MLA Members Receive 2020 NEH Grants

Congratulations to the fifteen MLA members who are among the winners of the National Endowment for the Humanities grants announced in July. Their projects include a group biography of five female members of the American transcendentalist movement; institutes on Frederick Douglass and Zora Neale Hurston; and the creation of a vital digital humanities infrastructure, including digital editions of literary works, a digital publishing platform, and an institute on natural language processing for humanities scholars.

Maram Epstein, University of Oregon

Project Title: The Early Modern Vernacular Novel in China and Japan

Project Description: A four-week seminar for sixteen higher education faculty members to study early modern vernacular literary works from China and Japan, in the context of the growth of global commercial markets and urbanization in these countries.

Randall Fuller, University of Kansas

Project Title: Bright Circle: Five Remarkable Women in the Age of Transcendentalism

Project Description: A group biography of five female members of the American transcendentalist movement: Mary Moody Emerson (1774–1863), Elizabeth Palmer Peabody (1804–94), Sophia Hawthorne (1809–71), Lidian Jackson Emerson (1802–92), and Margaret Fuller (1810–50).

Matthew Gold and Douglas Armato, CUNY Research Foundation, Graduate School and University Center

Project Title: Digital Publishing for Open Pedagogy

Project Description: Expanding the technical infrastructure in the Manifold digital publishing platform to enable the creation and publication of free open educational resources in the humanities.

Thomas Hahn, University of Rochester

Project Title: Middle English Text Series

Project Description: Preparation for print and digital publication of six volumes of medieval literary texts (thirteenth to fifteenth centuries) and implementation of an updated digital interface to enhance and expand user access.

Ayesha Hardison, University of Kansas Center for Research, Inc.

Project Title: Hurston on the Horizon: Past, Present, and Future

Project Description: A three-week institute for twenty-five higher education faculty members on the life and works of author Zora Neale Hurston.

Noah Heringman, University of Missouri, Columbia

Project Title: Vetusta Monumenta: Ancient Monuments, a Digital Edition

Project Description: Completion of an open-access digital edition of volume 3 of Vetusta Monumenta (Ancient Monuments), an eighteenth-century collection of engraved prints and essays published by the Society of Antiquaries of London from 1718 to 1906.

Paul Israel, Rutgers University, New Brunswick

Project Title: Edison Papers Digital Book Edition

Project Description: Preparation for publication of volumes 10, 11, and 12 of the selected papers of the inventor Thomas Edison (1847–1931), covering the years 1890–1905.

Andrew Janco, Princeton University (Haverford College)

Project Title: New Languages for NLP: Building Linguistic Diversity in the Digital Humanities

Project Description: An institute to help humanities scholars learn how to create linguistic data and apply statistical models to new languages.

Cameron Leader-Picone, Kansas State University

Project Title: Making a Statement: Gordon Parks’s Gift of Photographs

Project Description: Planning for a 2,950 square-foot temporary exhibition, a catalog, and a website exploring the life and work of the multidisciplinary artist Gordon Parks (1912–2006) and his relationship with his home state of Kansas.

Daniel Mosquera, SUNY Research Foundation

Project Title: Passion Plays of Eighteenth-Century Mexico: Nahuatl and Spanish Festival Performances under the Eye of the Inquisition

Project Description: Preparation for publication of a digital edition of ten colonial Mexican Passion plays and contextualizing historical documents.

Andrew Newman, SUNY Research Foundation, Stony Brook

Project Title: The History of Literature Instruction in American Schools

Project Description: A two-week seminar for sixteen English teachers (grades 6–12) on the history of literature instruction in the twentieth century.

Clara Pascual-Argente

Project Title: The Story of Apollonius of Tyre: An Edition and Translation of Two Medieval Iberian Texts

Project Description: Preparation for publication of a critical edition and translation of two medieval Iberian texts: the thirteenth-century verse romance Libro de Apolonio (Book of Apollonius) and Vida e historia del rey Apolonio (Life and Story of King Apollonius), the latter printed in 1488 and illustrated with thirty-five German woodcuts.

Guy Raffa, University of Texas, Austin

Project Title: Dante’s American Afterlife

Project Description: Research and writing of a book on the influence of Italian poet Dante Alighieri (d. 1321) on American culture.

Howard Rambsy, Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville

Project Title: Frederick Douglass and Literary Crossroads

Project Description: A one-week institute for twenty-five schoolteachers on Frederick Douglass and African American literary studies