IHGC to Hold Spring Symposium for Mellon Fellows

February 25, 2016

The Institute of the Humanities and Global Culture (IHGC) is holding a symposium of the 2016 Mellon Humanities Fellows. Five faculty members from Arts & Sciences were selected as the first group of a fellowship program in December 2015, which provides funds for research and course development as well as some release from teaching responsibilities. The spring symposium is an opportunity to hear four of the fellows to present their research.

It will be held in New Cabell Hall 236 from 9:30am-12:30pm on Friday, March 4. The program is:

A luncheon will follow the program, at 12:30. Please RSVP to Anne Gilliam (434-924-2157, agilliam at virginia.edu).

Denise Walsh focuses on how liberal democracies can become more inclusive and just. Her current book project, Nationalizing Rights, is a comparative study of minority rights and women's rights in Europe, Canada and South Africa. She argues that politicians in liberal democracies undermine the promise of rights by repurposing them for the nation. She uses grounded theory and discourse analysis to compare three policy controversies involving minority rights and women’s rights: polygamy in South Africa, indigenous women’s expulsion from the reservation in Canada, and the face veil ban in France. Her first book, Women’s Rights in Democratizing States (Cambridge University Press, 2010), explains how democratic institutions obstruct advances in women’s rights. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the Collegio Carlo Alberto in Italy, the Dickey Center for International Understanding at Dartmouth College, and the University of Virginia.

Nichole M. Flores is examining the contributions of Catholic and U.S. Latino/a theologies to notions of justice, emotion, and aesthetics as they relate to the common good within plural socio-political contexts. Her work in practical ethics addresses issues of migration, labor, consumption, race and ethnicity, family, and politics. She is currently completing a book manuscript on the relationship between religious aesthetics and social justice with special attention to performances inspired by the Virgin of Guadalupe. In 2015, she was awarded the Catherine Mowry LaCugna Prize for best essay in academic theology from the Catholic Theological Society of America. She earned her Ph.D. in theological ethics from Boston College.

Lawrie Balfour is a political theorist whose research and teaching focus on race, democracy, and literature. She is the author of Democracy’s Reconstruction: Thinking Politically with W. E. B. Du Bois and The Evidence of Things Not Said: James Baldwin and the Promise of American Democracy. During the fellowship period she is working to complete her book manuscript on reparations for slavery and its legacies in the U.S. Entitled Reparations: A Democratic Idea, the book draws on black political thought and on the examples of reparative efforts around the globe to develop an account of reparations as a political language that reconceives the time of politics and the prerequisites for a more fully realized multiracial democracy.

Nomi Dave's research examines music and aesthetic practices in authoritarian and post-authoritarian regimes, with a focus on Guinea and francophone West Africa. She is currently completing a book manuscript exploring the relationship between music, politics and pleasure in Guinea. She has a DPhil from the University of Oxford (2012), where she studied music and social anthropology. Before coming to UVA, she taught at Duke University, where she was Visiting Assistant Professor in the Departments of Music and Cultural Anthropology.