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HONORS & Other Things

Dr. Thompson-Schill: Young Investigator Award

Sharon Thompson-Schill

Dr. Sharon Thompson-Schill was awarded the Young Investigator Award for outstanding contributions to cognitive neuroscience at the annual meeting of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society in March.

She has been an assistant professor in the psychology department (with a joint appointment in the Neurology department) at Penn since 1999. A member of the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, the Institute for Research in Cognitive Science, and the Institute for Neurological Sciences at Penn, she teaches an undergraduate course in Cognitive Neuroscience. She has been the co-director of the IRCS/CCN Summer Workshop in Cognitive Science and Cognitive Neuroscience for several years.

Dr. Thompson-Schill's research centers on understanding the neural bases of memory and language. In particular, her lab has been studying the role of the frontal lobes in cognitive control, as it relates to memory, language, and emotion. They use functional magnetic resonance imaging to study physiological changes in human brains that support these various cognitive functions. In addition, they examine the behavior of patients with focal brain damage, identified through a collaboration with the Department of Neurology which has led to the creation of a substantial Focal Lesion Database to support neuropsychological research programs at Penn. Dr. Thompson-Schill was the recipient of the Searle Scholars Award in 2000.

Four New Weiler Fellows in SAS

Four faculty members have received Weiler Faculty Humanities Research Fellowships from the School of Arts and Sciences.

Assistant Professor of English Sean Keilin is a scholar of lyric poetry, the transmission of classical thought and literature in early modern England, the history of scholarship, the history of the book, Protestant aesthetics, Reformation antiquarianism and historiography, and theories of literary history. He is writing a book called Antique Dispositions: Ancient Objects and the Origins of English Language, which focuses on the relationship between ancient and modern writing, the problem of inventing an English literary tradition, and the nature of literary vocation.

Assistant Professor of Political Science Andrew Norris specializes in political theory. He is particularly interested in political judgment, philosophical anthropology, anti-liberalism and the politics of authenticity, and the history of moral and political philosophy. He is currently co-editing a collection of essays on Stanley Cavell and writing a book on judgment and decision in modern political philosophy. He is the director and co-founder of the Philadelphia Political Theory Workshop.

Professor of South Asia Studies Rosane Rocher has published several books and many articles on Indian and Indian American studies, East-West intellectual encounter, the history of Indian studies and linguistics, Sanskrit linguistics, and 18th-century studies. In addition to a biography of Indologist and polymath Henry Thomas Colebrook, for which she has received a Weiler Fellowship, her current work includes an edition and translation of an 18th-century Sanskrit lawbook, a study of language instruction at the East India Company's College in the early 19th century, and research on 18th-century Bengali Pandits in British employ.

R. Jean Brownlee Endowed Term Professor of Anthropology Peggy Reeves Sanday is a scholar of women's studies, Southeast Asia, anthropology of gender, multiculturalism, and sexual culture. She is currently working in an Aboriginal community in the Great Sandy Desert of Australia, where she is studying the Aboriginal representation of the Wolfe Creek Meteorite Crater, discovered by her geologist father in 1947. With the advantage of time off due to the Weiler Fellowship, she will complete a book entitled Track of the Rainbow Serpent: Aboriginal Representations of the Wolfe Creek Meteorite Crater.

These fellowships--established in 1982 by Alan G. Weiler, W'55--provide research funds and release time from teaching and administrative duties, are intended for research in the humanities and humanistic social sciences. They are awarded to faculty members who have a critical need for research and writing time outside of the usual sabbatical cycle.


  Almanac, Vol. 49, No. 28, April 8, 2003