Campus Notes: Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Claude Rawson honored

Claude Rawson, the Maynard Mack Professor of English, was honored last fall by the publication of a volume of essays written in his honor.

A copy of the volume, “Swift’s Travels: Eighteenth-Century British Satire and Its Legacy,” was presented to Rawson at a dinner in New York on Nov. 1. The book is edited by Nicholas Hudson of the University of British Columbia and former Yale student Aaron Santesso. Contributors include former Yale colleagues Ronald Paulson and Jenny Davidson.

Rawson, one of the world’s leading authorities on Jonathan Swift, is the senior of four general editors of “The Cambridge Edition of the Works of Jonathan Swift.” This is a major scholarly edition of the works of the 18th-century Irish satirist, to be published in 18 volumes over the next decade. The first volume was published in October.

Metcalf honored by Société Française

William E. Metcalf is the first American winner of the Jeton de Vermeil of the Société Française de Numismatique.

Metcalf is the Ben Lee Damsky Curator of Coins and Medals at the Yale Art Gallery and adjunct professor of classics.

The award recognizes international career contributions to numismatic study. The Société Française, founded in 1865, has awarded the medal since 1936. The presentation took place in the rooms of the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, in Paris, and was followed by an address by Metcalf titled “Ancient Numismatics in a Modern Country.” The talk will be published in the Bulletin of the Société.

Malone Center wins ­architecture award

The Daniel L. Malone Engineering Center won an Honor Award from AIA Connecticut, a non-profit association of architects and allied design professionals.

The association will feature all of the winners from its 2008 program in a traveling exhibit at the New Haven Public Library, 133 Elm St., through January.

The Malone Center is a 63,117-square-foot structure on Prospect Street (between the Arthur K. Watson Hall and the Farmington Canal). It houses the Department of Biomedical Engineering.

Speth’s book cited by Washington Post

A book by James Gustave Speth was selected by the Washington Post as one of the best non-fiction works of 2008.

Speth is the dean of the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and a former White House adviser.

In “The Bridge at the Edge of the World: Capitalism, the Environment, and Crossing from Crisis to Sustainability,” Speth examines the clash between today’s capitalism and the environment. The newspaper called the book “a thoughtful diagnosis of the root causes of planetary distress.”

Alexander wins Mary ­Douglas Prize

The Mary Douglas Book Prize has been awarded to Jeffrey C. Alexander’s “The Civil Sphere.” The prize is awarded every other year by the Culture Section of the American Sociological Association to the best work in the field. Alexander shared the prize.

Alexander, the Lillian Chavenson Saden Professor of Sociology and a director of the Center for Cultural Sociology, will hold the Kluge Chair at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., from January to June. Kluge Chairs are designed for individuals of great scholarly accomplishment. They are chosen solely for their intellectual and communicative abilities by the Librarian of Congress in consultation with a distinguished Scholars Council.

Gilliam recognized for ­commitment to children

Walter Gilliam was recognized for his work on bridging the gap between the worlds of researchers and state and federal policymakers at Connecticut Voices for Children’s eighth annual “First for Kids Awards” ceremony on Dec. 4.

Gilliam is an assistant professor at the Child Study Center and director of its Edward Zigler Center in Child Development and Social Policy.

The event, which took place at the New Haven Lawn Club, honored individuals and organizations in Connecticut whose work and commitment to the state’s young people serves as a model for all.

Gilliam received the Priscilla Canny Research Award. He was recognized for actively providing consultation to state and federal decision-makers. Connecticut Voices also praised his dedication to research on how early childhood policies translate into effective services, ways to improve the quality of pre-kindergarten and child care services, and the impact of early childhood programs on children’s school readiness. He was a principal investigator for the National Pre-Kindergarten Survey, the first-ever national study of the implementation of state-funded pre-kindergarten programs.

Two Yale scientists cited for cytoskeleton research

Editors from Nature publications ranked the work of two Yale scientists as among the top 25 milestones in cytoskeleton research over the past 60 years.

Nature Reviews in Cellular and Molecular Biology featured as milestones work conducted in the labs of Joel Rosenbaum, ­professor of molecular, cellular and developmental biology, and Thomas Pollard, Sterling Professor and chair of the Department of Mmolecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology.

Discoveries in Rosenbaum’s lab in 1993 led scientists to understand the importance to normal physiology of non-motile cilia on all human cells to normal physiology. Nature also cited Pollard’s lab for discovering the unconventional myosin (while at the National Institutes of Health); myosin’s role in the contractile ring during cell division (at Harvard University); and a complex of proteins that is crucial for assembly of actin filaments, one of key components in maintaining cellular structure (at Johns Hopkins University).

Football captain named to AFCA All-America Team

Bobby Abare was selected to the 2008 American Football Coaches Association FCS All-America Team.

Abare, a senior who captained the 2008 Bulldogs, was the only Ivy League player to make the 25-man squad after leading Yale to a second straight year with the nation’s top scoring defense.

Recently named the co-recipient of the Bulger Lowe Award (New England MVP) by the Gridiron Club of Boston and a Walter Camp Football Foundation All-American, Abare was honorable mention All-America in 2007. He is a finalist for the 2008 Buck Buchanan Award as the top FCS defensive player.

Frank Turner reappointed as Beinecke librarian

President Richard C. Levin announced the reappointment of Frank M. Turner, the John Hay Whitney Professor of History, as librarian of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library and associate University librarian.

His term will be for five and one-half years, effective Jan. 1.

Abrahams receives grant to study women with APS

Vikki M. Abrahams, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology, was awarded a one-year grant of $73,284 from the Alliance for Lupus Research for a project titled “Effect of Antiphospholipid Antibodies on Trophoblast Function in Pregnancy.”

Abrahams will study women with antiphospholipid syndrome (APS), which puts them at high risk for recurrent pregnancy loss and late pregnancy complications. She anticipates that findings from the study will advance understanding of the pathogenesis of recurrent pregnancy loss and preeclampsia in patients with APS. Her overall goal is to establish better diagnostic mechanisms and to find new therapeutic targets, thus improving the long-term health of the mother.

Reed is named editor-in-chief of Nanotechnology

Mark Reed, the Harold Hodgkinson Chair of Engineering and Applied Science, was appointed editor-in-chief of the journal Nanotechnology, effective from January.

Reed has made significant contributions in the areas of quantum dots, electronic transport in nanoscale and mesoscopic systems, artificially structured materials and devices, and molecular electronics.

Nanotechnology was the first peer-reviewed journal in the area of nanoscience. It has become a leading journal covering all aspects of nanoscale science and technology.

For more information, visit

Brooks honored for book on Henry James

Peter Brooks, Sterling Professor of Comparative Literature, received the Christian Gauss Award for his book “Henry James Goes to Paris.”

The $10,000 annual award from the Phi Beta Kappa Society is given for books in the field of literary scholarship and criticism.

Brooks’ work was cited as “a remarkable book of literary scholarship that begins in a primarily biographical mode but gradually shifts to brilliant criticism and enhances one’s understanding of James’ achievement.”

Founded in 1776, Phi Beta Kappa is the nation’s oldest academic honor society. Its mission is to champion education in the liberal arts and sciences, to recognize academic excellence, and to foster freedom of thought and expression.

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