Humanities Scholar Hoda El Shakry Receives the Prestigious MLA Scaglione Prize

Hoda El Shakry

Many non-Muslims know very little about the Qurʾan. Pervasive Islamophobia—particularly in the post 9/11 era—has even led some to mistakenly view the Qurʾan as a trigger for acts of terrorism. Hoda El Shakry’s book The Literary Qurʾan: Narrative Ethics in the Maghreb (Fordham University Press, 2019) seeks to upend that perspective by demonstrating how the Qurʾan simultaneously models and teaches critical reading practices.

To recognize her efforts to change this paradigm, El Shakry received the Modern Language Association’s Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for Comparative Literary Studies on Jan. 9 for The Literary Qurʾan. “El Shakry shows that the Qurʾan has been an endlessly suggestive model for interpretation for writers across the Maghreb’s linguistic divides,” wrote members of the MLA Selection Committee about her book.

Norman Golb, Renowned Scholar of Medieval Jewish History, 1928-2020

A prolific author who was fluent in Hebrew and Arabic, Prof. Emeritus Norman Golb advanced ideas that intensified a continuing debate over the origins of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Prof. Emeritus Norman Golb, a multilingual scholar renowned for his pioneering research about medieval Jewish history and the Dead Sea Scrolls, died on Dec. 29. He was 92 years old.

Remembered by his students as an intellectually generous, kind and patient teacher, the University of Chicago professor of more than 50 years was known for his encyclopedic knowledge—particularly in the study of Qumran, the West Bank archaeological site where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. A prolific author, Golb was fluent in Hebrew and Arabic and used his expertise to examine primary sources.

Humanities Grad Student Nova Smith Receives Diversity Leadership Award Tonight

Nova Smith

Every year, the University of Chicago honors members of the UChicago community who demonstrate leadership and a sustained commitment to justice and equality. In addition to faculty, alumni and staff, this year’s Diversity Leadership Awards also recognize the contributions of UChicago students.

This year’s recipients are Prof. Anita Blanchard, MD’90; Rami Nashashibi, AM’98, PhD’11; Jessica Jaggers of Chicago Booth; and UChicago students Nova Smith (Cinema and Media Studies Department) and Demetrius Johnson Jr. They will be honored Jan. 12 during a virtual celebration of UChicago’s annual Martin Luther King Jr. commemoration.

Jacqueline Stewart Is One of 2020 Chicagoans of the Year

Jacqueline Stewart by Joe Mazza of Brave Lux

Chicagoan of the Year Jacqueline Stewart is a longtime University of Chicago film professor, archivist and curator, and director of the South Side Home Movie Project. More recently, she is the first Black host of Turner Classic Movies. In January, she takes an extended leave the university to become the director of the Academy of Motion Pictures museum.

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