Dr. Jeffrey Lesser, Samuel Candler Dobbs Professor of History, recently contributed to a radio segment on Radio France International Brazil titled “Historiador Jeffrey Lesser: ‘Decreto de Trump pode afugentar cérebros'” (Historian Jeffrey Lesser: ‘Trump’s Decree Could Scare Away Intellectual Talent'”). Lesser offered his perspective on the consequences of Donald Trump’s recent executive order banning immigration. That perspective draws on his specialization in the history of immigration, role as chair of Emory’s History Department, and leader of various research and study abroad programs to Brazil that serve Emory’s international student population. Check out a translated section of the article below and read the full piece (in Portuguese) here.
At this moment the concern grows as many foreign students prepare to apply to American universities for classes that will begin in September. “It seems that many of the students from these seven countries (targeted in the executive order) will be admitted to Emory because they are brilliant. And now we all fear that these students will not come, that they will be prohibited (to enter the United States). This is bad for all of us, in the sense that we will lose this cohort of brilliant students.”
Dr. Joseph Crespino, Jimmy Carter Professor of History, was among fourteen contributors to a January 25 article in The New York Times, “How Do You View This Complex American Moment?” Read the full article and check out a copy of Crespino’s comments below.
“I don’t think we’ve ever seen a president take office under these circumstances with this many unknowns, people on both sides with a sense that we’re in uncharted waters. We have to remember what kind of revolutionary period we’re living through. We’re really living through a digital revolution that I think has upended our economy, it’s upended our society and now we see it clearly revolutionizing our politics and creating all of these circumstances that are new to us, that as a democracy, we’re going to try to get a hold of. My inclination is that we’re in this kind of disarray — this kind of messiness is going to be the new normal — for the foreseeable future.”
Dr. Mark Ravina, Professor of History, has been awarded a Japan Foundation Grant to host a summer 2017 (May 30 to June 2) workshop, “Japanese Language Text Mining: Digital Methods for Japanese Studies.” The workshop will bring together researchers working across the fields of computational text analysis and Japanese Studies, and will focus on the unique challenges of the digital analysis of Japanese texts. The workshop is part of a collaboration with Hoyt Long (The University of Chicago) and Molly Des Jardin (The University of Pennsylvania) on Japanese text mining. Check out the call for proposals.
Congratulations to Dr. Tonio Andrade, whose book The Gunpowder Age: China, Military Innovation, and the Rise of the West in World History (Princeton UP, 2016) won a Distinguished Book Award from The Society for Military History. Andrade is Professor of History at Emory University. The Gunpowder Age has received broad critical acclaim, including from the Wall Street Journal, which concluded: “The Gunpowder Age is a boldly argued, prodigiously researched and gracefully written work. This book has much to offer general readers, especially those with a passion for military history, as well as specialists.” Read more about the work and its reception on Andrade’s website.
In a 1985 edition of Southern Changes: The Journal of the Southern Regional Council, Allen Tullos penned an article on the attempted prosecution of three civil rights activists for voter fraud in West Alabama. Tullos’s article, “Crackdown in the Black Belt,” was recently cited in a New York Times piece about the nomination of Jeff Sessions as Attorney General. Sessions was the United States attorney in West Alabama who pursued and lost the case against the activists in 1986. Check out the excerpt below and read the full Times article, “The Voter Fraud Case Jeff Sessions Lost and Can’t Escape.” Dr. Tullos is Professor of History and Co-Director of the Emory Center for Digital Scholarship.
In Perry County, the polls were only open for four hours in the afternoon, even though nearly one-third of adults worked outside the county and another 15 percent were over the age of 65. White voters used absentee balloting to keep their level of participation high among local residents and also to include some who had moved away. “Letters would go out from white elected officials to a list of people they knew who owned land locally but lived elsewhere: ‘Make sure you vote absentee,’” says Allen Tullos, a historian at Emory University who has written about the Turner case. “The white power structure felt under siege, so there was a sense of ‘We’ve got to call in our friends and families to roll this back.'”
Congratulations to Dr. Tehila Sasson, Assistant Professor of History and a new colleague in the Emory History Department, for receiving the International Global History Research Award for 2016. Given by the The Universities of Basel, Heidelberg and Sydney, the award supports Sasson’s proposed conference, titled “Global Histories of Natural Resources.” Read more about the award, conference, and Professor Sasson’s work here.
Photo from the Bom Retiro neighborhood in São Paulo, Brazil, the test case for “Metropolis, Migration and Mosquitoes.” Photo from Wikimedia Commons.
Dr. Jeffrey Lesser, History Department Chair and Samuel Candler Dobbs Professor of History, will co-teach an interdisciplinary course, “Metropolis, Migration and Mosquitoes,” in the spring semester 2017. Recently featured by the Emory News Center as a timely, creative, and cool course, the class will be led by Lesser along with Uriel Kitron, Goodrich C. White Professor and Chair of Environmental Sciences, and Ana Teixeira, Director of the Portuguese Language Program and Lecturer in Portuguese, Spanish & Portuguese. Guest lecturers will include Thomas D. Rogers, Director of Graduate Studies and Associate Professor of Modern Latin American History. Check out the course description below, and browse some of Emory’s other unique offerings this semester.
The course will analyze how “health” has been understood over time by both populations and providers using diverse methodologies, both traditional and novel. Using the Bom Retiro neighborhood of São Paulo as a test case, students will analyze disease patterns and prevention within a historical perspective. They will also analyze how questions of class, race and gender have led to historically different incidences of, and responses to, disease, understanding the relationship between cultural attitudes, exposure to diseases and access to health care.