2016 History Publications and Grants

Arnold, Jonathan, Shane Bjornlie, and Kristina Sessa, eds. A Companion to Ostrogothic Italy. Brill, 2016.

Abstract: A Companion to Ostrogothic Italy is a concise yet comprehensive cutting edge survey of the rise and fall of Italy’s first barbarian kingdom, the Ostrogothic state (ca. 489-554 CE). The volume’s 18 essays provide readers with probing syntheses of recent scholarship on key topics, from the Ostrogothic army and administration to religious diversity and ecclesiastical development, ethnicity, cultural achievements, urbanism, and the rural economy. Significantly, the volume also presents innovative studies of hitherto under-examined topics, including the Ostrogothic provinces beyond the Italian lands, gender and the Ostrogothic court, and Ostrogothic Italy’s environmental history. Featuring work by an international panel of scholars, the volume is designed for both new students and specialists in the field.

Bjornlie, M. Shane. “Constantine in the sixth century: from Constantinople to Tours.” The Life and Legacy of Constantine: Traditions through the Ages, edited by M. Shane Bjornlie, Routledge, 2016, 92-114.  

Bjornlie, M. Shane. ““Governmental administration,” A Companion to Ostrogothic Italy edited by Jonathan Arnold, Shane Bjornlie and Kristina Sessa, Brill, 2016, 47-72.

Bjornlie, M. Shane. “The letter collection of Cassiodorus.” Late Antique Letter Collections: A Critical Introduction and Reference Guide, edited by Cristiana Sogno, Bradley K. Storin, and Edward J. Watts. University of California Press, 2016, 433-448.

Bjornlie, M. Shane, ed. The Life and Legacy of Constantine: Traditions through the Ages. Routledge, 2016.

Abstract: The transformation from the classical period to the medieval has long been associated with the rise of Christianity. This association has deeply influenced the way that modern audiences imagine the separation of the classical world from its medieval and early modern successors. The role played in this transformation by Constantine as the first Christian ruler of the Roman Empire has also profoundly shaped the manner in which we frame Late Antiquity and successive periods as distinctively Christian. The modern demarcation of the post-classical period is often inseparable from the reign of Constantine. The attention given to Constantine as a liminal figure in this historical transformation is understandable. Constantine’s support of Christianity provided the religion with unprecedented public respectability and public expressions of that support opened previously unimagined channels of social, political and economic influence to Christians and non-Christians alike. The exact nature of Constantine’s involvement or intervention has been the subject of continuous and densely argued debate. Interpretations of the motives and sincerity of his conversion to Christianity have characterized, with various results, explanations of everything from the religious culture of the late Roman state to the dynamics of ecclesiastical politics. What receives less-frequent attention is the fact that our modern appreciation of Constantine as a pivotal historical figure is itself a direct result of the manner in which Constantine’s memory was constructed by the human imagination over the course of centuries. This volume offers a series of snapshots of moments in that process from the fourth to the sixteenth century.

Geismer, Lily. "At Home in America: Through the Lens of Metropolitan and Political History." American Jewish History 100.2, 2016, 247-259.

Geismer, Lily. “Urban Politics Since 1945.” The Oxford Research Encyclopedia of American History, Oxford University Press, 2016.

Hamburg, G.M. Russia's Path toward Enlightenment: Faith, Politics, and Reason, 1500 – 1801. Yale University Press, 2016.

Abstract: This book, the first comprehensive analysis of political thought in Russia from medieval times until the end of the eighteenth century, demonstrates that Russia's path toward enlightenment began long before Peter the Great's opening to the West. It argues that the Russian Enlightenment was rooted in Christian notions of politics, virtue and duty, and that Western thought sharpened Russian conceptual categories without erasing them. Thus the Russian Enlightenment proceeded mainly from indigenous sources.

Hamburg, G.M. and Semion Lyandres, eds. Journal of Modern Russian History and Historiography, Number 9, 2016.

Abstract: Special issue on the history and historiography of the Russian Revolution of 1917.

