Arts & Humanities Fellowships awarded to four Texas A&M faculty members

Arts & Humanities Fellows for 2016 are, from left: Felice House, an assistant professor in the Department of Visualization, College of Architecture; Laura Estill, an assistant professor in the Department of English, Katherine Unterman, an assistant professor in the Department of History, and Daniel Conway, a professor in the Department of Philosophy, all from the College of Liberal Arts.

Arts & Humanities Fellows for 2016 are, from left: Felice House, an assistant professor in the Department of Visualization, College of Architecture; Laura Estill, an assistant professor in the Department of English, Katherine Unterman, an assistant professor in the Department of History, and Daniel Conway, a professor in the Department of Philosophy, all from the College of Liberal Arts.

Four faculty members at Texas A&M University became Arts & Humanities Fellows for 2016 during an awards luncheon held today at the University Club. Each fellowship comes with a grant of $15,000 over a three-year period to fund a specific scholarly or creative project. 

“Arts & Humanities Fellows receive recognition for extraordinary scholarship and creativity,” Vice President for Research Glen A. Laine said. “This outstanding program provides Texas A&M faculty with a supportive environment to advance their work and rewards their scholarly and artistic merit.”

Arts & Humanities Fellowships for 2016 were presented to the following faculty members:

  • Daniel Conway, a professor in the Department of Philosophy, College of Liberal Arts, focuses his scholarship on nineteenth century European philosophy, social and political philosophy, ethics and the philosophy of religion. Turning his research in a new direction, he plans to develop an original theory of evil that will not only explain the persistence of moral relativism among college students and young people more generally, but also authorize meaningful attributions of evil to any human being who is involved in the destruction, actual or threatened, of life, liberty, property, hope or aspiration. With his fellowship, Conway plans to complete a book, “Facing Evil—in Philosophy, Religion, Literature, and Ourselves,” that articulates and defends this theory of evil.

  • Laura Estill, an assistant professor in the Department of English, College of Liberal Arts, conducts research in Renaissance drama, the works of William Shakespeare, early modern print and manuscript culture, digital humanities, and book history. Her focus is on notable personal libraries of early modern plays from the turn of the nineteenth century. With her fellowship, she plans to develop a traditional scholarly monograph and a complementary database she has titled, “Collecting Plays, Creating Canon.” Estill intends to publish at least one chapter of the monograph as a journal article and to present her results at international conferences.

  • Felice House, an assistant professor in the Department of Visualization in the College of Architecture, paints large-scale female portraits to provide a counterpoint to the passive, overly sexualized female representations often found in art history and modern culture. She depicts women redefined in the “female voice” and contends that access to these kinds of images give women—young and old—an opportunity to see themselves as real people defining a new era of equality. She plans to use her fellowship to produce two series of eight to twelve large-scale paintings. The paintings will be exhibited in peer-reviewed exhibitions at galleries, museums, and universities around the country and internationally. The series is integral to House’s presentations and papers at relevant conferences.

  • Katherine Unterman, an assistant professor in the Department of History, College of Liberal Arts, who chronicles the US Supreme Court’s Insular Cases—from the initial colonial disputes to the judicial opinions to their everyday repercussions—and shows how abstract legal proclamations made between 1901 and 1905 have had real-life consequences and determined the shape of America’s new empire. With her fellowship, she plans to conduct critical archival research to complete a book manuscript titled, “After the Insular Cases: Law in the American Empire.”

A peer-review panel selected each recipient based on merit and originality, professional qualifications, clarity, benefit to the public and the quality of the overall presentation. Fellowship applications were open to all tenured or tenure-track Texas A&M faculty who engage in scholarship in the humanities or in creative work in the arts.