Letters



Fall 2006, Vol. 15, No. 1 (requires Adobe Acrobat)

2006/2007 Graduate Student Fellows

This year, the Warren Center is sponsoring its inaugural year-long interdisciplinary Graduate Student Fellows Program. Graduate student participants are chosen through a rigorous selection process for the six dissertation completion fellowships. The fellowship provides a generous stipend as well as a research fund for the students who will complete the dissertation during the academic year in which support is awarded. Students are freed from teaching and other departmental obligations, and they are not allowed to hold any other form of employment during the term of the fellowship. Based on a successful pilot program run during each of the last four summers, the Graduate Student Fellows will meet in weekly seminars at the Warren Center, giving presentations of their work to the seminar and discussing texts of common interest. The Warren Center will also arrange for a number of visiting speakers to meet with the seminar during the year to provide opportunities for discussion of issues pertinent to the scholarly life, such as the art of writing, successful strategies for publication, funding opportunities, grant writing, and workshops on delivering academic presentations.

Below are brief descriptions of the 2006/2007 Warren Center Graduate Student Fellows.

LISA BATTAGLIA is a doctoral candidate in the History and Critical Theories of Religion (HACTOR) program in the department of religion. Her dissertation, “Women Who Have Gone Forth: Gender and Religious Identity among Buddhist Nuns in Thailand,” focuses on the debate surrounding the establishment of a Theravada Buddhist Nuns’ Order in Thailand and women’s constructions of religious identities despite their exclusion from formal ordination and recognition within the Buddhist institution.

TIM BOYD is a doctoral candidate in history. He is currently completing his dissertation, “‘Out of the Shadow’: Southern Democrats and the Civil Rights Movement, 1946-1976,” which explores the impact of the civil rights movement on the state Democratic parties in the southern United States. He is particularly interested in the way that southern progressives in the 1940s attempted to reshape the Democrats in their states, and thereby paved the way for the emergence of the “New South” Democrats of the 1970s.

CAROLA DAFFNER is a doctoral candidate in German. Her dissertation, titled “Spaces of Provocation: Jewish Topographies in the Works of Gertrud Kolmar,” explores the topographies of Gertrud Kolmar’s poetry. Daffner’s work is influenced by theories of space that emphasize its sociological, political, and collective nature, and she focuses on Kolmar’s re-workings of contemporary spatial images that attempt to define, confront, or manipulate the Jewish self and the predominant idea of “Jewish space” as it was described in the works of contemporary Jewish intellectuals.

BRIAN RABINOVITZ, a doctoral candidate in philosophy, works on the relationship between differing conceptions of experience and rationality, and on the possibility for social and political criticism. His dissertation, titled “Experience and Criticism after Pragmatism and Critical Theory,” explores the relationship between the concepts of experience, rationality, and criticism in the work of American philosopher John Dewey and German philosopher Theodor Adorno.

LEEANN REYNOLDS is a doctoral candidate in history. She specializes in twentieth-century United States history and the history of the south; much of her research has focused on popular portrayals of the south. Reynolds’s dissertation, titled “Red and Yellow, Black and White: Maintaining Segregation, 1920-1955,” examines how black and white southern young people learned about segregation in the period from 1920 to 1955. She is particularly interested in what those lessons reveal about the maintenance of the segregated system during this period.

DAVID F. RICHTER is a doctoral candidate in Spanish. His dissertation, titled “Margins of Poetry: Performing the Formless in the Spanish Avant-Garde,” examines the “surrealist” period of Federico García Lorca’s late poetic and dramatic texts. While surrealism in Spain is problematic considering many of the Spanish poets’ explicit rejections of André Breton’s model of automatism, Richter argues that the theoretical stances concerning art and ethnography as expounded by Georges Bataille in the journal Documents reveal motifs that capture the sense of the avant-garde aesthetic in Spain.


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For more information, contact the Center's executive director, Mona C. Frederick.


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