From the Dean

Dear Colleagues,

The Lenfest Junior Faculty Development grants, the Italian Academy's Weinberg Fellowships, and the new Arts & Sciences Catalyst grants are among the opportunities with deadlines in April. More information on those is available below.

I also encourage you to explore the recently launched Digital Humanities portal, providing an overview of the many Digital Humanities projects at Columbia today.

Sharon Marcus
Dean of Humanities, Faculty of Arts and Sciences

Columbia Humanities News & Announcements
Rishi Goyal (ICLS)

Columbia University has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) for "Humanities Connections," a project proposed by the Department of Emergency Medicine and the Institute for Comparative Literature and Society and directed by Rishi Goyal. This project will develop curriculum for the ICLS undergraduate major, Medicine, Literature, and Society, an interdisciplinary major which lies at the intersection of humanities, medicine, and social sciences.
Ioannis Mylonopoulos (Art History and Archaeology)

"Explosive feelings, personal and political, [are] ... the subject of a strange and wonderful exhibition, 'A World of Emotions: Ancient Greece, 700 B.C.-200 A.D.,' at the Onassis Cultural Center New York in Midtown."

Read the full review of the show co-curated by Mylonopoulos, "A World of Emotions," at
Colm Tóibín (English and Comparative Literature)

During a recent short visit to at the University of Georgia as Delta Visiting Chair for the Willson Center for the Humanities and Arts, Colm Tóibín stopped by a high-needs, high-achieving high school to speak to a specially selected group of students.

Read about Tóibín's "somewhat extraordinary hour of high school on an otherwise ordinary day" at
Eileen Gillooly (English and Comparative Literature)

Eileen Gillooly spoke for the "Behind the Headlines" podcast series at Trinity College Dublin, on the effects that the Trump administration's policies on immigration and his proposed cuts to federal research funding are having on universities, and on the efforts universities are putting forth to resist his agenda.

Listen to the podcast now at
Alondra Nelson (IRWGS)

"The genetic ancestry experience was part of a lot of other experiences that African-Americans were having: in the criminal justice system, in clinical settings, and in genealogical settings. So, what people think about genetics is often drawing on all of these experiences simultaneously."

Nelson recently spoke to Genome about her latest book, The Social Life of DNA. Read the entire interview at
Hidetaka Hirota (Society of Fellows, 2013-16)

"While it is well known that Catholic Irish immigrants in the 19th century suffered bigotry of similar kinds, Irish American history has an even more direct connection to the current debate over immigration policy than many people might think."

Read Hirota's article on immigrant deportation policy and Irish-Americans in the 1840s at
Christia Mercer (Philosophy)

Christia Mercer gave the 54th Potter Memorial Lecture in Philosophy at Washington State University, speaking on "Criminal justice, mass incarceration, and the undermining of democracy."

More information on her lecture is available at
Martha C. Howell (IRWGS)

"I think Columbia should work harder to put women in leadership positions. I think ways that show how gender hierarchy plays out in life should be talked about more. The discussion of gender needs to be distributed throughout the curriculum rather than segregated in classes revolving around gender specifically."

To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the first graduation of a co-educational class at Columbia, Howell was interviewed about the progress women have made in academia and beyond. Read the entire interview at
Frances Negrón-Muntaner (English and Comparative Literature)

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has decided to preserve Brincando el charco: Portrait of a Puerto Rican (1994) by Frances Negrón-Muntaner and to begin the “Frances Negrón-Muntaner Collection."

Watch for upcoming news on her films' archives and preservation, including AIDS in the Barrio and War for Guam, later this year.
Kevin Fellezs (Music)

Kevin Fellezs's first book, Birds of Fire: Jazz, Rock, Funk, and the Creation of Fusion (Duke University Press, 2011) has just had its Chinese translation published by Central Conservatory of Music Press.
Nicholas Dames (English and Comparative Literature)

"A lesson emerged...namely that nothing, even the worst, was entirely new. Politics was a matter of taking the long view and enduring."

Dames writes about Grace Paley's acts of perseverance in "The Stubborn Optimist," in The Atlantic.
Teodolinda Barolini (Italian)

Teolinda Barolini co-organized the conference "De vulgari eloquentia: Dante's Laboratory of Vernacular Speech," held at both Columbia and NYU on April 7.

More information on the event is available at or at
Mariusz Kozak (Music)

Mariusz Kozak deploys a formalized analytical approach to Penderecki’s Threnody.

Read Kozak's “Experiencing Structure in Penderecki’s Threnody: Analysis, Ear Training, and Musical Understanding” in the Music Theory Spectrum.
Francisco Rosales Varo (Latin American and Iberian Cultures)

New this month, Campus Sur: Curso intensivo de español is Francisco Rosales Varo's latest textbook for universities teaching Spanish as a second language. Campus Sur was co-written with colleagues teaching in Germany, Belgium, and Spain.

