News from UIC’s History Department

  December 2006


The Bookshelf:

Just out--JAVIER VILLA-FLORES, _Dangerous Speech: A Social History of Blasphemy in Colonial Mexico_ (University of Arizona Press).


The Upcoming AHA Program--The Part That Counts:
UIC'ers who will enjoy Atlanta hospitality during the AHA Convention, January 4-7 include:
Prof. BURT BLEDSTEIN, who will gave a paper on "Visual Thinking in Chicago: Lewis Hine's Photographic Intelligence."
Prof. LEON FINK, who is part of a panel on "Corporatizing Higher Education: Developments, Consequences, and Future Perspectives."
Prof. BARBARA RANSBY, who will speak on "Creating a Family-Friendly Department (the session is on balancing work and family in the academic workplace). She will also preside at the Breakfast Meeting of the AHA Committee on Women Historians.
Prof. JAVIER VILLA-FLORES, who will give a paper on "God's Name as Pharmakon: False Witnessing before the Mexican Inquisition."

These UIC alums also adorn the program:
Prof. HASIA DINER (Ph.D., 1975) of NYU and the American Jewish Historical Society will take part in a panel on "Ethnic Historical Associations at the Crossroads?"
Prof. WENDY PLOTKIN (Ph.D., 1999) of Arizona State University will give a paper "Up and Running on the Cheap," part of a session on Exploring Historical Space and Environments in the Classroom.
Prof. MARGARET M. POWER (Ph.D., 1997) of IIT will give a paper on "Transnational, Conservative, Anti-Communist, and Catholic: Tradition, Family and Property" (for a session on Transnational Perspectives on the 20th-Century Political Right).
Prof. ANDREW W. WIEST (Ph.D., 1990) of the University of Southern Mississippi will preside over a sesson on the Limitations of Historical Lessons in Aspects of Recent US Military History.


Who Says It’s a Tough Job Market?  This is a, er, Slam Dunk.
            Grad students JOHN ROSEN AND JOSH FENNELL are working as the play-by-play and color announcers for UIC women's basketball this season.  You can watch the games and hear their commentary live on the internet at or from the UIC athletics home page, through the Horizon League link. A free registration is required to access the free live feed.  Coverage began December 9 with the UIC vs. Air Force game.


Other News of the Department:

Prof. ERIC ARNESEN’s articles “No ‘Graver Danger’: Black Anticommunism, the Communist Party, and the Race Question” and “The Red and the Black: Reflections on the Responses to ‘No Graver Danger’” appear in Labor: Studies in Working-Class History of the Americas 3, No. 4 (Fall 2006). (The first essay was the subject of a roundtable; the second a reply to responses by four other historians.)  He is General Editor of the three-volume_Encyclopedia of U.S. Labor and Working Class History_ (Routledge), which appeared in November.  He reviewed a book on the steel-drivin’ John Henry and several about radical journalist I. F. Stone in the Chicago Tribune and a book on white Southerners in the civil-rights era for the Boston Globe.  In November he served as respondent for a session at “Making the Mexicano Metropolis: Historical Research and Current Perspectives on Mexican and Mexican Community Life in Chicago,” the inaugural session of the Latino and Borderlands Seminar Group at the Newberry Library.
            In November his two-year term as President of the Historical Society began. 


Prof. RENATO BARAHONA recently published two essays:  “Coacción y consentimiento en las relaciones sexuales modernas, siglos 16 a 18,” in _Mujer, marginacion y violencia entre la Edad Media y los tiempos modernos_, Ricardo Córdoba de la Llave, ed. (Cordoba: Universidad de Córdoba. 2006); and “Between Ideals and Pragmatism: Honor in Early Modern Spain,” in _Approaches to Teaching Spanish Golden Age Drama_, Laura Bass and Margaret R. Greer, eds., (NY, 2006) in the series “Approaches to Teaching World Literature” of the MLA. 


The book _Unfit for Marriage_ by Prof. EDWARD BEHREND-MARTINEZ (Ph.D., 2002) of Appalachian State University will be released by University of Nevada Press in April.  Full details will be forthcoming then.


