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Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences

2011 Archived News and Features

morrissey college and graduate school of arts and sciences

Archived News and Features by Year












Occupy Sustainability?

The Occupy movement challenges our current economic model and could help transform our markets into ones led by fairness and democracy, says Professor of Sociology Juliet Schor in the Guardian.

On European culture

The ambiguous nature of Europe’s culture—the difficulty in 'defining it and owning it'—is also its strength, allowing countries on the margins to share in a common heritage, according to Seelig Professor of Philosophy Richard Kearney, in an interview with the Irish Times.

The 'group mind'

Who gets the blame when a an individual working for a group—be it a corporation, sports team, goverment entity or political party—does something wrong, the individual or the group? The answer may depend on how cohesive the group is perceived to be, according to Psychology Assistant Professor Liane Young, co-author of a study published by the journal Psychological Science. | LiveScience via MSNBC | Business News Daily | Yahoo! Canada | Science Daily | PsychCentral | Scientific American

Senses of sophistication

Fruit flies and disease-spreading mosquitoes share similar receptors that allow them to distinguish among thousands of sensory cues as they search for food or try to avoid danger, according to a report co-authored by Biology Professor Marc A.T. Muskavitch in the journal Nature. Public Affairs announcement

Women religious and the Church

Associate Professor of Theology Mary Ann Hinsdale, a member of the Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, was interviewed by 'CBS Sunday Morning' regarding issues related to women religious and the Church.

A Semester in Nepal

James O'Hara A&S '13 discusses his experience at the Rangjung Yeshe Institute, also known as the Centre for Buddhist Studies, at Kathmandu University in Nepal, in a Q&A with the Boston Globe.

O'Connor Stepping Down

College of Arts and Sciences Honors Program Director Mark O'Connor will step down at the end of the academic year following a tenure of 'profound commitment to students, steadfast belief in the transformative power of the liberal arts, and visionary leadership'. BC Chronicle

Condemnation to conversion

More than two million men and women are housed in prisons throughout the United States, and three out of every 100 American adults are either on probation, in prison or on parole. Theology Professor Stephen Pope writes on the need for restorative justice in the prison system in an essay for America.

A case for Lebanon

A review of Language, Memory, and Identity in the Middle East: The Case for Lebanon by Assistant Professor of Near Eastern Studies, Arabic and Hebrew Franck Salameh in the latest issue of the Journal of the Middle East and Africa calls it 'a valuable, well-documented and rich contribution to the topic of nationalism in the Middle East.' Preview

Challenges for charities

With fewer donations coming in due to the economic downturn, how are Bay State charities coping with the demand this holiday season? Sociology Professor Paul Schervish, director of the Center on Wealth and Philanthropy, discussed the subject as a guest on the 'Callie Crossley Show.' WGBH-FM

Improving a catalyst

Research by Vanderslice Millennium Professor of Chemistry Amir Hoveyda, with scientists at MIT and the University of Oxford, has led to the development of an efficient and highly selective catalyst for ring-closing olefin metathesis, one of the most widely used reactions in chemical synthesis, the team reports in Nature. Public Affairs announcement | Science Codex | Chemical & Engineering News | PhysOrg

Politics and Immigration

Political Science Professor Peter Skerry looks at which party is likelier to benefit from the latest round of immigration politics in an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal.

Creative Writing Fellowship

English Professor Suzanne Matson is among the recipients of the 2012 Creative Writing Fellowship in Prose from the National Endowment for the Arts for a work of fiction currently in progress. Public Affairs announcement

Science and the Liberal Arts

Rattigan Professor of English Mary Crane, director of the Institute for the Liberal Arts, and Professor Thomas Chiles, chair of the Biology Department, examine why the liberal arts need the sciences—and vice versa—as co-authors of a commentary for the Chronicle of Higher Education.

The politics of extremism

Polarization is making the American Dream impossible to realize, according to Political Science Professor Alan Wolfe, director of the Center for Religion and American Public Life. CommonWealth Magazine

China - U.S. relations

The raising of tensions between the U.S. and China is not only unnecessary but also potentially costly, according to a piece by Political Science Professor Robert Ross in The National Interest.