Read more about Campus Sur here.
Humberto Ballesteros (Department of Italian)

Humberto Ballesteros's second novel, Juego de memoria, written in his native Spanish, was published this month by Tusquets Editores.

Juego de memoria is now available for purchase.
Mark Taylor (Religion)

Mark Taylor was interviewed for the Hidden Forces podcast, in a conversation that ranged from religion, to economics, to art, to technology.

Listen to "Postmodernism – Art, Finance, Technology and the Individual with Mark C. Taylor" at
Casey Blake (Center for American Studies)

"Today, colleges and universities have an obligation to educate students beyond their walls in civil discourse and our shared national arguments and traditions. Institutions of higher education should collectively commit to creating an informed citizenry by democratizing the Great Books and connecting our least-enfranchised citizens with the challenging, fraught, and majestic tradition of self-governance."

Read Blake's article, "Democratizing the Great Books," at

Columbia University Libraries and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences is proud to announce the launch of a new portal for Digital Humanities at Columbia University. The showcase highlights work in digital archives, exhibits, visualizations, maps, and algorithmic work related to the Humanities and the study of culture.

Explore the new Digital Humanities portal at
Upcoming Events
Despair is not a Political Strategy
Thursday, April 20, 4:00pm
Jerome Greene Annex

Leading Advocates Discuss Current Policy Campaigns to Protect New York's Most Vulnerable

All eyes have been on the chaos in Washington, and on the ways that the changing federal policy scene has affected or might affect immigrants, refugees, LGBT people, racial and ethnic minorities, and other vulnerable groups in the United States. In this panel, leading community organizers will describe current policy advocacy work in New York, focusing on specific legislative targets that could buffer the impact of the new administration’s agenda. At the conclusion of the formal panel, there will be time for discussion as well as opportunities for those in attendance to sign up to get involved with the work that these organizers are doing.

More information at

KATHARINE BODDE, Policy Counsel at the New York Civil Liberties Union
CHARLENE GOSSETT NAVARRO, Regional Outreach Manager at the New York Immigration Coalition
YUL SAN LIEM, Co-Director of The Justice Committee, a Voting Member Organization of the Communities United for Police Reform (CUPR)
JOSE SCHIFFINO, Long Island Popular Education Coordinator at the Rural & Migrant Ministry
PETE SIKORA, New York Communities for Change
Fellowships, Grants, & CFPs
The Italian Academy is pleased to announce the establishment of the Weinberg Fellowships in architectural history and preservation. These Fellowships will be devoted to the understanding and conservation of architecture in any geographic area and period.

Applications are encouraged from all countries; candidates must be at the post-doctoral or faculty level.

Deadline: April 17, 2017
More information is available at
The spring cycle of the Lenfest Junior Faculty Development Grant program is currently accepting applications. Awards will be made ranging from $1,000 - $15,000. Associate and assistant professors on the tenure-track, who have not yet received tenure, and who are not being reviewed for tenure in the current academic year, are eligible to apply.

Deadline: April 17, 2017
More information is available here.
The Office of the Provost will continue to support open online courses taught by Columbia faculty via a Request for Proposals for Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). Columbia courses offered through MOOC platforms attract and reach a large global learning community, stimulate curiosity and intellectual exploration, make teaching and research activities at the University more visible, and promote public engagement and dialogue through our open online courses.

Deadline: Monday, April 24, 2017
For more information, please click here.
Visit and to get an overview of Columbia’s initiatives and resources in teaching and learning and online education.
The Arts & Sciences seeks faculty proposals for A&S Catalyst Grants. The goal is to accelerate nascent projects that have the potential to have significant societal impact in a three- to five-year timeframe. Projects should build on significant Columbia intellectual strengths and engage partners such as NGO’s, corporations, and/or colleagues at other academic institutions. This funding aims to maturate projects via organization of scholarly events and discourse during a concentrated period. By the end of the funded period, the project should be in a strong position to attract significant funding from foundations or philanthropists, and possibly be considered for the Columbia World Projects initiative.

Nomination Deadline: April 30, 2017
For more information, please click here.
The Berggruen Institute seeks to identify and nurture new ideas that have the potential to shape a better human future. We are committed to science as a source of knowledge and innovation and to philosophy as a source of critical perspective and deeper understanding of the place and role of humanity in the world. The Berggruen Prize is a $1 million award that recognizes humanistic thinkers whose ideas have both intellectual depth and long-term social and practical value across nations and cultures.

Nomination Deadline: July 14, 2017
For more information, please click here.
Do you have news to share with the Columbia Humanities community? Email
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