From Portland, Oregon, NORMAN EDER (Ph.D., 1980) reports that the lobbying firm of which he is a partner has grown to twenty people housed in three offices (Portland, Salem and D.C.)  His firm represents some 20-25 clients before the Oregon legislature.  He spent much of the last year helping a coalition of manufacturers build a new statewide advocacy coalition.  Norman is in his 24th year of part time teaching at the Pacific Northwest College of Art, where he teaches I am a an upper division seminar course each semester.


In October Prof. RICK FRIED gave a public lecture to unwitting evening users of the Oak Park Public Library on Bruce Barton, an Oak Park native son.


Prof. RICHARD JOHN commented in October on a panel at a Harvard graduate student conference on the "History of Capitalism." In November, he gave the keynote address at the first Blount Symposium on Postal History at the Smithsonian Institution's National Postal Museum, a conference organized by UIC  Ph. D.(2006) Cheryl Ganz, now curator of philately at the NPM. Next day, he flew to Bogota, Colombia, [ed. note: “air mail,” we assume] to give a paper at a conference on "The Nation-State During the 19th Century in America [North and South]: State, Territory, Parties."  In December, he lectured at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, on "Second Nature: The Popularization of Urban Telephony in the United States, 1894-1907."  His review essay, "Shop Talk: Liberalism, Consumerism, and the American Revolution," appeared in the September 2006 Enterprise and Society.


Prof. MARGARET POWER of IIT (Ph.D, 1997) has just returned from research in Chile. . While there she participated in a seminar at Universidad Alberto Hurtado on her book, Right Wing Women in Chile, which has been translated into Spanish and will be published in 2007 by the National Library of Chile.  This year she has published “Dirty Wars in South America,” in _Daily Life of Civilians during Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Latin America_, ed. Pedro Santoni (Westport, CT: Greenwood); and “La mujer conservadora en Brasil y Chile,” in _Historia de las Mujeres en España y America Latina_, (Madrid: Editorial Catedra); and “Right-Wing Men in Chile,” in Third World Men: An Anthology, ed. Adam Jones (London:  Zed Press).


Prof. PEG STROBEL retired September 30, after 27 years at UIC (12 years directing Gender and Women's Studies, then 7 directing the Jane Addams Hull-House Museum). History Department alums Cheryl Ganz and Mary Todd spoke at her retirement dinner November 13. The dinner helped raise $13,000 towards a GWS Jane Addams Fund, which GWS can use for projects consistent with Jane Addams's beliefs. Peg offers many thanks to History Department faculty and former and current students who contributed.


Prof. ASTRIDA TANTILLO presented "A 'Monstrous' Reading of Werther: Mary Shelley's
Frankenstein and Goethe at the German Studies Association Conference in Pittsburgh in September.


Grad student BENN WILLIAMS recently presented the paper “Varying Shades of Gray: Denunciation at the Frontier of Fact and Fiction” before the Rocky Mountain MLA in Tucson and has a proposal accepted for the upcoming Society for French Historical Studies conference. In addition, his first product as series editor for the Center for French Colonial Studies Extended Publications was published in October: Margaret Brown and H. Randolph Williams, eds., French Colonial Studies: Le Pays des Illinois. Selections from Le Journal, 1983-2005.


JACKIE WOLF (PhD 1998) of Ohio University, published “The First Generation of American Pediatricians and Their Inadvertent Legacy to Breastfeeding,” in _Breastfeeding Medicine_, (Fall 2006). She contributed a chapter, “Saving Babies and Mothers: Pioneering Efforts to Decrease Infant and Maternal Mortality,” to _Silent Victories: The History and Practice of Public Health in Twentieth-Century America_, John W. Ward and Christian Warren, eds.(Oxford, 2006).  She is just back from an exhausting-sounding series of invited talks at the University of Michigan:  for the Victor Vaughan Medical Lecture Series: “Doubling Life Expectancy: The Role of Public Health, 1900-2000"; for  the Program in Science, Technology & Society: “‘Rolling a Bowling Ball through the Vagina’: Rationales and Realities of Cesarean Section Rates”; for the Institute for Research on Women and Gender: “The Inadequate Breast: Inventing Lactation Pathology in the United States”; for Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women’s Health: “‘Powder and Lipstick Were On Just So’: The Ideal Woman, Perceptions of Labor Pain, and the Use of Obstetric Anesthesia;” and for obstetric grand rounds: “From Ether to Epidural: Obstetric Anesthesia in Social Context.”


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