Short-Term Visiting Fellows
During intensive three-to-five-day periods, these Fellows lecture and participate in classes, colloquia and informal discussions. The Program was created with a gift from Frank E. Taplin, Jr.'37 in honor of Whitney J. Oates, the distinguished classicist and founder of the Humanities Council. The Short-Term Fellows Program also hosts Virginia and Richard Stewart Fellows in Religion and Edward T. Cone ‘39*42 Fellows, named in memory of the eminent composer, musicologist, professor and benefactor of the arts and humanities.
Cathy Caruth of Cornell University, an expert on the literature and theory of trauma, combines literary and film studies with history, ethics and psychoanalysis. Since literature attunes us to hear what is said indirectly, it can sometimes be an avenue for understanding traumatic events, which exist as memories that are not immediately recognizable as truth. Her newest book is Literature in the Ashes of History. Her spring-term visit will be hosted by the English department.
Rana Dasgupta is the author of two acclaimed novels. In Tokyo Cancelled he imagines 13 strangers stranded in an airport where they huddle by their baggage and tell fantastic tales. Solo has been described as a “’philharmonic’ novel that reminds us why we will always need to tell the extraordinary stories of people’s ordinary lives.” Dasgupta is a Fellow in History in October.
William Dalrymple published the bestselling travel book, Xanadu, at age 22. As a writer and historian living in India, he focuses on British-Indian interactions. White Mughals relates the improbable marriage between a Muslim princess and a rising star in the East India Company. The Last Mughal is a portrait of Delhi in 1857. Dalrymple’s October visit is hosted by the Program in South Asian Studies.
Julie Dash, a filmmaker, is celebrated for Daughters of the Dust, the first feature film made by an African American woman. Set on the Sea Islands of South Carolina, it portrays an extended family at the turn of the 20th century, as they are on the verge of abandoning the isolated Gullah culture for the mainland. In 2004 the Library of Congress designated it as especially worthy of preservation because of its cultural, historical and aesthetic significance. Dash will be hosted by the Committee for Film Studies.
Guillaume Gallienne, an actor in the prestigious Comédie Française, has also written, directed and produced plays. As a film actor, he has worked with Sofia Coppola and other international directors. Recipient of two Molière awards (the French Tonys) for “Best up-and-coming actor” and “Best supporting actor,” he will conduct master classes during his October stay in French and Italian.
Mercedes García-Arenal of the Center for Human and Social Sciences in Madrid is a scholar of Arabic and Islamic Studies, Spanish cultural and intellectual history. Her work on the multicultural societies of early modern Spain shows the influence and legacy of Muslim cultures in the Mediterranean world. As Stewart Fellow in Spanish and Portuguese in April, she will speak about the role of religious minorities in rewriting the master narrative of Spanish history.
Rae Langton of M.I.T. has done influential work in moral and political philosophy, metaphysics and feminist philosophy. Her book on Kantian Humility offered a new interpretation of Kant’s doctrine of the thing in itself. More recently she has written about free speech and pornography in Sexual Solipsism: Philosophical Essays on Pornography and Objectification. Her October visit is hosted by the Philosophy department.
Stephen Orgel studies Renaissance literature, theater and art, exploring the patronage system, the nature of representation and performance practice. His pioneering 1975 book The Illusion of Power remains a classic in the field. Last year, he published Spectacular Performances : Essays on Theatre, Imagery, Books, and Selves in Early Modern England. He is a Fellow in English in October.
Olga Palagia, Professor of Classical Archaeology at Athens University, writes about the Greek world from the archaic period to Roman rule. She combines knowledge of the material remains of the Greek world with an understanding of its history and language. Her expertise in religious rituals, practices and beliefs makes her a particularly appropriate Stewart Fellow, hosted by the Classics department in November.