Laura L. Aull, Assistant Profes-
sor of English and Linguistics,
received a 2016-2017 Spencer
Postdoctoral Fellowship from
the National Academy of Edu-
cation to work on A Generaliz-
ing Genre: The Development and
Dangers of the American Essay
in School and Public Discourse.
At all levels, from college papers
to popular magazines and op-ed
pieces, American popular essays
tend to include more generalizations than other genres.
This project uses corpus linguistic analysis of large text
databases to identify recurring linguistic patterns related
to generalizations. In light of these patterns, the project
considers how and why the generalist essay genre devel-
oped in the twentieth century and raises important ques-
tions about the essay's frequent use in schooling and pub-
lic debate. In particular, it explores implications for the
essay--discursively, if subtly, characterized by generaliza-
tions--in a world of diverse perspectives.
Timo Thonhauser, Associate Professor of Physics, is one
of 14 professors in the nation
named a Simons Fellow by
the Simons Foundation Divi-
sion for Mathematics and the
Physical Sciences. The award
supports up to a semester’s
leave, which, combined with
his sabbatical from Wake
Forest, will allow him to
spend a year at MIT. Thonhauser’s research focuses on
using condensed matter theory to solve currently
outstanding problems in physics, biophysics, chemistry,
and materials science, with applications to nano-, bio-,
and energy-related materials ranging from cell-phones
and computers to energy production and storage.
David Weinstein, Emeritus Professor of Politics and In-
ternational Affairs, has been
awarded a Franklin Research
Grant from the American
Philosophical Society. Build-
ing on an award from the
WFU Humanities Institute,
funds will allow him to
spend two months using the
extensive resources of the
Bodleian Library, Oxford
University, UK, to compose
Classical Utilitarianism and the Anxiety of Influence. The
book will be the first to compare and contrast the thought
of Herbert Spencer; classical utilitarians like Mill and
Sidgwick; idealists like Green, Bradley, and Caird; and
new liberals like Hobhouse and Ritchie.
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