Fellowships

Current Fellows at the Jackman Humanities Institute

This page provides information only. For fellowship applications, please see Calls for Funding.

Photo credit:  for all fellows except Alex Wilson, the photographer was Diana Tyszko, 2018. 

The heart of the Jackman Humanities Institute is its Circle of Fellows, a group of scholars at every level from undergraduate to faculty, who are chosen for the excellence of their research and for its relevance to the Annual Theme.  Fellows hold private offices (or in the case of undergraduate fellows, carrels) in a quiet, shared enclave; they attend a weekly lunch to hear one of their members or an invited guest discuss their research; they organize events for the group such as tours, reading groups, and informal parties; and they talk. In the process of sharing their projects and the contours of their various disciplines, they find new ways to conceptualize their work, discover resources, and force each other to think beyond disciplinary assumptions to the wider goal of how their project addresses the Humanities as a whole.

Fellows 2018-2019

Brigidda Bell

Chancellor Henry N.R. Jackman Graduate Fellow in the Humanities

Brigidda Bell, Study of Religion

Dissertation: Moved by the Spirit(s): Credibility and Normative Models of Spirit Practices in the First and Second Centuries of the Mediterranean

What I'm working on

Brigidda’s dissertation analyses prophetic insight in the Graeco-Roman world. She asks how the legitimacy of the claims to truth by spirit-practitioners was gauged, looking beyond the content of speech alone.  Signalling theory, a framework from the cognitive sciences, allows the analysis of signals or traits that influence the behaviour of others, and assesses what makes signs credible or not. Through this framework, Brigidda examines four ancient literary sites where claims of prophetic truth were interrogated: in movements of the body, in marks of ethnicity,  in visible social networks, and in the varied cultural markers of moral character.

Talise Beveridge

JHI Undergraduate Fellow in the Humanities

Talise Beveridge, FAS English, History, and Criminology

James Fleck Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

What I'm working on

Project:  Close Reading of FBI COINTELPRO Documents
Supervisor: Michela Ippolito

Katherine Bruce-Lockhart

SSHRC/CHCI Postdoctoral Fellow in the Humanities

Katherine Bruce-Lockhart, History, University of Cambridge

Dissertation: Power and Politics in the Ugandan Prison, 1894-1979

What I'm working on

Katherine Bruce-Lockhart is a social historian of Africa, and, more broadly, the history of prisons and punishment. Her research examines the afterlives of colonial coercive institutions, illuminating how  prison officers, police officers, and soldiers imagine and inhabit their professional identities. Katherine is currently finishing up her book manuscript on the history of the prison system in postcolonial Uganda. She is also undertaking new projects on the Uganda Police, Idi Amin's soldiers, and transnational debates about the prison in the era of decolonization. Katherine's research and teaching interests include the history of crime and punishment in the Global South, the gendered dimensions of incarceration, debates surrounding reparations and reconciliation, and critical archive studies.

Deanna del Vecchio

Amilcare Iannucci Graduate Fellow in the Humanities

Deanna Del Vecchio, Social Justice Education, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

Dissertation:  Borders and Shadows: Participatory Photography at the U.S.-Mexico Border

 

 

 

What I'm working on

Deanna’s research addresses the possibilities and dilemmas of using photography to document border struggles, with a focus on youth participatory photography in the U.S.-Mexico borderlands. Through interviews and focus groups with photographers and project facilitators, she investigates the use of images to explore young people’s relationships to place, drawing on Indigenous theorizations of refusal and resistance to consider what it means to position images as a “gesture towards” in participatory photography.

