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Key words: 'George Orwell' (this phrase)
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AQ-228960-15

Carroll University (Waukesha, WI 53186-5593)
Scott Edward Hendrix (Project Director: September 2014 to present)

NEH Enduring Questions Course on the Social Response to Poverty

The development and teaching of a new seminar for first-year students to examine religious, philosophical, and historical views on poverty and its role in human life.

The proposed course addresses the question of how a society should deal with poverty. From the author of the book of Matthew to George Orwell and beyond, many have struggled with this intransigent issue. It is a question with particular salience to today's "Millenials." Therefore, this is an opportunity to engage and excite students about their education while considering the manifold causes of poverty, its effects, and the way in which people of differing cultures address the issue. I will introduce first year students to a wide range of cultural views and a blend of disciplinary approaches. In this way, I plan to open their eyes to the varied ways that cultural conditions shape the way people view even the most universal and fundamental issues, while also showing how varying disciplinary outlooks work together to enhance our understanding of the world.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Comparative Religion; History, General; Interdisciplinary Studies, General

Program:
Enduring Questions: Pilot Course Grants

Division:
Education Programs

Total amounts:
$18,264 (approved)
$17,959 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2015 – 12/31/2017


AQ-50660-12

New York University (New York, NY 10012-1019)
Martha Dana Rust (Project Director: September 2011 to present)

NEH Enduring Questions Course on "What Is Memory?"

The development of an undergraduate honors seminar on the question, What is memory?

Martha Rust, an associate professor of English with a specialty in medieval literature and a background in nursing, and Suzanne England, a professor of social work with an interest in gerontology, develop a course on memory as a source "from which we draw both in acting as morally astute agents in the present and in envisioning new possibilities for the future." In approaching the subject, the course addresses such subsidiary questions and issues as, Where does memory exist in the brain, and what are its connections with sensory organs? Why do our memories change, and how accurate are they? What is the connection between memory and the self-and with language and story-telling? Can a preoccupation with memories forestall beneficial growth and change? and What events are best forgotten and how do we go about forgetting them? The course is divided into six units, the first three on memory in its "untrained and personal states" and the last three on the "training of memory, its uses and abuses." The first unit approaches childhood memories through readings in Augustine's Confessions, Eric Kandel's In Search of Memory: The Emergence of a New Science of Mind, and Tolstoy's The Death of Ivan Ilyich. The second unit, on the idea of memory, draws on David Bloch, Aristotle on Memory and Recollection; Henri Bergson, Matter and Memory; Sigmund Freud, "Screen Memories"; John Locke, An Essay Concerning Human Understanding; Plato, Theaetetus; William Wordsworth, "Tintern Abbey"; and W.G. Sebald, Vertigo. In the third section, on the science of memory, the class reads more from Kandel's book, studies Jamie Ward's The Student's Guide to Cognitive Neuroscience, and views Akira Kurosawa's film Rashomon. The fourth unit, on memory in art, draws on additional chapters from Augustine, Borges's "Funes the Memorious," Thomas Bradwardine's "On Acquiring a Trained Memory," and A. R. Luria's The Mind of a Mnemonist: A Little Book about a Vast Memory. The fifth section, on cultural memory, includes Italo Calvino's "World Memory," Primo Levi's The Drowned and the Saved, and George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four. In the final unit, on forgetting, the class utilizes Janna Quitney Anderson, "Does Google Make Us Stupid?"; Alice Munro, "The Bear Came Over the Mountain"; and Sarah Polley's film version of Munro's story. Professors Rust and England draw on the materials in the course bibliography to grow intellectually in such areas as cultural memory studies and the practice of memory in a variety of time periods; in addition, Professor England benefits from Professor Rust's nursing background and knowledge of cognitive neuroscience and Professor Rust benefits from Professor England's scholarly expertise. The course includes a website and an electronic discussion board to foster intellectual community.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, General

Program:
Enduring Questions: Pilot Course Grants

Division:
Education Programs

Total amounts:
$25,000 (approved)
$24,744 (awarded)

Grant period:
9/1/2012 – 8/31/2016


FT-56590-09

Sandra Jean Ott
University of Nevada, Reno (Reno, NV 89557-0001)

The Vicissitudes of Purge Justice: An Ethnographic Approach to the Trials of Collaborators, France 1944-1946

The proposed work seeks to assess the justice of judgments made in post-Liberation trials in the borderlands of the Basque Country and Bearn during 1944-1946. I will analyze the backgrounds of the judges, prosecutors, jury members and witnesses; the internal political conflicts between communists and their opponents; and public reactions to the trials in the local press. I will conduct archival research on Germans involved as trial witnesses and will develop further the conceptual, interdisciplinary framework of a book project. The most serious acts of collaboration included treason, espionage and threats to the external security of the nation; and the trial dossiers contain a wealth of information about the people involved in the purge process. These documents raise important questions about human dignity and degradation, the morality of capital punishment, the appropriate exercise of mercy, and the questionable justice of judgments made during the often politicized purge trials.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, General

Program:
Summer Stipends

Division:
Research Programs

Total amounts:
$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2009 – 7/31/2009


GL-20515-83

University of Colorado, Boulder (Boulder, CO 80302-7046)
Virgil Grillo (Project Director: December 1982 to present)

Is This 1984?

To support an investigation of George Orwell's 1984, secondary studies of the novel and its author, and interpretations of the book from the perspectives of historiography, ethics, aesthetics, political science, and the philosophicaland historical aspects of sociology and economics.

Project fields:
British Literature

Program:
Libraries and Archives, Humanities Projects in

Division:
Public Programs

Total amounts:
$91,089 (approved)
$91,089 (awarded)

Grant period:
9/1/1983 – 12/31/1984


GN-*0197-80

Greater Cincinnati TV Educational Foundation (Cincinnati, OH 45214-2834)
Ronald L. Wilson (Project Director: August 1979 to present)

1984- Our World or Orwell's?

To support planning for a television program which will compare the present world with the imagined world that George Orwell portrayed in the novel "l984".

Project fields:
Communications

Program:
Media, Humanities Projects in

Division:
Public Programs

Total amounts:
$19,650 (approved)
$14,002 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/1980 – 10/31/1980