Hopper, Ian DT. "Militarism and the British left, 1902–1914." First World War Studies Vol. 7, Issue. 1, 2016, 103-105.

Abstract: This is a book review of Matthew Johnson's recent book on British militarism.

Hopper, Ian, “Remembering war (XII): Simulations Make Us Understand How Hard War Is.” Foreign Policy. February 26, 2016.

Abstract: Drawn from the experience of teaching a WW2 simulation to undergraduates at Claremont McKenna College, this article argues that refighting the past with simulations helps to relearn the lessons of these wars.

Kumar, Nita. “The Weavers of Banaras,” Economic and Political Weekly. Vol. 51, Issue No. 53, 2016, 59-63.

Abstract: This piece is in two parts. In the first I ask the question, “What will be the fate of the Banaras silk handloom industry given the changes in market demand and technology that are occurring? What will be the fate of weavers?” I argue that we should, have a quarrel with the weavers’ understanding of their changing lives while giving them credit for their rationality, prescience and agency. They have no more mobility than they had, because that could have come only from a third route, the quality education of their children. In the second part I ask, “What are the changes occurring in Banaras culture, specially for weavers, with the above changes and the new political leadership?” I argue that instead of thinking of themselves as one, simply because they are Muslims and ‘Ansaris,’ weavers should develop a class consciousness and realise that they could do better for themselves through a different kind of solidarity than the present community one.

Livesay, Daniel. "Privileging Kinship: Family and Race in Eighteenth-Century Jamaica." Early American Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal 14.4, 2016, 688-711.

Abstract: During the long eighteenth century, elite free people of color in Jamaica petitioned the government for exemptions to some of the island’s laws against those with African ancestry.  In making these appeals, they highlighted advanced social and financial positions that put them above the average Jamaican of color.  But perhaps most importantly, these biographies noted familial relations to white men on the island.  These kinship connections were central in determining if a free person of color was deserving enough to receive “privileged” rights.  In bestowing these privileges, Jamaican officials demonstrated that one’s racial status on the island was determined, in part, by familial linkages to white colonists.  Although only a fraction of mixed-race Jamaicans gained these legal exemptions, the practice nevertheless reveals how important family relation was in constructing racial identities, even in a place built upon racialized oppression and slavery. 

External Grant: Huntington Library/Omohundro Short Term Research Fellowship, San Marino, CA, 2016.

Two-month research fellowship to begin new project on studying the lives of elderly enslaved individuals in Virginia and Jamaica from 1783-1865.

Lobis, Victoria Sancho. Van Dyck, Rembrandt, and the Portrait Print. Yale University Press, 2016.

Abstract: In the last decade of his life, Anthony van Dyck (1599-1641) undertook a printing project that changed the conventions of portraiture. In a series later named the Iconography, he portrayed artists alongside kings, courtiers, and diplomats—a radical departure from preexisting conventions. He also depicted his subjects in novel ways, focusing on their facial features often to the exclusion of symbolic costumes or props. In addition to illustrating approximately 60 works by Van Dyck and other artists from his era—particularly Rembrandt—this catalogue traces the artist’s influence over hundreds of years. Showcasing both 17th century portraits in a variety of media and portrait prints by a wide range of artists spanning the 16th through the 20th centuries—including Albrecht Dürer, Hendrick Goltzius, Francisco de Goya, Edgar Degas, and Jim Dine—the book demonstrates the indelible mark that Van Dyck left on the genre.

Lower, Wendy. “Nicholas Stargardt The German War – A nation under arms, 1939–1945,” Times Literary Supplement, May 13, 2016

Park, Albert L. “Religion: 1876-1910.” The Routledge Handbook of Korean History, edited by Michael J. Seth, Routledge Press, 2016, 62-80.

Abstract: This article traces the history of religions in Korea from 1876 to 1910. In particular, it examines the relationship between religion and happenings in society to explain religious ferment and social change in modern Korean history.

Park, Albert L. "Social renewal through the rural: Agricultural cooperatives in South Korea as a form of critiquing capitalism." Global Environment 9.1, 2016, 82-107.

