August 25, 2019

Devlin Comments on Segregation in National Parks

Assistant Professor of History Erin Devlin

Assistant Professor of History Erin Devlin

Erin Devlin, assistant professor of history and American studies, was interviewed recently on the National Parks Traveler podcast. She discussed her research into sites in national parks in Virginia that were associated with segregation during the first half of the 20th century. She initially looked at all of the parks in Virginia before 1964, and then focused specifically on six case study parks, including Shenandoah National Park, Colonial National Park in Tidewater, Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Parks, Prince William Forest Park, and George Washington National Birthplace Monument. “Any park that was established before 1945, you should presume that the facilities there were segregated,” she said. “This is a history we can find imprinted across the Parks Service landscape.”

Listen here. 

Al-Tikriti Completes Fulbright Year in Baku

Professor Al-Tikriti in Baku

This summer Professor Nabil Al-Tikriti completed an academic year as a Fulbright Scholar in Baku, Azerbaijan, affiliated with Baku State University. In the course of this past year he conducted historical research in four manuscript collections and libraries; completed an American Studies curriculum reform proposal and led a workshop on teaching undergraduate research methods at Baku State University; presented UMW to six audiences (four American Centers, one high school, and a U.S. Study Abroad office); offered two guest lectures on Ottoman History at ADA University; organized a guest lecture at Baku State University; observed elections in Georgia, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine; and prepared proposals for an international conference and student exchange program.

For all their generous hospitality and gracious hosting, Dr. Al-Tikriti extends his deepest gratitude to his points of contact at Baku State University, the U.S. Embassy in Baku, and ADA University. He hopes to maintain communications and collaboration with his Azerbaijani colleagues well into the future.

Al-Tikriti Monitors Parliamentary Elections in Ukraine

Prof. Al-Tikriti (2nd from right) at a Ukrainian polling station.

Prof. Al-Tikriti (2nd from right) at a Ukrainian polling station.

Associate Professor of Middle Eastern History Dr. Nabil Al-Tikriti served as an election monitor for the Ukraine parliamentary elections on 16-24 July. Joining 90 Americans in the U.S. delegation of some 750+ observers total, Al-Tikriti worked as an OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe) STO (Short Term Observer) in 11-12 rural villages in the agricultural region around Berdyansk, in Eastern Ukraine. His observation partner was a French government official, based in Paris. For more information on these Ukrainian elections, and OSCE’s support of these elections, please see:
https://www.osce.org/odihr/elections/kazakhstan/418187.

In the course of his visit, Al-Tikriti spent four days in Berdyansk, an industrial port on the Sea of Azov, and five days in the capital Kiev, where observers carried out preliminary briefings. While there, he found time to visit the Chernobyl Museum, the National History Museum, and several World War II monuments in the rural villages around Berdyansk.

Originally scheduled to be held at the end of October 2019, the 2019 Ukrainian parliamentary elections were brought forward after newly inaugurated President Volodymyr Zelensky dissolved parliament early on 21 May 2019 (a day after his inauguration). In the event, the “Servant of the People” party won the most seats, enabling the formation of a new government. For more information on the politics behind this elections, see this article.

This is the 15th OSCE-monitored election Al-Tikriti has observed since 1997, and the 3rd within the past year.

Devlin’s National Parks Project Highlighted in The Free Lance-Star

Assistant Professor of History Erin Devlin

Assistant Professor of History Erin Devlin

Assistant Professor of History and American Studies Erin Devlin’s collaboration with the National Park Service was the focus of an article in The Free Lance-Star. Devlin is working with NPS to develop a historic resource study that will explore the practice of racial segregation in national parks throughout Virginia during the first half of the 20th century. According to the article, “NPS has installed a wayside exhibit outside the Fredericksburg Battlefield Visitor Center on the history of segregation at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park.”

Read more. 

Al-Tikriti Monitors Kazakhstan Presidential Election

Associate Professor of Middle Eastern History Dr. Nabil Al-Tikriti (3rd from left) recentlyserved as an election monitor for the Kazakhstan presidential elections.

Associate Professor of Middle Eastern History Dr. Nabil Al-Tikriti (3rd from left) recently served as an election monitor for the Kazakhstan presidential elections.

Associate Professor of Middle Eastern History Dr. Nabil Al-Tikriti served as an election monitor for the Kazakhstan presidential elections on 4-12 June. Joining 29 other Americans in the U.S. delegation of some 300+ observers total, Al-Tikriti worked as an OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe) STO (Short Term Observer) in 8-9 rural villages and the main town in the somewhat remote steppe region around Capaev, in Western Kazakhstan province. His observation partner was a Polish human rights activist, based in Prague. For more information on these Kazakhstan elections, and OSCE’s support of these elections, please see:
https://www.osce.org/odihr/elections/kazakhstan/418187

In the course of his visit, Al-Tikriti also spent two days in Uralsk, an oil exploration base in Western Kazakhstan, and two days in the capital Nur Sultan (Astane), where observers carried out preliminary briefings.While in Nur Sultan, he visited Nazarbayev University, the country’s premier higher education facility.