Spending and the economy

In dollar terms, the U.S. economy is actually smaller today than it was in 2007, an indication of how profoundly the last four years' reliance on consumer spending has failed, writes Sociology Professor Juliet Schor. Time

Weather expert

John Ebel, professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences/director, Weston Observatory, was among the experts interviewed on a recent segment of WCVB-TV Ch. 5 'Chronicle'.

Fitzgibbons Professor

The Albert J. Fitzgibbons Professorship in Philosophy has been appointed to Rev. Arthur R. Madigan, S.J., chairman of the Philosophy Department and a Boston College faculty member for 32 years. BC Chronicle

A New Look at Nanotubes

Professor of Physics Zhifeng Ren (right) and researcher Hengzhi Wang have discovered two previously overlooked stages of carbon nanotube growth, according to a report in the latest edition of the journal Nanotechnology. BC Chronicle

The politics of evil

Political Science Professor Alan Wolfe was a guest on WBUR-FM's Radio Boston to discus his latest work, Political Evil: What It Is and How to Combat It. The New York Times review called the book 'timely, valuable and refreshingly adult,’ while America magazine said it “should be required reading for anyone concerned with politics and religion.” 

Investing in our future

Relying on consumer spending to boost the U.S. economy has failed to pull America out of the recession. Instead, according to Professor of Sociology Juliet Schor, the solution to the economy is “investment—by businesses, government, and households.” Time Ideas

Priesthood and the Eucharist

To live ordained priesthood in the light of the Eucharist is to discover anew the mystical heart of the priest's life and ministry, writes Theology Associate Professor Rev. Robert Imbelli in the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano.

Into the Woods

In celebration of its 30th anniversary season, the Robsham Theater Arts Center is presenting Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s Tony Award winning production Into the Woods, from now until October 30. Putting a modern twist on the Brothers Grimm’s well-known fairy tales, this year’s musical is directed by Paul Daigneault, a guest artistic director from Boston's SpeakEasy Stage Company, and Rev. J. Donald Monan, S.J., Boston College Professor of Theater Arts. Public Affairs announcement

Theologian honored

Theologian M. Shawn Copeland has been presented with the St. Elizabeth Seton Medal, which recognizes distinguished women in theology. Public Affairs announcement

The fate of Arabic

The jury is out on the fate of the Arabic language, according to an article in Middle East Quarterly by Assistant Professor of Near Eastern Studies, Arabic and Hebrew Franck Salameh, with contributions by his research assistant, Iulia Padeanu A&S '12. MEQ

Fulbright top producer

Boston College is 8th in the nation among research universities in terms of producing undergraduate winners of Fulbright Awards, with 21 winners out of 73 applicants, according to the annual survey by the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Must Read Nonfiction

History Professor Heather Cox Richardson's book, Wounded Knee: Party Politics and the Road to an American Massacre, was named the Must Read Nonfiction book of 2011 by the Massachusetts Center for the Book.

Blanchette honored

A biography of French Catholic philosopher Maurice Blondel by Professor of Philosophy Oliva Blanchette has been honored with a first place 2011 Catholic Book Award by the Catholic Press Association of the U.S. and Canada. Public Affairs announcement

Evildoers and us

To ask questions about the nature of evil is to understand how difficult it is to answer them. One way to start the discussion is to narrow the focus, according to Political Evil, the latest book by Political Science Professor Alan Wolfe, director of the Boisi Center for Religion and American Public Life. An essay adapted from the book is featured by the Chronicle of Higher Education Review.

Early Career Award

Psychology Assistant Professor Liane Young has received a 2011 Early Career Award for Distinguished Scientific Contributions to Social Neuroscience. Public Affairs announcement

Carbon nanotube growth

Physics Professor Zhifeng Ren and Research Associate Hengzhi Wang report in the journal Nanotechnology the discovery of two early stages of carbon nanotube growth that could lend themselves to thermal management and other applications. Public Affairs announcement | Science Daily | PhysOrg | AZoano | R&D

Play's the thing

In his latest column for the Boston Globe, English Professor and American Studies Director Carlo Rotella advocates unstructured play for children, citing a report on the subject by Psychology Research Professor Peter Gray. | Gray discusses his study in an interview with Fox News Boston.

