Monday, March 24, 2014

Bloomsburg Explores Digital Humanities

This spring the Bloomsburg University Institute for Culture and Society’s Annual “Bloomsburg Explores” Symposium presents Bloomsburg Explores Digital Humanities. The symposium is a three-day series of discussions, lectures and other events centering on digital tools and projects relevant to faculty and student creative work and scholarship, and on the future of digital liberal arts.

The lineup for the symposium includes the following events:

Faculty Panel Discussion: “Digital Tools and Projects in the Arts and Humanities” (Monday, April 14 at 3 PM in Centennial 239) featuring Professors Sue O’Donnell (Art and Art History), Alla Myzelev (Art and Art History), Robert Dunkelberger (Library), Stephanie Schlitz (English), Christopher Podeschi (Sociology), Jennifer Whisner (EGGS), M. Safa Saracoglu (History)

Student Panel Discussion: “Digital Projects In and Out of the Classroom” (Wednesday, April 16 at 7 PM in Centennial 201) An all-student panel will discuss class-based projects, internship projects and student participation in University-related programs (e.g., the BU Writing Center, the Center for Community Research and Consulting, the University Archives, and the Magee Archives Project)

Professor William Pannapacker
Featured Guest Lecture: "Stop Calling it Digital Humanities, Start Calling it Digital Liberal Arts" April 21, at 7 PM, McCormick Center for Human Services Rm. 1303) from Professor William Pannapacker, Professor of English at Hope College and founding director of the Hope College Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Scholars Program in the Arts and Humanities, which has become a model for the integration of digital technology into undergraduate research in the humanities.

The Institute for Culture and Society promotes research, scholarship, and the creative and performing arts in the College of Liberal Arts at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania. The Institute organizes lectures, presentations, and performances that explore and elucidate aspects of human culture and society. Through such events, the ICS works to share the intellectual and creative achievements of COLA faculty and students with the Bloomsburg University community and with the regional community.

For more information, visit the ICS Symposiums page.


Thursday, March 13, 2014

History Student Presents Research at the National Collegiate Honors Council in New Orleans

Allison Huber, a BU senior double-majoring in History and Secondary Education/Citizenship, presented a research paper at the National Collegiate Honors Council annual conference in New Orleans this past November on the topic of "The Nobles in the French Revolution."  Her presentation summarized findings from her year-long BU Honors Independent Study project, mentored by History professor Michael Hickey.

Allison Huber presenting at the National Collegiate Honors Council,
courtesy of Michael Hickey
Huber presented her work on a panel at the National Collegiate Honors Council annual conference, which gathered on November 6-10 in New Orleans.  The event brought together hundreds of Honors Students from across the country, including seven BU students.  Huber was the group's only COLA representative and the only BU student to present a formal paper rather than participate in a poster session.  Her paper was selected by a NCHC research committee in a competitive process and was included in a panel on Student Interdisciplinary Research. 

Huber studied how aristocrats described and understood their own experiences during the French Revolution in their diaries, journals, letters, and memoirs, and used that information to make generalizations about how nobles viewed and reacted to revolutionary transformations of society. 

She found that many nobles in France initially supported the Revolution. In general, though, noble fear of the revolutionary government started soon after the abolition of privileges in 1789 and then multiplied as the moderate revolutionary government of 1789-92 instituted increasingly anti-aristocratic policies. Noble fear and hatred of the revolution peaked with the Jacobin Reign of Terror in 1793-94. Huber concluded that tracing the evolution of aristocratic attitudes in 1789-1794 helps us understand the nobility's actions during the Third, or Thermidorian, Phase of the Revolution in 1795-1799. 

The fifteen minute presentation focused on the sources Huber used and her research methods, her main conclusions, and possible areas for further research.  Her presentation was followed by questions from the panel discussant and the audience.  "It was an incredible experience and I was proud to represent the university and the Honors Program,” said Huber.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Political Science students visit PA's Coal Region

Dr. Peter Doerschler's First-Year Seminar on the PA Coal Region, which looks at the history and culture along with recent social and political issues of the coal region, went on a field trip on Saturday, Nov. 9 through the southern and eastern coal fields that stretch as far south as Pottsville up to Hazelton, PA.