 

Grace Egan

JHI Undergraduate Fellow in the Humanities

Grace Egan, FAS Peace, Conflict & Justice Studies

Dr. Jan Blumenstein Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

What I'm working on

Project: Heritage for Peace and Inclusion: the politics of heritage, memory, and belonging in post-conflict and decolonizing multicultural societies
Supervisor: Rebecca Kingston

Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in the Humanities

Mark Anthony Geraghty, Anthropology, University of Chicago

Dissertation: Genocide Ideology, Nation-Building, Counter-Revolution: Specters of the Rwandan Nation-State

 

What I'm working on

Mark’s research focuses on the violent aftermaths of war, genocide and colonialism, and is based, in part, on five years of ethnographic fieldwork in the African Great Lakes Region. His first book manuscript, Spectres of the New Rwanda, examines the Rwandan state's on-going campaign against “genocide ideology,” which is prohibited in law as "thoughts" of ethnic hatred that threaten the recurrence of genocide. He conducted research for this project in Rwanda’s prisons, layperson-run genocide courts, military-run "re-education" camps, and state-run genocide commemoration events. He has been concurrently working on a second book project which offers a critique of the interdisciplinary literatures on "transitional justice," based upon ethnographic research drawn from attending over 150 hearings of Rwanda's Gacaca courts, which between 2002 and 2012 tried 1.9 million cases of genocide.

Bradley Hald

Chancellor Henry N.R. Jackman Graduate Fellow in the Humanities

Bradley Hald, Classics

Dissertation:  Auditory and Visual Affect in Thucydides’ History of the Peloponnesian War

 

What I'm working on

Bradley’s research examines the intersection of sensory perception, affect, and historical causality in the text of Thucydides. Visual and auditory perception operate as transmitting media for emotional affect, and these sensory conduits for affect serve both as conduits of individual power and as autonomous force, moving beyond human will to the collective perceptivity of whole political groups. The effect of this analysis is a view of Thucydides’ craft as historian: the visual-affective dynamics in discrete narrative episodes perform the evaluative processes the author avows: and in the process, provide a way to read the mind of the historian.

Michela Ippolito head shot

Chancellor Jackman Faculty Research Fellow in the Humanities

Michela Ippolito, Department of Linguistics (FAS)

Michela Ippolito (Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2002) is Associate Professor of Linguistics. She has been a researcher at the University of Tübingen and has taught at the University of California Santa Cruz and Boston University. Her research in linguistics has focused on the formal study of meaning, particularly in subjunctive conditionals, counterfactuals, and modal expressions more generally. She has published a monograph with MIT press and also numerous scholarly articles on topics such as similarity, embedded implicatures, the meaning of focus-sensitive expressions such as ‘only’ and ‘still’, indefinite pronouns, and tense.

What I'm working on

Communicating Through Speech and Gestures

This project will take linguistic analysis beyond the realm of words by investigating the contribution of gestures in face-to-face conversations where speech and gestures work together to produce a coherent and coordinated communicative act by analyzing the role of gestures in conversation from the perspective of formal pragmatics within the larger framework of model-theoretic semantics. The starting point of the project are gestures used in conversation by native speakers of Italian. I will pursue the hypothesis that quotable gestures in Italian are speech act markers and that their role in discourse is to signal the speaker’s and hearer’s commitment (or lack thereof) to a given proposition. I hope to advance our understanding of the human ability to read each other in face-to-face communication and, more generally, our understanding of human cognition.

Amir Khadem

Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in the Humanities

Amir Khadem, Comparative Literature, University of Alberta

Dissertation: Endemic Pains and Pandemic Traumas: The Literary Construction of Public Memory in Iran, Palestine, and the U.S.

What I'm working on

Amir analyses contemporary literature of the Middle East to show how diverse the roles of violent pasts can be in the public drama of remembrance and remediation. His postdoctoral project is titled The Forgiven and the Forgotten: Narrating Wars in Iran and Lebanon and it examines the problem of literary commemoration and its impact on national practices of communal reconciliation. He has published articles in The Comparatist, Intertexts, and Neohelicon. Amir is teaching in the UTSC Department of English in 2018-2019.

