Library Enhancement Grant

Beginning in 2009, the Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere has used funds from the Rothman Endowment to sponsor a grant competition among University of Florida faculty to expand the existing University of Florida library collections in areas in and related to the humanities that are currently underserved. Resources may include print, digital, or audio-visual media that enhance scholarly research and teaching in the humanities as well as affiliated disciplines. Requests that address the needs of broader constituencies of the University beyond the immediate applicants are judged especially favorably.

2017-2018 Library Enhancement Grant Recipients
2016-2017 Library Enhancement Grant Recipients
2015-2016 Library Enhancement Grant Recipients
2014-2015 Library Enhancement Grant Recipients
2013-2014 Library Enhancement Grant Recipients
2012-2013 Library Enhancement Grant Recipients
2011-2012 Library Enhancement Grant Recipients
2010-2011 Library Enhancement Grant Recipients
2009-2010 Library Enhancement Grant Recipients

2017-2018

  • Najwa Al-Tabaa

    Department of English
    2017-2018 Library Enhancement Grant

    Najwa Al-Tabaa and Charles Acheson on behalf of the Graduate Comics Organization and ImageTexT: Interdisciplinary Comics Study Journal, received a Library Enhancement Grant to acquire materials necessary to enhance these programs focusing on Comics and Visual Rhetoric. The grant will add to the UF Smathers Libraries’ comics collection with more theoretical texts on comics and adaptation that will benefit students and faculty working in the field of Comics and Visual Rhetoric, Popular Culture Studies, Digital Humanities, Film and Media Studies, and Fine Art.

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2016–2017

  • Terje Ostebo

    Department of Religion
    2016-2017 Library Enhancement Grant

    Dr. Terje Ostebo, Associate Professor in Religion, received a Library Enhancement Grant to improve the George A. Smathers Libraries holdings on the topic of global Islam. The Center for Global Islamic Studies (CGIS), an academic unit in CLAS created in 2014, creates a space for the multidisciplinary academic study of the impact and influence of Islam in areas beyond the Middle East including Africa, America, and Europe. Through affiliated faculty in several departments, CGIS offers an interdisciplinary graduate certificate and is planning to establish a Ph.D. track in Global Islam housed in the Department of Religion.

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  • Francesc Morales

    Department of Spanish & Portuguese Studies
    2016-2017 Library Enhancement Grant

    Francesc Morales, a graduate student in the Department of Spanish & Portuguese with the support of Dr. Luis Alvarez-Castro, received a Library Enhancement Grant to acquire films, novels, and scholarly works on modern Spanish terrorism. Political and religious conflict and suppression from the nineteenth century to the present day in Spain have sparked violence and dissention against the Spanish government and its people.

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  • Lisa Iglesias

    School of Art + Art History
    2016-2017 Library Enhancement Grant

    Lisa Iglesias, Assistant Professor in the School of Art + Art History, received a Library Enhancement Grant to purchase new texts by and about artists of color and from under-represented communities. The new acquisitions fundamentally expand the potential of researching work by under-represented writers and artists at the Architecture and Fine Arts Library.

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  • Vandana Baweja

    School of Architecture
    2016-2017 Library Enhancement Grant

    Dr. Vandana Baweja, Assistant Professor in the School of Architecture, received a Library Enhancement Grant to acquire books about cities in cinema. The making of space is important to understanding the function of art. The aesthetic effects of an artwork do not only consist in its own internal beauty, but also its relationship with space. The use of lighting, the placement of an object, and the angle from which it is viewed affect our experience of the artwork and our memory of it. As works of art, films are no different but pose to an intriguing question: how architecture and urbanism are represented in cinema and inversely how discourses of cinema construct urbanism and architecture?

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2015-2016

  • Najwa Al-Tabaa

    Department of English
    2015-2016 Library Enhancement Grant

    Najwa Al-Tabaa, a PhD student in English, was awarded a Library Enhancement grant to further improve an already strong collection of comics in Library West by addressing a crucial absence: theoretical texts about comics. The acquisition of works such as The Power of Comics: History, Form and Culture and Death, Disability and the Superhero: The Silver Age and Beyond, as well as duplicate copies of crucial texts such as System of Comics by Thierry Groensteen and Graphic Women by Hilary Chute, offer a variety of theoretical perspectives on comics as cultural products. These works will be more accessible and provide fertile ground for faculty and graduate students to conduct more comprehensive research and teaching.

