CONTACT: MARY GERAGHTY
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0011; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Dec. 17, 1999
Three UI professors win NEH fellowships
IOWA CITY, Iowa Three University of Iowa professors won research
fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) in its latest
round of grants. Paula A. Michaels and Michel Gobat, both assistant professors
of history, and Janet G. Altman, professor of French and Italian, have each
been awarded $30,000 fellowships to carry out research projects.
Michaels will work on a book, "Curative Powers: Medicine and Empire
in Soviet Kazakhstan." Her book explores the political, social, and cultural
meanings of the Communist party's and Soviet state's campaign to expand the
health-care system in the Central Asian republic of Kazakhstan from the October
Revolution through the death of Joseph Stalin. The book will reconstruct how
the Soviet state harnessed medicine to extend its imperial power.
Gobat will build on his dissertation research to complete a book, "Against
the Bourgeois Spirit: The Nicaraguan Elite under U.S. Imperialism, 1910-1934,"
which details how the U.S. occupation of Nicaragua transformed the power and
identity of the country's elite. In addition to writing and revising his manuscript,
Gobat will spend two months in Nicaragua collecting additional source material.
Altman will work on a project titled, "Letter Books in France, 1539-1900:
The Cultural History of a Genre," which studies the little-known role
that writers' correspondences and letter manuals played in the formation of
individual and collective identity in France. From 1539-1900, published letter
collections were an important genre in elite culture, schools, and popular
literature, whether they were used as models of artistry, rhetoric, pragmatics,
or basic literacy. Altman will use her fellowship to return to archives in
Europe and the U.S. whose holdings are key for this study and to write chapters
for a book on this topic.
These three fellowships were among more than $9.7 million in grants and
fellowships the NEH awarded to 172 scholars and 14 colleges and universities.