Rebecca Kingston

Chancellor Jackman Faculty Research Fellow in the Humanities

Rebecca Kingston, Department of Political Science (FAS)

Rebecca Kingston (Ph.D. McGill University, 1997) is Professor of Political Science. She has taught (and previously tenured) at Saint Francis University and is a Life Fellow of Clare Hall, Cambridge University. She is the author of Public Passion: Rethinking the Grounds for Political Justice (McGill-Queen’s UP, 2011) and Montesquieu and the Parlement of Bordeaux (Librairie Droz, 1996) as well as many articles on Montesquieu; a volume co-edited (with Elizabeth Sawyer) of Plutarch’s Writings is forthcoming from Cambridge UP. Her research has been driven by a longstanding interest in the role of emotions in the historical development of political theory, and more recently, in the reception of Classical texts in political thought.

What I'm working on

Reading Faces, Reading Minds in the Public Realm: Early Modern Translations of Plutarch and their Impact on Conceptions and Practices of Public Life

This is a part of a larger study of the reception of Plutarch’s Lives and Moralia in French and English political thought 1500-1800. From the beginning of the 16th century, Plutarch's work was circulated and translated into the vernacular by a number of scholars with a keen interest in matters of public life who reflected on the nature of public life and its expectations in terms of how those in a public role both saw and were seen. During her time as a JHI fellow she will focus on her research related to the latter part of her project and in particular with a focus on the ways Plutarch was invoked in political argument in France and England in the 17th and 18th centuries. This will contribute to her broader objective to offer a new account of the development of political thought in France and England in the early-modern and modern period.

Jennifer Nagel

Chancellor Jackman Faculty Research Fellow in the Humanities

Jennifer Nagel, Department of Philosophy (UTM)

Jennifer Nagel (Ph.D. University of Pittsburgh, 2000) is Professor of Philosophy. Her research covers both historical and contemporary topics in the theory of knowledge, ranging from 17th century debates about skepticism to current controversies about the context-sensitivity of the verb “to know”. Much of her recent work focuses on epistemic intuitions—natural instincts about knowledge—and the question of exactly what these instincts can tell us about knowledge itself. Nagel has worked collaboratively with social and developmental psychologists on problems in mental state attribution. She is the author of Knowledge: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford UP, 2014), and numerous articles on epistemic intuitions, skepticism, knowledge, and knowledge ascription. She is currently writing a book entitled Recognizing Knowledge: Intuitive and Reflective Epistemology.

What I'm working on

Extracting Belief from Knowledge

This project explores the relationship between belief and knowledge, extracting evidence about this relationship from our instinctive abilities to attribute these states to ourselves and others. The project brings philosophical theories of knowledge into contact with developmental research on mental state recognition in young children, comparative studies of the social intelligence of human and non-human animals, and linguistic work on verbal mental state attributions. Convergent evidence from all of these fields suggests that belief attribution emerges from a more basic capacity for knowledge attribution. When we predict and explain the actions of others, we naturally start from calculations about what they know, and then adjust these calculations to take into account what they believe. With a more detailed understanding of the strengths and limitations of instinctive mental state attribution, we can draw a sharper picture of the underlying states of knowledge and belief.

Nisarg Patel

JHI Undergraduate Fellow in the Humanities

Nisarg Patel, FAS English (Literary Studies program)

Dr. Michael Lutsky Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

What I'm working on

Project: A Glimpse of the Old Home: Capturing the Indian Subcontinent under British Raj
Supervisor: Maria Subtelny

My current project primarily analyses the Stereoviews taken by an American photographer James Ricalton during the British Colonial rule over India. By engaging with Ricalton’s stereoviews, as well as the supplementary text that he wrote contextualizing images (India through Stereoscope), I am trying to understand how the bodies of the colonized were framed and depicted― both in Ricalton’s text as well as his stereoviews. I am interested in understanding the relationship between the visual culture and the underpinning ideological mechanisms which codifies, generates, frames the image of the (subaltern-)Other.