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  • Eleni Bozia

    Department of Classics
    2015-2016 Library Enhancement Grant

    Dr. Eleni Bozia, Assistant Professor of Classics, was awarded a Library Enhancement grant to improve the current digital humanities collection in Library West. Over the past few decades, the digital humanities as a distinct interdisciplinary field of research has grown significantly. Many universities including Harvard, Princeton, and Duke have founded Humanities Centers focused on digital humanities projects; individual faculty at the University of Florida have pursued their own avenues of research in the digital humanities, which has resulted in a wide variety of digital humanities projects spanning curated archives, new visualization methods, and big data text analysis. A variety of fields have benefitted from these projects such as classics, archaeology, linguistics, and history. A comprehensive bibliography accessible to students and faculty will support ongoing growth and ensure robust conversation about the theoretical underpinnings of digital scholarship in the humanities.

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  • Barbara Mennel

    Department of English
    2015-2016 Library Enhancement Grant

    Dr. Barbara Mennel, Associate Professor of English, was awarded a Library Enhancement grant to acquire DVDs of contemporary Turkish German female filmmakers with additional faculty support from Holly Raynard, Esther Romeyn, Emrah Sahin, Sylvie Blum, and John Richard Stepp. In the 1960s, a generation of Turkish German filmmakers were born after their parents immigrated to Germany. Under the auspices of the Marshall Plan, the West German government recruited workers from Turkey to help rebuild Germany’s broken infrastructure after the Second World War. The workers’ children would grow up to produce and direct films celebrating multiculturalism and a self-confident cosmopolitanism. As a result, their films are important cultural products; they interrogate the experience of the Turkish minority during a transitional period in German history and provide unique access into a world of new, negotiated identities and undetermined possibility.

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2014–2015

  • Jack Kugelmass

    Jack Kugelmass
    Director of Jewish Studies and Professor of Anthropology

    Rebecca Jefferson
    Head of the Isser and Rae Price Library of Judaica

    2014-2015 Library Enhancement Grant

    Drs. Kugelmass and Jefferson have been awarded a Library Enhancement Grant to acquire historical newspapers on microfilm for the Isser and Rae Price Library of Judaica at the University of Florida. The grant will fund the acquisition of microfilm copies of the periodical Forverts (The Forward), which was established as a Yiddish-language daily newspaper in New York City in 1897. The UF Smathers Libraries presently own Forverts on microfilm for the years 1910-1947. This grant, with matching funds from the Center for Jewish Studies and the Price Library of Judaica, will extend UF holdings of Forverts further into the critical years following World War II to include issues for 1947-1950.

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  • Alessia Colarossi

    Languages, Literatures, and Cultures (Italian)

    In collaboration with Deborah Amberson
    Languages, Literatures, and Cultures (Italian)

    2014-2015 Library Enhancement Grant

    Drs. Alessia Colarossi and Deborah Amberson have been awarded a Library Enhancement Grant in the Humanities for 2014 to supplement the University of Florida Libraries’ Italian resources. Through the acquisition of Italian primary and critical texts, this Library Enhancement Grant will add new titles focused on the fields of literary modernism, contemporary cinema, immigrant literature and contemporary cultural studies.

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2013–2014

  • Eric Segal

    Education Curator of Academic Programs, Harn Museum of Art

    In collaboration with Ivy Chen
    Bishop Studies Center Manager, Harn Museum of Art

    2013-2014 Library Enhancement Grant

    Dr. Eric Segal received a library enhancement grant to support acquisitions for the Bishop Studies Center (BSC) at the Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art. The BSC under the leadership of Ivy Chen provides visitors to the Harn Museum a number of multimedia and hands-on resources for extended study in art and culture. This grant supports the acquisition of artist monographs, books, and DVDs directly related to current exhibitions, as well as significant scholarly publications selected by museum curators. Visitors to the Harn can spend time in the BSC to learn more about the artists and cultural contexts they encounter in the museum exhibits.

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  • Malini Johar Schueller

    Department of English
    2013-2014 Library Enhancement Grant

    Professor Malini Johar Schueller, Professor of English and Director of the Asian American Studies Certificate Program, has received a Library Enhancement Grant to increase UF library holdings in Asian American Studies. Since the certificate program opened its doors at UF in 2004, students and faculty have expressed great enthusiasm for more resources in this area. Books and media purchased through this grant for the UF library will better serve students’ needs and facilitate ongoing graduate and faculty research.

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  • Elisabet Liminyana Vico and Ana de Prada Pérez

    Elisabet Liminyana Vico
    Instructor of Catalan and Graduate Student, Journalism
    Ana de Prada Pérez

    Assistant Professor of Spanish

    2013-2014 Library Enhancement Grant

    A Library Enhancement Grant was awarded to Ms. Liminyana Vico and Dr. de Prada Pérez to acquire additional holdings in Catalan linguistics and cultural studies. These acquisitions will build on current collection strengths in 20th-century Catalan literature and reference works by making available new materials spanning from the 12th through 21st centuries.

