The Department has two students doing honors theses this year, Jeff Lamson and Kevin Galvin. Jeff’s project, “The Carabineros of Chile and the Military Coup of 1973,” will examine the role of the carabineros in the 1973 military coup and the question of how Chile’s socialist president, Salvador Allende had aimed, during his time in office, to fit “this strange entity that was both militaristic and oppressive yet populist in its makeup” into his “peaceful revolution.” Jeff will be traveling to Chile in January for primary and archival research. Kevin’s project, “The Big Dig: Revitalizing Boston’s Seaport District,” will evaluate the economic and cultural impact of the Big Dig, particularly in the city’s Seaport District. Kevin’s research will involve investigations into sources ranging from the Boston Redevelopment Authority’s development plans to the records of various citizens’ clubs (such as the South Boston Irish American Society) and the experiences of individual Seaport area residents.
The History Department has a new Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow this year, Professor Bryce Beemer, who comes to us from the University of Hawaii and will be teaching sections of HI 276: Patterns and Processes in World History, as well as courses in Southeast Asian history.
Professor Tortora led fifty-five students, faculty and staff on a guided tour of the Norridgewock Village Historic Site on November 2, 2013. The tour, sponsored by the Pugh Center and Colby Four Winds, covered the dramatic story of the Abenaki Indians and the French priest who called that village home until an English attack in 1724. Tour stops also included brief lectures about Abenaki and Wabanaki history, culture, warfare and diplomacy.
Colby was well represented on C-SPAN2’s Book TV Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012, when the show visited Maine in its tour of state capitals. History Professors Larissa Taylor, Raffael Scheck, and Elizabeth Leonard were interviewed about their books on Joan of Arc, Hitler’s African victims, and Lincoln’s Judge Advocate General Joseph Holt. Interviews are available on the C-SPAN web site.
Professor Scheck was featured in a C-SPAN interview about his book, Hitler’s African Victims. Scheck has been appointed to a new endowed chair, effective September 1, 2012: the Audrey Wade Hittinger Katz and Sheldon Toby Katz Professorship for Distinguished Teaching. He is also finishing a book manuscript of French colonial prisoners in German captivity 1940-1945. In the course of his archival research for the book, he discovered an unknown report of captivity from eminent poet, philosopher, and statesman Léopold Sédar Senghor (president of Senegal, 1960-1980, theorist of “négritude,” and member of the prestigious Académie française), who spent twenty months in German POW camps and whose career was profoundly influenced by his captivity experience. The French daily newspaper Le Monde interviewed Scheck and published an article about this discovery on 17 June 2011, and the magazine Jeune Afrique published Senghor’s report together with an interview with Scheck on 24 July 2011. Scheck was also interviewed recently for the French documentary “Les 43 Tirailleurs” by Mireille Hannon, which traces a massacre in Clamecy (Burgundy) that he had covered in his book Hitler’s African Victims (Cambridge University Press, 2006; in French: 2007; in German: 2009). The Musée de la Résistance in Saint Brisson organized a conference on this massacre, inviting Scheck to give the keynote lecture. The film was released at the end of the conference.
Professor Taylor was recently invited to be part of a filming in France of a two-part documentary on “Ken Follett’s Medieval World”. Her segment was on medieval women, and she was interviewed for the documentary. She was asked to show Ken Follett Joan of Arc sites in Rouen and Chinon, France. This will accompany British TV Channel 4 and German TV’s production of a miniseries on Pillars of the Earth and World Without End this fall. Professor Taylor is President Emerita for 2012 of the American Catholic Historical Association.
Above images are of Professor Taylor, Ken Follett, and location in France.