Abstract: This article argues that concepts associated with “the rural” over the last thirty years have acquired fresh meaning and value as sources of political, social and economic imagination through the intersection of economic, environmental and cultural factors. First, it explains how various factors, especially the consequences of contemporary neoliberal reforms, environmental issues and natural disasters, drives for local forms of production, exchange and consumption, and progressive agricultural and food movements, have combined in developed and developing countries, such as the United States and Haiti, to foster a process of valuation through which “the rural” has begun to shed its historical legacy as traditional and conservative and become a powerful tool for reconstructing society. Second, in order to provide an in-depth analysis of this transformation, this article shows the efforts of South Korean agricultural cooperatives, such as Hansalim and iCOOP, in creating a new moral economy that seeks to overcome forms of inequality caused by neoliberalism and the historical division and opposition between the city and the country. Overall, through a macro and micro-analysis, this article explains the discursive transformation of “the rural,” and its emergence as tool for political, economic and social critique and social reconstruction.

External Grant: LIASE Exploration Grant, Henry Luce Foundation, a $100,000 grant to fund EnviroLab Asia.

Petropoulos, Jonathan. "Art Dealer Networks in the Third Reich and in the Postwar Period." Journal of Contemporary History, 2016.

Abstract: This paper discusses art dealers who trafficked in looted art during the Third Reich and how they re-established networks and continued their trade in the postwar period. Because of the extensive scholarship on these dealers’ behavior during the Third Reich, the focus here lies on their activities after 1945. The article posits that these dealers worked within a series of overlapping networks. A primary network was centered in Munich, with dealers such as Dr. Bruno Lohse (Göring’s art agent in Paris during the war); Julius Böhler, Maria Almas Dietrich, Xaver Scheidwimmer, Karl Haberstock, Walter Andreas Hofer, Adolf Wüster, and Gustav Rochlitz. These individuals worked closely with colleagues in Austria, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein (states contiguous with Bavaria) in the postwar years. Many of the individuals in outer appendages of the networks had not been complicit in the Nazis’ plundering program, yet they trafficked in looted works and formed networks with non-Nazis that extended to Paris, London, and New York. Both the recently discovered Gurlitt cache—over 1,400 pictures located in Munich, Salzburg, and Kornwestheim—and the annotated Weinmüller auction catalogues help illuminate aspects of these networks. Art dealers played a key role in the looting operations during the Third Reich and in the transfer of non-restituted objects in the postwar period. The current generation of the profession may be the key to advancing our understanding of a still incomplete history.

Sarzynski, Sarah. “Inácio da Catingueira (c.1845-1881)” and “Antonio Conselheiro alias Antônio Vicente Mendes Maciel (1828-1897).” Dictionary of Caribbean and Afro-Latin American Biography (DCALAB) 1st ed, edited by Franklin W. Knight and Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Oxford University Press, 2016. 

Tamara Venit-Shelton, ed., Gale Researcher: U.S. History, Series III: Post- Reconstruction through World War I, Farmington Hills, MI: Gale/Cengage Learning, 2016.

Abstract: In the wake of the Civil War, the United States experienced a remarkable transformation. Once a predominantly agrarian society with a strong tradition of localism and a peripheral role in world events, the United States of the late 19th and early 20th centuries was rapidly industrializing and urbanizing, drawing diverse immigrants to its shores, and becoming a preeminent world power with an overseas empire. The federal government took on unprecedented power and spurred on these many changes. Americans responded with optimism and anxiety. Men and women of diverse backgrounds seized opportunities to reform their communities, states, and nation, to uphold traditional values or to embrace new progressive and cosmopolitan attitudes. Their efforts established modern understandings of citizenship, social obligation, and global responsibility that continue to shape the United States today.

Venit-Shelton, Tamara. "Strangers on Familiar Soil: Rediscovering the Chile-California Connection. Yale Agrarian Studies Series. By Edward Dallam Melillo." Western Historical Quarterly Volume 47, Issue 4, 2016, 512-513.