Presenter Bios

James Chandler

James Chandler is Director of the Franke Institute for Humanities, as well as the Barbara E. & Richard J. Franke Professor, Department of English Language & Literature, Committees on the History of Culture, Cinema & Media Studies, and Interdisciplinary Studies in the Humanities, and the College; and Director of the Center for Disciplinary Innovation. His research and teaching interests are centered in the Romantic movement in England but he works more broadly in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century literature, in early twentieth-century cinema, and in Irish studies.

Ted Cohen

Ted Cohen is Professor in Philosophy, the College, the Committee on Art and Design, and the Committee on General Studies in the Humanities. He received his A.B. from the University of Chicago in 1962, his Ph.D. from Harvard in 1972, and has taught at the University of Chicago since 1967. Cohen works mainly in the philosophy of art. Among his recent publications are the book Jokes, and the essays, "Identifying with Metaphor," "Metaphor, Feeling, and Narrative," and "Three Problems in Kant's Aesthetics."

Anastasia Giannakidou

Anastasia Giannakidou is an associate professor in the Department of Linguistics and the Humanities Collegiate Division. Professor Giannakidou works on formal semantics and pragmatics, syntax, and their interfaces. Her research covers languages such as Greek, Germanic, Romance, Basque and Mandarin Chinese. She is currently involved in psycholinguistic research with Prof. Goldin-Meadow from the Psyschology Deptartment of the University of Chicago. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Groningen in 1997, and has taught at Chicago since 2001.

Philip Gossett

Philip Gossett, Robert W. Reneker Distinguished Service Professor of Music, is a music historian with special interests in 19th-century Italian opera, sketch studies, aesthetics, textual criticism, and performance practice. Professor Gossett is author of two books on Donizetti and of Divas and Scholars: Performing Italian Opera (Chicago, 2006), and he serves as General Editor of The Works of Giuseppe Verdi and of Works of Gioachino Rossini.

Thomas Gunning

Tom Gunning is the Edwin A. and Betty L. Bergman Distinguished Service Professor Professor, Department of Art History, Committee on Cinema & Media Studies, and the College, and the Chair, Committee on Cinema & Media Studies. He works on problems of film style and interpretation, film history and film culture. His published work – approximately one hundred publications – has concentrated on early cinema from its origins to the WW I, as well as on the culture of modernity from which cinema arose. He has written on the Avant-Garde film, both in its European pre-World War I manifestations and the American Avant-Garde film up to the present day. He also also written on genre in Hollywood cinema and on the relation between cinema and technology. The issues of film culture, the historical factors of exhibition and criticism and spectator's experience throughout film history are recurrent themes in his work.

Rebecca Hasselbach

Rebecca Hasselbach is an Assistant Professor of Comparative Semitics in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations (NELC) and at the Oriental Institute.

Richard Hellie

Richard Hellie is the Thomas E. Donnelley Professor of Russian History in the Department of History and the College, Chairman of the Russian Civilization Program, and the former Director of the Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies.

Judy Hoffman

Judy Hoffman has worked in film and video for over 25 years. She was active in the Alternative Television Movement of the early 1970's, experimenting in the use of small format video equipment. During the 1973 International Visual Anthropology Conference, she assisted French ethnographer and filmmaker Jean Rouch. She researched a film project for him, and became deeply influenced by cinema verite and the idea of shared anthropology. Hoffman played a major role in the formation of Kartemquin Films, working on many of their film productions and was the Associate Producer on Golub, which debuted at the New York Film Festival. She is currently on Kartemquin's Board of Directors. The first woman film Camera Assistant in Chicago, Hoffman was an apprentice in IATSE, and worked on feature films, but ultimately chose documentary. Her credits include numerous PBS series, including Daley: The Last Boss, for "American Experience," and Ken Burns' Baseball, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Jazz. A major focus of her work has been with the Kwakwaka'wakw First Nation of British Columbia, producing films and videotapes about the reclaiming of Native culture. She was the Associate Producer on the award-winning Box of Treasures, a film tracing their efforts to repatriate cultural artifacts. For over ten years Hoffman directed a video training program on the N'amgis Reserve so that the Kwakwaka'wakw could make their own tapes, and she continues to work with them on their projects. She received a VOICE Media Activism Award from Chicago's Center for Community and Media in 1994, was a Visiting Artist at Middlebury College in 1997, and was the Guest Artist at the Big Muddy Film Festival in 1999. She was awarded the 2004 Nelson Algren Committee Award for community activists making a significant contribution to Chicago life.

