We are pleased to announce our first two History in Action Research Associates, who will be serving in Spring 2015.
David Allen will be working at the New York Times writing reviews of classical music performances and recordings. In this role he will be deploying the historian’s skills of public writing, research, and historical thinking in a non-academic setting. He writes, “The act of writing about classical music is itself ‘history in action.’ As I conceive it, music criticism is an attempt, albeit in unusual form, to find usable pasts, to demonstrate the continuing validity of recapitulated art from past centuries in a quite different society, and to contextualize contemporary works and developments in the industry by citing them within that past. With that philosophy, and given very tight constraints of space and form, I attempt to give my reviews a distinctly historical flavor, and to pitch historical pieces in longer forms.” For a recent example of his work, see this review of a new Pierre Boulez collection.
Kathryn Lasdow will be working at the Brooklyn Historical Society on the “BHS: Waterfront” project. The exhibit, aiming for a launch in late 2016 in BHS’s newly acquired gallery space in the Empire Stores Warehouse in the DUMBO neighborhood, will present the history of development and change in this dynamic part of the city. In her role as a Research and Content Assistant (supervised by Columbia History PhD Julia Golia), she will be drawing on her historian’s skills as a researcher, but also gaining experience in the curatorial, design, project management, and educational programming aspects of museum work. The project fits in well with her own dissertation research on nineteenth-century American port cities and waterfront infrastructure.
The aims of the HARA program are to create institutional relationships between outside organizations and the Department of History, and to allow graduate students to use and develop historical skills and methods outside the walls of the university. An application schedule and instructions for the next round of HARA awards (for work starting in Summer or Fall 2015) will be announced shortly. For more information, click here.