Indiana University Bloomington
IUB College of Arts and Sciences

January 2008

Bennett I. Bertenthal Dear colleagues and friends of the College,

I began my last newsletter by saying: "The IU College of Arts and Sciences is second to none. I look forward to 2008 with optimism for another great year for all of us." I am sad to report that the New Year started with the death of a valued and highly esteemed colleague, Michael Walker. However, the end of 2007 and the beginning of 2008 have also been full of news and rewards for the many accomplishments of faculty members in the College. I heartily congratulate everyone who has been singled out for recognition.

Warm regards from Bloomington,

Bennett I. Bertenthal
James H. Rudy Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences
Dean, IU College of Arts and Sciences

College mourns the death of J. Michael Walker, professor of neuroscience

J. Michael Walker Michael Walker, 57, was found dead at home on Saturday, January 5, 2008. Walker, a professor of both psychology and neuroscience, was director of the Linda and Jack Gill Center for Biomolecular Science at IU. In his lab research, he studied neurochemical, neurophysiological and anatomical bases of pain perception.

Dean Bennett Bertenthal said, "Michael’s sudden and unexpected death is a tragic loss for the College and the University. He was an outstanding scientist and administrator, who was conducting cutting edge research in the neurophysiology of pain. His presence on campus will be sorely missed, but his memory will live on through the programs and students he directed."

Robert de Ruyter, professor of Physics and Walker’s colleague on the Gill Board, told the ids that he will remember how Walker approached life each day.

“He was irreverent,” Ruyter said. “He didn’t take all things too seriously. He had a nice, quirky way of looking at things, especially other people’s self-importance.”

The department will host a memorial Friday, February 22nd at the Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center.

   In this Newsletter

College faculty rewarded for excellence, productivity

Roger Temam Professor Roger Temam, Department of Mathematics, was elected to the French Academy of Sciences.  Professor Temam is now the most prolific thesis advisor of Ph.D.’s in mathematics. He has directed 101 Ph.D. theses, including 18 at Indiana University.

Picture of Michael Wade
  Michael Wade

The College congratulates Michael Wade, professor of Biology, and James Townsend and Linda B. Smith, both professors of Psychological and Brain Sciences, upon being elevated to the rank of Distinguished Professor.

Picture of James Townsend
James Townsend
Picture of Linda B.  Smith
  Linda B. Smith

Picture of Jamsheed  Choksy
  Jamsheed Choksy
Jamsheed Choksy and David Hertz nominated to National Council on the Humanities.

Prof. Choksy, born in Mumbai, India, grew up in Colombo, Sri Lanka, before coming to the United States to attend Columbia University and Harvard University. Now a U.S. citizen, he is a professor of Central Eurasian studies and history, an adjunct professor of religious studies, and an affiliated faculty member of India studies and ancient studies at IU.

Prof. Hertz, who served as a member of the National Council on the Humanities from 2003-2006, is a professor of comparative literature at IU Bloomington and previously was chair of the department. He is also professor of West European studies and American studies, and he teaches annual undergraduate colloquia on music and culture in the Hutton Honors College.
Picture of David Hertz
David Hertz

Kudos to the entire faculty of the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, which was ranked Number 1 in the 2007 Top Research Universities Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index by the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Sara Pryor, Geography, has been selected to receive the IU President’s Award for teaching excellence.  David Blouin, Sociology, won the Lieber Associate Instructor Award for teaching excellence.  President McRobbie will present these awards on Founders Day, March 30, 2008.

Six College of Arts and Sciences professors have been named Outstanding Junior Faculty by the Dean of the Faculties:

  • Candy Gunther Brown, Religious Studies
  • Tony H. Grubesic, Geography
  • Scott Michaels, Biology
  • Ethan Michelson, Sociology
  • Sima Setayeshgar, Physics
  • Chen Yu, Psychological and Brain Sciences

William H. Wiggins, Jr., professor emeritus of African American and African Diaspora Studies and of Ethnomusicology and Folklore, has been awarded the William S. Armstrong Ambassador Award by the Indiana University Foundation. Wiggins is a national figure in folklore and African American Studies. He's the founding president of the Association of African and African American Folklorists, a fellow of the American Folklore Society, a former trustee of the Library of Congress, a former trustee of the Indiana Historical Society and a member of several Indiana landmark boards.

