Kevin Kruse (Princeton) on “One Nation Under God”

Kevin Kruse, associate professor of history at Princeton University, delivers the back story (“One Nation Under God: Corporate Interests, Christianity, and the Rise of Religious Nationalism in America”) on the rise of the religious right and the social movement’s intersections with corporate America and matters of human rights, as part of Emory’s J. Harvey Young Lecture in American History (Feb. 17, 2012). The talk also served as the keynote address for the first-ever Atlanta Graduate Student Conference in U.S. History.

Emory Seniors Recognized with Scholarships

Four Emory seniors, and a recent alum who is now a graduate student at Emory, have been recognized with top scholarships in recent weeks.

Dana Toy, double majoring in biology and sociology, is one of 18 Americans selected as a 2012-2013 Luce Scholar for a year of hands-on experience and work in Asia, and the fifth Emory student selected for the highly competitive scholarship since 2000. He was among 143 candidates nominated by 62 colleges and universities for the Luce Scholars Program, a nationally competitive fellowship program launched by the Henry Luce Foundation in 1974 to enhance the understanding of Asia among potential leaders in American society. The program provides stipends, language training, and individualized professional placement in Asia for 15-18 Luce Scholars each year.


(from left: Dobben, Chew, Richards, Eye)

Brenda Chew (environmental studies and economics), Joel Dobben (English) and William Eye (philosophy and music), and graduate student Sarah Richards (film studies) are the 2012-2013 recipients of the Bobby Jones Scholarship for a year of study at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland.  They will represent Emory as ambassadors to St. Andrews and were selected based on their established records of leadership, academic excellence and interests that can be pursued through the offerings at the venerable Scottish institution.

Read 2012 Luce Scholarship news release

Read 2012 Bobby Jones Scholarship news release

Klehr (Political Science) on McCarthy and American Communism

Harvey Klehr, Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Politics and History, spoke on the topic of “Me and Joe McCarthy: Studying American Communism” at Emory’s 17th annual Distinguished Faculty Lecture (Feb. 6., 2012).

In the last two decades, as new material has become available from newly-opened Russian archives, the issue of whether Senator Joseph McCarthy was right about communist subversion has generated a lot of controversy. He talks about that issue, as well as what it is like to be labeled a ‘McCarthyite’ for exposing Americans who spied for the Soviet Union.

Klehr’s research interests center around American communism and Soviet espionage in America. His most recent publication, with John Earl Haynes and Alexander Vassiliev, is “Spies: The Rise and Fall of the KGB in America” (Yale University Press, 2009).

The Distinguished Faculty Lecture Series is part of Founders Week, an annual academic festival. Each year’s speaker for the series is selected by a committee, headed by the chair-elect of the Faculty Council and comprised of Distinguished Faculty Lecturers from previous years. The committee is responsible for administering the annual lecture initiated and supported by the Office of the President.

See full video of the talk on YouTube

Choreographer Kyle Abraham Returns to Emory

As part of the Coca-Cola Artist in Residency Program, dancer and choreographer Kyle Abraham worked with Emory students last fall to create “Date Night,” a piece that explored the tension, awkwardness and momentum of dating. He also talked about his work in “Dance in Progress” series sponsored by the Emory Dance Program (September 27, 2011, Dance Studio, Schwartz Center for Performing Arts).

On February 23-25, Abraham returns to Emory, along with his company, Abraham.In.Motion, to perform “The Radio Show,” an investigation of communication, identity and personal history. See links below for more information.

“The Radio Show” Promotional Video

Emory Calendar Info

Abraham.In.Motion Homepage

Emory Dance Program

More Kudos for Emory

According to the Huffington Post and a just-released Princeton Review survey of over 122,000 students on the top schools around the country for quality of life, Emory ranks in the top 10 (as does nearby Agnes Scott).

The Princeton Review has also named Emory University to its list of “2012 Best Value Colleges.” The annual ranking identifies America’s top undergraduate schools that offer “excellent academics, generous financial aid and/or relatively low cost of attendance.” Emory has been named a “Best Value” by The Princeton Review in 2011, 2009 and 2008. The ranking also comes on the heels of Emory’s ranking in October 2011 as the 13th “best value” out of 100 top private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine for 2011-2012.

Your Brain on Religion and Science

In his new book, Why Religion Is Natural and Science Is Not (Oxford University Press, 2011), Robert McCauley (William Rand Kenan Jr. University Professor and director of Emory’s Center for Mind, Brain, and Culture) describes how our minds are better suited to religious belief than to scientific inquiry. Religion has existed for many thousands of years in every society because the kinds of explanations it provides are precisely the kinds that come naturally to human minds.

Science, on the other hand, is a much more recent and rare development because it reaches radical conclusions and requires a kind of abstract thinking that only arises consistently under very specific social conditions.

Religion makes intuitive sense to us, while science requires a lot of work. The naturalness of religion, he suggests, means that science poses no real threat to it, while the unnaturalness of science puts it in a surprisingly precarious position.

Check out McCauley’s blog in

Seniors Choose to Create Art for a Living

See the Emory Wheel article (01.23.12) on Emory College seniors who are planning to work in art after graduation. The article profiles Gillian Kramer (Theater), Kala Seidenberg (Dance), Matt Gaynes (Film), and Charlotte Watts (Visual Arts).

With graduation fast approaching, Emory seniors are faced with a question: What’s next? This question is a particularly difficult one for students whose passions lie in the arts. Artists cannot spring forth into the world expecting to find a desk job awaiting them — they must work hard to get their names out there, network with others in their field and find a niche. So what, exactly, do the graduating artists of Emory have planned?

Read the full article


Andrade Book Tells the Story of Koxinga’s conquest of Taiwan

Just in time for the 350th  anniversary of the Chinese warlord Koxinga’s victory over the Dutch in Taiwan (during China’s first war with Europe), is history professor Tonio Andrade‘s new book, Lost Colony: The Untold Story of China’s First Great Victory over the West (Princeton University Press, 2011).

During the seventeenth century, Holland created the world’s most dynamic colonial empire, outcompeting the British and capturing Spanish and Portuguese colonies. Yet, in the Sino-Dutch War–Europe’s first war with China–the Dutch met their match in a colorful Chinese warlord named Koxinga. Part samurai, part pirate, he led his generals to victory over the Dutch and captured one of their largest and richest colonies–Taiwan. How did he do it? Examining the strengths and weaknesses of European and Chinese military techniques during the period, Lost Colony provides a balanced new perspective on long-held assumptions about Western power, Chinese might, and the nature of war.

“You can read this book as an exciting novel full of pirates, swashbuckling characters, beheadings, treachery, and battles on land and sea–a novel that just happens to be true–or as a revelatory look at the little-known first war between China and the West, and window into one of the biggest unsolved questions of world history: why Europe rather than China colonized the world from the time of Columbus onward. Either way, you will be sorry when you reach the last page.”–Jared Diamond, author of Guns, Germs, and Steel and Collapse

See interview with Andrade (cover interview, Dec. 9, 2011)