Three Yale faculty win 2017 Guggenheim Fellowships for their ‘exceptional promise’

Three Yale faculty members — mathematician Hee Oh, poet Claudia Rankine, and historian Timothy Snyder — have won 2017 Guggenheim Fellowships.

Three Yale faculty members — mathematician Hee Oh, poet Claudia Rankine, and historian Timothy Snyder — have won 2017 Guggenheim Fellowships.

The fellowship winners are appointed on the basis of prior achievement and exceptional promise. The Yale faculty members were among the 173 scholars, artists, and scientists chosen for this year’s award from among almost 3,000 applicants.

“These artists and writers, scholars and scientists, represent the best of the best,” said Edward Hirsch, president of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. “Each year since 1925, the Guggenheim Foundation has bet everything on the individual, and we’re thrilled to continue to do so with this wonderfully talented and diverse group. It’s an honor to be able to support these individuals to do the work they were meant to do.”

Brief bios of the Yale winners follow:

Update: Make that four Yale Guggenheim winners

Yet another update: And then there were six (Guggenheim winners)

Hee Oh
Hee Oh portrait

Hee Oh is the Abraham Robinson Professor of Mathematics. She grew up in Gwangju, South Korea, and received her BA from Seoul National University in 1992 and her Ph. D from Yale University in 1997. She held faculty positions in Princeton University, California Institute of Technology and Brown University, before returning to Yale in 2013.

Her main areas of research include discrete subgroups of Lie groups, homogeneous dynamics, and its connections to number theory and geometry. In recent years, Hee Oh has been exploring the theory of dynamics on hyperbolic 3-manifolds of infinite volume, bringing together dynamics on homogeneous spaces, the geometry and topology of 3-dimensional manifolds and various subtle number-theoretic phenomena, for example, the distribution of primes.

Her recent honors include a talk at the ICM in 2010, a joint AMS-MAA invited address at the 2012 joint Mathematics meeting and a plenary lecture at ICWM in 2014. She was awarded the Ruth Lyttle Satter Prize in Mathematics in 2015. She is an inaugural fellow of the AMS and a 2017 Simons fellow in Mathematics.

Claudia Rankine

Claudia Rankine, the Frederick Iseman Professor of Poetry, is the author of five collections of poetry and two plays, and the editor of five anthologies. Her bestselling book, “Citizen: An American Lyric,” uses poetry, essay, cultural criticism, and images to explore what it means to be an American citizen. Among other awards, “Citizen” won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry (it was also a finalist in the criticism category, making it the first book in the award’s history to be a double nominee), the NAACP Image Award, and the PEN Open Book Award. It is the only poetry book to be a New York Times bestseller in the nonfiction category.

Claudia Rankine portrait
(Photo by Ricardo DeAratanha, Los Angeles Times)

Her poetry, essays, art writings, interviews, and articles have been published in numerous journals, newspapers, and magazines, including the New York Times, ELLE magazine, Paris Review, The New Yorker, and The Guardian, among others. Her many awards and fellowships include a 2017 MacArthur Fellowship, a United States Artist Fellowship, and the Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry.

In 2016, Rankine co-founded The Racial Imaginary Institute, an interdisciplinary cultural laboratory in which the racial imaginaries of our time and place can be engaged, read, countered, contextualized and demystified. She is a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and co-produces a video series, “The Situation,” alongside John Lucas.

Timothy Snyder
Timothy Snyder portrait

Timothy Snyder, the Richard C. Levin Professor of History, is an American historian of eastern and central Europe. Snyder is the author of numerous works, most recently three prizewinning bestsellers: “Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin,” “Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning,” and “On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons of the Twentieth Century.” “Bloodlands” won 12 awards and has been translated into 33 languages; “Black Earth” has likewise received numerous distinctions, including the award of the Dutch Auschwitz Committee, and has been translated into more than 30 editions; “On Tyranny” rapidly became a bestseller in the United States and will appear in more than 20 foreign editions. In a special project, Snyder helped his friend, historian and intellectual Tony Judt, to compose a thematic history of political ideas and intellectuals in politics, “Thinking the Twentieth Century.” He is also the co-editor of scholarly books on border control, Stalinism, and the Balkans. He has also written articles for numerous newspapers and journals.

In 2015 Snyder was awarded both inaugural Andrew Carnegie Fellowship and the Havel Foundation Prize. He has received state orders from Estonia, Lithuania, and Poland.

During the Guggenheim Fellowship year, Snyder will work on a new book project titled” Brotherlands,” a family history of the modern nation.


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