In December of 2019 Harvard University Press released Professor Sharon T. Strocchia‘s newest book, Forgotten Healers: Women and the Pursuit of Health in Late Renaissance Italy. The monograph recovers the pivotal roles that women played in providing health care in Renaissance Italy and, in doing so, uncovers their role in the transformation of early modern medicine and medical science. Sheila Barker, director at the Medici Archive Project, writes that Strocchia’s work “makes a vital contribution to the history of medicine, gender studies, and Renaissance studies.” Strocchia’s previous monographs were Death and Ritual in Renaissance Florence (Johns Hopkins UP, 1992) and Nuns and Nunneries in Renaissance Florence (Johns Hopkins UP, 2009), which was awarded the 2010 Marraro Prize by the American Catholic Historical Association. Read more about Forgotten Healers on the site for Harvard UP.
The Emory News Center featured a profile of the Archival Lives conference from December 5-7, 2019. Co-convened by Adriana Chira (History), Clifton Crais (African Studies/History), and Walter C. Rucker (African American Studies/History), the workshop brought together an array of participants “to reckon with what it means to work with and produce archives of the African diaspora.” Read April Hunt’s feature story on the Emory News Website, “‘Archival Lives’ conference examines trans-Atlantic slave trade,” in addition to the full description of the conference at “Archival Lives.”
Dr. Joseph Crespino, Department Chair and Jimmy Carter Professor of History, authored an opinion piece in The New York Times last month on the day of the democratic presidential primary debate held here in Atlanta. In the article, “The Democrats Are in Georgia. The Stakes Couldn’t Be Higher,” Crespino provides historical context for democratic optimism that Georgia could turn blue in the 2020 election. Crespino’s most recent book is Atticus Finch: The Biography (Basic Books, 2018). Read an excerpt of The New York Times article below along with the full piece: “The Democrats Are in Georgia. The Stakes Couldn’t Be Higher.”
“In many ways, American politics today resemble an earlier era in Southern history, when candidates who only a few years before their election had been dismissed as jokes or nobodies stoked reactionary impulses to win the highest office in the state. That’s what happened in Georgia in 1966 when Lester Maddox, a folksy restaurateur and longtime failed candidate, was elected governor. After Congress passed the Civil Rights Act in 1964, forcing the desegregation of public accommodations in the South, Maddox leapt to public prominence by wielding an ax handle to chase away African-Americans who attempted to eat at his restaurant. He attracted the same voters that George Wallace won in neighboring Alabama — white Southerners embittered by social and political changes that they felt were being forced upon them by sanctimonious, out-of-touch elites.”
Dr. Astrid M. Eckert, Associate Professor of History, published West Germany and the Iron Curtain: Environment, Economy, and Culture in the Borderlands with Oxford University Press in October 2019. The History Department recently sponsored a public presentation and conversation about the new monograph with Eckert and Joseph Crespino, Department Chair and Jimmy Carter Professor of History. Over 75 guests attended the event, which is the first of three that the Department will host this year. To learn more about Eckert’s newest work, read the recent written Q&A we published: “New Books Series: Q & A with Astrid M. Eckert about ‘West Germany and the Iron Curtain.’”
The Emory New Center recently published a feature about Dr. Astrid M. Eckert‘s new book, West Germany and the Iron Curtain: Environment, Economy, and Culture in the Borderlands (Oxford UP). The article presents some of Eckert’s central findings, which she will discuss in more depth with History Department Chair Joseph Crespino on Thursday, November 14. Find out more information about the event, hosted at 5pm in the Jones Room, 311 of the Robert W. Woodruff Library, here. Read the full Emory News Center article (written by April Hunt): “Iron Curtain’s consequences still evident for former West Germany.” Also learn more about the project by checking out our recent Q&A with Eckert: “New Books Series: Q & A with Astrid M. Eckert about ‘West Germany and the Iron Curtain’.”
David Eltis, Woodruff Professor Emeritus of History, was recently cited in a Nature article on research tracing the origins of the enslaved on St. Helena Island. Led by University of Copenhagen researchers Marcela Sandoval-Velasco and Hannes Schroeder, the study analyzed the DNA of 20 individuals from St. Helena and concluded that they were likely taken from West-Central Africa, or present-day Gabon and Angola. The piece quotes numerous scholars who see promise in genomic analysis for reconstructing the geographic origins of the enslaved.
Eltis co-founded Slave Voyages, the Emory-based digital memorial and database that collects nearly 36,000 transatlantic slaving voyages. This past summer Slave Voyages was re-launched in expanded and updated form. The Emory News Center featured the new edition here: “Documenting Slave Voyages: Led by Emory, a massive digital memorial shines new light on one of the most harrowing chapters of human history.”
Read the excerpt from the Nature piece that features Eltis below along with the full article: “Genomes trace origins of enslaved people who died on remote island.”
“David Eltis, a historian at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia who co-founded a database that collects information on 36,000 slaving voyages between 1514 and 1866, notes that most people captured in the transatlantic slave trade originated from south of the equator — where a paucity of genome data from modern inhabitants makes it difficult to trace the origins of enslaved individuals with any accuracy.”
This year Dr. Kristin Mann retired from the Emory History Department after a long and accomplished career. The Laney Graduate School has launched a special initiative to honor Mann’s legacy. The Mann Prize in African Studies will be awarded to an outstanding graduate student whose work and commitment to African Studies embodies the career of Kristin Mann.
To name this award in honor of Dr. Mann, we must raise $12,500. If we are unable to reach this goal by December 31st, 2019, the funds will be allocated for general unnamed awards in African Studies. Please consider making a gift to honor the legacy of Dr. Kristin Mann and support African Studies graduate education in the Laney Graduate School at Emory.
“After coming to Emory University in 1979, Professor Mann helped create the Institute of African Studies, which she directed from 1993 to 1996. The Institute is one of the country’s oldest and most dynamic centers of Africanist scholarship. Professor Mann was very active in creating the Women’s Studies Program, now the Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies. Professor Mann was also instrumental in bringing to Emory University the African Studies Association (ASA), the world’s largest organization devoted to the study of Africa, and in creating the nationally-ranked Ph.D. program in African History. Between 2008 and 2011, Kristin chaired the Department of History. A model citizen, Professor Mann has been active throughout Emory University, including the President’s Committee on Undergraduate Education, the Faculty Council, and the University Senate. A dedicated mentor and a meticulous reader, Professor Mann has advised generations of students, at Emory and around the world. The Mann Prize honors her commitment to students, her collegial spirit, and her enduring contributions to African Studies.“