IPRH: Latest News

IPRH: Latest News

  • 1/10/2018

    The Humanities Without Walls Consortium, funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, fosters interdisciplinary, collaborative research, teaching, and scholarship in the humanities, sponsoring new areas of inquiry that cannot be created or maintained without cross-institutional cooperation.   On Thursday, December 14, the Consortium announced the results of its latest research challenge initiative, “The Work of the Humanities in a Changing Climate.”  It awarded one of these grants—a multi-year investment of $138,360—to a team of humanists from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Michigan State University, and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.  The award will support their multi-year research project, titled “The Classroom and the Future of the Historical Record.” 

    This project will investigate recent, profound shifts in how the sources of our knowledge about the past are made.  Mobile digital technologies have allowed documentation to become an ubiquitous practice that extends far beyond traditional memory institutions such as libraries and scholarly presses.  The Internet is not an archive in a professional sense, but it is filled with a vast panoply of artifacts—images, sounds, films, texts, and data—digitized by people around the world, from originals of their own choosing.  Many of these sources can be difficult to interpret or cite, however.  Digitization often results in radical de-contextualization, with provenance and proof of authenticity being lost along the way.  Much of this new historical record is being built on proprietary platforms provided by IT corporations (Facebook, Twitter).  Their primary aim is to commercialize private data, rather than to preserve and sustain knowledge of the past as a common good.

    Over the course of the three years of the study, students, faculty, and staff from the three participating universities will explore how higher education should respond to this shifting environment for the production of history.  They will develop education-based practices for documentary and data literacy work in the 21st century, and partner with students to create better models for producing, preserving, and publishing the past. 

    At Michigan State University, Sharon Leon and Brandon Locke from the Lab for the Education and Advancement in Digital Research (LEADR) will develop a curriculum to teach students how to produce and analyze historical data.  At the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Patrick Jones, William G. Thomas, and Aaron Johnson will work with K-12 teachers to bring their innovative digitization project “History Harvest” to Nebraska public schools.  Scholars at the University of Illinois, meanwhile, will build a curriculum that works across the entire life cycle of sources, from their initial identification, to their preservation and publication, to their use within education, research, and public history.  (Kathryn J. Oberdeck, Daniel Gilbert, Bonnie Mak, and John Randolph (Primary Investigator) will lead the group in Urbana-Champaign.)

    Humanities Without Walls funds will be used to support the work of graduate and undergraduate students on the project.  In particular, graduate students will be made lead researchers on the project, as part of a special Graduate Laboratory Practicum.   Working as a cohort, they will collaborate across institutions to develop documentary applications, skills, and practices that they can carry over into their post-graduate careers, in a range of fields.   Over the course of the project, HWW funds will also allow the team to convene for workshops where they can discuss the results of their local experiments and prepare for joint presentations of their ideas.  The group intends, as well, to share its applications and model curricula through journal publications and open educational resources.

  • 10/6/2017

    Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities
    Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research
    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


    The Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities (IPRH), http://www.iprh.illinois.edu/ at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is seeking a Project Manager to be responsible for coordinating, managing and supporting the Training in Digital Methods for Humanists (TDMH) pilot program, and other IPRH initiatives as needed.  Focus and training in digital humanities methods is imperative to the success of the eligible incumbent for this position.

    The Project Manager will accomplish strategic objectives by overseeing multiple project activities,   provide effective coordination of the unit’s projects and management of their inter-dependencies and initial and ongoing coordination of the TDMH pilot program and other IPRH academic and curricular projects as they arise.

