Spring 2018 Speaker Biographies
Lee Alan Dugatkin is an Evolutionary Biologist, Behavioral Ecologist, Historian of Science, Distinguished University Scholar and Professor of Biology at the University of Louisville. He is the author 9 books, including Principles of Animal Behavior; Mr. Jefferson and the Giant Moose (the subject of a previous Chautauqua lecture); Evolution; The Altruism Equation; and most recently How to Tame a Fox (and Build a Dog): Visionary Scientists and a Siberian Tale of Jump-Started Evolution. Co-written with Lyudmila Trut – a professor of evolutionary genetics at the Institute of Cytology and Genetics, in Novosibirsk, Siberia, and one of the principal investigators along with Dmitri Belyaev in the original experiment – How to Tame a Fox has received critical acclaim from all quarters, including Scientific American, the LA Review of Books, the Times Literary Supplement, Science News, and the New York Times, which called it “sparkling… a story that is part science, part Russian fairy tale, and part spy thriller.”
Delyaev and Trut’s experiment to ‘jump-start’ evolution and to domesticate foxes has been hailed as a “landmark experiment,” “one of the world’s most important animal studies,” and “one of the most influential biological studies ever” by a range of notable scholars. In their book, Trut and Dugatkin tell the story of the adventure, science, politics, and love behind the now 60-year old and still ongoing study. They take the reader inside the path-breaking experiment in the midst of the brutal winters of Siberia to reveal how scientific history was made and continues to be made today. To date, fifty-six generations of foxes have been domesticated, and we continue to learn significant lessons from them about the genetic and behavioral evolution of domesticated animals. How to Tame a Fox offers an incredible tale of scientists at work, while also celebrating the deep attachments that have brought humans and animals together throughout time.
In addition to his books, Lee Dugatkin has published over a hundred scientific articles on the evolution of behavior. His research has drawn considerable media attention over the years, garnering full-length articles in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Manchester Guardian, The Globe and Mail, Discovery Magazine, Scientific American, Nature, Science, BioScience, Science News and dozens of other newspapers, magazines and journals across the world. Dr. Dugatkin is a contributing author to Scientific American, The New Scientist, Newsday, Cerebrum, BioScience, and The Wilson Quarterly, and between 1996-2003, he contributed more than 80 science columns to the Louisville Courier Journal newspaper.
Maryanne Wolf is "Global Literacy" Fellow at Stanford University (2017-18), the John DiBiaggio Professor of Citizenship and Public Service, and Director of the Center for Reading and Language Research at Tufts University. The author of dozens of articles on the psychology of reading and related areas of dyslexia, linguistics, neuroscience, cognition and child development, Dr. Wolf has written several books, including the critically acclaimed Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain, published by Harper Collins in 2008 and since translated into 13 languages; Tales of Literacy for the 21st Century, published by Oxford University Press in 2016; and Reader, Come Home: The Reading Brain in the Digital Age, forthcoming in 2018 from Harper Collins.
In 2017, Dr. Wolf has been serving as a Fellow in the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University, as part of the New Literacies Network. The aim of this work is to apply current research on the reading brain circuit and numeracy to the design and curation of a digital learning experience for non-literate children in remote regions around the world and in the rural US. The overarching goal is to contribute towards ameliorating illiteracy for the 200 million children who may otherwise never attain functional literacy. In this connection, Dr. Wolf is a co-founder of Curious Learning: A Global Literacy Initiative, which has current deployments in Ethiopia, Uganda, South Africa, India, and the rural US.
Maryanne Wolf received her doctorate from Harvard University in the Department of Human Development and Psychology in the Graduate School of Education, where she began her work on the neurological underpinnings of reading, language, and dyslexia. Professor Wolf was awarded the Distinguished Professor of the Year Award from the Massachusetts Psychological Association, and also the Teaching Excellence Award from the American Psychological Association.
As a Fulbright Fellow in Germany, Dr. Wolf conducted research on dyslexia in German-speaking children. In addition to research into reading, neuroscience and global literacy, her current work in collaboration with Dr. Pat Bowers concerns a new conceptualization of developmental dyslexia, the Double-Deficit Hypothesis. This research was the subject of a recent special issue of the Journal of Learning Disabilities. Along with colleagues Dr. Robin Morris and Dr. Maureen Lovett, Professor Wolf was awarded a NICHD Shannon Award for Innovative Research and several multiyear NICHD grants to investigate new approaches to reading intervention. Dr. Wolf is the author of the RAVE-O Intervention Program, an evidence-based fluency comprehension program for struggling readers that has proven successful in two major federal studies. She received the Norman Geschwind Lecture Award from the International Dyslexia Association for neuroscience research in dyslexia.
Kimberly Kay Hoang is Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Chicago, where she teaches courses in Sociological Theory; Ethnography; States, Markets, and Bodies; Power, Identity, and Resistance; and Economy and Ethnography. Having earned her Ph.D. in 2011 from the Department of Sociology at the University of California, Berkeley, in 2012 she won the Best Dissertation Award from the American Sociological Association. Before joining the faculty at the University of Chicago, she was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Rice University (2011-13) and an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Boston College (2013-15).
Dr. Hoang is the author of Dealing in Desire: Asian Ascendancy, Western Decline, and the Hidden Currencies of Global Sex Work, published by the University of California Press in 2015. This monograph examines the mutual construction of masculinities, financial deal-making, and transnational political-economic identities. Her ethnography takes an in-depth and often personal look at both sex workers and their clients to show how high finance and benevolent giving are intertwined with intimacy in Vietnam's informal economy. Dealing in Desire is the winner of seven distinguished book awards from the American Sociological Association, the National Women Studies Association, the Society for the Study of Social Problems, and the Association for Asian Studies.
