Congratulations to Assistant Professor Nicolas Russell and Associate Professor Michelle Bolduc, who were both awarded National Endowment for the Humanities Scholarly Editions and Translations Grants for 2014-16!
Rendez-vous with Rhetoric: New Translations and Commentary on the Writings of Chaïm Perelman and Lucie Olbrechts-Tyteca: Chaïm Perelman (1916 – 1984), a Belgian Jew, achieved global recognition as a scholar in the humanities. He was also celebrated for his leadership of the Jewish underground in Belgium during World War II, an experience central to the purpose of his scholarship, which was to redeem reason and civil society in the wake of war and genocide. After the war, Perelman alone, and in collaboration with Lucie Olbrechts-Tyteca (1926 -1994), who joined him in 1947, wrote 350 books, book chapters, essays outlining a vision of rhetoric and argumentation as an answer to the post-war “crises of reason.” Their many writings constitute the New Rhetoric Project (NRP), drawing from Classical rhetoric traditions and Jewish argumentative practices to encourage a global society based on both universal (Justice) and local (justice) understandings of justice. With funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Scholarly Editions and Translations Award, Professors Michelle Bolduc (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee) and David Frank (University of Oregon) are translating 25 articles from the NRP from French to English with expert commentary, which will be available in both a print volume and on an open access website.
With funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Scholarly Editions and Translations Award Professors Nicolas Russell (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee) and Mary McKinley (University of Virginia) are preparing an English translation and critical edition of Marguerite de Navarre’s Heptameron. The Heptameron was published in 1559, ten years after the death of its author, Marguerite de Navarre (1492-1549), the sister of Francis I, King of France from 1515 to 1547. This collection of 72 novellas with a substantial prologue and a frame story is, along with Rabelais’s Gargantua and Pantagruel and Montaigne’s Essays, one of the three most important works of narrative prose to emerge from the French Renaissance. Its value resides not only in its literary appeal, but also in its tableaux of contemporary history. The stories offer glimpses into the world of political – and amorous –intrigues involving French emissaries in England, Germany, Spain, Italy and the Levant, while also presenting domestic scenes in homes of the common people. In the discussions that follow each story, the fictional narrators disagree about the moral lesson the stories offer. Their conflicting interpretations reflect the different philosophical currents evolving in Marguerite’s lifetime: neo-Platonism, Epicureanism, skepticism and Christian humanism, for example. This new translation with a thorough introduction and notes will make the world described in the Heptameron easily accessible to an English language audience of scholars and students, as well as to a broader general readership.