    Major Duties & Responsibilities:

    • Coordinate and serve as the main point of contact for all operational and faculty-development aspects of the Training in Digital Methods for Humanists (TDMH) pilot program.
    • Survey the landscape of institutional resources (both human and otherwise) for the TDMH program, and work to cultivate collaborative partners and networks as necessary to support the work of the program.
    • Coordinate and steer the activities of the TDMH Working Group.
    • Run the application, selection, and notification process for the TDMH program.
    • Investigate external resources available to TDMH Fellows, keeping a current list of opportunities and assisting Fellows with accessing those opportunities.
    • Assist Fellows with identifying courses to complete their digital methods training, and facilitate navigating the audit, or similar, processes for course attendance.
    • Run the application, selection, and notification process for the TDMH program.
    • Serve as liaison between the Fellows and the wider intellectual community, including facilitating relationships with the Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning (CITL) and similar campus resources to foster the development of digital methods for undergraduate classroom instruction.
    • Conduct research and data collection and assessment on the TDMH program to document and evaluate its impact and sustainability.
    • Research grant opportunities and spearhead the preparation of funding proposals to support current TDMH projects and future iterations.
    • Organize regular events, activities, and final conference in 2021.  Coordinate with Library and Scholarly Commons faculty and staff for digital humanities methods brown bags and other co-curricular programming events.
    • Prepare interim and final reports on the project.
    • Investigate and pursue personal professional development opportunities in digital methods to deepen knowledge and stay ahead of current trends.
    • Provide support to a variety of emerging projects, including Mellon-funded initiatives under development, as determined by the needs of IPRH, including the Mellon Emerging Areas in the Humanities Certificate Programs.
    • Supervision, tasking and scheduling of staff, as needed; and maintaining appropriate staffing levels to ensure project success. 

    Position Requirements and Qualifications:

    Required: Receipt of PhD in a humanities field. A minimum of 2 years’ experience in digital humanities or digital methods through either academic training or career development.  Proven record of developing successful professional collaborations.  Work experience in a higher-education environment. Strong project-management skills, time management, detail orientation, and capacity to work independently.  Effective interpersonal skills; ability to work collaboratively and foster mutually beneficial partnerships.  Robust writing, research, and communication skills.  Proficiency in Microsoft Office suite. 

    Preferred: Previous supervisory experience.  Familiarity with Python, HTML, and relational database programming. Familiarity with Scalar and/or Omeka. 

    Proposed start date: March 1, 2018.

    Salary: Commensurate with qualifications and experience. 

    Appointment Status: Full-time academic professional appointment.  Qualified individuals will be eligible to receive vacation, sick, and personal leave; retirement through the State Universities Retirement System; and group health, dental, vision and life insurance.

    To apply:  For full consideration, applications must be received by November 15, 2017.  Search will remain open until qualified candidate is identified. Interviews may be conducted prior to search closing date, but hiring decision will not be made until after the closing date. To apply, submit an online profile through https://jobs.illinois.edu, and upload a letter that details qualifications noted above, CV/Resume and the names and contact information of three professional references. Also required is a narrative of no more than 1,000 words explaining the intended career trajectory and addressing the following questions:

    • What is your vision of Digital Humanities in the academy today?
    • What are your intellectual and professional goals for this position?
    • What experience do you have in facilitating intellectual community?
    • What in your career trajectory leads you to seek this kind of work?

     All requested information must be submitted for your application to be considered. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

    For further information please contact Erica Hanson, HR Associate, Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research, at elhanson@illinois.edu.

    The University of Illinois conducts criminal background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer.

    The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer. Minorities, women, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. For more information, visit http://go.illinois.edu/EEO. To learn more about the University’s commitment to diversity, please visit http://www.inclusiveillinois.illinois.edu.

  • 4/21/2017

    It is with great pleasure that IPRH announces that Professor Bob Morrissey (History) will be the Mellon Faculty Fellow in Environmental Humanities. Professor Morrissey's fellowship term will begin in the Fall of 2017 and extend through 2020.