Kenya: Passing the Baton

Professor of Fine Arts John Michalczyk's documentary 'Kenya: Passing the Baton' premiered at the MFA, Boston. The film sheds light on Kenya’s struggle to create a united, civil society from one currently split by disturbing tribal tensions, corruption, land distribution, and social issues. News release | GateHouse News | AOL Wayland Patch | Boston Herald

The jobs plan push

Political Science Professor Marc Landy commented on president Obama’s jobs plan in a NECN interview, stating “Though the president is coming late to the game with his jobs plan, there will be consequences should the GOP reject it outright.”

What the brain sees

Psychology Assistant Professor Sean MacEvoy co-authored a study published in Nature Neuroscience that helps to explain how people quickly and accurately recognize complicated scenes, such as a kitchen or traffic intersections, by the objects within them. News release | Science News

Every Day: A Long Year

On September 25, Fine Arts faculty member Karl Baden will be giving a talk at the Danforth Museum on his exhibit, Every Day: A Long Year, a collection of 23 years of daily self-portraits.

Reflections on 9/11

College of Arts and Sciences Dean David Quigley, who had spent much of the summer preceding the attacks conducting research in and on New York City, reflects on the tragedy and its aftermath. BC Chronicle

The Muslim-American muddle

A decade after 9/11, America has reached a political and intellectual stalemate regarding the Muslims in its midst, writes Political Science Professor Peter Skerry. National Affairs

The need for play

Hovering helicopter parents who restrict their childrens’ unstructured play may actually harm, rather than help, according to the latest issue of the American Journal of Play, edited by Research Professor of Psychology Peter Gray. Public Affairs announcement

Gilder Lehrman Scholar

Jooyeon Koo A&S '12 is one of only ten students in the nation selected for the prestigious Gilder Lehrman History Scholars Program, which identifies and supports the top undergraduate majors in American history. Public Affairs announcement

'Socks for Servicemen'

College of Arts and Sciences freshman Taylor Laffey of Brighton, whose brother is a U.S. Marine, has launched a campaign to collect socks for military members serving overseas.

The new retirement

Retirement is no longer a one-time, permanent event. A retirement that continues for the rest of your life is now the exception, rather than the rule, according to a series of studies by McIntyre Professor of Economics Joseph Quinn and alumni Kevin Cahill, Ph.D. '00 and Michael Giandrea, MA '97, Ph.D. '03 featured in US News & World Report.

'Blackbody' of energy

A designer metamaterial has shown it can engineer emitted 'blackbody' radiation with an efficiency beyond the natural limits imposed by the material's temperature, a team of researchers led by physicist Willie Padilla report in Physical Review Letters. Nanowerk News | AZoNano | Science Daily | Space Daily |

East Coast earthquake

Earth and Environmental Sciences' Weston Observatory, including Director John Ebel (left) and NE Seismic Network Operations Manager Mike Hagertywere interviewed by dozens of media outlets about Tuesday's 5.8 magnitude earthquake centered in Virginia and felt up and down the east coast. New England Seismic Network News | WCVB-TV | WBZ-TV | NECN | Boston Globe | Boston Herald | Boston Herald 2 | Forbes | International Business Times | WBUR

Virginia earthquake

Earth and Environmental Scientist Professor Alan Kafka discusses the Virginia earthquake on NECN. | "Why Does the Earth Quake in New England?" | BC-ESP Seismograms | New England Seismic Network News

Making music

'Affairs of a French Afternoon' is the third musical written by College of Arts and Sciences junior Patrick Lazour and his younger brother to be staged in the past several years. Worcester Telegram & Gazette

Boston and the Civil War

As the nation considers the advantages and disadvantages of involving itself in wars around the world, it might do well to study the Civil War, writes History Professor Emeritus and University Historian Thomas O'Connor, taking the conflict's effect on Boston as a case in point. Boston Globe Magazine

A darker shade of green

Boston-based British investor Jeremy Grantham is a rare species - an environmental activist in the Wall Street jungle - but he intends to make money whether the world heeds his apocalyptic warnings or not, according to a profile by English Professor and American Studies Director Carlo Rotella in the New York Times Magazine.