Associate Professor of Middle Eastern History Dr. Nabil Al-Tikriti (2nd from right), recently served as an election monitor for the Kazakhstan presidential elections. Al-Tikriti worked as an OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe) STO (Short Term Observer) in 8-9 rural villages and the main town in the somewhat remote steppe region around Capaev.

Associate Professor of Middle Eastern History Dr. Nabil Al-Tikriti (2nd from right), recently served as an election monitor for the Kazakhstan presidential elections. Al-Tikriti worked as an OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe) STO (Short Term Observer) in 8-9 rural villages and the main town in the somewhat remote steppe region around Capaev.

Kazakhstan’s ruling party, Nur Otan, had nominated Kassym-Jomart Tokayev as its candidate for a snap presidential vote after he was backed by the country’s founding leader, President Nursultan Nazarbayev, following his resignation in March 2019. In the election itself, state election officials awarded Tokayev 70% of the vote, in line with exit polls announced by state media one hour after polls closed. 

This is the 14th OSCE-monitored election Al-Tikriti has observed since 1997.

McClurken Presents Multi-day Workshop on Digital Liberal Arts Pedagogy in Beirut

McClurken leading off the workshop with a set of shared resources

From May 3rd to 5th, UMW’s Chief of Staff and Professor of History and American Studies Dr. Jeffrey W. McClurken ran a workshop on Collaborative Digital Liberal Arts Pedagogy: Integrating Projects and Methodologies into Your Course at DHI-B (Digital Humanities Institute — Beirut) held at the American University of Beirut. The participant group of 25 faculty, librarians, and instructional technologists came from AUB or other AMICAL schools with the goal of collaborating on using Digital Humanities tools in a course, in particular in the undergraduate context of international liberal arts institutions. Participants brought syllabi (or at least the idea for a syllabus) and left with clear plans to integrate digital projects and/or methodologies into their courses.

Harris Comments in Los Angeles Times on Housing Development in Ukraine

Associate Professor of History and American Studies Steven Harris

Associate Professor of History and American Studies Steven Harris

Associate Professor of History and American Studies Steven Harris was quoted in the Los Angeles Times in an article about a new housing development in a residential area of Kiev, in Ukraine. The article, entitled “Soviet housing was famously drab. This Ukraine complex is all about color,” states, “‘Scholars say housing is one realm where the Soviet Union did what the United States could not: provide cheap, reasonably decent housing for everyone.’ ‘They actually did solve the housing question,’ said Steven Harris, a historian at the University of Mary Washington and author of Communism on Tomorrow Street: Mass Housing and Everyday Life After Stalin.”

UMW’s McClurken to Appear on With Good Reason Radio

University of Mary Washington Chief of Staff and Professor of History and American Studies Jeff McClurken will be featured on the With Good Reason public radio show this Sunday, May 18. The episode, Reconstructing Danville, will air daily through Saturday, May 24. The show examines an 1883 Danville race riot and the ripples it sent through the […]

Al-Tikriti Publishes Article on Turkish Municipal Elections

The Middle East Report Online (MERO) published an article by Associate Professor of Middle Eastern Studies Nabil Al-Tikriti, entitled “Turkish Voters Upset Erdogan’s Competitive Authoritarianism.” In the course of this article, Professor Al-Tikriti analyzed the political and economic dynamics driving the results of the March 31, 2019 Turkish municipal elections, which proved a major defeat for the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

“Turkish voters sent a strong message to its long-standing ruling party and its leader on March 31, 2019 that the government’s authoritarian turn has not fully succeeded,” Al-Tikriti said. “In nationwide municipal elections, for the first time in a quarter century, the political movement largely associated with Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lost control over both the country’s economic and political capitals, as well as numerous other districts throughout the country…” Read more.

McClurken Presents on Digital Humanities and Southern History at University of Alabama

Professor Jeff McClurken, Department of History and American Studies.

Professor Jeff McClurken, Department of History and American Studies.

In early March, Professor of History and American Studies Jeff McClurken, who also serves as the Chief of Staff and Clerk of the Board of Visitors, was invited to present on Digital Humanities and Southern History at the University of Alabama, as well as to talk with graduate students about how to integrate digital tools into their teaching and research.

See https://cw.ua.edu/51322/news/mary-washington-professor-lectures-on-southern-history-digital-humanities/ for more.