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Princeton Weekly Bulletin   September 25, 2006, Vol. 96, No. 3   prev   next   current

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  • Editor: Ruth Stevens

    Calendar editor: Carolyn Geller

    Staff writers: Jennifer Greenstein Altmann, Eric Quiñones

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Humanities Council lines up roster of distinguished visitors

Princeton NJ — From Academy Award-winning actress Meryl Streep to an eminent Austrian filmmaker and from a leading scholar in American Indian beliefs to the Washington bureau chief of Time magazine — the guests brought to campus this year from the Council of the Humanities will represent a wide range of fields and interests.

The council, founded in 1953 to foster teaching, research and intellectual exchange, will bring more than 30 scholars to Princeton during 2006-07. Sixteen of the visitors will spend a semester or more at the University, while the others will come for intensive shorter periods of lectures, seminars and colloquia.

The public is invited to talks by these visitors, which are announced in the Humanities Council’s calendar at <> and in the Princeton Weekly Bulletin.

Long-term visiting fellows

These fellows generally spend a semester at Princeton teaching courses.

Ann Banfield, professor of English and French studies at the University of California-Berkeley, brings modern linguistic analysis to bear on literary texts. She is an Old Dominion Fellow in Comparative Literature in the fall.

Annette Becker, professor of modern history at the University of Paris X-Nanterre, will be a Class of 1932 Fellow in History during the fall term. A scholar of World War I, she has written six pioneering books on the subject.

Simon Goldhill studies literature beginning with the archaic and Classical Greek periods and extending through to the Renaissance and onward. A professor of Greek at King’s College, Cambridge, he will be an Old Dominion Fellow in Classics in the spring.

Paul Kalligas of the University of Athens is a philosopher and world expert on Plotinus. As an Old Dominion Fellow in Classical Philosophy, he will teach a spring-term seminar on Plotinus’ “Theory of the Soul.”

Peter Kubelka, an eminent Austrian filmmaker, has influenced European avant-garde cinema with his films, which have been described as “brilliant, profound and breathtaking.” An Old Dominion Fellow in Visual Arts this fall, he is offering a course on cinema and the related arts.

Abelardo Morell is known for his original “camera obscura” approach to photography. His work has been exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, the Corcoran Gallery and countless other museums. Visiting in the spring from the Massachusetts College of Art, he is a Class of 1932 Fellow in Visual Arts.

Peter Nabokov is a leading scholar in American Indian beliefs and practices. An anthropologist at the University of California-Los Angeles, he has written about mythic thought and its relation to Pueblo architecture. As a Stewart Fellow this fall, he is teaching an anthropology course on religion, history and environment in native America.

Short-term visiting fellows

During intensive three-day periods, these fellows lecture and participate in classes, colloquia and informal discussions. Three are designated Whitney J. Oates Fellows (*) in honor of the distinguished classicist and founder of the Humanities Council.

Jonathan Crary* investigates how human beings have been progressively transformed by machines, by mass-cultural spectacle and, more recently, by information technologies. A professor of modern art and theory at Columbia University, he will be hosted in the spring by the Department of Art and Archeaology and the Program in Media and Modernity.

Francesco d’Errico of the University of Bordeaux studies the prehistoric origins of the artistic and imaginative traits that make us human. As a Fellow in Anthropology in April, he will examine some of the earliest cave drawings and reflect on how they emerged.

Hans Magnus Enzensberger*, a German poet and essayist, is said to possess an almost uncanny gift of sensing aesthetic, political and social changes before his contemporaries. Since World War II, he has been a catalyst for change in German intellectual and literary history. He will be a Fellow in German in April.

Alexander Kluge, a German writer, theorist, filmmaker and television pioneer, was one of the founders of the “New German Cinema.” His visit to the German department will inaugurate the Kluge film archive at Princeton.

Jean-Luc Marion of the University of Chicago is a philosopher, theologian and scholar of Descartes. The author of more than 20 books, including “God Without Being,” he is a Stewart Fellow in September, hosted by the philosophy department.

Yvonne Rainer* is a dancer who began to integrate short films into her live performances. She later went on to win acclaim for six feature-length films. She will be a guest of the Program in Visual Arts in April, working closely with the Program in Theater and Dance.

David Shields holds joint appointments in English and history at the University of South Carolina. An expert on early American literature and book history, he also studies the visual culture of America’s pre-1930 entertainment industry. He will visit the English department in October.

David Shulman, professor of Indian studies and comparative religion at Hebrew University, will be a Stewart Fellow in February. Known for his analyses and translations of South Indian devotional texts, he will be a guest of the anthropology department.

Vanessa Tran is an artist whose work is informed by her Vietnamese heritage and her love of Chinese painting and landscape poetry. Hosted jointly by the Program in Visual Arts and the Tang Center for East Asian Art, she will lead a series of workshops for student artists in the fall.