 

Maggie Reid

New Media and Humanities Journalism Fellow

Maggie Reid

Maggie Reid completed her doctorate in Communications and Culture (York/Ryerson University joint program) in 2018.  Her dissertation was titled Investing in Yourself? Entrepreneurial Journalism in the Digital Age. She has worked as a Documentary Producer for King Squared Media and a Radio Host and Producer for CHRY 105.5 FM.  She has written extensively about the culture of journalism, Canadian media policy, and educational and pedagogical issues.

What I'm working on

Project: lower case truth

Maggie’s fellowship project considers the humanities within the public university in a weekly public podcast. She is also working with CBC Ideas and holds a concurrent fellowship with the Massey College Society of Fellows.

URL: https://maggiemreid.com  
Twitter: @maggiemreid

 

David Rokeby

Artist in Residence

David Rokeby

David Rokeby is an internationally renowned new media, electronic, video, and installation artist who has been exploring human relationships with digital machines for 35 years, starting with Very Nervous System in 1982. His interests have ranged from the issues of digital surveillance in such works as Watch (1995), Guardian Angel (2002) and Sorting daemon (2003) to critical examination of the differences between the human and artificial intelligence (e.g. The giver of Names, 1991; and n—cha(n)t, 2001). He is a recipient of a Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts (Canada), a Prix Ars Electronica Golden Nica for Interactive Art (Austria), and a “BAFTA” award (U.K). In his art and publications, David has also probed the social, political, and psychological challenges posed by emerging technologies, and conversely, how these can be used to expand the dialogue about what it means to be human in our contemporary world.

What I'm working on

The Institute’s newly enhanced Artist-in-Residence program will welcome one distinguished artist to participate in the rich intellectual life of the Jackman Humanities Institute during the fall and winter semesters each year. The 2018-2019 program is organized in collaboration with the Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies. During the upcoming academic year, David will also teach an innovative graduate course in the Centre. The 2018-19 theme of JHI's events is Reading Faces--Reading Minds. David will be a part of an intellectual community involved in public events, lectures, and workshops.

URL: http://www.davidrokeby.com/

Nolan Sprangers

JHI Undergraduate Fellow in the Humanities

Nolan Sprangers, Faculty of Music; minor in Study of Religion

Jukka-Pekka Saraste Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

 

What I'm working on

Project: Reviving Music and Mythology in Stravinsky’s Orpheus
Supervisor: Rebecca Kingston

Maria Subtelny

Chancellor Jackman Faculty Research Fellow in the Humanities

Maria Subtelny, Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations (FAS)

Maria Subtelny (Ph.D., Harvard University) is Professor of Persian and Islamic Studies. Her areas of expertise are the history of medieval Iran, classical Persian literature, Perso-Islamic mysticism, and Islamic political philosophy. She is the author of Timurids in Transition: Turko-Persian Politics and Acculturation in Medieval Iran (Leiden, 2007) and Le monde est un jardin: Aspects de l’histoire culturelle de l’Iran médiéval (Paris, 2002), as well as numerous articles on Persian and Islamic topics ranging across cultural history, literature, and religion, including contributions to The Encyclopaedia of Islam, Encyclopaedia Iranica, and The New Cambridge History of Islam. She is currently preparing an edition, translation, and commentary of a fifteenth-century Persian mirror for princes entitled Akhlaq-i muhsini (“Ethics for Prince Muhsin”), composed for a descendant of Tamerlane.

What I'm working on

Physiognomy in the Context of Medieval Islamic Mirrors for Princes

Assessing character by scrutinizing physical features had a long history in the Islamic world, thanks largely, although not exclusively, to translations into Arabic from ancient Greek treatises. I propose to examine the role and literary presentation of physiognomy (firasat) in Persian and Arabic works of political advice for Muslim rulers—the so-called mirrors for princes—to determine how Greek and Islamic conceptions of physiognomy may have melded together in a kind of Platonic ideal of the philosopher-king, who was portrayed as possessing spiritual insight and occult powers thanks to his divine election.