Service and leadership

Angela Donkor A&S '12 has been honored for her commitment to community service and peer leadership at the 2011 Leadership Conference of the Magic Johnson Foundation

'Miriam Meets' Richard Kearney

Seelig Professor of Philosophy Richard Kearney discussed his latest book Anatheism: Returning to God after God and a variety of other topics as a guest on 'Miriam Meets' with Miriam O'Callaghan, one of Ireland's leading public broadcasting hosts. RTE Radio 1

Focus on low-income youth

Sociology Research Professor Lisa Dodson, in collaboration with the Center for Social Policy at the University of Massachusetts, has been awarded a grant from the Ford and Annie E. Casey foundations for a project examining the well-being of youth growing up in low-income families.

Fewer working hours can work

In time-affluent countries like Germany and the Netherlands, reduced working hours mean lower carbon emissions, much lower unemployment and a better quality of life, Sociology Professor Juliet Schor explains in the 'Leading Thinkers' series presented by the Toronto Globe and Mail.

What's so funny?

Nothing seems to be out of bounds in contemporary entertainment, whether crude, crass or mean. English Professor Paul Lewis discusses the controversial side of today's comedy as a guest on PRI RadioWest.

Game of high fantasy

George R.R. Martin's mega-bestselling A Dance with Dragons - the latest installment in the series that inspired the popular television dramatization 'Game of Thrones' - may bring fresh readers to the genre, English Professor and American Studies Director Carlo Rotella writes in his latest column for the Boston Globe.

'Most downloaded' article

An article by Sociology Professor Sharlene Hesse-Biber - a newly appointed associate editor of the Journal of Mixed Methods Research and member of the editorial board of the American Sociological Association's flagship journal Sociological Methodology—was the most downloaded article published in 2009 and 2010 by Qualitative Inquiry, according to the journal's publisher. 

Nicomachean Ethics

A new edition of Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics co-translated by Behrakis Professor of Hellenic Political Studies Robert Bartlett, which includes an array of aids to understanding the work, 'brings the original text within the compass of every intelligent reader,' according to a review in the Sunday New York Times.

The Physics of Pollock

Jackson Pollock’s paintings often clashed with the rules of the art world. But they couldn’t defy the laws of physics, according to a multi-disciplinary team of researchers from Boston College and Harvard who give quantitative form to Pollock’s methods and genius in the journal Physics Today. News release | Wired Magazine | Science Magazine | MSNBC | New York Magazine | Live Science | Science Daily

The Norway attacks

The attacks in Norway have exposed the danger of the Europe's right-wing extremists. Political Science Associate Professor Jonathan Laurence discussed the subject on 'The Takeaway,' a co-production of WNYC Radio, PRI and the BBC, on NPR-affiliate WHYY in Philadelphia, and with the Christian Science Monitor.

Economics of gambling

Proposals to expand gambling are on the table in states across the nation. BC economist Richard McGowan, S.J., discussed the potential effects of increased gaming on NPR's All Things Considered, as well as NPR affiliates WBUR in Boston and WOSU in Ohio, and Chicago Public Media's WBEZ.

The debt divide

As the clock ticks down to the debt deadline in Washington, DC, Law Professor Kent Greenfield and Economics Associate Professor Robert Murphy discussed the potential fallout in two news segments on NECN. Greenfield | Murphy | Greenfield also writes on the topic for the Huffington Post.

Justice for Magdalenes

The advocacy group seeking justice for survivors of Ireland's Magdalen laundries, represented by English Associate Professor James Smith, has filed a report alleging widespread state involvement with the notorious workhouses. He discussed the case with the Irish Examiner, as well as the Irish Times, Belfast Telegraph and Time Magazine.

Listening to God's whispers

In his latest book, Soundings in the Christian Mystical Tradition, Theology Professor Emeritus Harvey Egan, S.J., 'first attracts and then Jesus Christ, the mystic paradigm, but in a way that draws along the full potential of the reader.' America

Research Recognition

Professor of Sociology Juliet Schor has been awarded the 2011 Herman Daly Award of the US Society for Ecological Economics. Schor’s research on work, leisure, and consumption has been noted for raising thought provoking questions and challenging long-held assumptions within the field of ecological economics. She kicks off a 'Living Sustainably' series in The Guardian (UK), with an essay on how reducing working hours can benefit the economy and the environment.

Work lessons

Lessons from the working lives of people in the past have taken on new importance in the modern age, especially for children, writes English Professor and Director of American Studies Carlo Rotella in the Boston Globe.

