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Syracuse University, College of Arts and Sciences

The SU Humanities Center appoints faculty fellows

Program enables professors to engage in research, public programming

Jan. 19, 2012, by Rob Enslin

The Syracuse University Humanities Center has announced its internal faculty fellows for Spring 2012. They are Amy Kallander, assistant professor of history, as well as Rania Habib and Stefano Giannini, both assistant professors of languages, literatures and linguistics (LLL).

The fellowship program carries a one semester teaching reduction so each fellow may complete a proposed research or creative project. In addition to continuing to serve in his or her home department or program, each fellow participates in various research initiatives and public events. Among them are The SU Humanities Center Faculty Fellows Symposia, part of The SU Humanities Center’s Spring Symposia. More information is available by calling 315-443-5708.

“Internal Faculty Fellowships are designed to recognize and support the ongoing excellence of our humanities faculty,” says Gregg Lambert, Dean’s Professor of the Humanities and founding director of the SU Humanities Center. “These fellows are not only outstanding scholars, but also are caring mentors, exceptional role models and innovative teachers. They deserve an experience that is both personally rewarding and professionally enriching.”

The fellows, he adds, were chosen after a rigorous selection process by a subcommittee of the faculty advisory board of The SU Humanities Center.

Kallander is appointed to both the Department of History and the Department of Women’s & Gender Studies, where she is an affiliated faculty member. She also is a core faculty member of the Middle Eastern Studies Program. In addition to the modern Middle East, Kallander examines the social and cultural histories of the Ottoman Empire, gender and colonialism, and family histories. She has written extensively about the social histories of women and families who governed Tunisia in the 18th and 19th centuries, before turning to more contemporary fare, including bloggers and the Tunisian revolution, French support for Tunisian authoritarianism and representations of Tunisian modernity. Her project, “Friends of Tunisia: The Multiple Meanings of Modernity under Ben Ali (1987-2011),” explores the impact of the longtime Tunisian president, who was ousted last year. She earned a Ph.D. in Middle East history from the University of California, Berkeley.

Habib teaches linguistics, where she also coordinates the Arabic language program. Much of her research is interdisciplinary, drawing on subfields of linguistics, including sociolinguistics, bilingualism, cross-cultural communication, and child and adolescent language. Her fellowship project, “Comparing Urban Linguistic Influence in Children, Adolescents and Parents in a Rural Community in Syria,” combines cutting-edge scholarship in sociolinguistics, second-language acquisition and Middle Eastern studies. Habib earned a Ph.D. in linguistics from the University of Florida.

Giannini teaches modern Italian literature, where he coordinates the Italian language program. His research encompasses the historical novel, poetry and intersections between historical memory and philology (i.e., the study of literary texts). He is the author of numerous articles on both sides of the Atlantic, and of a recent book about the role of coffeehouses in shaping Italian culture. His fellowship project, “Maps of Absence: Modern Italian Writers in Alexandria, Egypt,” stems from a National Endowment for the Humanities research project examining soon-to-be-recognized accomplishments of four Italian writers in North Africa more than a century ago. He earned a Ph.D. in Italian studies from The Johns Hopkins University.