Current Winners

John L. Simpson Memorial Research Fellowship in International and Comparative Studies

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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
Anthropology
I will undertake research to study settlement patterns among Swahili communities prior to and during the development of the plantation economy in Zanzibar, from AD 1500-1850. The mid-19th-century plantation system in Zanzibar is described as an imported social landscape run predominately by Omani landowners, and worked by enslaved people drawn from many parts of East Africa. However, it is also clear that the plantation system was built on top of at least a millennium of settlement by indigenous Swahili coastal people on Zanzibar, which is largely undocumented outside the coastal rim prior to...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
Sociology
Public mental healthcare systems in the developed world face three interlinked challenges, but their responses to them—and the consequences of those responses for people living with severe mental illnesses like schizophrenia—vary enormously. First, as emphasis shifts from the relatively narrow category of “mental illness” to the much broader one of “mental health,” growing demand for services is increasingly in tension with welfare-state retrenchment. Second, as long-term “institutionalization” in custodial hospitals has become fiscally and ethically indefensible, there is a widening fissure...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
Comparative Literature
My research focuses on Chinese fiction produced in the early decades of the 20 th century, a time when Chinese writers and thinkers looked eagerly to Western nations as models for China’s social, political, economic, and cultural development. For Chinese intellectuals of this time, rejuvenating Chinese cultural production (especially literature) according to Western models was a primary means of reinvigorating Chinese society and redefining Chinese national standing among hegemonic world powers. The genre of literary realism, a recent arrival from the West along with dozens of other - isms ,...Read more
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Term:
AY 18-19
Department:
Sociology
At Indopanoptic’s training center in Jakarta, peasant daughters undergo military discipline. Banned from leaving the complex until overseas departure, they withstand verbal abuse for disobeying commands. Managers confiscate inmates’ cell phones, subjecting them to a regiment of language immersion, mental training, and housekeeping chores lasting 12 hours a day, for over three months. At Indofree, a firm nestled in Ponorogo’s agrarian heartland, trainees chitchat, take selfies, and browse social media while instructors coax them to pay attention. After seven training hours each day, women slip...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
History
My dissertation examines the international politics of migration during Guatemala’s Cold War, focusing on events and historical actors in the United States, Mexico, and Guatemala. Through an examination of both the top-down and bottom-up politics of four decades of exile and migration, the project poses the following questions: under what circumstances and through what mechanisms does the movement of people across borders undermine international partnerships and existing foreign policy commitments? And when migration does challenge the prevailing international order in a region, how do states...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
Sociology
How did the Philippines develop “the most globalized workforce on the planet ”? We often assume global labor circuits, yet still lack long-term analysis that addresses how a sustained supply of global workers is made and replenished over time. To analyze this process, my dissertation traces the genealogy of a country’s transnational workforce, as the next generation joins its predecessors in the global labor force. In particular, I am building an archive of transnational family histories and work trajectories, which map out family dispersion, occupational diversification, and shifts in the...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
South & Southeast Asian Studies
In the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, India-based authors living under the Mughal Empire entered a sustained textual conversation concerning the origins and history of those who they called “Afghan.” The result of this endeavor, which included the participation of Sufis, courtiers, imperial news-writers, and soldiers, was a rich collection of stories about the history of Afghan migration from the Sulaiman mountain range to locations across India, where, as the authors collectively attested, Afghans acted as trailblazers in the foundation of new settlements and rose to...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
History
Sophie J. FitzMaurice is a PhD candidate in the Department of History at the University of California, Berkeley, where she specializes in the environmental history of the United States and Latin America. Her dissertation reexamines empire-building in the nineteenth century through the lens of ecology, focusing on non-human animals and the migratory paths that crossed manmade borders (or were crossed by them). Her research questions how the spread of infrastructural systems that delineated physical space and facilitated an unprecedented growth in communication and movement (roads, fences,...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
Architecture
Giuseppina Forte charts the largely ignored historical genealogy of city making in the peripheries of São Paulo, Brazil, and its connection to broader urban dynamics. Going beyond fixed profiles of poverty and subaltern agency, formal/informal and local/global divides, her research uncovers the interconnectedness between the peripheries and the center(s) under republican (1946-64), dictatorial (1964-85), and democratic regimes (1985-present). An exemplary case study in the Northern fringe of São Paulo is the oblique point of entry between global and situated elements, encompassing multiple...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
Political Science
When donors give humanitarian aid to alleviate suffering during a crisis, such as a natural disaster, conflict, or famine, donors, not recipient governments, decide how funds are spent. Citing concerns about recipient governments’ ability or will to provide assistance, donors channel the vast majority of these funds to international organizations and NGOs to deliver goods and services to affected populations more quickly and efficiently. Despite this, governments play a significant, often overlooked role, in the success or failure of humanitarian assistance. Governments, even those with...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
Medical Anthropology
My dissertation examines shifts in the practice and conceptual framework of modern medicine as the Middle East comes to terms with recent political upheavals and scientific developments. There is also an urgency to respond to a (perceived) local scientific stagnation, a demand to consider local visions of health (‘ afiya : physical, psychological, and spiritual wellness) and the human (grounded in an Islamic cosmology), and an imperative to subject the field of medicine to socio-economic and political concerns and Islamic ethics. My ethnographic work, based in three urban centers (Jeddah,...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
Political Science
How do individual trauma responses affect intergroup relations and support for reconciliation after conflict? The question of what impacts reconciliation after conflict is one that has received a significant amount of study to date. While scholars in the past have looked to factors such as economic stability, employment opportunities, equal representation of various groups in government, and the establishment of strong political institutions, this study maintains that the psychological impacts of war and their related physiological expressions have been neglected in the post-conflict...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
City and Regional Planning
I am a PhD Candidate in City and Regional Planning with Designated Emphases in Science and Technology Studies and Global Metropolitan Studies. My dissertation research examines city masterplanning processes in Rwanda, as the country undergoes large-scale urban transformation. Focusing on the remapping of municipal services in the capital, Kigali, and in designated secondary cities, I examine the new spatial and social configurations that emerge as urban space is reorganized. I ask: How can one locate urban change in the context of the country’s history and aims to transition to a green, low...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
Education
“Educate a girl, empower a nation” is a popular aphorism that has come to be the axiomatic solution to improve the ‘developing world.’ What is more, o ver the past 30+ years the significance of education as a pathway to empowerment for third world girls and their nations has garnered increased visibility and notoriety . Important international actors such as the UN, UNESCO and the WTO among others boast that when you invest in a 'third world girl', you inherently invest in changing her nation. While this claim is compelling it is dangerous for a myriad of reasons, first (1) it makes invisible...Read more
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Term:
AY18-19
Department:
History
The proliferation of law-of-war norms and conventions since the mid nineteenth century has been strikingly concomitant with the onset of unprecedentedly destructive warfare. My dissertation grapples with this troubling trend by examining the history of weapons prohibitions under the laws of war, particularly between the 1860s and 1920s. In this time of rapid technological change and escalating violence in war, a few particularly outrageous weapons were prohibited by international law. Among them were explosive bullets under 400g (St. Petersburg, 1868), explosives thrown from balloons,...Read more

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