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Syracuse University, College of Arts and Sciences

John Burdick to receive 2011 College of Arts and Sciences Wasserstrom Prize

Award presented during 2011 Doctoral Hooding Ceremony

April 12, 2011, by Judy Holmes

John Burdick, professor of anthropology in Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and The College of Arts and Sciences, will receive the 2011 William Wasserstrom Prize for the Teaching of Graduate Students.  The award will be presented during the 2011 Graduate School Doctoral Hooding Ceremony and Reception, 6 p.m. Friday, May 13.

The prize is awarded annually in memory of English Professor William Wasserstrom to faculty members in The College of Arts and Sciences who exemplify Wasserstrom’s outstanding success as a graduate seminar leader, research and dissertation director, and advisor and role model for graduate students.

Burdick directs the Advocacy and Activism concentration in the Maxwell School’s Program for the Advancement of Research on Conflict and Collaboration (PARCC) and is on the steering committee for the Maxwell School’s Program on Latin America and the Caribbean.

Burdick’s research focuses on understanding the role of grassroots action in bringing about social, political, and cultural change in Latin America and the United States. He has studied grassroots organizations in Brazil, including liberationist Catholicism, Pentecostalism, African religious movements, the Workers' Party, the black consciousness movement, and the landless workers' movement. In the United States, he studies community organizing.

He is currently completing a book that examines the role of music in the antiracism movement among evangelical churches in São Paulo, Brazil. Burdick is committed to building ties between academic research and social movement practice, through creating collaborative research teams and introducing research findings into social movements' ongoing self-assessments.

Burdick received a Fulbright-Hayes award for research in Brazil in 2004 and in 1995, and a 2004 National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Research Stipend. Other awards include a Social Science Research Council award (1996), a Tinker Foundation Grant to Enhance Graduate Student Education (2004), a Wilson Innovation Award (2001), and a Rockefeller Foundation Grant (1995).

In addition to numerous publications in scholarly journals and book chapters, Burdick is the author of Legacies of Liberation: the Progressive Catholic Church in Brazil at the Start of a New Millennium (Ashgate International, London 2004); Blessed Anastacia: Women, Race, and Popular Christianity in Brazil (Routledge, New York 1998); and Looking for God in Brazil: The Progressive Catholic Church in Urban Brazil’s Religious Arena (Berkeley University of California Press 1993), which was translated into Portuguese as A Procura deDeus no Brasil: A Igreja Catolica Progressista na Arena Religiosa do Brasil Urbano (Editora Mauad, Rio de Janeiro1998).

Burdick holds a Ph.D. in cultural anthropology from City University of New York Graduate Center, a master’s degree in social history from Yale University, and a B.A. in history from the University of Michigan.