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July 1, 2013
Swann Foundation Announces Awards for 2013‑2014
The Caroline and Erwin Swann Foundation for Caricature and Cartoon, administered by the Library of Congress, has awarded fellowships to five applicants for the academic year 2013-2014. Recipients attend the University of North Carolina and Brandeis, Fordham and George Mason universities.
- Alexandra Boni, a doctoral candidate in history at George Mason University, was awarded a Swann Fellowship to support research for her dissertation, "Editorializing the Cold War: Cartoons and Commentary on Nuclear Fear and Anxiety, 1945-1989." Boni aims to provide a comprehensive analysis of cartoons relating to Cold War anxiety by three nationally syndicated cartoonists—Herbert Block (Herblock), Paul Conrad and Frank Miller—in the context of their cartoons’ embedded contents and related articles and letters to the editor in the main newspapers that published their work (Herblock’s in the Washington Post, Conrad’s in the Denver Post and Los Angeles Times and Miller’s in the Des Moines Register).
- Erin Corrales Diaz, a doctoral candidate in art history at the University of North Carolina, was awarded a fellowship to support research for her dissertation, "Remembering the Veteran: Disability, Trauma, and the American Civil War, 1861-1915." She will investigate ways in which American illustrators, cartoonists, artists and photographers used the figure of the disabled veteran to explore the trauma and violence of the American Civil War. She will focus on the work of Thomas Nast, Joseph E. Baker and other artists whose work in the pictorial press shows how the figure of the veteran permeated many forms of American popular culture.
- Allison Lange, a doctoral candidate in history at Brandeis University received a fellowship to support research on her dissertation, "Pictures of Change: Transformative Images of Gender and Politics in the Woman Suffrage Movement, 1776-1920." This project explores the use of publicly circulating imagery in the movement. Lange first will examine late-18th century conventions for representing gender. She then will examine how suffragists used newspaper cartoons and illustrations, photographs and other imagery to promote their movement, which ended with women winning the vote in 1920.
- Johnathan Pettinato, a doctoral candidate in history at Fordham University, received a fellowship to support research for his dissertation, "Burke and Britons: Edmund Burke and the Irish Other in 18th-Century Cartoons." In tracing the rise of chauvinism and xenophobia in late-18th-century Britain, Pettinato focuses on the era’s scurrilous cartoons that caricatured Burke as an ‘other,’ an un-British threat to Britain and its empire, by often drawing upon stereotypes of the Irish and Jesuit priests. The study will particularly benefit from consulting the Library’s outstanding collection of British satirical prints.
- Louis Dean Valencia, also a doctoral candidate in history at Fordham University, received a fellowship to support research for his dissertation, "Making a Scene: Movida, Comic Books, Punk Rock, Anti-authoritarian Youth Culture, and Creating Democratic Spaces in Franco’s Spain, 1955-1984." He explores how young Spaniards living under Francisco Franco’s dictatorship subverted the régime in their everyday lives by reading American comics, despite government attempts to interdict such activity. Valencia suggests that exposure to such comics that conveyed democratic, pluralistic and proto-feminist ideals contributed to Spanish youths’ rejection of fascist ideology as evidenced in comics they produced in the mid-1970s that critiqued the régime.
During the coming academic year, the five recipients will conduct research at the Library of Congress, largely in the General Collections and in the Prints and Photographs, Serial and Government Publications, and Rare Book and Special Collections divisions.
New York advertising executive Erwin Swann (1906‑1973) established the Swann Foundation for Caricature and Cartoon in 1967. An avid collector, Swann assembled a large group of original drawings by more than 500 artists, spanning two centuries, which his estate bequeathed to the Library of Congress in the 1970s. Swann's original purpose was to build a collection of original drawings by significant creators of humorous and satiric art and to encourage the study of original cartoon and caricature drawings as works of art. The foundation's support of research and academic publication is carried out in part through a program of fellowships.
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