Students are standing with tour guide Bob Zimmerman (Class of 1968) at Eckley,
courtesy of Dr. Doerschler

Along the way, Doerschler and his students took a walking tour of Mount Carmel and toured Centralia, where an underground mine fire has been raging for over 50 years, forcing all but a handful of the 2,000 or so residents to abandon the town.

Students also discussed religious and ethnic communities with Fr.Frank Karwacki in Mount Carmel, learned about the mining history of Shenandoah from several local citizens, and took a walking tour of Eckley Miners’ Village in Eckley, PA, a former “patch town” that has been converted into a historical site where visitors can observe how miners lived and worked in the mid- and late 1800s.

Students with Fr. Karwacki (Class of 1967)
and Kyle Grybos (Class of 2010) in Mount Carmel,
courtesy of Dr. Doerschler

Monday, November 25, 2013

Students present research projects at PA Sociological Society

On October 12, two BU students in the department of Sociology, Social Work, and Criminal Justice successfully presented their research projects, supervised by Dr. Megumi Omori, at the annual meeting of the Pennsylvania Sociological Society held at Penn College in Williamsport.

Ethan Minier and Stephen Staats at the Pennsylvania Sociology Society,
courtesy of Dr. Omori

Ethan R. Minier, a senior sociology major, presented research titled “An Assessment of Mortality for Pennsylvania’s Aging Population” and Stephen Staats, a senior criminal justice major, presented his presentation on “Low Abortion Rates in Wyoming.” Congratulations to both!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

English Classes Take Learning Outside the Classroom

Dr. Christina Francis' English 288 – Feminist Reading of Culture traveled to New York City on September 18th to visit the New York Public Library exhibit entitled “The ABC of It: Why Children’s Books Matter” as part of their exploration of fairy tales and gender representation this semester. 
Students on the steps of the New York Public Library,
courtesy of Dr. Francis

Student particularly enjoyed learning about banned children’s books and children’s literature from other cultures, and they also attended a performance of the newly adapted Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella on Broadway, which offered a Cinderella more in control of her own glass slipper. The trip was sponsored by a College of Liberal Arts Curriculum Enhancement Grant and the English Department.


Students in Dr. Francis' English 341 – Medieval Literature traveled to the PA Renaissance Faire from October 11 - 13 in order to experience some approximation of the material culture and activities associated with the Middle Ages. Students have been studying the original stories of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table by writers such as Chretien de Troyes and Sir Thomas Malory.  


courtesy of Dr. Francis
At the Faire, students witnessed a game of human chess--a board game invented during the Middle Ages--listened to talks on archery, sword-making, glassblowing, and falconry and watched several sessions of tournament and combat jousting, a form of military training common in the medieval period. Medieval and Renaissance torture devices were on prominent display during this Halloween season.

Students standing with a replica guillotine,
courtesy of Dr. Francis

Friday, November 8, 2013

What We Did Over Summer "Break": Philosophy Professors Attend Conferences in Greece & Scotland

Dr. Steven Hales of the philosophy department participated in two conferences this past summer. The first was a "Workshop on Luck" at the Department of Philosophy of University of Edinburgh, Scotland. Dr. Hales delivered an invited talk entitled "Some Analyses of Luck and their Failures."

The second conference was the 23rd World Congress of Philosophy in Athens, Greece, where Dr. Hales gave three talks. His invited addresses were "Motivations for Relativism as a Solution to Disagreements" and "Synchronic and Diachronic Luck." He also contributed a paper entitled "Virtue Epistemology and the Value Problem."

"Both conferences were an outstanding opportunity to hear other researchers from around the world, as well as engage more broadly in the community of scholars," said Hales.

Dr. Lee and Dr. Hales at the remains of Poros,
courtesy of Dr. Hales
Dr. Wendy Lynne Lee, professor of philosophy, also gave a talk at the Athens conference. Together, they visited the remains of the Poros, the state prison of ancient Athens. Located in the ancient Agora, it is the likely location of the imprisonment and death of Socrates.