysterious dream worlds, and evil social-networking sites are among the themes that will play out on the big screen this weekend during the University of Notre Dame’s seventh annual Asian Film Festival and Conference. Presented by the Kellogg Institute for International Studies and the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center March 25-26, the festival will showcase five recent animated films from Japan, including two from internationally acclaimed director Satoshi Kon.
A growing number of Ph.D. students in the University of Notre Dame’s Department of Sociology are attracting attention for their research and publishing papers in leading peer-reviewed journals.
Notre Dame undergraduate Josef Kuhn has set out to show how the human struggles depicted in ancient Greek literature are just as pressing today as they were thousands of years ago. After studying Euripides’ well-known tragedy The Bacchae, the senior Program of Liberal Studies (PLS) major decided to write a novel based on the classic but set in modern times.
The Center for Social Concerns of the University of Notre Dame will host leading international scholars in the Catholic Social Tradition on campus for a Dear Brothers and Sisters Conference March 24 to 26 (Thursday to Saturday), to consider how 120 years of Catholic social teaching apply to the social issues of our world today. Issues to be discussed at the conference include globalization, immigration, racial justice, the environment and worker rights.
With the U.N. recently authorizing a no-fly zone over Libya, University of Notre Dame political scientist and international relations expert Michael Desch proposes a “limited liability intervention strategy” with the country.
A spring semester program for University of Notre Dame students in Tokyo, Japan has been canceled by Notre Dame’s Office of International Studies due to the situation following that country’s March 11 earthquake and tsunami and its subsequent nuclear crisis. The three students enrolled in the canceled program had been scheduled to leave for Japan March 27.
The University of Notre Dame’s Higgins Labor Studies Program recently released a report in response to the Indiana Chamber of Commerce’s position on right-to-work (RTW) legislation considered by the Indiana legislature. If passed, the legislation would prevent unions and employers from negotiating a requirement that employees pay their “fair share” for union costs such as collective bargaining and grievance representation.
Once viewed as a language of the poor and uneducated, and moribund for the last half of the 19th century, the Irish language has experienced a return to prominence – both internationally and at the University of Notre Dame.
Bridget O’Malley was just 11 years old in 1909 when she left her family in Ireland and sailed to Boston. She was the youngest passenger listed on the ship’s manifest, which included one striking detail: Bridget was traveling alone. Why would a parent send away an 11 year-old girl? Why was she alone? What kind of life awaited her in Boston? A new course at Notre Dame explores these questions and broader issues of emigration through the lens of an archeological anthropologist, a historian and a scholar of Irish language.
What must we change in order to help us bridge the gap between the world as it is, and the world as it should be? In its first year, the Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study (NDIAS)—inspired by the classical values of beauty, goodness and truth—began transforming the academic landscape through an annual conference, lecture series and fellowships.
According to The Art Bulletin’s recent centennial anthology, Kathleen Pyne’s 1996 article on Charles Freer is one of the top 32 essays “that made a difference to us as art historians and as people”—considered among the “greatest hits” since the journal’s debut.
Who are we? Why are we here? Why do we do what we do? What makes humans unique? These are the universal questions at the heart of an ambitious new initiative led by Notre Dame anthropologist Agustín Fuentes.
Felipe Fernández-Armesto, William P. Reynolds Professor of History at the University of Notre Dame, has been appointed the 2011 Cátedra Hispano-Británica Reina Victoria Eugenia at the Complutense University of Madrid. Named for Queen Victoria Eugenia, the daughter of Spanish King Alfonso XIII, the honor is awarded each year to a distinguished British professor in a different discipline.
Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame, has announced that the 2011–12 Notre Dame Forum will examine topics related to K–12 education.