Danielle Taschereau Mamers

Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in the Humanities

Danielle Taschereau Mamers, Media Studies, University of Western Ontario

Dissertation: Settler Colonial Ways of Seeing

What I'm working on

Danielle’s research as a settler-scholar sits at the intersection of media studies, political theory, and critical Indigenous studies. Her fellowship project is titled Decolonizing the Plains: Indigenous Resurgence Through Buffalo Repatriation, and it examines the repatriation of bison herds to Indigenous territories in North America as a response to settler colonization. Danielle’s work is based in discourse analysis of contemporary and historical accounts of bison transport, the 2014 Buffalo Treaty and 2016 transfer, including community visits and in-person interviews, and a photography project that will build a visual archive of the return of bison. She is also engaged in a reworking of her dissertation research for a monograph. She is teaching this year in the UTM Department of Political Science and the Institute of Communication, Culture, Information, and Technology.

Karen Wang

JHI Undergraduate Fellow in the Humanities

Karen Wang, UTSC Arts, Culture and Media (Art History program)

Milton Harris Undergraduate Award in the Jackman Humanities Institute

 

What I'm working on

Project: Reading the World’s Oldest Primer: How the ‘Newly-Compiled Illustrated Four-Word Glossary’ Reflects the Face and Mind of Ming China
Supervisor: Jennifer Nagel

 

Mason Westfall

Chancellor Henry N.R. Jackman Graduate Fellow in the Humanities

Mason Westfall, Philosophy

Dissertation: Understanding Minds

What I'm working on

Mason’s thesis offers an account of how we understand ourselves and other people. He rejects the commonly-held claim that introspection is a necessary precursor to understanding others, arguing rather that perception of relevant physical features provides the necessary knowledge of others, and that the role of introspection is to generate understanding of why mental properties cause the behaviours that they do.

Alexandria Wilson

Distinguished Visiting Indigenous Faculty Fellow

Alexandria (Alex) Wilson, Education, University of Saskatchewan

Dr. Alex Wilson is Neyonawak Inniniwak from the Opaskwayak Cree Nation. She is a professor with the Department of Educational Foundations and the Academic Director of the Aboriginal Education Research Centre at the University of Saskatchewan.

Dr. Wilson is one of many organizers with the Idle No More movement, integrating radical education movement work with grassroots interventions that prevent the destruction of land and water. She is particularly focused on educating about and protecting the Saskatchewan River Delta and supporting community based food sovereignty efforts. Having co-developed a Masters program in Land-Based Education at the University of Saskatchewan, Dr. Wilson is now in the process of creating an international Indigenous Land –based PhD program.   

Dr. Wilson is a recipient of the University of Saskatchewan Provost’s Award in Aboriginal Education for connecting research to pedagogy and practice and the Avenue Community Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity’s 2014 Affinity community service award; the 2015 Provost’s Award for Community Outreach and Engagement;  2016 Nellie Award; and, the 2016 Peter Corren Award. She was recently recognized by the Legislature of Manitoba for her extensive ongoing work with Indigenous communities revitalizing Cree culture through land based education.

What I'm working on

Dr. Wilson’s scholarship has greatly contributed to building and sharing knowledge about two spirit identity, history and teachings, Indigenous research methodologies, and the prevention of violence in the lives of Indigenous peoples. Her current projects include two spirit and Indigenous Feminisms research: Two-Spirit identity development and “Coming In” theory that impact pedagogy and educational policy; studies on two spirit people and homelessness; and an International study on Indigenous land-based education.

Corals Zheng

JHI Undergraduate Fellow in the Humanities

Corals Zheng, FAS English; minor in Political Science

Zoltan Simo Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

 

What I'm working on

Project: Genre as Heuristics
Supervisor: Michela Ippolito