    A native of Oak Park, IL, Bob Morrissey is Associate Professor of History, Helen Corley Petit Scholar (2016–17), and Conrad Humanities Scholar (2016–2021) at U of I. A specialist on early American history, his scholarship has focused on the relationship of people and non-human nature in the early modern period, and particularly in the Great Lakes and Mississippi Valley regions of North America. In his current projects, he explores how the special ecological transition zone of the mid-continent—the former tallgrass prairie peninsula which covered much of Illinois, Iowa, Southern Minnesota and Wisconsin—shaped a dynamic and often overlooked human history between the fall of Cahokia and the arrival of the steel plows that utterly transformed the tallgrass in the mid-19th century. A major premise of this project is that the middle of North America was one of the most important ecological and cultural borderlands of early America. In a larger sense, Morrissey’s intellectual projects have explored the important role of the North American heartland in environmental history and thought. Bob has published work widely in journals such as Journal of American History, William and Mary Quarterly, Environment and History, and Early American Studies. His book,Empire by Collaboration: Indians, Colonists, and Governments in Colonial Illinois Country, is available from University of Pennsylvania Press.

    As the Mellon Faculty Fellow in Environmental Humanities, Professor Morrissey will serve as the primary supervisor for the Environmental Humanities Research Group. He will serve as a mentor for the post-doctoral fellows, pre-doctoral fellows, and undergraduate interns, and as the leader for the research group’s initiatives, which will include a curriculum development for an undergraduate certificate program in Environmental Humanities.

    To learn more about the IPRH-Mellon Fellowships, please visit the IPRH website.

    Please join IPRH in offering our congratulations to Professor Morrissey!

  • 4/13/2017

    The Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities (IPRH) is pleased to announce the 2017–18 IPRH-Andrew W. Mellon pre-doctoral fellows and undergraduate interns in Bio-Humanities. They will join faculty fellow Professor Samantha Frost, as well as post-doctoral fellows Daniel Liu and Rosine Kelz, as part of the Bio-Humanities Research Group. You can learn more about the “Bio-Humanities” research initiative at the fellowships section of the IPRH website.

    Please join IPRH in congratulating the below fellows and interns on their selection from a very competitive field of applicants.


    IPRH-Mellon Pre-Doctoral Fellows in Bio-Humanities, 2017–18

    Robert Rouphail (History), “Disastrous Kinships: Nature, Gender, and Resilience in Moder Mauritius, 1892–1980”

    Michael Uhall (Political Science), “Companion Ecologies”


    IPRH-Mellon Undergraduate Interns in Bio-Humanities, 2017-18

    Victoria Halewicz (Psychology, minor in Communication)

    Hyun Park (Psychology and English)

    Henry Yeary (English)

  • 4/11/2017

    The Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities invites you to be our guest for our annual award reception on May 1 honoring the faculty, graduate student, and undergraduate student recipients of this year's IPRH Prizes for Research in the Humanities. We are pleased to announce this year's prize winners below. Please join us in congratulating them.



    José B. Capino (English), “Figures of Empire: Documentaries in the Philippines” in The Colonial Documentary Film in South and South-East Asia. Ed., Ian Aitken and Camille Deprez (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, Dec. 2016): 79-104.

    Craig Koslofsky (History), “Parisian Cafés in European Perspective: Contexts of Consumption, 1660‐1730,” in French History 31,1 (2017): 39-62.

    Honorable Mention:

    Alistair Black (I School) “The Long Journey to Libraries of Light,” an extract from Libraries of Light: British Public Library Design in the Long 1960s. (London: Routledge, 2017).




    Christine Hedlin (English), “Ethiopiansim and the Turn-of-the-Century African American Novel,” submitted for ENG 599: Thesis Preparation, supervised by Professor Justine Murison

    Honorable Mention:

    Lisa Ortiz (EPOL), “#yonomequito: Deconstructing classed and neoliberal values haunting a Puerto Rican campaign,” written for ANTH 466: Class Culture, and Society, taught by Professor Faye Harrison.




    Madeline Decker (English), “What’s Love Got to Do with It: Intersections of the Personal and Political in The Bostonians and Obergefell v. Hodges,” Nominated by Professor Justine Murison, and written for ENG 300: “Inventing Privacy in 19th-Century America,” taught by Professor Murison (English).

    Honorable Mention:

    Kuizhi (Lewis) Wang (Philosophy),“Role of Teleology in Kant’s Philosophy of History,” nominated by Professor Alexandra Newton and written for PHIL 501: “Seminar in the History of Philosophy,” taught by Professor Newton (Philosophy).