2010–2011 News in Medieval and Early Modern Studies

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Visit the web site for “From the Renaissance to the Modern World: A Symposium in Honor of John Headley,” November 11 & 12, 2011.

Read the Summer 2011 MEMS Newsletter!

Pilgrimage in the Middle Ages: A Reader

(University of Toronto Press, 2011)

The source documents selected by Brett Whalen (History) illustrate the far-reaching significance and consequences of pilgrimage for medieval culture, society, economics, politics, and spirituality. Pilgrimages inspired and shaped the experiences of commoners and nobles, men and women, clergy and laity for over one thousand years; this collection focuses on sites within Europe and beyond its borders—including the holy places of Jerusalem—with documents that shed light upon Eastern Christian, Jewish, and Islamic pilgrimages to offer a window onto broader trends, shifts, and transformations in the Middle Ages.

Robert Babcock (Classics) was awarded a fellowship by the Belgian affiliate of the European Institutes of Advanced Studies (EURIAS) to spend May and June in 2011 and 2012 at the  Flemish Academic Center in Brussels, researching manuscripts from the Abbey of Gembloux. He just returned from the first stint in Brussels.

Brett Whalen (History) has been awarded one of the University’s highly competitive “Phillip and Ruth Hettleman Prizes for Artistic and Scholarly Achievement by Young Faculty.” The Hettleman Prize, which carries a $5,000 stipend, recognizes the achievements of outstanding junior tenure-track faculty or recently tenured faculty. This is an important recognition of Brett’s achievements in the field of medieval European history and his ability to communicate with diverse audiences within and beyond the University. He will be presenting a paper on his work at a public event in the coming year. Read more in the University Gazette.

Nelson at hooding

Alan Nelson (Philosophy) recently was honored with the University’s 2011 Distinguished Teaching Award for Post-Baccalaureate Instruction.


Among the recipients of 2001 University Teaching Awards were MEMS faculty members Dino Cervigni (Romance Languages and Literatures), Board of Governors’ Award for Excellence in Teaching; Todd Ochoa (Religious Studies), Johnston Teaching Excellence Award; Geoffrey Sayre-McCord (Philosophy), Tanner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate TeachingAlan Nelson (Philosophy), Excellence in Graduate Mentoring.

Morgan Pitelka (Asian Studies) has been awarded a 2011–2012 National Humanities Center Fellowship for his project, “Sixteenth-Century Losers: A History of Daily Life and Destruction in Ichijodani, Japan.”

Melissa Bullard (History) was selected to attend a four-week NEH seminar,The Early American Republic and the Problem of Governance,” in conjunction with her Atlantic Renaissance project. She has also received an Institute for the Arts and Humanities Fellowship and a MEMS Faculty Research Leave Fellowship for the academic year 2011–2012.

Barbarians and Brothers: Anglo-American Warfare, 1500–1865

(Oxford University Press, 2011)

The most important conflicts in the founding of the English colonies and the American republic were fought against enemies either totally outside of their society or within it: barbarians or brothers. Wayne E. Lee (History) presents a searching exploration of early modern English and American warfare, looking at the sixteenth-century wars in Ireland, the English Civil War, the colonial Anglo-Indian wars, the American Revolution, and the American Civil War.

Into the Archive: Writing and Power in Colonial Peru

(Duke University Press, 2011)

Kathryn Burns (History) argues in her new book that the archive itself must be historicized. Writing has long been linked to power. For early modern people on both sides of the Atlantic, writing was also the province of notaries, men trained to cast other people’s words in official forms and make them legally true. In this inside story of the early modern archive, Burns offers a wealth of possibilities for seeing sources in fresh perspective.

Richard Talbert (History) has received an “honorable mention” in the competition for the American Publishers Awards for Professional and Scholarly Excellence. Talbert’s book, Rome’s World: The Peutinger Map Reconsidered (Cambridge University Press), was recognized among the top three books published last year in the field of Classics and Ancient History.

Empires and Indigenes: Intercultural Alliance, Imperial Expansion, and Warfare in the Early Modern World

(NYU Press, 2011)

Edited by Wayne E. Lee (History), Empires and Indigenes is a sweeping examination of how intercultural interactions between Europeans and indigenous people influenced military choices and strategic action. Ranging from the Muscovites on the western steppe to the French and English in North America, it analyzes how diplomatic and military systems were designed to accommodate the demands and expectations of local peoples, who aided the imperial powers even as they often became subordinated to them.