Valerie Snobeck, MFA’08, Creates Piece for Smart Museum Courtyard

Valerie Snobeck, MFA'08, has created a piece titled American Standard Movement as part of the annual Threshold series sponsored by the Smart Museum of Art. The site-specific work, presented in the Vera and A.D. Elden Sculpture Garden, re-uses debris netting that was previously part of a construction project on the University of Chicago campus in order to open up questions about environment, the passage of time, and progress.

Alumna Traces History of Bowl Belonging to Cleopatra Through 20th Century AD

Cultural historian Marina Belozerskaya, AM'92, PhD'97, has published the first book-length account of the Tazza Farnese, a libation bowl dating to Ptolemaic Egypt that once belonged to Cleopatra. The book, titled Medusa's Gaze: The Extraordinary Journey of the Tazza Farnese, charts the renowned artifact's journey through history, from Rome and Constantinople to the Holy Roman Emperor's court at Palermo and the French Revolution. It inspired artists such as Raphael and Botticelli and was owned by Greek, Roman, Byzantine, and Mongol rulers. The Tazza Farnese's adventure continued even after it came to rest at the Naples National Archaeological Museum--it was nearly destroyed there in 1925 by a deranged guard.

For more information on alumni publications, visit the University of Chicago Magazine, or check out the catalog of alumni books on the magazine's Goodreads page.

Philosophy Alumnus Named Distinguished Professor at University of Southern Maine

Robert Louden, AM'76, PhD'81, is the fifth person to be named distinguished professor at the University of Southern Maine, one of the highest honors a tenured professor can receive at the university. Louden, whose interests include the history of ethics, ethical theory, Kant, and the history of philosophy, arrived at USM in 1982 as an assistant professor. He became a professor in 1996 and has served as the department chair four times since then. In 2009 he also received the University of Southern Maine Faculty Senate Award for Excellence in Scholarship in the Humanities. He has published four books with the Oxford University Press and edited one, titled The Greeks and Us: Essays in Honor of Arthur W. H. Adkins, with the University of Chicago Press.

More alumni news can be found in the most recent edition of the University of Chicago Magazine.

Alumna Publishes Personal Look at Gender Politics in Figure Skating

Erica Rand, AM'81, PhD'89, published a book of essays--part cultural critique, part memoir--last year titled Red Nails, Black Skates: Gender, Cash, and Pleasures On and Off the Ice. The idea for the book began when Rand, a professor in women's and gender studies and art and visual culture at Bates College, started figure skating and noticed the numerous ways in which the sport intersected with her academic interests: strict gender rules, class distinctions, and heavy emphasis on popular culture. For example, both male and female skaters, must follow strict guidelines for apparel, such as white skates and short skirts for women, black skates and spandex--clingy, but still masculine--for men. The book contains Rand's observations about the skating world from the point of view of a "self-identified queer femme in a heavily sequined sport."

Read more about Rand's research and the work of other UChicago alumni here.

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