Hodder Fellows

Recipients of this fellowship are humanists of exceptional promise who spend a year in Princeton pursuing independent projects.

Gabe Hudson won an American Academy of Arts and Letters fiction prize for his novel, “Dear Mr. President,” which was also a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award. He is teaching a fiction course and completing a second novel.

Dan O’Brien has twice been Tennessee Williams Fellow in Playwriting at Sewanee. A winner of the American Theatre Critics Association’s Osborn Award, he is teaching a playwriting course and working on two plays.

David Orr, a member of Princeton’s class of 1996, is the recipient of a 2004 National Book Critics Circle Citation for Excellence in Reviewing. He is a poetry columnist and regular reviewer for The New York Times Book Review. At Princeton, he is advising students and writing a book about contemporary poetry.

Visiting professors of journalism

Each year eminent journalists teach at Princeton, joining a roster that includes many of America’s most distinguished writers.

Walt Bogdanich is an investigative reporter for The New York Times and the recipient of two Pulitzer Prizes and four George Polk awards. As a Ferris Professor in the spring, he will examine the barriers investigative journalists must overcome to expose corporate misconduct that cheats or endangers the public.

Lisa Cohen, a former producer for “60 Minutes” and “PrimeTime Live,” will teach a spring-term Ferris seminar on “Inside Television News.” The recipient of Emmy awards and other honors, she currently is writing a book about the disappearance of a young boy, Etan Patz.

Barbara Demick, foreign correspondent and Seoul bureau chief for The Los Angeles Times, has received three awards for international reporting. She is a Ferris Professor this fall, leading a seminar on “Societies Under Siege: Reporting From Sarajevo to Baghdad to Pyongyang.”

Michael Duffy, Washington bureau chief for Time magazine, has covered presidents, Congress, elections and politics for the past 15 years. He is the recipient, with two colleagues, of the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting. This fall he is team-teaching a Ferris seminar with Nancy Gibbs (see below).

Mark Feeney, Boston Globe feature writer and photography reviewer, also has edited the Globe’s weekly news analysis and commentary section as well as the book review. As a Robbins Professor in the spring, he will teach “The Literature of Fact.”

Nancy Gibbs, Time magazine editor-at-large, has written many of the cover stories for major events, including 9/11, elections, Columbine and the space shuttle explosion. This fall, she and Michael Duffy are team-teaching a seminar about America’s divided political culture titled “Red Truth, Blue Truth.”

• Julia Keller, Chicago Tribune cultural critic, won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for feature writing. As a McGraw Professor of Writing this fall, she is teaching “The Journalism of Ideas,” in which students learn to infuse ideas into traditional storytelling.

Greil Marcus has been writing for Rolling Stone since 1968. A repository of knowledge about music, from rock ’n’ roll to country western, he is the author of more than 10 books, including “Double Trouble: Bill Clinton and Elvis Presley in a Land of No Alternatives.” As a Ferris Professor in the fall, he is teaching a seminar on “Writing About Culture.”

Martha Mendoza of the Associated Press won the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting for her coverage of a decades-old secret about American soldiers who killed civilians at the No Gun Ri bridge early in the Korean War. As a Ferris Professor in the spring, she will teach “Writing About Social Justice.”

• T.R. Reid of the Washington Post has been a correspondent in Washington, Japan and London. A member of Princeton’s class of 1966 and a regular commentator on National Public Radio’s “Morning Edition,” he is the author of five books, including “The United States of Europe.” His fall-term Ferris seminar is titled “Breaking the Code: How to Extract the Truth From the News Media.”

Rose Tang has been a correspondent, columnist, business writer, radio news reporter, CNN Hong Kong producer and senior reporter for the Hong Kong Standard. She is now writing about the “hidden side of Chinese society” — the unprecedented grass-roots movement in which ordinary Chinese citizens participate in news gathering. Her spring-term Ferris seminar focuses on the development of the Chinese news media.

Belknap Visitor in the Humanities

Named in honor of Chauncey Belknap ’12, this program sponsors visitors for one or two days at Princeton.

Meryl Streep, the Academy Award-winning actress, will be the Belknap Visitor in the Humanities on Thursday, Nov. 30, sharing her reflections on acting, film, theater and show business. Streep has appeared in nearly 60 films, including: “Kramer vs. Kramer” (1979), “The French Lieutenant’s Woman” (1981), “Sophie’s Choice” (1982), “Out of Africa” (1985), “Postcards From the Edge” (1990), “One True Thing” (1998), “The Hours” (2002) and “The Manchurian Candidate” (2004). Two of her most recent films are “The Devil Wears Prada” and “A Prairie Home Companion,” both released in 2006.


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