BC mourns rising senior Kristine Topel

Kristine D. Topel, a member of the Boston College Class of A&S 2012, died June 14 in her home state of Illinois. Kristine Topel obituary

The soul of Syria

The current upheaval in Syria seems intent on 'redeeming this ancient land to its true self,' writes Assistant Professor of Near Eastern Studies, Arabic and Hebrew Franck Salameh, who recently gave a Congressional briefing on sectarianism in Syria, Lebanon, and beyond. The National Interest

Walking 'Ulysses'

Anyone who has ever plowed through the puns and prose of James Joyce's Ulysses can now explore the novel's setting of 1904 Dublin thanks to a 'digital humanities' project undertaken by BC students, English Assistant Professor Joseph Nugent, and the Office of Instructional Design and eTeaching Services. Chronicle of Higher Education.

Nanotec solar

Physics Professor Zhifeng Ren and colleagues from MIT have used nanotech materials to obtain seven to eight times higher efficiency than previous flat-panel solar thermoelectric generators, opening up solar-thermal electric power conversion to residential and industrial use. Solar Novus Today | Discovery News | EcoSeed | Smart Planet | Science Daily | RD Magazine | First Science | LifeSciences World

Numbers 1, 2, 3, 4

A prose poem by English Professor Elizabeth Graver has been chosen to accompany a photograph of an Arctic weather station, which is the cover image of the current issue of Hayden's Ferry Review.

Justice for Magdalenes

An advocacy group that has spent two years lobbying the Irish government to investigate the history of the Magdalene laundries is taking the case to the United Nations. English Associate Professor James Smith, spokesman for the group, comments in the New York Times.

Outstanding students

Matt DeLuca and Stephanie Fernandes, both A&S Class of 2011, are noted for their academic excellence, involvement in campus life, and dedication to service.

Outstanding students

A&S Class of 2011 Anthony Castonzo and Sara Onori are noted for their academic achievement, service to others, and campus involvement.

NCAA scholarship recipient

John Maloy A&S '11, a multiply-honored member of the Eagles Men's Swim Team, has been awarded a 2011 NCAA Post-Graduate Scholarship

Mass. 'Future leaders' nominee

Harvey Simmons A&S '11, a national marketing associate at career networking startup BranchOut, has been nominated for the Massachusetts Innovation & Technology Exchange's 2011 Future Leaders Group.

Above and Beyond

London McWilliams A&S '11 has won the 2011 St. Alphonsus Rodriguez Award, in recognition to the student employee who goes far beyond his or her paid responsibilities. London is the A&S Service Center's student Web Services Assistant. After graduation she has been selected to be a corps member of City Year in Boston.

Future changer

Aditya Ashok ’12, a Presidential Scholar and student in the A&S Honors Program, who earlier this semester was named a recipient of a 2011 Harry S. Truman Scholarship, is featured by the Boston Globe.

Skaggs-Oxford winner

With Goldwater and NSF fellowships already under her belt, chemistry major Anne Kornahrens A&S '11 is the first BC student to win a prestigious Skaggs-Oxford award for post-graduate study at Scripps Research Institute and the University of Oxford.

A passion for teaching

An interview with Nathan Kono A&S '11, one of only 25 recipients nationwide to receive a Woodrow Wilson-Rockefeller Brothers Fund Fellowship for Aspiring Teachers of Color. Education Portal

Shaun Tan's wild imagination

Already celebrated in his native Australia, Shaun Tan has emerged on the global stage at age 37 as a major visual storyteller. English Professor and Director of American Studies Carlo Rotella profiled the artist for the New York Times Magazine.

On Lebanon, Syria

Assistant Professor of Near Eastern Studies, Arabic and Hebrew Franck Salameh draws praise for his book Memory and Identity in the Middle East; The Case for Lebanon in a review by Middle East Quarterly. He writes about the climate for change in Syria in The National Interest.

Talking 'Tower'

Local media highlighted actor James Franco's appearance at BC to screen for students his new film 'The Broken Tower' - inspired by and based on University Professor of English Paul Mariani's biography of poet Hart Crane. Boston Herald | Boston Globe | Mariani writes about the book-to-screen process in America.

