Real Genius

Tara Zahra, an associate professor in the Department of History who focuses on Central and Eastern Europe, received a MacArthur Fellowship in September. The fifth history faculty member at UChicago to receive the fellowship, known as a “genius grant,” Zahra was praised by the MacArthur Foundation as “a historian who is challenging the way we view the development of the concepts of nation, family, and ethnicity and painting a more integrative picture of twentieth-century European history.” Zahra’s first book, Kidnapped Souls: National Indifference and the Battle for Children in the Bohemian Lands, 1900–1948 (Cornell University Press, 2008), won numerous prizes. Her second book, The Lost Children: Reconstructing Europe’s Families after World War II (Harvard University Press, 2011), was awarded the George Louis Beer Prize from the American Historical Association. She is working on a history of emigration from East Central Europe to Western Europe and the United States between 1889 and the present, to be published by W. W. Norton Press in August 2015. Zahra was featured in the Spring/Summer 2014 Dialogo. 

Riding the Rails

Graduate student Korey Garibaldi, AM’10 (History), is one of 24 recipients of Amtrak’s Writing Residency. Over the next year, he will work on a writing project of his choice while riding a long-distance train. Garibaldi’s dissertation research focuses on how racial, gender, and sexual formations were challenged, solidified, and reconfigured by material commodities, especially literary texts, over the 20th century. He has lectured in the America in World Civilization College sequence and has also taught post-emancipation African American history and the histories of gender and sexuality in America and Europe. Garibaldi is working on a book, “Different Trains,” with Ben Shepard, AB’08.

Heckman Earns Education Award

In October James Heckman, the Henry Schultz Distinguished Service Professor of Economics, was presented the Spirit of Erikson Institute Award for his work on the economics of early childhood development, including proving the economic gains of investing in early childhood development. The Chicago-based Erikson Institute trains and educates graduate students to be child development and family service professionals. The award recognizes those who make significant contributions to the education and development of children.

Toynbee Goes to Chakrabarty

The Toynbee Prize Foundation selected Dipesh Chakrabarty, the Lawrence A. Kimpton Distinguished Service Professor of History, as the recipient of the 2014 Toynbee Prize in July. The prize, given every other year, recognizes a distinguished practitioner of global history. Chakrabarty will formally receive the award at the American Historical Association’s annual meeting in January 2015 in New York, where he will deliver a lecture on global history. Chakrabarty, who has taught at the University since 1995, is a scholar of South Asian history, postcolonial studies, and global history. In 2000 he published Provincializing Europe (Princeton University Press, 2007) and is working on a book about how the science of climate change affects historical and political thinking.