The grant program was introduced in 2002 by the Casden Institute to facilitate research and creative works by USC faculty who have a scholarly interest in the American Jewish community. Applicants were asked to describe the proposed project and how it will contribute to an understanding of American Jewry or relationships between Jews and other ethnic and religious groups in the United States.
|2007||Douglas Greenberg||“If You Didn’t Hate Me, Would I Still Be Jewish, Survival and Identity in a Post-Holocaust World.”|
|2007||Alison D. Renteln||“Jewish Names and Public Policy.”|
|2006||Donald E. Miller||“Once Again: Jewish Community Organizing and the Genocide in Darfur”|
|2005||Robert Cutietta and David Spear||“Restoring and Re-scoring Classic Films From the National Center for Jewish Film”|
|2004||Steven Ross||“The Politicization of Hollywood”|
|2003||John Bowlt||“Russian-Jewish Artists in America”|
|2002||Nomi Stolzenberg||“In/Tolerance: ‘Spiritual Custody’”|
Faculty Research Grant Past Recepients 2008-2013
Steve Ross-USC Department of History
Professor Ross received this Casden Faculty Research Grant for the research of his latest book titled “Hitler in Los Angeles: How the Jews and Their Spies Foiled Nazi and Fascist Plots Against America.” Professor Ross has written extensively in the areas of working-class history, social history, and film history. His first book, Workers On the Edge: Work, Leisure, and Politics in Industrializing Cincinnati, 1788-1890 (1985) was adapted for the screen by Cincinnati unionists and made into a documetary entitled “They Build the City: The Working People of Cincinnati.” His second book, Working-Class Hollywood: Silent Film and the Shaping of Class in America (1998), received the prestigious Theater Library Association Book Award for 1999. It was also named by the Los Angeles Times as one of the “Best Books of 1998” and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award in History. Professor Ross’s latest book, Hollywood Left and Right: How Movie Stars Shaped American Politics, received a Pulitzer Prize nomination and a Film Scholars Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Josh Kun, Professor of Communication and American Studies and Ethnicity
Professor Kun was awarded the Casden Faculty Research Grant to support his project that aims to archive, excavate and critically contextualize the forgotten catalog of Tikva Records, the most prominent independently run Jewish record label of the second half of the 20th century. Professor Kun’s research focuses on the arts and politics of cultural connection, with an emphasis on popular music, the cultures of globalization, the US-Mexico border, and Jewish-American musical history. He is director of The Popular Music Project at USC Annenberg’s The Norman Lear Center and co-editor of the book series “Refiguring American Music” for Duke University Press. He founded the USC Annenberg Distinguished Lecture Series on Latin American Arts & Culture, which he now runs in collaboration with the USC Latino Alumni Association.
Erin Graff Zivin-Associate Professor of Spanish and Portuguese and Comparative Literature
Professor Graff Zivin was awarded the Casden Faculty Research Grant to further her research on constructions of “Jewishness” in the Luso-Hispanic Atlantic, aesthetic representations of torture and interrogation, and the intersection of ethical philosophy and critical theory. She is the author of The Wandering Signifier: Rhetoric of Jewishness in the Latin American Imaginary (Duke University Press, 2008) and editor of The Ethics of Latin American Literary Criticism: Reading Otherwise (Palgrave Macmillan, 2007).
Professor Greenberg received the USC Casden Institute Faculty Research Grant for his project “If You Didn’t Hate Me, Would I Still Be Jewish, Survival and Identity in a Post-Holocaust World.” With this award, Professor Greenberg plans to explore and identify the main themes in American Jewish identity since 1945 by examining the impact of the Holocaust upon Jewish institutions, both secular and religious. Through extensive research of the major denominational archives of the Conservative and Reform movements, Professor Greenberg seeks to understand why, in an era of declining anti-Semitism in the United States, Jewish religious life has been steadily decreasing while the vitality of Jewish secular institutions and organizations has never been greater.
Alison D. Renteln
Professor Renteln received the USC Casden Institute Faculty Research Grant for her project “Jewish Names and Public Policy.” One of the standard markers of ethnic and religious identity is a person’s name – as a name may convey the social identity of an individual. Inthe United States, Jewish immigrants experienced the “melting pot” pressure to become “Americanized” by adopting anglicized names in the early 20th century. This decision was a conscious strategy to prevent discrimination both in the workplace and in educational institutions. Through the study of names, a field known as onomastics, Professor Renteln will look at institutional responses to name change, e.g., universities admissions, policy of Jewish quotas and judicial decisions in petitions for name changes and how various principles of law, such as privacy and freedom of expression, have been influenced by the right to change one’s name.
Donald E. Miller
Robert A. Cutietta and David Spear
The USC Casden Institute for the Study of the Jewish Role in American Life awarded its 2005 Faculty Research Grant to Robert A. Cutietta, Dean of the USC Thornton School of Music, and David Spear, Assistant Professor of Clinical Studies for Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television (SMPTV).
Dean Cutietta and Professor Spear received the $9,480 grant for their project “Restoring and Re-scoring Classic Films From the National Center for Jewish Film”. This project is in collaboration with the National Center for Jewish Film at Brandeis University. With this grant, Professor Spears and his USC Thornton SMPTV graduate students will provide the Center with original and/or adapted scores for restored films where their original music scores have been either lost or destroyed.
The National Center for Jewish Film contains the largest collection of Jewish films in the world and is dedicated to the restoration of its historic archive. The USC Casden Institute and the faculty review committee that selected Dean Cutietta and Professor Spear’s proposal look forward to this collaboration between USC and Brandeis University.
Steven Ross, Professor and Chair of the Department of History in the USC College of Letters, Arts and Sciences has been awarded the 2004 Faculty Research Grant from USC’s Casden Institute for the Study of the Jewish Role in American Life.
Professor Ross received the $11,620 grant for his project, entitled “The Politicization of Hollywood: How Jews, Anti-Fascism, Anti-Communism, and Anti-Semitism Shaped the Course of American Politics, 1930s-1960s.”
The competition for this award was impressive, but the review committee of faculty throughout the university concluded that Professor Ross’ proposal set itself apart from the others in its level of scholarly excellence and originality.
John Bowlt, Professor in the Slavic Languages and Literature department of the College of Letters, Arts and Sciences was awarded the 2003 Faculty Research Grant from USC’s Casden Institute for the Study of the Jewish Role in American Life.
Professor Bowlt’s project, entitled “Russian-Jewish Artists in America,” received high praise from a review committee of three faculty from three disciplines and was selected for the award based on both its scholarly excellence and originality.
From a strong group of proposals from faculty throughout the university, Professor Bowlt’s proposal set itself apart by its focus on an important subject to which scant attention has been given. Reviewers also praised the proposal for its broad scope, careful conception and interdisciplinary nature, all of which imbue the project with the potential to further our understanding of the contributions of these �migr� artists to the evolution of 20th century American culture.
Nomi Stolzenberg, Professor in The Law School at USC has been awarded the first Faculty Research Grant from USC’s Casden Institute for the Study of the Jewish Role in American Life. The award is in the amount of $15,000.
Professor Stolzenberg’s project, entitled “In/Tolerance: ‘Spiritual Custody’,” received high praise from a review committee of three faculty from three departments and was selected for the award based on both its scholarly excellence and originality.
From a strong group of proposals from faculty throughout the university, Professor Stolzenberg’s proposal set itself apart by its interdisciplinary nature, innovative approach and overall applicability and timeliness in light of the current political, religious and cultural climate.