Divided on torture

In the 21st century, what is needed is a popular will to extend the abolition of torture from criminal law to all state activity, writes Theology Professor Kenneth Himes, O.F.M. in America. He discusses the piece in a related podcast.

Goldwater Scholar

Presidential Scholar Christopher Sheridan '12, a biochemistry and philosophy major in the A&S Honors Program, has been awarded a Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, considered the premier undergraduate fellowship in the sciences.

Catalyst breakthrough

A new catalytic chemical method for the synthesis of a large and important class of carbon-carbon double bonds has been developed by Vanderslice Millennium Professor of Chemistry Amir Hoveyda and colleagues from BC and MIT, they report in the journal Nature. News release | R&D Magazine | Science Daily | Medical News Today | PhysOrg

Irish Studies prize

Irish Studies historian Robert Savage has been honored by the American Conference for Irish Studies for his new book A Loss of Innocence?: Television and Irish Society, 1960-72.

Hockey Humanitarian Award

Brooks Dyroff A&S '13 has received the 2011 Hockey Humanitarian Award, for his efforts as co-founder of CEO 4 Teens - a non-profit that helps provide educational opportunities for teenagers in developing countries - and other service.

'The Broken Tower'

Actor James Franco's new film 'The Broken Tower' was inspired by and based on a biography of American poet Hart Crane written by poet and University Professor of English Paul Mariani. Chronicle of Higher Education 1 | Chronicle of Higher Ed 2 | Boston Herald 1 | Boston Herald 2 | Boston Globe | Mariani Q&A | BC Chronicle

Fossil find

In the sandstone cliffs of the Scottish Highlands, Earth and Environmental Science’s Paul Strother and colleagues discovered fossils that show early life forms might have emerged 500 million years earlier than previously established, they report in the journal Nature. U.S. News & World Report | Science Daily | UPI | LiveScience | MSNBC | Science News | The Scientist | Discovery News | New Scientist

Impact of a Shutdown

As the clock ticks toward a government shutdown, which will begin at 12:01 Saturday morning if no deal is reached, Political Science Professor Marc Landy discussed the president's approach to the situation and the impact of a shutdown with Fox News Boston and the Christian Science Monitor.

Studying the super-rich

An advance look at findings from an ambitious study of how wealthy Americans think, live and give - conducted by the Center for Wealth and Philanthropy - is featured in the April issue of The Atlantic | CWP Director Paul Schervish - author of the new book Wealth and the Will of God - also was interviewed about the study by NPR 'On Point' and WGN-Chicago.

'Dis-integration' of Europe

European leaders are attacking 'multiculturalism' in a transparent ploy to appeal to far-right voters. But they're threatening decades of progress in reaching out to Muslim minorities, writes Politicial Science Associate Professor Jonathan Laurence. Foreign Policy

New Monan professor

Theater educator, stage director and arts leader Paul Daigneault - A&S '87 - has been named the University's next Monan Professor in Theater Arts. News release | Broadway World | The founder of Boston's SpeakEasy Stage Co. was featured by the Boston Globe.

Truman Scholar

Boston College junior Aditya Ashok, a Presidential Scholar and student in the A&S Honors Program, has been named a recipient of a 2011 Harry S. Truman Scholarship. | News release

In celebration

The University celebrates the 20th anniversary at Boston College of virtuoso composer and Music Professor Thomas Oboe Lee

Widowers on the prowl

Britain after Rome: The Fall and Rise by History Professor Robin Fleming, is 'full of new information, bringing together in particular data from many archaeological sites that have been hidden away until now,' according to the London Review of Books.

Who's Really Upset?

In response to opposition by GOP lawmakers on the institution of new standards for light bulbs and the phase-out of incandescent bulbs, the NYTimes asked a few experts to weigh in on the controversy. BC sociology department member Juliet Schor led off the debate on March 18, 2011. NYTimes Blog

Is it art?

Even the untrained human eye can distinguish the work of abstract expressionists from that of children or animals, through discernment - whether consciously or not - of the thought and planning behind the art, according to a study published in Psychological Science by doctoral candidate Angelina Hawley-Dolan and Professor Ellen Winner. Psychology Today | New York Times | Toronto Star | Miller-McCune | BCM

Meeting the president

Kristoffer Munden A&S '11 participated in a White House roundtable with other local college students during President Barack Obama's recent visit to Boston.

