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Your independent source for Harvard news since 1898

John Harvard's Journal

University People

July-August 2018

Photograph reproduced courtesy of the artist, Stephen Coit

Photograph reproduced courtesy of the artist, Stephen Coit

Portraiture Project

Harvard’s Portraiture Project, meant to include important members of the community, has now produced its likeness of the late S. Allen Counter, founding director of the Harvard Foundation for Intercultural and Race Relations. The painting was unveiled in Annenberg Hall in late April.

Top Teachers

The Faculty of Arts and Sciences annually recognizes its most outstanding teachers of undergraduates by conferring Harvard College Professorships: a five-year title that is accompanied by supplemental research support. This May, the dean of the faculty, Michael D. Smith, recognized Robin Bernstein, Dillon professor of American history and professor of African and African American studies and of studies of women, gender, and sexuality; Lawrence Bobo, Du Bois professor of the social sciences; George Lauder, Bigelow professor of ichthyology; Yukio Lippit, professor of history of art and architecture (featured in “Works in Wood,” September-October 2008, page 44); and Amy Wagers, Forst Family professor of stem cell and regenerative biology (see “A Hidden Youthfulness,” January-February 2010, page 27).

Faculty Leaders

This spring, Dean Smith also unveiled the Arts and Sciences Professorships, a new honor recognizing faculty members who have made significant leadership contributions while sustaining their teaching and scholarship. The new chairs, lasting five years like Harvard College Professorships (above), have been enabled by funds raised through the capital campaign since 2012, and come with incremental support for the recipients’ research. An initial recipient, in 2013, was Jeff Lichtman, Knowles professor of molecular and cellular biology (covered in “Shedding Light on Life,” May-June 2008, page 40). A fuller cohort, presented this April, includes Catherine Dulac, Higgins professor of molecular and cellular biology (see “The Mr. Mom Switch,” May-June 2015, page 11); Jennifer Lewis, Wyss professor of biologically inspired engineering (featured in the January-February 2017 cover article, “Building Toward a Kidney”); Louis Menand, Bass professor of English (and a Harvard College Professor); and Mary C. Waters, Loeb professor of sociology (covered in “End of the Melting Pot?” May-June 2007, page 44).

Radcliffe Roster

The Radcliffe Institute has announced its 53 fellows for the 2018-2019 academic year. Nine are Harvard faculty members: Robin Bernstein, Dillon professor of African and African American studies and of studies of women, gender, and sexuality; Sara Bleich, professor of public health policy; Marine Denolle, assistant professor of earth and planetary sciences; Lisa R. Diller, professor of biology and medical sciences; Cora Dvorkin, assistant professor of physics; Cynthia Dwork, McKay professor of computer science; Myrto Kalouptsidi, assistant professor of economics; Durba Mitra, assistant professor of women, gender, and sexuality; and Janet Rich-Edwards, associate professor of medicine and associate professor of epidemiology (and co-director of the science program at Radcliffe). Further details appear at

Guggenheims Galore

Faculty members awarded 2018 Guggenheim Memorial Fellowships include Joyce E. Chaplin, Phillips professor of early American history; Peter A. Hall, Krupp Foundation professor of European studies (see “Anatomy of the Euro Crisis,” July-August 2013, page 24); Jane Kamensky, professor of history and director of the Schlesinger Library (see “Facing Harvard,” November-December 2016, page 42); Wai-yee Li, professor of Chinese literature; Naomi Oreskes, professor of the history of science (see Harvard Portrait, July-August 2014, page 23); Lisa Randall, Baird professor of science (see “Meeting the Multiverse,” November-December 2005, page 19); and Robert J. Sampson, Henry Ford II professor of the social sciences (see “The Persistence of Place,” January-February 2012, page 22).

Amanda Claybaugh
Photograph by Justine Cooper Photography

Undergraduate Educator

Amanda Claybaugh has been appointed dean of undergraduate education, effective July 1, succeeding Jay H. Harris, on whose decade-long watch the Faculty of Arts and Sciences adopted an honor code (violations of which are administered by an Honor Council); adjusted class schedules to accommodate instruction in Allston; and revisited General Education. Claybaugh, Ph.D. ’01, the Samuel Zemurray Jr. and Doris Zemurray Stone Radcliffe professor of English (see Harvard Portrait, May-June 2012, page 47), is a scholar of nineteenth-century literature and history (she chaired Hist & Lit for four years). Getting the revised Gen Ed curriculum up and running by the 2019 fall term will be among her most pressing priorities. Other continuing-business items range from rethinking students’ course “shopping week” and revising course evaluations to ensuring that the launch of undergraduate teaching in Allston on a large scale in 2020 proceeds smoothly.

Honor Roll 

Elizabeth Hinton
Photograph by Jon Chase/HPAC

Jane Mansbridge
Photograph by Martha Stewart

Elizabeth Hinton, assistant professor of history and of African and African American studies, who studies incarceration and criminal justice (see Harvard Portrait, March-April 2017, page 19), has been awarded a 2018 Carnegie Fellowship, which confers a $200,000 stipend to support research.…Separately, Adams professor of political leadership and democratic values Jane Mansbridge, of the Kennedy School, has won the 2018 Skytte Prize in Political Science, the leading international recognition in the field; it comes with a 500,000 Swedish kronor honorarium. 

AAAS Honorands

The American Academy of Arts and Sciences announced the election of 213 new members to its class of 2018, including 11 faculty members: Cynthia M. Friend, Richards professor of chemistry and professor of materials science; Susan M. Dymecki, professor of genetics; Naomi E. Pierce, Hessel professor of biology; Patricia A. D’Amore, Schepens professor of ophthalmology; Christopher A. Walsh, Bullard professor of pediatrics and neurology; J. Wade Harper, Vallee professor of molecular pathology; Gita Gopinath, Zwaanstra professor of international studies and of economics; Jeffry A. Frieden, Stanfield professor of international peace; Pippa Norris, McGuire lecturer in comparative politics; Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, Thomas professor of history and of African and African American studies; and Rebecca M. Henderson, McArthur University Professor.

Literary Lions

Frank Bidart, A.M. ’67, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in poetry for the collection Half-light, and Caroline Fraser, Ph.D. ’87, the Pulitzer in biography for Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder.…Winners of 2018 Whiting Awards, which confer $50,000 stipends on emerging writers, included Weike Wang ’11, S.D. ’17, whose recent novel is Chemistry, and Antoinette Nwandu ’02, a playwright who wrote Breach: a manifesto on race in america through the eyes of a black girl recovering from self-hate

Library Leave-Taking

Sarah E. Thomas, since 2013 vice president for the Harvard Library and University Librarian and Larsen librarian of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, will retire at year-end. Provost Alan Garber made the announcement on May 30; he will begin the search for a successor during the summer. Thomas consolidated library functions following cuts and reorganization after the financial crisis; a University library committee now guides common practices and policies.

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