Campus & Community

Four faculty recognized with Cabot Fellowship

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Achievements and scholarship are key in annual fellowship

Faculty of Arts and Sciences interim Dean David Pilbeam has announced that Allan Brandt, Kathleen Coleman, Jeffry Frieden, and James Robinson are the Walter Channing Cabot Fellows for the current academic year. The fellowships are awarded annually to selected faculty members in recognition of their achievements and scholarship in the fields of “literature, history or art, as such terms may be liberally interpreted.”

“These four honorees represent the pinnacle of scholarship in their respective fields of study, and we are proud to honor their professional achievements,” Pilbeam, Henry Ford II Professor of Human Evolution, said. “The distinction of these faculty advances the prestige already associated with the Cabot Fellowships.”

Brandt, professor of the history of science and Amalie Moses Kass Professor of the History of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, was awarded the fellowship for “The Cigarette Century: The Rise, Fall, and Deadly Persistence of the Product that Defined America” (Basic Books, 2007). In the book, Brandt charts “big tobacco’s” campaigns of scientific disinformation in the face of medical studies showing the deleterious effects of cigarettes as well as the astonishing decline and stigmatization of tobacco use as the 20th century progressed. Brandt’s academic work focuses on the social and ethical aspects of health, disease, and medical practices in United States in the 20th century. He is also the author of “No Magic Bullet: A Social History of Venereal Disease in the United States Since 1880.”

Coleman, Harvard College Professor and professor of Latin, received the fellowship for her work on the “first full-scale edition” of the “Liber Spectaculorum” (Oxford University Press, 2006) by the Roman poet Martial. In the book, Martial’s epigrams are carefully illuminated and contextualized by English translations and Coleman’s astute commentary. While her principal area of study has been Latin literature, Coleman also researches and writes about Roman spectacle, from aquatic displays to executions staged as mythological re-enactments.

Frieden, Stanfield Professor of International Peace, was awarded the fellowship for his book “Global Capitalism: Its Fall and Rise in the Twentieth Century” (W.W. Norton, 2006). Through this work, Frieden takes up the daunting task of chronicling and explaining the major historical events that shaped the global economy throughout the last century in a work that the New York Times Book Review called “magisterial … one of the most comprehensive histories of modern capitalism yet written.” His research specializes in the politics of international monetary and financial relations.

Robinson, professor of government, received the fellowship for his work on the book “Economic Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy” (Cambridge University Press, 2005), co-authored with K. Daron Acemoglu of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The book explores the economic circumstances that force elites within a society to create a democracy in place of a dictatorship, which Robinson argues is their preferred form of government. Robinson’s research seeks to understand what makes countries different, particularly in terms of economic prosperity and degrees of democratic representation in government.