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  • Jack Kugelmass

    Center for Jewish Studies

    In collaboration with Rebecca Jefferson
    Price Library of Judaica

    2013-2014 Library Enhancement Grant

    Drs. Jack Kugelmass and Rebecca Jefferson have been awarded a Library Enhancement Grant in the Humanities for 2014 to help fund the acquisition of the Buenos Aires Yiddish daily Di prese. Published between 1918 and the 1980s, this newspaper was arguably the most important Jewish publication within Latin America. Since the 1880s, Argentina was a major destination for migrating Jews and became a cultural hub for Yiddish publications. Nobel prize-winning Yiddish writer Bashevis Singer was particularly impressed during his South American travels by the literary output of the Yiddish writers in Buenos Aires, many of whom wrote for the Di prese. Thus, the publication is a valuable historical resource that logged daily output from the many Jewish literati in and around Argentina.

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2012–2013

  • Jill Sonke

    Jill Sonke
    School of Theatre and Dance / UF Center for the Arts in Medicine
    2012-2013 Library Enhancement Grant

    Jill Sonke, Director of the UF Center for the Arts in Medicine, was awarded a grant through the Library Enhancement Program in Spring 2012 to extend the holdings of the Criser Cancer Resource Center (CCRC). Acquisitions funded by the grant will form the core of the interdisciplinary Medical Humanities Collection. The collection will feature resources to facilitate dialogue and teaching, provoking insights into such topics as the human condition, suffering, empathy, creativity, and self-reflection. These topics will contribute toward the better understanding and practice of whole-person and patient-centered care.

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  • Jason Steuber, Lourdes Santamaría-Wheeler, and Allysa Browne Peyton

    Jason Steuber
    Cofrin Curator of Asian Art, Harn Museum of Art

    Lourdes Santamaría-Wheeler
    Museum & Special Projects Coordinator, Digital Library Center, University of Florida

    Allysa Browne Peyton
    Curatorial Associate of Asian Art, Harn Museum of Art

    2012-2013 Library Enhancement Grant

    A Library Enhancement Grant was awarded to the Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art to fund the digital preservation of a 17th-century Korean gilt-wood bodhisattva in the Harn collection. The bodhisattva is an enlightened figure in the Buddhist tradition. This particular sculpture represents a bodhisattva seated in a lotus position (paryankasana) with the right hand raised in a gesture of fearlessness (abhaya mudra) and the left hand resting on the knee in a gesture of gift-giving (varada mudra). Based on body posture and stylistic features, Dr. Unsok Song of Dongguk University, Korea, determined the bodhisattva was sculpted sometime between the 1650s and 1670s in southeastern Korea. This was a period of renaissance for Buddhist arts in Korea, following widespread destruction during the Japanese invasions of 1592-1598. Dr. Song has noted the exemplary character of this piece, concluding “the Harn Museum bodhisattva highlights the vigour and creative genius of the Buddhist monk-sculptors in this important epoch of Buddhist art in Korea.”

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2011–2012

  • Leah Rosenberg

    Department of English
    2011-2012 Library Enhancement Grant

    Prof. Leah Rosenberg was awarded a Library Enhancement Grant to expand the collection of early Caribbean literature and periodicals in the Digital Library of the Caribbean (dLOC) and UF Digital Collections (UFDC). The University of Florida is a founding member and the technological hub of dLOC, an open access database of digitized historical material from the Caribbean and the largest database of periodicals from the Caribbean. The Library Enhancement Grant allowed the dLOC and UFDC to acquire Planters’ Punch (1922-1945) from the National Library of Jamaica, which digitized the periodical for dLOC. Planters’ Punch is now available on dLOC.

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  • Barbara Mennel

    Associate Professor of German and English
    2011-2012 Library Enhancement Grant

    Prof. Barbara Mennel, Director for the Center for Film and Media Studies, was awarded a Library Enhancement Grant in Spring 2011 to develop the Film and Media Resources (FMR) maintained by the Center. FMR consists of an academic collection of films, videos, and multimedia for classroom instruction and research available to faculty members and graduate teaching assistants at the University of Florida. The unique variety of media formats available through FMR allows study of technological innovation and aesthetic use. The Library Enhancement Grant facilitated acquisitions for the FMR collection, improvements to the website, additional phone services, and a new sign for the FMR door. Further efforts are underway to increase faculty and student awareness of the collection.

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2010–2011

  • Gonda Van Steen

    Greek Studies
    2010-2011 Library Enhancement Grant

    When Professor Gonda Van Steen joined the faculty of the Department of Classics at the University of Florida in 2009, she found the modern Greek holdings in the Library to be in need of significant expansion. Dr. Van Steen immediately recognized a need to build more comprehensive holdings in this area and set about trying to increase the library’s collection. With the assistance of a Library Enhancement Grant provided by the Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere, she was able to bring important new books related to modern Greece to the University of Florida Library.

