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Kingdon Fellows

Stephanie Grace Petinos
French, Hunter College
Kingdon Fellow
Divine Touch and Relicization within Narrative, Hagiographical and Visual Representations from the Twelfth through the Fifteenth Centuries

Divine Touch and Relicization within Narrative, Hagiographical and Visual Representations from the Twelfth through the Fifteenth Centuries is an interdisciplinary investigation of specific moments in various Old French, Middle English and hagiographical texts, as well as visual representation, in which individuals—humans and non-human animals— are divinely touched. The individuals in question are often miraculously bodily restored, transforming them into living relics; a process that I refer to as relicization. As relicized bodies are at once living and holy material, functioning in and among the secular and sacred realms, what can they tell us about the hierarchy between humans, non-human animals, and objects?

Stephanie Grace Petinos received her PhD in French with a certificate in Medieval Studies in September 2016 from The City University of New York (CUNY) Graduate Center. Her dissertation was entitled “Seeking Holiness: The Contribution of Nine Vernacular Narrative Texts from the 12th to the 14th Centuries.” Her main research interests include medieval spirituality, medieval materiality, ecocritical theory and gender. She has several forthcoming articles related to these fields, including “The Ecology of Relics in Philippe de Remi’s Le Roman de la Manekine.” Ed. Heide Estes. Medieval Ecocriticisms (Amsterdam University Press); “Happiness via Spiritual Transcendence in a Selection of Old French Texts.” Ed. Bryan Turner, Yuri Contreras-Vejar, and Joanna Tice. Exploring Happiness; and “Leprosy as locus of divine touch in Ami et Amile.” Paroles Gelées.

Daniel Hummel
History, Harvard University
Kingdon Fellow
A Covenant of the Mind: American Evangelicals, Israel, and the Construction of a Special Relationship

This book tells the international history of Christian Zionism from 1948 to the present, tracing its rise to one of the most powerful religious movements in American politics. Using archives in English and Hebrew, this book tells the story of the religious, political, and international forces that emerged after the establishment of Israel in 1948 to transform evangelicals into fervent supporters of Israel. With close attention to a multitude of actors including the Israeli government, American Jewish organizations, and evangelical leaders in both the U.S. and Israel, A Covenant of the Mind is both expansive in scope and methodologically diverse, relying on a number of fields including history, religious studies, and anthropology. In addition to reconstructing the Christian Zionist movement, this book touches on broader developments in evangelical and American history: the construction of Judeo-Christianity, the rise of interreligious dialogue, non-state actors in the Cold War era, and Jewish-Christian relations after the Holocaust.

Dan Hummel received his PhD in History from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2016. In 2016-17, he was the Postdoctoral Fellow in History and Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. He has published in forums including Religion & American Culture, Religions, Religion & Politics, and War on the Rocks. His research interests include U.S. foreign relations, American evangelicalism, American Judaism, and international history. Recently, he helped found Voices & Visions, an online primary source reader for U.S. foreign relations that combines rigorous academic standards with digital teaching methods.