Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

23
Feb
12

what do cherry blossoms have to do with samurai?

CONSTANTINE VAPORIS, DIRECTOR OF THE ASIAN STUDIES PROGRAM AND PROFESSOR OF HISTORY

Constantine Vaporis is a consultant and writer for a new exhibit at the National Geographic Museum entitled “Samurai: The Warrior Transformed,” which opens March 7, 2012, and runs through September 3.

The exhibition was planned to coincide with and D.C.’s annual National Cherry Blossom Festival, which this year marks the 100th anniversary of the gift of 3,000 cherry trees to Washington, D.C. by the government of Japan

But what do samurai have to do with cherry blossoms?


 

Constantine Vaporis, director of UMBC’s Asian studies program and professor of history, has received numerous fellowships for research in Japanese history including a Fulbright Scholar’s Award and an NEH Fellowship for College Teachers. He is the author of “Breaking Barriers: Travel and the State in Early Modern Japan” and “Tour of Duty: Samurai, Military Service in Edo and the Culture of Early Modern Japan.”

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18
Jan
12

ellen handler spitz in czech republic and india

Ellen Handler Spitz, honors college professor of visual arts, spent her winter break traveling to the Czech Republic, for research, and to India, where she gave the first annual alumni lecture to English Alumni Association of Ravenshaw University in Cuttack and the keynote address at the International Seminar on Children’s Literature and Politics.

Spitz shares an account of her journeys and experiences abroad below.

My trip started in the Czech Republic, where I am researching the children’s drawings from Terezin, a Nazi concentration camp. This project started for me years ago when Peter Jelavich, a Weimar period historian who is now at Johns Hopkins University , asked me to work with him on a children’s opera, ‘Brundibar’ by Hans Krasa, which was produced in the camp and performed entirely by children. (This opera was performed last year in Baltimore at the Chizik Amuno Synagogue, where I gave an illustrated introductory talk.) Since first visiting the camp 20 years ago, I have written and lectured on the opera and Friedl Dicker-Brandeis, the Bauhaus-trained artist who became the children’s art teacher. Over 4,000 drawings survive today, saved and hidden by her before she was taken to the gas chambers of Auschwitz; to write on them is my next project.

Continue reading ‘ellen handler spitz in czech republic and india’

16
Nov
11

umbc on “60 minutes”

We met a man with an unusual name you’ve probably never heard of, but his message about education and America’s future is something we thought you should know.

Freeman Hrabowski says the United States is not producing enough scientists and engineers – professions critical to creating more jobs.

Hrabowski is president of the University of Maryland Baltimore County. UMBC, as it’s called, was once known primarily as a commuter school. Today, this mid-sized state university has earned a reputation as one of the most innovative schools in the country. Especially when it comes to getting students into math and science and keeping them there.

So begins a segment on “60 Minutes” that follows UMBC President Freeman Hrabowski and Meyerhoff students and alumni to explain the UMBC approach to graduating more students, especially minorities, in STEM fields.

See the full segment here.

10
Oct
11

Leslie Morgan Helps Sun Readers Find Quality Assisted Living

“When an older family member needs supportive housing, there’s often a rush to find a place with the ‘best quality,'” wrote Leslie Morgan, professor of sociology, in an October 3rd Baltimore Sun op-ed. “But what is quality?” she asked. “Do family or friends value the same things as the future assisted-living resident?”

In searching for assisted living for a family member, Morgan recommends looking beyond a facility’s cosmetic factors to attend to the individual habits, interests and needs of the person who will live there. “What are their priorities?”; “How important is flexibility in their daily routine?”; “What about continuing lifelong behaviors, like having a drink before dinner, attending religious services or spending time outdoors?”

To learn more, read “Questions to Ask Before Choosing Assisted Living” or watch Morgan’s Talking Heads video. See also Morgan’s recent Washington Post letter “The unsung heroes of elder care.” Leslie Morgan is UMBC’s Lipitz Professor of the arts, humanities and social sciences for academic year 2011-2012 and one of the nation’s foremost scholars on aging.

13
Sep
11

life and loss in the shadow of the holocaust, part two

REBECCA BOEHLING, PROFESSOR OF HISTORY AND DIRECTOR OF THE DRESHER CENTER FOR THE HUMANITIES
Rebecca Boehling and Uta Larkey, an associate professor of German studies at Goucher College, discuss their new book, Life and Loss in the Shadow of the Holocaust.

This fascinating and deeply-moving account of Jewish family life before, during and after the Holocaust reveals how the Kaufmann-Steinberg family was pulled apart under the Nazi regime and left divided between Germany, the US and Palestine. The family’s unique eight-way correspondence across two generations brings into sharp focus the dilemma of Jews in Nazi Germany facing the painful decision of when and if they should leave the country.

See a previously posted video with Rebecca Boehling and Suzanne Ostrand-Rosenberg, a professor of biology at UMBC, on whose family letters the book is based.

16
Aug
11

shaped by 9/11

REBECCA ADELMAN, ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF MEDIA AND COMMUNICATION STUDIES
SETH MESSINGER, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR OF SOCIOLOGY AND ANTHROPOLOGY

The events of September 11, 2001 changed course of history. For Rebecca Adelman, assistant professor of media and communication studies, and Seth Messinger, associate professor of sociology and anthropology, they also changed the course of their life’s work. The attacks and subsequent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan led them to study new issues and respond to new needs. This video includes reflections from Adelman, who examines imagery of the War on Terror, and Messinger, who works with veterans recovering from limb loss.

For more UMBC experts on 9/11, click here.

22
Jul
11

life and loss in the shadow of the holocaust

REBECCA BOEHLING, PROFESSOR OF HISTORY AND DIRECTOR OF THE DRESHER CENTER FOR THE HUMANITIES

While cleaning out her mother’s closet a few years ago, Suzanne Ostrand-Rosenberg, a professor of biology at UMBC, discovered a worn brown cardboard box covered with German writing and filled with wartime letters. Most of the letters were dated between 1938 and 1941 – after her mother had left Germany and come to the United States. Now, thanks to Rebecca Boehling and Uta Larkey, an associate professor of German studies at Goucher College, this extraordinary family story comes to life in a new book: Life and Loss in the Shadow of the Holocaust

This fascinating and deeply-moving account of Jewish family life before, during and after the Holocaust reveals how the Kaufmann-Steinberg family was pulled apart under the Nazi regime and left divided between Germany, the US and Palestine. The family’s unique eight-way correspondence across two generations brings into sharp focus the dilemma of Jews in Nazi Germany facing the painful decision of when and if they should leave the country.

Published by Cambridge University Press.




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