The power of the atom

The disaster in Japan and its effect on a nuclear power plant has once again turned the attention of the world on the power of the atom. Geophysics Professor Alan Kafka of BC's Weston Observatory discussed the subject on WGBH-TV's Greater Boston.

Top scientists
Vanderslice Millennium Professor of Chemistry Amir Hoveyda and Professor of Physics Zhifeng Ren have been named among the Top 100 experts in their respective fields, according to rankings based on the influence of their research and scholarship.

Muslims in America

Political Science Professor Peter Skerry, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, discusses the U.S. Muslim community with WGBH-TV 'Greater Boston,' in an op-ed for the Christian Science Monitor and in a Q&A with the International Business Time.

Portrait of the artist

No fiddler has won more solo championships than Sullivan Family Irish Artist-in-Residence Séamus Connolly, but an undergraduate's praise is among his favorite honors. Wall Street Journal

Walking Down a Long Road

Angela Donkor A&S '12 recently added the Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholarship Award to a lengthy list of achievements. BC Chronicle

Visiting Scholar award

Sociologist Natasha Sarkisian has been awarded a Visiting Scholar residential fellowship by Russell Sage Foundation, a ten-month program to pursue her research and writing.

The Arab Westphalia

Assistant Professor of Near Eastern Studies, Arabic and Hebrew Franck Salameh addresses language as a key factor in shaping (and misshaping) the Middle East in The National Interest and the journal Middle Eastern Studies.

Quoth the detective

News that an ABC TV series will feature Edgar Allan Poe solving crimes as a detective working in pre-Civil War Boston has been met with delight by some—but not all, writes English Professor Paul Lewis. Boston Globe

Women and marriage

Sociology Professor Sharlene Nagy Hesse-Biber discussed a new federal report on changing attitudes among women toward marriage and children, in an interview with CBS Boston.

Sloan Fellow

Assistant Professor of Chemistry Kian L. Tan has been named a 2011 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow, a highly competitive honor that recognizes early-career scientists whose work shows outstanding promise. 

Physicist receives NSF award

Experimental physicist Stephen Wilson has received a Career Award from the National Science Foundation to support his research into the behavior of electrons in three new classes of materials. More | R & D Magazine |

Physicist earns presidential award

Associate Professor of Physics Willie J. Padilla has been named by President Obama as a recipient of a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. BC Chronicle

Sheen's struggles

Psychology Associate Professor Joseph Tecce recently provided perspective on factors that drive individuals, such as actor Charlie Sheen, to controversial behavior. NECN

Catholicism and literature

University Professor of English Paul Mariani discusses Catholicism and literature in a Q&A with The Fine Delight (scroll to Feb. 24 entry). Also, production continues on 'The Broken Tower' – a film project of actor James Franco inspired by Mariani's 1999 biography of poet Hart Crane. MassLive

Hellenic Legacy Scholar

Melanie Graf '11 is one of two students nationwide named Hellenic Legacy Scholars for study abroad by the Greek America Foundation.

War, Shoah, legacy

Professor of Russian, English, and Jewish Studies Maxim D. Shrayer offers a new perspective on the life and career of major Holocaust writer Vasily Grossman in the London-based Jewish Quarterly.

New Voices 2011

'New Voices 2011' - original plays by Meghan Crosby A&S '12 and Riley Madincea A&S '11, directed by Theater Associate Professor Scott Cummings - will be presented at Robsham Theater Arts Center Feb. 23-27. The premiere is highlighted by Broadway World, the Watertown Tab and AOL-Newton Patch. | News release

Hockey humanitarian

Brooks Dyroff A&S '13, co-founder of a nonprofit serving educational needs of teens in developing countries, is among finalists for the 2011 Hockey Humanitarian Award. | BC Chronicle

'Rebirth' of Arabism

Countering close to a century of Arabic intellectual output tolling the death knell of Arab nationalism, Western 'Arabist' romantics still cling to this ideology’s obsolete models, writes Franck Salameh, assistant professor of Slavic & Eastern Languages and Literatures. The National Interest

Facing fourth grade

A visit to a fourth-grade classroom prompts reflections on the importance of elementary school education in the latest column by English Professor and American Studies Director Carlo Rotella in the Boston Globe.

