[MGSA-L] Modern Greek Studies at Illinois Establishes "Dr. Arthur G. Nikelly" Annual Lectures

Modern Greek Studies UIUC moderngreek at illinois.edu
Thu Nov 8 16:21:36 PST 2012

The Modern Greek Studies Program, University of Illinois, is pleased to
announce the establishment of "Dr. Arthur G. Nikelly’s" annual lectures.
The new annual lecture is established in honor of the memory of the late
Dr. Arthur G. Nikelly, a clinical psychologist and Associate Professor of
Health Sciences who began his career at the University of Illinois in 1959.
Dr. Nikelly’s life was a testimony to the importance of human rights,
social justice, freedom of expression, and educational achievement. During
his lifetime, his work and philanthropy furthered these values not only at
the University and in the communities of Urbana-Champaign and Chicago, but
also at the village of Vrisa – the birthplace of his parents, George J. and
Mary G. (Koletti) Nikelly, on the Greek island of Lesvos. The Dr. Arthur G.
Nikelly’s annual lectures have become possible due to a $75,000 donation
funded from the assets of Dr. Arthur G. Nikelly of the University of
Illinois by his sister, Eva G. Nikelly, of Morton Grove, Illinois. The
Director, the affiliated faculty members and members of the executive board
of the Modern Greek Studies Program at the University of Illinois wish to
thank Eva G. Nikelly for this generous and meaningful gesture, which
follows similar efforts in the past to support Modern Greek Studies program
on campus, the most recent being the establishment of the Houston and
Papadimitriou Greek Culture Awards in 2009.

The first “Dr. Arthur G. Nikelly” annual lecture will take place on Monday
8 April 2013. In line with the endowment agreement between Eva G. Nikelly
and the University, a multidisciplinary committee of faculty, students and
administrators, and members of the Modern Greek Studies Program Executive
Board was convened on 1 November 2012 to select the name on the scholar to
be invited for the first such annual lecture. The multidisciplinary
committee decided to invite Professor Thomas W. Gallant, holder of the
Nicholas Family Endowed Chair in Modern Greek History and Archaeology,
University of California, San Diego, who was pleased to accept the
committee’s invitation: “I am both honored and pleased to accept your
invitation to present the inaugural Arthur G. Nikelly Lecture, which I am
flattered and humbled to receive”, were Professor Gallant’s exact words to
the committee’s invitation.


*Professor Thomas W. Gallant (Short Biographical Note)*: Professor Thomas
W. Gallant who received a Ph.D. in Classical Archaeology from Cambridge
University melds his Greek heritage with a prestigious academic background
in the study of Greece and the Greeks in the Modern era. A New England
native whose mother was from a small village in Greece Professor Gallant
specializes in Modern Greek history with special interest in rural society
and culture, banditry, piracy and violence, masculinity and gender,
cultural identity, imperialism and law, and the social history and
anthropology of the Mediterranean. His most recently published books
are *Modern
Greece: Experiencing Dominion: Culture, Identity and Power in the British
Mediterranean* (winner of the 2002-2003 Modern Greek Studies Association
Best Book Prize); *The 1918 Anti-Greek Riot in Toronto*; *Murder on Black
Mountain: Love and Death on a Nineteenth Century Greek Island*; *Blood on
Their Hands: Crime, Criminal Justice and Policing in the British
Mediterranean*. He is the editor of the ten-volume Edinburgh History of the
Greeks and author of volume nine on the Nineteenth century. Prior to his
current position at the University of California Professor Gallant held the
Hellenic Heritage Foundation Chair of Modern Greek History at York
University in Toronto, Canada. For 17 years before that, he was Professor
of Greek history and anthropology at the University of Florida.

The title of Professor Gallant’s “Dr. Arthur G. Nikelly” lecture will be:
“Writing Greek History in the 21st Century”. In this lecture, Professor
Thomas W. Gallant argues that the time is ripe for a radical departure in
the ways we conceptualize Greek history in general and social history in
particular. There is a movement among historians to turn away from the
nation-state as the field’s primary geographical frame of analysis and to
opt instead for regional or transnational perspectives. Taking this as his
starting point, he explains why a social history of the Greeks must adopt a
framework that is transnationalist, that connects global developments with
local experiences and that is broadly comparative. He then discusses the
manifold challenges that confront historians attempting to write such a
social history of the Greek people in the modern era. In addition to
articulating the difficulties historians face, he also highlights the
topics and themes on which such a study should focus. Among his most
controversial observations is that such a transnational social history of
the Greeks can provide a model of how world history and the history of the
nation can be blended together into a novel form of historical writing, the
transnational history of a single people.

For more information about the “Dr. Arthur G. Nikelly” annual lectures
contact Dr. Stefanos Katsikas, Historian of Modern Greece and Southeastern
Europe, Director of the University of Illinois Modern Greek Studies
Program: skatsika at illinois.edu

Dr. Stefanos Katsikas,
Historian of Modern Greece and Southeastern Europe,
Director of Modern Greek Studies, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Modern Greek Studies
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
4080 Foreign Languages Building
707 S. Mathews Ave, MC-168
Urbana, Illinois 61801

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