MLA Members Receive 2019 NEH Grants

Congratulations to the eleven MLA members who are among the winners of National Endowment for the Humanities grants announced in March 2019. Their projects include preservation efforts for Chuquisaca Quechua, an indigenous and endangered language; a project to restructure the Charles Chesnutt Digital Archive; development of an interdisciplinary course on the Middle East and North Africa; and a study on visually impaired filmmakers.

Documenting Endangered Languages – Fellowships

Susan Kalt, Roxbury Community College

Project title: Stories in Chuquisaca Quechua

Project description: The analysis of recordings of Chuquisaca, a dialect of Quechua, an indigenous language spoken in the Andean regions of Bolivia and Peru, as well as linguistic training of local collaborators involved in language revitalization.

Humanities Collections and Reference Resources

Jeanne Britton, University of South Carolina, Columbia

Project title: The Digital Piranesi

Project description: Production of a comprehensive, searchable, and open-access online version of the works of Piranesi. Work would include preservation, scanning, custom page-level metadata creation, translation, digital collections management, Web design, exhibit curation, and public events planning.

Matt Cohen, University of Nebraska, Board of Regents

Project title: Charles Chesnutt: A Digital Archive

Project description: A structural redesign of the Charles Chesnutt Digital Archive, with the addition of more works by Chesnutt. The online reference resource would include all of Chesnutt’s published fiction and nonfiction; a manuscript section with hand-corrected galleys of four major works, including his first and second novels and his biography of Frederick Douglass; and a collection of three-hundred contemporary reviews of six book-length works Chesnutt published between 1899 and 1905.

Humanities Connections Planning Grants

Ali Behdad, University of California, Los Angeles

Project title: New Directions in Middle East Learning

Project description: A one-year project aimed at developing a freshman-level interdisciplinary course sequence on the Middle East and North Africa.

Katharine Trostel, Ursuline College

Project title: Cleveland Divided: Rust Belt Revival

Project description: The development of a core curricular pathway and new course offerings focused on Cleveland and the Rust Belt region.

Summer Stipends

Katherine Gustafson, Indiana University Northwest

Project title: Novel Marketing, Novel Writing, and the Development of the Adolescent, 1740–1815

Project description: Completion of the first book-length study of adolescence as a modern social category in eighteenth-century British novels and its affiliated marketing industry.

Catherine Jaffe, Texas State University, San Marcos

Project title: A History of the Women’s Council of the Royal Madrid Economic Society (1787–1823)

Project description: Research and preparation for a book on the philanthropic contributions of Spanish women in the eighteenth-century Enlightenment.

Eduardo Ledesma, University of Illinois, Urbana

Project title: Blind Cinema: Visually Impaired Filmmakers and Technologies of Sight

Project description: A book-length study and companion Web site about visually impaired filmmakers and their use of various technologies, which illuminate the experience of blindness through film.

Marguerite Rippy, Marymount University

Project title: Orson Welles, Macbeth, and Africa: Collective Genius and the Diaspora

Project description: Research leading to publication of a book about the contributions made by African and African American artists to Orson Welles’s 1936 Federal Theater Project production of Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

Danielle St. Hilaire, Duquesne University

Project title: The Art of Compassion: Aesthetics, Ethics, and Pity in Early Modern English Literature

Project description: Completion of a book on the role of compassion in art and literature from ancient writers (Plato and Aristotle), medieval theologians (Saint Augustine and Saint Thomas Aquinas), and writers of the English Renaissance (Philip Sidney, Edmund Spenser, and Shakespeare).

Akiko Tsuchiya, Washington University in St. Louis

Project title: Spanish Women of Letters in the Nineteenth-Century Antislavery Movement: Transnational Networks and Exchanges

Project description: Research and writing leading to publication of a book about Spanish women writers and the transnational antislavery movement of the nineteenth century.