Matthew Jesse Jackson

A specialist in contemporary and postwar European, Soviet and Russian art, Matthew Jesse Jackson received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. His research interests include the theory and practice of the Euro- American historical and neo-avant-gardes, conceptual art, the history of art history, management and performance art, the collaborative and the collective in the contemporary art world, Americanization, and critical theory.

James Ketelaar

James Ketelaar is Professor in History and East Asian Languages and Civilizations and Director of the Center for East Asian Studies. He is currently finishing a book on the importance of the barbarian and the frontier in the construction of Japanese national identity and national history, tentatively titled Ezo: A History of Japan's Eastern Frontier (Princeton University Press). He is beginning a book project on the roles and meanings of love and eros in Japanese historical imaginations which will look at issues ranging from the relationship of Izanami and Izanagi to Shunga to the marriage of Emperors.

Jason Merchant

Professor Merchant's interests are in syntax, semantics, and typology, with particular emphasis on Greek and the Germanic languages. He focuses on the form of ellipsis known as sluicing, a common feature of interrogative clauses, such as in 'Sally's out hunting - guess what!'; and 'Someone called, but I can't tell you who'. It is the most frequently found cross-linguistic form of ellipsis. Dr. Merchant received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 1999. He has been at Chicago since January 2001.

Richard Theodore Neer

Richard Neer is the David B. and Clara E. Stern Professor of Humanities, Art History and the College. He earned his A.B. from Harvard and his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley. He has published on variety of topics including ancient Greek art, art historical theory and method, French painting, and cinema. His most recent book, Theory of Sculpture: The Emergence of the Classical Style, is forthcoming from the University of Chicago Press. He is currently writing an introductory textbook, Ancient Greek Art and Archaeology. He is Co-Editor of the journal Critical Inquiry.

Martha Nussbaum

Professor Nussbaum is the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics, appointed in the Philosophy Department, Law School and Divinity School. She is an Associate in the Classics Department and the Political Science Department, a Member of the Committee on Southern Asian Studies, and a Board Member of the Human Rights Program. She is the founder and Coordinator of the Center for Comparative Constitutionalism. Martha Nussbaum received her B.A. from NYU and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard. She has taught at Harvard, Brown, and Oxford Universities. From 1986 to 1993, Ms. Nussbaum was a research advisor at the World Institute for Development Economics Research, Helsinki, a part of the United Nations University. She has chaired the Committee on International Cooperation and the Committee on the Status of Women of the American Philosophical Association, and currently chairs its new Committee for Public Philosophy. She is also the current President of the Human Development and Capability Association. She has been a member of the Association's National Board. In 1999-2000 she was one of the three Presidents of the Association, delivering the Presidential Address in the Central Division. Ms. Nussbaum has been a member of the Council of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a member of the Board of the American Council of Learned Societies. She received the Brandeis Creative Arts Award in Non-Fiction for 1990, and the PEN Spielvogel-Diamondstein Award for the best collection of essays in 1991; Cultivating Humanity won the Ness Book Award of the Association of American Colleges and Universities in 1998, and the Grawemeyer Award in Education in 2002. Sex and Social Justice won the book award of the North American Society for Social Philosophy in 2000. Hiding From Humanity won the Association of American University Publishers Professional and Scholarly Book Award for Law in 2004. She has received honorary degrees from thirty-two colleges and universities in the U. S., Canada, Asia, and Europe, including Grinnell College, Williams College, Bard College, Knox College, The University of St. Andrews (Scotland),the University of Edinburgh (Scotland), Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium), the University of Toronto, The University for Humanist Studies (Utrecht, the Netherlands), the New School University, the University of Haifa, Ohio State University, and Georgetown University. She received the NYU Distinguished Alumni Award in 2000, the Grawemeyer Award in Education in 2002, the Barnard College Medal of Distinction in 2003, and the Radcliffe Alumnae Recognition Award in 2007. She is an Academician in the Academy of Finland.

