Visiting Faculty Fellows
The Visiting Faculty Fellows program is intended to extend the practice of humanities research and education philosophically grounded at the undergraduate level into liberal arts colleges and Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Duke, as a research hub, can offer its research opportunities to faculty from these institutions and by extension have its impact on their undergraduates even as we can learn from the knowledge and world-views generated at these other institutions. This element of the HWL grant realizes the Mellon Foundation’s desire to reframe humanities as an engine for new knowledge production and to multiply the benefits of the Humanities Writ Large initiative at Duke.
2014-15 Visiting Faculty Fellows
The Humanities Writ Large Steering Committee has selected five Visiting Faculty Fellows for the 2014-15 academic year. They are:
- Frank Graziano, John D. McArthur Professor of Hispanic Studies / Connecticut College
- Stephen G. Hall, Assistant Professor of History / Alcorn State University
- Bruce Matthews, Professor of Philosophy / Bard High School Early College
- Norman Sandridge, Associate Professor of Classics / Howard University
- Kimberly Stern, Assistant Professor of English and Modern Languages / Longwood University
Professor Graziano will be based in the Department of Religious Studies, where he will collaborate with David Morgan, and will also work with Noah Pickus and Suzanne Shanahan of the Kenan Institute for Ethics. He will be completing Miraculous Images and Votive Offerings in Mexico, a book under contract with Oxford University Press that will have a companion website. His collaborations center on the development of colloquia on “Economies of the Sacred” — which will focus on the material culture of religion and its role in understanding the operation of religions as sacred economies — and on “Christianity and Global Migration” — which will focus on the move of Latin American Catholics to the United States and of African Evangelicals and Pentecostals to western Europe.
Professor Hall will be based in the History Department, and will work closely with Adriane Lentz-Smith on his current book project, “Global Visions: African American Historians Write About the World, 1885-1960,” which explores historical writing about and activism concerning the Diaspora among African American historians. His work aligns with the History department’s focus on the transnational visions and processes that shape everyday lives within and across boundaries. His tenure at Duke also will coincide with Professor Lentz-Smith's first semester teaching a signature course, “Race: A World History.”
Professor Matthews seeks to cultivate in his students the skills and habits of humanistic inquiry needed to integrate the different fields and disciplines encountered in higher education. While at Duke he will work with Michael Gillespie, Professor of Political Science and Philosophy, participating in his Intellectual History Seminar and his political philosophy group. He also plans to participate in a new course under development by Thomas Pfau of English and Reinhard Hütter of the Divinity School, “The University: what it is, and why it matters,” that addresses the very theme of his research activity. His primary research activity will be to translate Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling’s seminal lectures on "The Method of Academic Studies" (1802), in which he argues that freedom of inquiry is the absolute value defining the modern university and provides an historical model and a theoretical justification for integrative learning.
Professor Sandridge will be based in Classical Studies, where he will continue his scholarly commentary on cross-cultural interactions between Greece and Persia. In addition, he will work with Professor Joshua Sosin to improve Cyrus’ Paradise, a collaborative online commentary to Xenophon’s Education of Cyrus, a Greek text (c. 365 BCE) about the first king of the Persian Empire, Cyrus the Great (c. 600-529 BCE). Teaching with this text is challenging as it requires expertise in disciplines not commonly mastered by a single scholar: fourth-century Athenian philosophical prose, political science, Greek historiography, narratology, Achaemenid Persia, and Iranian folklore. The collaborative creation of Cyrus’ Paradise draws in these various domains. To date three institutions—Illinois-Wesleyan, Cornell College, Rhodes College—have successfully used the site as a third-semester Greek textbook. Professor Sandridge is planning for its use at Howard University in the newly configured Ancient Mediterranean Studies department.
Professor Stern will be based in Theater Studies. She is currently at work on a book entitled Lessons of the Aesthete: Liberal Education and the Pedagogical Style of Oscar Wilde. Since one of her central claims is that Wilde advocates a sort of "learning by doing," she seeks to learn to think as Wilde did—as a dramatist. She also hopes to develop a multimodal and interactive learning resource that could serve as a hub for students and scholars researching the work of Oscar Wilde. Unlike existing online resources, this project would focus exclusively on the work of Wilde, compiling annotated electronic texts, as well as other relevant primary and secondary source material on his life, work, contemporaries, context, and cultural significance.