Humanities Institute Supports UM Faculty Research, Student Writers

May 21, 2018

MISSOULA – The Humanities Institute at the University of Montana announced it will fund more than a dozen faculty research projects for the 2018-19 academic year. It also awarded two UM students with writing awards and two instructors with grants to support book publishing.

Undergraduate Ryan Garnsey’s essay “Dostoyevsky: Definite Circumstances and the Character of an Individual” won the Richard Drake Writing Award for Student Essays in the Humanities.

The award honors excellence in writing and the humanities in UM’s College of Humanities and Sciences. The graduate student winner was Dwight Curtis for the essay “The Play Within the Play: Eschaton, Hamlet and ‘Theater Boundaries’ in ‘Infinite Jest.’”

The Humanities Institute awarded UM Professor Anya Jabour in the Department of History its 2018 Baldridge Grant. The fund will support publisher fees for her forthcoming book, “Sophonisba Breckinridge and Women’s Activism in Modern America.”

Associate Professor Jody Pavilack in UM’s history department was the 2017 Baldridge Grant recipient for the Spanish translation of her book “Mining for the Nation: The Politics of Chile’s Coal Communities from the Popular Front to the Cold War.”

Additionally, the Humanities Institute announced its support of the following faculty research projects:

  • Irene Appelbaum, anthropology associate professor, “Grammar and Discourse in Kutenai Tales.”
  • Hiltrud Arens, German professor, “Of Animals and Humans in Yoko Tawada’s Memoirs of a Polar Bear.”
  • Leora Bar-el, anthropology associate professor, “The Dialects of Butte, Montana.”
  • David Beck, Native American studies professor, “‘Bribed with Our Own Money’: Federal Misuse of Tribal Funds.”
  • Abhishek Chatterjee, political science assistant professor, “Property Rights in Colonial India.”
  • John Eglin, history professor, “Commercial Gaming in 18th Century England.”
  • Valerie Hedquist, art professor, “Artists as Prodigals and Wives as Prostitutes: Playing Roles in High Life Portraiture.”
  • Anya Jabour, history professor, “NEH Summer Institute on ‘Suffrage in the Americas.’”
  • Emilie LeBel, music assistant professor, “Women Buddhist Esoterics in Art Song: A Song Cycle for Soprano and Electric Guitar.”
  • Clary Loisel, Spanish professor, “Gender Construction in 20th-century Portuguese Literature.”
  • Quan Manh Ha, English associate professor, “Vietnamese Short Stories about the Vietnam War: A Translation and Anthology.”
  • Tobin Shearer, African American Studies associate professor, “Prayerful Protest: The Use of Religious Resources in Anti-Abortion Protests.”
  • Ruth Vanita, global humanities and religions professor, “Urdu Poetry of Sa’adat Yar Khan and Insha Allah Khan: A Translation and Scholarly Edition.”

The Humanities Institute is dedicated to supporting humanities scholarship across all disciplines, departments and programs at UM. Led by faculty, the institute brings new and exciting research opportunities to both students and faculty, and it offers public lectures about the projects it supports.


Contact: Nathaniel Levtow, director, UM Humanities Institute, 406-243-2845,