Seth Richardson

Seth Richardson is an assistant professor in the department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations. Professor Richardson received his Ph.D. in Ancient Near Eastern History from Columbia University in 2002. After occupying a post-doctoral research fellowship at Columbia for a year, he came to Chicago to teach history. He is responsible for NELC’s graduate program in Ancient Near Eastern History, and is the Mesopotamian Faculty Advisor to the Oriental Institute Museum. He is now continuing work on research projects related to Old Babylonian economic and administrative texts, Assyrian political history, an intellectual history of early Babylonian liver divination, and Ancient Near East labor history, state collapse, and chronology.

Lawrence Rothfield

Lawrence Rothfield is Associate Professor of English Language and Literature, and of Comparative Literature, and Faculty Director of the Center for Cultural Policy Studies. His interests include 19th-century British and French fiction; the novel; critical theory; literature and the human sciences; the politics and sociology of the arts and humanities.

David Schutter

David Schutter has had solo exhibitions of his work at The Gemäldegalerie, Berlin, Galerie Aurel Scheibler, Berlin, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, Tony Wight/Bodybuilder & Sportsman Gallery, Chicago, and Paul Kotula Projects, Detroit. His work is in the collections of the Gemäldegalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Silkeborg Kunstmuseum, Silkeborg, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, The Silverman Collection, Detroit, and The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia. Schutter is a recipient of both Humboldt and Fulbright Grants, for Germany and Denmark respectively, and received his MFA from The University of Chicago.

Michael Silverstein

Michael Silverstein is the Charles F. Grey Distinguished Service Professor of Anthropology, of Linguistics, and of Psychology and in the Committee on General Studies in the Humanities. He studies problems of language structure and function, language history and prehistory, the anthropology of language use, sociolinguistics, semiotics, language and cognition (and their development), and history of linguistic and ethnographic studies. His fieldwork in northwestern North America and northwestern Australia has been the basis of various descriptive, theoretical and generalizing contributions. He is also investigating language use and textuality as sites of contestation and transformation of cultural value in contemporary American society, rereading social and rhetorical theory in light of the anthropology of communication.

Herman Sinaiko

Herman Sinaiko is Professor in the Humanities Collegiate Division. He has been teaching in the College for over 50 years.

Malynne Sternstein

Malynne Sternstein is Associate Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures and the College. Her interests include Czech Literature and Culture, Russian Literature and Culture, Avant-Garde Studies, Central European Studies, Literary, Psychoanalytic and Cultural Theory, Art and Media Theory, The ďRetro-Avant-garde,Ē and Czech Film.

David Thompson

David Thompson is the Associate Dean for Planning and Programs in the Humanities Division. He received a B.A. in English and History from the University of Nebraska, an M.Phil in English from Oxford University in England, and a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature at Chicago.

Theo van den Hout

Theo van den Hout is a Professor of Hittite and Anatolian Languages in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations (NELC). His dissertation (1989, published as a monograph in 1995) consisted of both a philological edition of a Late-Hittite treaty and a prosopography of the leading officials of the Hittite empire of the second half of the 13th century B.C. That period has since then been the center of his further historical-philological research. His recent interests concern record and information management in the Hittite empire and their role in its burocracy. A monograph on this topic is in preparation. In his linguistic research he tries to combine the Hittite data with those of the other Anatolian languages like Luwian, Lycian, Lydian and Carian. The growing importance of the not related Hurrian has led him in recent years to get more involved with that language as well. He is editor-in-chief of the Chicago Hittite Dictionary and currently working on the S-volume.

Christina von Nolcken

Christina von Nolcken studied in England at Oxford University, where she specialized in Medieval English language and literature. She came to the University of Chicago in 1979, where she is currently Associate Professor in the Department of English and the College, and Chair of the Committee on Medieval Studies. She regularly teaches courses on Old and Middle English language and literature, and is especially interested in Anglo-Scandinavian relations towards the end of the Anglo-Saxon period. Most of her writing has been on texts prepared by the followers of John Wyclif (d. 1384) as part of their program to bring education, and especially religious education, to the people.

William C. Wimsatt

William C. Wimsatt is Professor of Philosophy and a member of the Committee on Evolutionary Biology and the Committee on the Conceptual Foundations of Science. His work centers on the philosophy of the inexact sciences—biology, psychology, and the social sciences—the history of biology, and the study of complex systems.