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  • Rebecca Nagy

    Director, Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art
    2010-2011 Library Enhancement Grant

    The Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida, with the assistance of a Library Enhancement Grant provided by the Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere, has made significant book acquisitions in support of the freshman humanities course, “What is the Good Life?” These books are housed in the Harn’s Bishop Study Center where they are available to faculty, students and other museum visitors.

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  • Sean MacDonald and Richard Wang

    Languages, Literatures, and Cultures (Chinese Studies)
    2010-2011 Library Enhancement Grant

    The University of Florida is home to the largest pool of Chinese scholars in the state. Not only are there four scholars specializing in the language and culture of China currently in the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, there are also scholars working on China in the School of Art and Art History, the Department of Anthropology, and the Department of Religion.

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  • Howard Louthan

    Department of History
    2010-2011 Library Enhancement Grant

    The University of Florida is home to a large and growing group of scholars of Central and Eastern Europe. After the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet Union this region has emerged with a distinct and fascinating identity, and UF has been leading the way in the study of its languages, cultures, politics, and history. For example, the University of Florida teaches a full sequence of Hungarian classes for undergraduates, something not even Oxford University can claim. Another area of growing interest is religious history. There has been an increase in the number of classes on religion in several departments, and UF recently wrapped up a two year-long lecture series “Faithful Narratives” which brought leading scholars in the history of religion to speak at UF. One area where the two expanding fields of East-Central Europe and religion intersect is in the study of the Protestant and Catholic Reformations. UF has a number of undergraduates interested in the Reformation in Central and Eastern Europe, and several graduate students and faculty members are conducting research on this broad area of study.

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2009–2010

  • Andrea Sterk

    Late Antique and Medieval Studies
    2009-2010 Library Enhancement Grant

    In recent years there has been growing interest in medieval history at the University of Florida. With four professors in the history department directly engaged in the field, as well as several others in the departments of English, Religion, and Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, among others, UF has more medievalists than it has ever had before; indeed, UF has a greater concentration of medievalists than many other North American universities. As a result, an increasing number of undergraduates is getting interested in the Middle Ages at the same time that UF has attracted a growing contingent of graduate students committed to research in the Middle Ages. Every semester there are multiple courses offered on medieval topics, and UF’s recent creation of the Medieval and Early Modern Studies Center (MEMS) has facilitated interdisciplinary work by undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty working on the medieval world.

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  • Benjamin Hebblethwaite

    Haitian Creole Studies
    2009-2010 Library Enhancement Grant

    While many may not know it, the University of Florida has one of the largest collections of Haitian Creole literature in the world. The largest university in a state with one of the largest Creole populations, UF is a vital institution for the study of this language. With Haitian Creole as the third most widely spoken language in Florida after English and Spanish, librarians at UF have been collecting books in Haitian Creole since they first appeared around 1904. However, within the past decade, significant gaps have emerged in the library’s collection, holes which Assistant Professor of Haitian Creole Ben Hebblethwaite has sought to fill. With the assistance of a Library Grant provided by the Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere with the support of the Rothman Endowment, he was able not only to bring important new books to the library, but also CDs and DVDs relevant to Haitian Creole culture. “I tried to fill in the gaps,” he said, “and I really just followed my heart.”

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  • Michelle Campos

    Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies
    2009-2010 Library Enhancement Grant

    With events in the Middle East capturing the attention of Americans as never before, demand for courses that shed light on this region has grown. The University of Florida has thus sought to provide students with more opportunities to learn about the history, languages, and cultures of the Middle East. One manifestation of this directive was the hire in 2006 of Michelle Campos, Assistant Professor of the Modern Middle East. Prior to her arrival, there was no scholar in this area of specialization in the history department. Consequently, as she began teaching undergraduate classes, especially senior seminars, she found that the University of Florida libraries did not have many of the materials needed by her students. While the library had a comprehensive collection in Israeli history, its resources on other Middle Eastern nations were far scarcer; there were gaps in the primary and secondary sources necessary for student research. With the assistance of a Library Enhancement Grant from the Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere with the support of the Rothman Endowment, she was able to request that the UF libraries purchase films, sourcebooks, and translated primary sources to bolster their collection relevant to Arab, Persian, and Turkic societies.

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  • Brenda Chalfin

    Department of Anthropology and Center for African Studies
    2009-2010 Library Enhancement Grant

    Dr. Brenda Chalfin was awarded a Library Enhancement Grant to extend UF’s archives of African Studies by compiling architectural, planning, and housing records from Ghana’s midcentury planned city of Tema. The grant funded digital photographic documentation of urban planning materials dealing with the creation and conception of Tema including maps, blue prints, photos, marketing materials, correspondence, and public records from Ghana’s independence in 1957 to the present day in the collection of the Tema Development Corporation (TDC). This grant contributes important materials and records from a cornerstone planned city at the heart of 20th century African modernism.

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