IU Trustees recently invited two LAMP students, Abbey Stemler and Eli Isaacs, to present at their regular meeting LAMP’s Virtu Project, an innovative, student-based, fund-raising venture for the Timmy Foundation, which supports health care and education in Latin America. For more information, see

Faculty in the news

The Book Nook:

Professor Abdulkader Sinno (a joint appointment in NELC and Political Science Departments) has just published his first book: Organizations at War in Afghanistan and Beyond by Cornell University Press (2008).   NELC Chair Nazif Shahrani describes Sinno’s book as “very important and timely.”

Samrat Upadyhay, Department of English, won the 2007 Asian American Literary Award in Fiction for his book The Royal Ghosts (Houghton Mifflin, 2006).

Matthew Guterl, African American and African Diaspora Studies, published Race, Nation, and Empire in American History, co-edited by James T. Campbell and Robert G. Lee, University of North Carolina Press, 2007.

Michael Martin, African American and African Diaspora Studies, published Redress for Historical Injustices in the United States, co-edited with Marilyn Yaquinto, Duke University Press, 2007.

Audrey T. McCluskey, African American and African Diaspora Studies, published Frame by Frame III: A Filmography of the African Diasporan Image, 1994–2004, edited with an introduction, Indiana University Press 2007; Imaging Blackness: Race and Racial Representation in Film Poster Art, Indiana University Press, 2007.

Stephen Selka, African American and African Diaspora Studies, published Religion and the Politics of Ethnic Identity in Bahia, Brazil, University Press of Florida (as part of its New World Diasporas book series), December 2007.

Vernon Williams, African American and African Diaspora Studies, published The Social Sciences and Theories of Race, University of Illinois Press, 2006 (nominated for the Gustavus Myers Center for the Study of Bigotry and Human Rights’ Outstanding Book Award)

Philip LeSourd, Anthropology, 2007. Tales from Maliseet Country: The Maliseet Texts of Karl V. Teeter. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press.

Awards by discipline

Natural and Mathematical Sciences:

Liang-shi Li, Department of Chemistry, received a 2008 National Science Foundation Early Award. The NSF honors outstanding junior faculty members in science and engineering nationwide with the Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) awards.  The CAREER award is NSF’s most prestigious honor for junior faculty members. 

Milos Novotny, Department of Chemistry, has been named the recipient of the 2008 Ralph N. Adams Award in Bioanalytical Chemistry. This award recognizes his numerous contributions to the field and will be presented during the Pittsburg Conference on Analytical Chemistry, in New Orleans this spring.

Dennis Peters, Department of Chemistry, has been named a Fellow of the Electrochemical Society in recognition of scientific achievement and service to the Society.  He was honored at the annual Plenary Session of the Electrochemical Society 212th meeting in Washington D.C.  Dr. Peters also won a Trustees Teaching Award, along with professors Kate Reck and Dongwhan Lee.

Romualdo De Souza, Department of Chemistry, 2008 ACS Glenn T. Seaborg Award for Nuclear Chemistry in recognition of research in nuclear and radiochemistry or their applications. 

Mu-Hyun Baik, Department of Chemistry, has been chosen by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation for the Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow Award. The award, involving nominations from the very best scientists across the U.S. and Canada.

Hari Bercovici, Department of Mathematics, has been named the recipient of the 2007 Béla Szőkefalvi- Nagy Medal. The Medal is awarded annually by the Bolyai Institute in Hungary to honor a distinguished mathematician who has published significant, deep results in their journal Acta Scientiarum Mathematicarum.

Rebecca Eberle, Speech and Hearing Sciences, has been appointed as Chair of the Board of Directors for Brain Injury Association of Indiana

Larry Humes, Speech and Hearing Sciences, has been elected Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America. This recognition is given to members who “make notable contributions to the advancement or diffusion of the knowledge of acoustics or the fostering of its practical applications.” He also is the recipient of the Jerger Career Award for Research in Audiology from the American Academy of Audiology. He will receive this award at the annual convention in Charlotte, NC in April. This award recognizes research productivity, as well as significant contributions to teaching and clinical practice.  

