Seven retiring faculty members who have a combined 268 years of service to Dartmouth were thanked for their contributions to the College during the meeting of the Faculty of the Arts and Sciences on May 16. The profiles below, drawn in part from the citations that were read during the meeting by the chairs of their departments, also highlight just one course and one publication from each professor’s distinguished career as a Dartmouth teacher and scholar.
Hoyt Alverson, Professor of Anthropology
A member of the Dartmouth faculty since 1968, Alverson has taught “The Cross-Cultural Study of Values: Universal and Particular” and published Mind in the Heart of Darkness: Value and Self-Identity among the Tswana of Southern Africa.
The longest-serving member of the anthropology department in Dartmouth’s history, Alverson undertook his first fieldwork among Native Americans in the Southwest and First Nation’s people in British Columbia. Alverson also worked among the Tswana in Southern Africa, and his phenomenological approach to self-identity “stood the work apart from more conventional structural analyses of African societies,“ said Deborah Nichols, the William J. Bryant 1925 Professor and chair of the anthropology department. In the 1990s Alverson began a new program of research with Dartmouth Medical School that focused on the delivery of mental health and employment services.
Hoyt Alverson, Professor of Anthropology, has taught “The Cross-Cultural Study of Values: Universal and Particular” and published Mind in the Heart of Darkness: Value and Self-Identity among the Tswana of Southern Africa. (photo by Joseph Mehling ’69)
Nichols said, “Hoyt has brought his training and insights as a cultural anthropologist to both the public and private sectors and has been a consultant to a diverse array of organizations, ranging from the Peace Corps, U.S. AID, to Texaco and L.L. Bean. His research and teaching have crossed the fields of economics, linguistics, and medicine. Hoyt’s breadth as a cultural anthropologist distinguishes him in an era of increasing specialization.
Kirk Endicott, Professor of Anthropology
A member of the Dartmouth faculty since 1982, Endicott has taught “Introduction to Cultural Anthropology” and published Analysis of Malay Magic.
Kirk Endicott, Professor of Anthropology has taught “Introduction to Cultural Anthropology” and published Analysis of Malay Magic. (photo by Joseph Mehling ’69)
Kirk Endicott is a cultural anthropologist interested in hunting and gathering societies and the indigenous people of Southeast Asia. He continues to work with the Batek people of Malaysia, who he first met in 1971, and he is currently studying the impact of tourism on indigenous people. Endicott shaped the design of Dartmouth’s interdisciplinary foreign study program in New Zealand, which is offered jointly by the anthropology department and the linguistics and cognitive science programs. Endicott has led three of those programs abroad.
Former student Andrew Hay ’01 noted, “Professor Endicott could teach the theory, the methods, and the passion—and make it all stick in our brains. One moment he’d be discussing the development of functionalist to structuralist anthropology, the next moment he’d demonstrate—with somewhat disturbing accuracy—how to use a Malaysian blow-dart gun. He taught us how to see crocodiles as political symbols, yams as currency, and Trobriand jewelry as social fabric. When I started a career in diplomacy, I didn’t expect that Professor Endicott’s lessons would come back to serve me. But they did, frequently! In analyzing Kurdish nationalism into its structural symbols, taboos, and myths, I was really just channeling [Emile] Durkheim, who I read in Professor Endicott’s class.”
Hans Michael Ermarth, Professor of History
A member of the Dartmouth faculty since 1971, Ermarth has taught “Modern Germany, 1800-1945” and published “Hyphenation and Hyper-Americanization: Reich Germans View German-Americans, 1890-1918,” Journal of American Ethnic History.
Michael Ermarth, Professor of History, has taught “Modern Germany, 1800-1945” and published “Hyphenation and Hyper-Americanization: Reich Germans View German-Americans, 1890-1918,” in the Journal of American Ethnic History. (photo by Joseph Mehling ’69)
A historian of modern Germany, Ermarth has published numerous books and articles, in English and German, about 20th-century German intellectuals, such as Wilhelm Dilthey, Martin Heidegger, and Karl Jaspers. For the past decade his research and writing has focused on such thinkers’ conception of Americanization and the Americanization of Germany. Ermarth has taught numerous classes offered jointly by the history department and the Jewish Studies program.
Chair of the History Department Margaret Darrow, who described Ermarth as “lighting quick with the turn of a phrase,” team-taught a European history course with Ermarth and others. She said, “Listening to and watching Michael lecture [when we taught] “The History of Europe Since 1715” was an education, both in subject matter and in pedagogy. Michael invites students to think with him rather than thinking for them. His immense erudition is easy and inclusive. Although our interests in history and our approaches to any particular topic or period differ quite a bit, even when I was a pea-green newbie at lecturing, Michael was always delighted to work with what I brought to the course, a thoroughly engaged, helpful, generous colleague.”
Gene Garthwaite, the Jane and Raphael Bernstein Professor in Asian Studies and Professor of History
A member of the Dartmouth faculty since 1968, Garthwaite has taught “Eye of the Beholder: Introduction to the Islamic World” and published Khans and Shahs: A History of the Bakhtiyari Tribe in Iran.