With funding support from the Social Science Research Council and the Fulbright Global Scholar Award, Dr. Hoang has recently been conducting research for her second book project, tentatively titled Playing in the Gray: Capital Brokers in Emerging Markets. This second book involves a comparative study of the articulation of inter-Asian flows of capital and foreign investment in Southeast Asia.
Kimberly Hoang’s work has been published in many important journals, including the Journal of Asian American Studies, Social Problems, Gender & Society, City & Community, Contexts, Sexualities, the International Journal of Politics, Culture and Society, and the Journal of Contemporary Ethnography. Her peer-reviewed journal articles have won essay prizes from a host of academic bodies including the Sociologists for Women in Society, Vietnam Scholars Group, and the American Sociological Association: Section on Global & Transnational Sociology, Section on Race, Gender and Class, Section on Sociology of Sex & Gender, Section on Sociology of Body and Embodiment, Section on Asia and Asian America, and the Section on Sexualities.
Robert H. Frank is a bestselling author, veteran columnist, the Henrietta Johnson Louis Professor of Management and Professor of Economics at Cornell's Johnson Graduate School of Management, and a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos. His most recent book is Success and Luck: Good Fortune and the Myth of the Meritocracy, published in 2016 by Princeton University Press. About the book, Fortune declared it “well-reasoned, coherent, and compelling,” adding that “Frank is one of the great writers of economics.”
Dr. Frank’s other books, which include Choosing the Right Pond, Passions Within Reason, Microeconomics and Behavior, Principles of Economics (with Ben Bernanke), Luxury Fever, What Price the Moral High Ground?, Falling Behind, The Economic Naturalist, and The Darwin Economy, have been translated into 23 languages. The Winner-Take-All Society, co-authored with Philip Cook, received a Critic's Choice Award, was named a Notable Book of the Year by The New York Times, and was included in Business Week's list of the ten best books of 1995. He is a co-recipient of the 2004 Leontief Prize for Advancing the Frontiers of Economic Thought. He was awarded the Johnson School’s Stephen Russell Distinguished teaching award in 2004, 2010, and 2012, and its Apple Distinguished Teaching Award in 2005.
For more than a decade, Frank’s “Economic View” column appeared monthly in The New York Times. He received his B.Sc. in mathematics from Georgia Tech, and then taught math and science for two years as a Peace Corps Volunteer in rural Nepal. He holds an M.A. in statistics and a Ph.D. in economics, both from the University of California at Berkeley. His papers have appeared in the American Economic Review, Econometrica, Journal of Political Economy, and other leading professional journals. Many of Robert Frank’s theories have been very influential in the field of economics, including the ‘prisoner’s dilemma,’ the ‘positional arm race,’ ‘winner-take-all’ and the strategic role of the emotions in decision making.
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Robert Choate Darnton is a literary and cultural historian, columnist, author, MacArthur Fellow, and the Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor and University Librarian Emeritus at Harvard University, having served last year also as a Fellow at the Institut d’études avancées in Paris. He was recently awarded (in June 2017) an honorary doctorate from the University of Oxford for the significance of his life’s work. A former president of the International Society for Eighteenth Century Studies and longtime board member of the Voltaire Foundation, Dr. Darnton’s contributions to the history of the French Enlightenment are so significant that an entire volume of the landmark journal in the field, Studies on Voltaire and the Eighteenth Century, was once devoted to essays on his work and remains one of the best selling books in the 60-year history of the series. Robert Darnton’s most recent book is Censors at Work: How States Shaped Literature, published in 2014. He is next book, A Literary Tour de France: The World of Books on the Eve of the French Revolution, is set for publication on February 2, 2018 by Oxford University Press.
Dr. Darnton was educated at Harvard University (A.B., 1960) and Oxford University (B.Phil., 1962; D. Phil., 1964), where he was a Rhodes scholar. After a brief stint as a reporter for The New York Times, he became a junior fellow in the Society of Fellows at Harvard. He taught at Princeton from 1968 until 2007, when he became Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor and Director of the University Library at Harvard. He has been a visiting professor or fellow at many universities and institutes for advanced study, and his outside activities include service as a trustee of the New York Public Library and the Oxford University Press (USA) and terms as president of the American Historical Association and the International Society of Eighteenth-Century Studies.
Among Robert Darnton’s many honors are a MacArthur Fellowship (often called the “Genius” prize), a National Book Critics Circle Award, election to the French Legion of Honor, the National Humanities Medal conferred by President Obama in February 2012, and the Del Duca World Prize in the Humanities awarded by the Institut de France in 2013.
Robert Darnton is a prolific author who has written and edited numerous books, including The Business of Enlightenment: A Publishing History of the Encyclopédie (1979, an early attempt to develop the history of books as a field of study), The Great Cat Massacre and Other Episodes in French Cultural History (1984, probably his most popular work, which has been translated into 18 languages), Berlin Journal, 1989-1990, (1991, an account of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of East Germany), and The Forbidden Best-Sellers of Prerevolutionary France (1995, a study of the underground book trade). His latest books are The Case for Books (2009), The Devil in the Holy Water, or The Art of Slander in France from Louis XIV to Napoleon (2009), Poetry and the Police: Communication Networks in Eighteenth-Century Paris (2010), and Censors at Work: How States Shaped Literature (2014).
Dr. Darnton is a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books and serves as a Trustee of the New York Public Library.