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Auteur Rockstar Strikes A Chord

Auteur Rock Star Strikes a Chord

February 11, 2010

Listening to a brooding cello concerto, the writer strikes the keyboard as he begins his short story or book. He begins, yet does not know where it will end until he arrives there. "You know, it's hard for me to do this -- to…

James McHugh of USC College has been offered a Society Fellowship at Cornell University’s Society for the Humanities to complete his book about scent in medieval India. Photo credit Steve Cohn.

The Sweet Smell of Success

February 9, 2010

Imagine a figure wrapped in fine silk, dripping with diamonds and bathed in a cloud of exotic perfume. Is this a celebrity, a diva, the ghost of Liberace? According to James McHugh, assistant professor of religion in USC…

Professor of physics and astronomy, and leading expert on superstring theory Clifford Johnson. Photo credit Philip Channing.

A Quantum Leap into the Blogosphere

February 5, 2010

First, the highly popular Asymptotia is not a science blog. It's a blog that happens to be written by a scientist. Clifford Johnson, professor of physics and astronomy in USC College, blogs about his life and vast interests.…

Lynn Swartz Dodd, curator of USC College's Archaeology Research Center, adjusts a bronze-gold figurine to be X-rayed at Argonne National Laboratory near Chicago during her and her students' first visit in July 2009. Dodd has been awarded a second grant to use the country's most powerful X-ray. Photo credit Elizabeth Friedman.

Beaming with Joy

January 29, 2010

For the second consecutive year, archaeologist Lynn Swartz Dodd of USC College has won "beam time," enabling her and her students to conduct research on ancient artifacts using the nation's most powerful X-ray. "The items…

Historian & Author Extraordinaire

Historian and Author Extraordinaire

January 27, 2010

Back in Widener Library at Harvard University during the late ’60s, an American historiographer was born. University Professor and Professor of History in USC College, Kevin Starr researched and wrote five chapters for…

Illustration by Rick Cortes.

The Magic Poetry Bus

January 27, 2010

I grew up within poetry — the sound of my mother’s voice reciting Great Poems. The poetry she recited was canonical: Shakespeare, Milton, Tennyson, Dickinson, Longfellow — but the way she told these poems…

Lyn Boyd Judson, director of the Levan Institute for Humanities and Ethics, housed in USC College, contemplates the sculpture, "Life," created by Junxian Poon. Photo credit Pamela J. Johnson.

The Art of Ethics

January 27, 2010

Go ahead, gripe. It's not against the law or anything. But have you considered your negativity's impact on others? Constant exposure to a Debbie Downer or Bob Bummer can be like inhaling second hand smoke. It's repugnant, but…

Distinguished Professor of English Percival Everett. Photo credit Philip Channing. Story printed with permission from the <em>Los Angeles Times</em>.

In & Out of Fiction

January 27, 2010

Percival Everett doesn’t spend a lot of time considering his body of work. Instead, says the 52-year-old author, whose new novel I Am Not Sidney Poitier (Graywolf, 2009) came out in June, “I think about writing one…

Faculty Notes

January 25, 2010

Alber Named 2009 Pew Scholar Frank Alber, assistant professor of biological sciences, will get closer to determining the architecture of a macromolecular machine after being named a 2009 Pew Scholar in the Biomedical…

Sergey Nuzhdin and his co-researchers focused on Arabidopsis Lyrata in their paper about how plants survive in marginal soil environments. Photo credit William Cullina, <a href="http://www.williamcullina.com/"> www.williamcullina.com</a>.

Surviving Serpentine Soil

January 25, 2010

Recently published in Nature Genetics, a paper by Sergey Nuzhdin, alumnus Tom Turner, and their co-researchers reveals how plants survive in marginal soil environments. Nuzhdin, professor of molecular biology in USC College,…