2017-18 Fenwick Fellows Announced!

Dean of Libraries and University Librarian John Zenelis announced that the Fenwick Fellow Selection Committee recommended two recipients to receive the award for 2017-2018. Beginning this academic year, up to two fellowships may be awarded, one for a project proposal that aligns with the libraries’ ever-increasing activities in the area of digital scholarship.

The Fenwick Fellows for academic year 2017-18 are Dr. Jennifer Ashley, Assistant Professor of Global Affairs, College of Humanities and Social Sciences; and Dr. Alok Yadav, Associate Professor of English, College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Professor Ashley’s research proposal, The Political Afterlife of Chile’s 1988 Plebiscite, is a retrospective analysis of the Chilean plebiscite and an exploration of the response of those who participated in the democracy campaigns to recent efforts by the post-transition generation to move the country towards the Chile promised in those campaigns. The research is part of a larger book project and accompanying digital humanities project. The book chapter (“Political Afterlife”) will form part of a monograph titled The Politics of Resolution: Television, Protest, and Democracy in Chile. The digital humanities project will focus on the plebiscite campaign, bringing together (for both display and analysis) oral histories, interviews with activists and political leaders, and video footage from the campaign.

With his project, Anthologies of African American Literature: An Online Bibliography, Professor Yadav envisions creating a fully searchable and comprehensive bibliographic database of African American Literature anthologies. Such anthologies have played a crucial role in the effort to claim and construct an African American literary tradition, serving as venues for critical discussion and scholarship on African American literature; yet despite recognition of their cultural significance, there is a dearth of adequate reference sources on these important vehicles for literary, cultural, and political movements. Professor Yadav’s project seeks to rectify this deficit.

Zenelis commented that both faculty members’ research projects “promise to make excellent and mutually beneficial use of the Libraries’ resources, especially, our newest program – the Digital Scholarship Center.”

Professors Ashley and Yadav will present the results of their work in spring 2019 at the annual Fenwick Fellow Lecture hosted by the University Libraries.

ABOUT THE FENWICK FELLOWSHIP: The Fenwick Fellowship is awarded annually to up to two Mason tenured, tenure-track, or multi-year appointment term faculty members to pursue a research project that uses and enhances the University Libraries’ resources while advancing knowledge in their fields. The winning proposals are recommended to the Dean of Libraries and University Librarian by a six-member selection committee including three instructional faculty members and three librarians, with one of the Associate University Librarians serving as administrative coordinator. The recipients are provided with a fully equipped and furnished research office in Fenwick Library and an award of $5,000 to support the recipient’s research project. The terms for this year’s Fellows begin on August 28, 2017 and will end on August 10, 2018.

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