Council Awards 2024-25 Grants for Innovation and Collaboration

May 16, 2024

The Humanities Council is pleased to award 29 new grants for innovation and collaboration in 2024-25. These projects, led by 39 faculty from across 27 academic departments and programs, will contribute to humanistic inquiry at the University and beyond. The Council will also continue to support nine previously awarded multi-year initiatives.

The new grants will generate original research within emerging fields of study, create and build new scholarly networks, engage with digital tools, and preserve archival materials.

The awards include 18 grants from the David A. Gardner ’69 Magic Project, which supports ideas that have the potential to change how the humanities are conceived and taught.

This year’s Magic Projects include:

  • An immersive exhibition exploring human-robot collaboration and its role in sustainable and inclusive building practices
  • A documentary film challenging medical narratives that obscure systemic racial violence
  • An initiative introducing the field of Taiwan Studies to Princeton
  • An undergraduate spring break trip to explore Indigenous cosmologies in Juneau and Sitka, Alaska
  • The development of in-gallery video stations at the new Princeton University Art Museum

Grants will also enrich pedagogy at Princeton and support global and comparative approaches to teaching, with the enhancement of new undergraduate courses and graduate collaborations. Next year, students will see theater in New York City, examine Black representation in Japanese video games in Tokyo, connect with poets in Paris and musicians in Leipzig, and study ancient architecture and contemporary art in Athens and Venice.

In addition to the Magic Projects, five new Collaborative Humanities Grants will receive support from the Council. These projects help faculty develop a collaborative area of focus to generate research or teaching in emergent and underrepresented fields in the humanities. This year’s projects include new collaborations with scholars and universities in the United States and abroad.

The Council has additionally awarded six special grants for initiatives, conferences, and workshops related to literature, music, and art.

  • Human-Centered Automation for Resilient and Inclusive Built Environments
    Arash Adel (Architecture)
  • Excited Delirium: The Invention of a Disease
    Aisha Beliso-De Jesús (Effron Center)
  • Island at the Crossroads: New Directions in Taiwan Studies
    Janet Chen (History; East Asian Studies)
  • The Modern Breakthrough in Scandinavia: Philosophy, Science, Art
    Hans Halvorson (Philosophy); Bridget Alsdorf (Art & Archaeology)
  • Photography as Poetic Document
    Deana Lawson (Lewis Center for the Arts)
  • The Ends of Prosody
    Meredith Martin (English; Center for Digital Humanities)
  • Connecting Visitors to Digital Cross-Disciplinary Content in the New Museum
    James Steward (Princeton University Art Museum)
  • Music Theory in the Plural
    Anna Yu Wang (Music); Jürgen Hackl (Civil and Environmental Engineering)


  • Translating the Untranslatable: Exploring René Char’s Wartime Poetry
    Sandra Bermann (Comparative Literature)
  • Women in European Cinema
    Maria DiBattista (English); Gaetana Marrone-Puglia (French and Italian)
  • Reimagining ANT 437, “Gaming Blackness”
    Akil Fletcher (Anthropology; Humanities Council; Society of Fellows)
  • New THR course on María Irene Fornés, Spring 2025
    Brian Herrera (Lewis Center for the Arts)
  • Relaunching HUM 417 focused on Greek Architecture
    Samuel Holzman (Art & Archaeology);  Branko Glisic (Civil and Environmental Engineering)
  • Chain Reactions: Princeton-Hiroshima Student Partnership and Future Memories of the Atomic Age
    Ryo Morimoto (Anthropology)
  • Princeton-in-Leipzig
    Jamie Rankin (German); Wendy Heller (Music); Ruth Ochs (Music)
  • Pacific Archives and Indigenous Cosmologies
    Sarah Rivett (English; Effron Center)
  • Contemporary Art: The World Picture
    Irene Small (Art & Archaeology)
  • Musical Theatre and Fan Cultures
    Stacy Wolf (Lewis Center for the Arts; Effron Center); Betsy Armstrong (SPIA)

Full descriptions of these projects can be found on the Magic Grant website.  

  • Derrida Seminars Translation Project
    Eduardo Cadava (English); Katie Chenoweth (French and Italian); Karen Emmerich (Comparative Literature; Translation and Intercultural Communication)
  • Cortona Colloquia on Latin Literatures
    Andrew Feldherr (Classics)
  • Elasticities (Phase 2)
    Brooke Holmes (Classics); Martha Friedman (Lewis Center for the Arts)
  • Princeton-LMU Munich Summer Seminar
    Joel Lande (German)
  • SOVMODE: Reconsidering Modernity & Socialism
    Serguei Oushakine (Anthropology; Slavic Languages and Literatures)

Full descriptions of these projects can be found on the Collaborative Humanities Grant website.

  • Princeton Ethiopian, Eritrean, and Egyptian Miracles of Mary (PEMM) Project Gap Year Funding
    Wendy Belcher (Comparative Literature; African American Studies)
  • Princeton’s American Revolution
    Michael Blaakman (History)
  • The Sense Archive Working Group
    Monica Huerta (English; Effron Center)
  • Collaborative Deciphering and Interpreting: Philippine Indigenous and Mestizo Texts from the Spanish Archive of 1762 and Beyond
    Christina Lee (Spanish and Portuguese)
  • Freedom and Obligation in the Seventeenth Century
    Russ Leo (English
  • Indian Ocean Trade, the Global Middle Ages and the Cairo Geniza
    Marina Rustow (Near Eastern Studies; History)

Full descriptions of these projects can be found on the Special Grants website.

  • Climate Stories Incubator
    Allison Carruth (Effron Center; HMEI); Barron Bixler (Effron Center); John Higgins (Geosciences); Tim Szetela (Lewis Center for the Arts)
  • International Network for Comparative Humanities
    Maria DiBattista (English; Comparative Literature)
  • Rome Archive and Library Seminar
    Anthony Grafton (History)
  • LOGION: Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Philology
    Barbara Graziosi (Classics); Johannes Haubold (Classics); Karthik Narasimhan (Computer Science); Suma Bhat (Computer Science)
  • Aristotle in the Americas
    Hendrik Lorenz (Philosophy)
  • Princeton Food Project Phase II
    Tessa Lowinske Desmond (SPIA); Anne Cheng (English); Andrew Chignell (Religion); Hanna Garth (Anthropology); Daniel Rubenstein (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology)
  • Re-Discovering Semiotics for the Humanities and Social Sciences
    Federico Marcon (East Asian Studies; History)
  • Land, Language and Art
    Sarah Rivett (English; Effron Center) with Simon Morrison (Music; Slavic Languages and Literatures; Canadian Studies); Bryan Just (Princeton University Art Museum); Laura Kalin (Linguistics; Humanities Council); Tessa Lowinske Desmond (SPIA); Daniel Rubenstein (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology)
  • The Animal Song Collective
    Gavin Steingo (Music); Asif Ghazanfar (Neuroscience; Psychology)

The Humanities Council’s mission is to nurture the humanities locally and globally, engage diverse perspectives past and present, and enrich public dialogue with humanistic approaches.

The Council offers a wide array of funding opportunities for research, teaching, collaboration, innovation, and outreach. Information about eligibility and deadlines to apply can be found on the Council’s website.

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