Congratulations to second-year Ph.D. students Michael Chiappini and Megan Weber, whose projects were selected by the 2014-15 Graduate Committee for support from the Dean’s Fellows program!
Chiappini’s project looks at the Northeast Ohio LGBT Archives at the Western Reserve Historical Society, specifically their holdings of the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland papers and their oral histories of queer community members. He hopes to show that such an archive might point to regional differences (i.e. Midwest/Rust Belt) in the ways that persons with AIDS/HIV related to their disease and the biomedical discourses surrounding it. This has implications for fleshing out a narrative of the AIDS Crisis that more often than not is grounded in urban centers like New York City or San Francisco. Chiappini plans to put this collection in dialogue with both the New York Public Library‘s ACT UP Archives and New York University‘s holdings of the David Wojnarowicz papers.
Weber’s project examines paratext from John Dryden’s satires. She will look into how different publishers shift the rhetoric regarding satire, and how political and/or social climates create a need for a new version of the satire to be released. Weber is planning to use CWRU’s Special Collections and UCLA’s Center for 17th- and 18th-Century Studies.
Chiappini and Weber follow Thom Dawkins and Jess Slentz, selected in August 2013, and Evan Chaloupka and Ray Horton, selected in August 2014, as the third cohort to have projects supported by the Dean’s Fellows program.
The program provides all first-year doctoral students with startup research funds related to the development of project proposals. As many as two projects per year may be selected for additional support for writing time and travel. The program is designed to put interdisciplinary study and work in collections in Cleveland in dialogue with comparable institutions of national and international import and to expand the resource base for doctoral dissertation projects in English.