Richard Durisen, Astronomy, delivered lectures as a Visiting Scholar at the Max Planck Institute in Heidelberg last summer.

Colin Allen, Cognitive Science, was elected president of the Society for Philosophy and Psychology for 2008-2009.

World Languages and Cultures:

Claudia Breger, Germanic Studies, received a year-long research fellowship from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation to conduct research in Berlin for 2008.

Michel Chaouli, Germanic Studies, received a year-long research fellowship from the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, academic year 2008/2009.

Marc Weiner, Germanic Studies, was elected to the executive committee of the Modern Language Association Division on Literature and the Other Arts.

Salih J. Altoma, emeritus professor of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, was selected this month by The World Association of Arab Translators and Linguists (WATA) as one of “honored” Arab scholar/poets and translators in recognition of their contributions. WATA issues a list of honored figures in different fields every January.

Arts and Humanities:

Bret Rothstein, History of Arts, Northern Renaissance/Baroque, received a 2006-2007 Fellowship from the American Council of Learned Societies.

Social and Historical Studies:

Department of History faculty member Amrita Chakrabarti Myers was awarded a Short-Term Visiting Research Fellowship through the Institute for Southern Studies at the University of South Carolina.

Department of History emeritus faculty member Alex Rabinowitch has been awarded an Emeritus Fellowship by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to serve as a co-editor/director of a major document publications project developed jointly by the St. Petersburg Institute of History, Russian Academy of Sciences, and the former Leningrad [Communist] Party Archive. The goal of this project is to prepare a comprehensive volume of previously secret, unpublished protocols of meetings of the Bolshevik Petersburg Committee in 1918, and supplementary documents, commentaries, and appendices relating to them.

Mark Roseman, Department of History and Borns Jewish Studies Program, was awarded the Charles H. Revson Foundation Fellowship for 4 months research at the US Holocaust Museum Fall 2007.  

Michael Alexeev, Economics, was invited to attend the 30th Anniversary Conference of the Russian National Academy of Economy and to present a paper. The title of the presented paper is “Determinants of VAT Collections: Panel Data Analysis”.

Juan Carlos Escanciano, Economics, received the second prize in the International Corporate Risk School Competition. This prize was awarded by the Banco de Santander for the paper entitled “Estimating Risk Effects on Backtesting for Parametric Value-at-Risk Models”.

Gerhard Glomm, Economics, was invited to deliver a keynote address at the Workshop on Public Economics and Growth which was organized by the University of Santiago de Chile.

Kim Huynh, Economics, received a grant from the Social science and Humanities Research Council of Canada for his research project on “Duration of New Firms Across entry Cohorts”.

Eric Leeper, Economics, was invited to present lectures at the Far East Meetings of the Econometric Society Meetings in Taipei, Taiwan and at the London School of Economics “Research in the Tradition of Sargent-Sims Colloquium”. He was also an invited speaker in the Guest Lecture series of the New Zealand Treasury.

Frank Page, Economics, delivered an invited lecture at the International Conference on the Formation of Social Networks at the Carree des Sciences in Paris. He was also an Honorary Visiting Professor at the University of Paris.

Arlington Williams, Economics, presented an invited paper at the International Foundation for Research in Experimental Economics 10th Anniversary Conference and Gala in Arlington, Va. The title of his presentation was:” Implementing Computerized Experiments in Large Undergraduate classes”.

Scott Robeson, Geography, was the Distinguished Alumni Lecturer in the Department of Geography at the University of Delaware in November 2007.  His presentation was entitled “Trends, Spatial Variability, and Persistence of Recent Thermal Anomalies”

Eduardo Brondizio, Anthropology, was elected as a Fellow of the Society for Applied Anthropology

Gracia Clark, Anthropology, has been elected co-chair of the Society for Lesbian and Gay Anthropology (2007-9)

Laura Scheiber, Anthropology, is the recipient of several grants, including a National Science Foundation grant of $158,000 to study Culture Contact and Culture Change in The Rocky Mountain Frontier: Late Period Shoshone Responses to Colonization.

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