In April 2011 Garthwaite was the subject of a weekend event titled, “Crossing at the Green: The Dartmouth / Middle East Connection, A Symposium in Honor of Professor Gene R. Garthwaite.” About 50 of Garthwaite’s previous students—some of whom are now professors, diplomats, and military leaders—returned for the symposium. Chair of the History Department Margaret Darrow said Garthwaite is the “go-to referee of many publishers for any manuscript dealing with Middle Eastern history.”
Gene Garthwaite, Jane and Raphael Bernstein Professor in Asian Studies and Professor of History, has taught “Eye of the Beholder: Introduction to the Islamic World” and published Khans and Shahs: A History of the Bakhtiyari Tribe in Iran. (photo by Joseph Mehling ’69)
Darrow said, “If we ever wondered what Gene has contributed to Dartmouth, this symposium made it abundantly clear: Gene’s gift to Dartmouth, to the country, and to the world is several generations of informed people including many extremely influential people, with deep interest and understanding of the Middle East. Gene has created and inhabited a unique place in the life of the history department, the Asian and Middle Eastern studies program, and the College.”
Walter (Jay) Lawrence, Professor of Physics
A member of the Dartmouth faculty since 1971, Lawrence has taught “Quantum Computation and Information” and published “Accessibility of Quantum Effects in Mesomechanical Systems,” Physical Review.
A theoretical physicist, Lawrence has completed pioneering calculations (often using just pencil and paper) on superconductivity, and more recently, he has been studying quantum information theory. In April there was a symposium held in honor of Lawrence, attended by Lawrence’s former students including Fiona Harrison ’85, professor of physics and astronomy at California Institute of Technology, and Jonathan Bagger ’77, a vice provost at Johns Hopkins University and the Krieger-Eisenhower Professor of Physics and Astronomy.
Jay Lawrence, Professor of Physics, has taught “Quantum Computation and Information” and published “Accessibility of Quantum Effects in Mesomechanical Systems,” in Physical Review. (photo by Joseph Mehling ’69)
Erica Artukovic Peters ’01, now professor of physics at MiraCosta College, said of Lawrence, “I have always considered Jay to be the archetypal physics instructor: passionate, brilliant and often easily distracted by his own complicated brain. His passion and interest in physics and philosophy inspired me and piqued my interest in a way that no other subject did. It’s for this reason that I continued studying physics in grad school, and with Jay as a role model in the back of my mind, I decided to go into teaching. Nothing can get students as excited about physics as explaining how weird reality actually is, and this is something I definitely learned from Jay.”
Brenda Silver, the Mary Brinsmead Wheelock Professor of English
A member of the Dartmouth faculty since 1972, Silver has taught “Woolfenstein” (on Virginia Woolf and Gertrude Stein) and has published Virginia Woolf’s Reading Notebooks.
Brenda Silver has published the books Virginia Woolf Icon and Virginia Woolf’s Reading Notebooks, an annotated bibliography of 68 reading notebooks. Silver has taught classes on Woolf to many students, including Louise Erdrich ’76, now a celebrated author herself. Erdrich has said of Silver, “Brenda was my adviser and she steered me to Virginia Woolf, which changed my life.” Silver is also interested in cyberculture, and she was one of the first at Dartmouth to start teaching courses in digital studies. In May Silver was honored on campus during a symposium titled, “Where We Are Now,” which was organized by the English department and Women’s and Gender Studies Program.
Brenda Silver, the Mary Brinsmead Wheelock Professor of English has taught “Woolfenstein” (on Virginia Woolf and Gertrude Stein) and has published Virginia Woolf’s Reading Notebooks. (photo by Joseph Mehling ’69)
Silver came to Dartmouth in 1972, the year women first matriculated as four-year students at the College. She originated the English department course “Women and Literature: A Feminist Perspective,” and was one of the founders of the Women’s Studies Program. Gretchen Gerzina, the Kathe Tappe Vernon Professor in Biography and chair of the English department, said, “The curriculum has shifted because of her work. As she retires from Dartmouth, she leaves an institution that is far better for her long presence here.”
Marsha Swislocki, Associate Professor of Spanish and Portuguese
A member of the Dartmouth faculty since 1977, Swislocki has taught “Theater and Performance in Modern Spain: 1800-1936” and published Estrenado con gran aplauso: teatro español, 1844-1936, edited with Miguel Valladares.
Marsha Swislocki, Associate Professor of Spanish and Portuguese has taught “Theater and Performance in Modern Spain: 1800-1936” and published Estrenado con gran aplauso: teatro español, 1844-1936. (photo courtesy of Marsha Swislocki)
Swislocki’s fields of expertise include the Spanish literature of the early modern period, theater and poetry, Spanish and Portuguese literary relations, and Portuguese language and literature. She helped organize a conference in 2003 at Dartmouth on the topic of Spanish Theater. The conference informed her later articles on Lope de Vega, a major figure of the Spanish Golden Age Theater. Swislocki helped establish Dartmouth’s study abroad programs in Spain, Mexico, and Brazil, and she has led more than 15 of those programs.
José del Pino, chair of the department of Spanish and Portuguese, said, “Marsha Swislocki has brought vision and collegiality to the many committees in which she served at the departmental and college level. She is a generous member of the faculty who has served as vice chair and chair of the Spanish and Portuguese department for more than 10 years, on three different occasions. She is a very respected and admired member of our department.”