A semester in Russia

John Casper A&S '12, majoring in political science with a minor in Russian, chose a study-abroad program at St. Petersburg State Polytechnic University. He writes about his experience in the Boston Globe.

Clean energy boost

Chemist Dunwei Wang reports that a nanonets structure developed in his lab enhances efforts to extract hydrogen from water for clean fuel. The findings are published by the online Journal of the American Chemical Society. News release | R&D Magazine | Science Daily | Nanotechwire | Nanowerk

Wilson-Rockefeller fellowship

Nathan Kono A&S '11 has received a prestigious Woodrow Wilson-Rockefeller Brothers Fund Fellowship for aspiring teachers of color, which will support his graduate study in the Lynch School of Education. 

Book of the Year prize

Calderwood University Professors of Islamic and Asian Art Sheila Blair and Jonathan Bloom have been awarded the World Prize for Book of the Year in the field of Islamic Studies by the Ministry of Culture of the Islamic Republic of Iran - for their Grove Encyclopedia of Islamic Art and Architecture. The award presentation is held in Tehran.

Toward 1000 genomes

Biologist Gabor Marth, whose lab analyzes billions of pieces of data as part of the 1000 Genomes Project team, has co-authored a report in the journal Nature about the project's most recent discoveries.

U.S. media and Egypt

Political Science Professor Ali Banuazizi, director of BC's Islamic Civilization and Societies program, recently discussed American media coverage of the events in Egypt as a guest on Al Jazeera's Inside Story.

Sounds of silence

Muslim-American organizations have been largely silent in the aftermath of the assassination of Salmaan Taseer, the secularist governor of Punjab, writes Political Science Professor Peter Skerry. Boston Globe

Physicist receives NSF award

Experimental physicist Stephen Wilson has received a Career Award from the National Science Foundation to support his research into the behavior of electrons in three new classes of materials. R & D Magazine |

Nanotech spotlight

An approach used by the research group of Physics Professor Zhifeng Ren and colleagues dramatically enhances the performance of thermoelectric materials. Research Associate Xiao Yan is lead author of a paper on the work, recently published by the American Chemical Society journal Nano Letters. News release | Physics World | R&D Magazine | Nanowerk News

Young Investigator Award

Assistant Professor of Psychology Alexa Veenema has won a prestigious Young Investigator Award from the National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression.

Supporting liberal arts

Is it in the best interests of the liberal arts to be perpetually defending them? asks Rattigan Professor of English Mary Crane, director of BC's Institute for the Liberal Arts, in a perspective piece for Inside Higher Ed.

Faith and ethics

Monan Professor of Theology Lisa Sowle Cahill is widely considered a bridge builder, intent on making connections between different theological traditions, perspectives, and methodologies, always with an eye toward shaping the broader conversation about faith and ethics. Commonweal

Middle East Christians

The Middle East is not a monolithic 'Arab world,' but a diverse human and cultural space that includes tens of millions of Christians, who possess their own cultural cognomens, writes Franck Salameh, assistant professor of Slavic & Eastern Languages and Literatures, in The National Interest.

The art of war

'Civil War Drawings from the Becker Collection,' the exhibition curated by Fine Arts faculty Sheila Gallagher and Judith Bookbinder that premiered at the McMullen Museum in 2009, is now on tour. Its stop in Virginia is highlighted by the New York Times (second item) and Richmond Times-Dispatch.

'Forum' Scholar of the Year

Professor of Russian and English Maxim D. Shrayer has been named Scholar of the Year by Forum, a leading newspaper of America's Jewish-Russian community, for his contributions to the study of Jewish literature. 

Challenging times

A new British security strategy can be read as a realistic blueprint for tough times, reflecting the priorities of a new government, according to a piece co-authored by Political Science Associate Professor Jonathan Laurence in Armed Forces Journal.

Living well online

To live well online one must learn to transmute quantity into quality, writes English Professor and Director of American Studies Carlo Rotella in his latest column for the Boston Globe.

What Gift to Bring a Child?

Working parents returning from business trips can find themselves questioning the practice of gift giving. "It can lead to the gimmies, when gifts become ordinary and expected," says sociologist Juliet Schor in the NYTimes.