25 IU faculty from five campuses earn New Frontiers in Arts and Humanities grants

IU Vice President for Research Jorge José | Photo by Indiana UniversityOn the heels of President Michael A. McRobbie’s announcement as part of Indiana University’s Bicentennial Strategic Plan of continued funding for the New Frontiers in the Arts and Humanities program, Vice President for Research Jorge José has named 25 more faculty members to receive New Frontiers grants.

Considered one of the largest internally funded university arts and humanities programs supporting scholarship and creative activity, the New Frontiers program has awarded more than $9.3 million to 451 faculty members in the past 10 years.

The new five-year extension was the second made by McRobbie after the Lilly Endowment’s Excellence in Indiana Initiative funded an initial five years beginning in 2004-05. This latest round of awards provides up to $50,000 each in Creativity and Scholarship Awards to 19 faculty members from four campuses and up to $15,000 each in Experimental Fellowship Awards for six faculty members from three campuses.

New Frontiers has helped define IU’s commitment to support innovative and creative scholarship with the potential for transformative achievement, McRobbie noted.

“New Frontiers has repeatedly fostered exciting new opportunities for our faculty by integrating the arts, scholarship and creativity, and empowering that relationship with a strong commitment of support,” he said. “This program has allowed our faculty to expand the breadth and depth of their research and creative activity and led to the development of innovative works across a wide range of disciplines. In doing so, it has guaranteed that IU’s longstanding tradition of excellence in the arts and humanities continues to thrive and enrich our quality of life.”

José said continued support of the program validates IU’s commitment to the arts and humanities as a sustaining stakeholder in IU’s mission set down in the Bicentennial Strategic Plan.

“The New Frontiers program, which is unique among major research universities, fosters and strengthens the university’s commitment to transformative innovation, outstanding scholarship, and creative and intellectual achievement,” José said. “More broadly, New Frontiers helps demonstrate the importance of the arts and humanities in contemporary life and is truly a signature program for the university.”

In addition to these grant programs, New Frontiers also supports outstanding and topical scholarly symposia through the New Currents program, and faculty travel for research and creative activity through the Exploratory Travel Fellowship program.

Jean Robertson, the Chancellor’s Professor of Art History at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis’ Herron School of Art and Design, has been a New Frontiers grant recipient and later a member of the IU faculty panel that reviews new grant applications. She said receipt of the award provided her the support, motivation and freedom to attain new levels of academic achievement.

“Beyond the practical benefits, New Frontiers funding has given me moral support and strong motivation. I want to justify the confidence Indiana University has expressed in me, thus I aim even higher than I would on my own,” she said. “I don’t know of another university in the country that provides such generous financial support for faculty who specialize in arts and humanities disciplines, and the sheer volume of research that IU faculty members have been able to accomplish as the outcomes of New Frontiers grants is jaw dropping.”

Recipients of 2014-15 New Frontiers grants are:

New Frontiers of Creativity and Scholarship

  • Heather Blair, Department of Religious Studies, IU Bloomington, “The Gods Make You Giggle: Finding Religion in Japanese Children’s Picture Books”
  • Purnima Bose, Department of English, IU Bloomington, “Intervention Narratives: Afghanistan, the United States, and the War on Terror”
  • Judith Brown, Department of English, IU Bloomington, “Passive States: India and Global Modernism”
  • Maria Bucur-Deckard, Department of History, IU Bloomington, “The Century of Women”
  • Konstantin Dierks, Department of History, IU Bloomington, “Globalization of the United States, 1789-1861: An Interactive Digital Atlas”
  • Jeffrey Gould, Department of History, IU Bloomington, “Port Triumph”
  • Patricia Ingham, Department of English, IU Bloomington, “A Cultural History of Curiosity: Part 1, Monkey Business”
  • Sarah Knott, Department of History, IU Bloomington, “Mother: the past in our present”
  • Elizabeth Kryder-Reid, Department of Anthropology, IUPUI, “An Investigation of Stakeholder-Defined Value at Two Contested Cultural Heritage Sites in Indiana”
  • C. Thomas Lewis, Department of Human-Centered Computing, IUPUI, “Participatory Filmmaking Confronting HIV Stigma”
  • Eden Medina, School of Informatics and Computing, IU Bloomington, “How Data Become Law: Computer-Mediated Evidence in Cases of Human Rights Violations”
  • Jonathan Rossing, Department of Communication Studies, IUPUI, “Humor, Race, and Rhetorical Agency in Post-apartheid South Africa”
  • Kelly Alisa Ryan, Department of History, IU Southeast, “Violence, Self Presentation and Power”
  • R. Matthew Shockey, Department of Philosophy, IU South Bend, “The Bounds of Self: An Essay on Heidegger’s ‘Being and Time'”
  • Ruth Stone, Department of Folklore and Ethnomusicology, IU Bloomington, “Ebola in Town: Critical Musical Connections in Liberian Communities during the 2014 Ebola Crisis in West Africa”
  • Alberto Varon, Department of English, IU Bloomington, “Textual Citizens: Literary Manhood and the Making of Mexican Americans, 1848-1959”
  • John Walsh, Department of Information and Library Science, IU Bloomington, “CoBRA: Comic Book Readership Archive”
  • Brenda Weber, Department of Gender Studies, IU Bloomington, “Gendered Modernity and Mediated Mormonism”
  • Gregory Witkowski, Lilly Family School of Philanthropic Studies, IUPUI, “Donors in a Dictatorship”

New Frontiers Experimentation Fellowships

  • Jim Ansaldo, Indiana Institute on Disability and Community, IU Bloomington, “Exploring the Impact of Improv Classes for Teens on the Autism Spectrum”
  • Lesley Baker, Herron School of Art and Design, IUPUI, “Digital Clay — Extrapolation”
  • Andrew Hopson, Department of Theatre, Drama and Contemporary Dance, IU Bloomington, “Using Motion Tracking to Control Audio Playback”
  • Gregory Schrempp, Department of Folklore and Ethnomusicology, IU Bloomington, “Science the Second Time Around”
  • Susan Skoczen, Department of Humanities, IU Kokomo, “Electroformed Metal Mesh as New Material in the Creation of Wearables”
  • Rachel Wheeler, Department of Religious Studies, IUPUI, “Songs of the Spirit: Building Bridges between Eighteenth and Twenty-first Century Mohican Music”

Donut Anthropologist Answers All of Your Burning Donut Questions

Paul Mullins 1

June 6 was National Doughnut Day, the day when Krispy Kreme gives away donuts, and artisan shops debut a new wacky creation like “zombie donuts” with cheddar larvae. Time Magazine interviewed Dr. Paul R. Mullins, Chair of the Department of Anthropology at Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis, and author of Glazed America: A History of the Doughnut, which explores the pastry as a way to look at the evolution of American consumer culture.

“In pop culture, the donut symbolism begins and ends with Homer Simpson. I suspect he made consumers more receptive to eating donuts because he does what we want to do — owns up to his bodily desires and doesn’t care if he’s carrying a little extra luggage in the center. But we’ve been disciplined to look at donuts as being bad foods, and Homer almost makes them not seem so bad,” Mullins explained.

For more of the interview, read the article here.


Lecture: Nicholas Rattray, “Altered Bodies and Relocated Dreams: Understanding reintegration and care for student veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan”

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013
12:00-1:00 pm
Campus Center 309
Nicholas Rattray, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor, IUPUI Department of Anthropology
Presented by Medical Humanities and Health Studies Seminar Series
“Altered Bodies and Relocated Dreams: Understanding reintegration and care for student veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan”

This talk will explore issues of community reintegration for student veterans whose bodies have been altered by psychological and physical injuries. Drawing on long-term ethnographic research, I discuss the tensions that lie behind labels such as “reintegrated,” “disaffected,” and “disabled” and how they are negotiated in veterans’ everyday lives. In seeking to manage new embodiments and the tensions between care and the cultural dislocations of military service, many veterans have been forced to create new pathways that diverge from their prior plans — dreams both deferred and transformed.

Free and open to the campus and public, but space is limited. Please RSVP to: medhum@iupui.edu to save a spot.