ASU faculty members engage in a year of research related to the annual theme.


The ASU IHR Fellows program provides funding for tenured or tenure-track faculty, as well as to other faculty eligible for a research release. Fellows may apply as individuals or as a team to engage in a year of research related to the annual theme, to share their research with the academic community, and to produce a strong application for an external grant. 

Successful proposals for the Fellows program will outline a rich scholarly project rooted in the humanities that will benefit from interdisciplinary conversations and readings, that has clear and feasible outcomes for the fellowship year, and that has the potential to be funded by outside agencies.

Fellowships provide funds toward one course buyout (in the spring semester) for each faculty member as well as research funds of $2500 per faculty member. 


2019-2020 Theme: Borders and Boundaries

Disciplinary, spatial, ideological, virtual—the boundaries we imagine, construct, and confront are multiple and multi-faceted. Boundaries exclude and include; borders connect and separate. Borders and boundaries are created by states and communities, by institutions and individuals; they shift and change over time. What functions do borders and boundaries serve? Who makes and guards them? Who confronts and crosses them? Who do they serve and who do they limit? How does our current attention to borders and boundaries in this age of globalization reflect new worries and how does it echo old ones? The Institute for Humanities Research invites scholars to propose research projects that address these questions or any others related to the topic of “Borders and Boundaries.”



Fellows Projects

Damming Asia: Japanese Overseas Development and the Reconfiguration of the Urban and Rural from the Colonial to the Post-Colonial Era

Aaron Moore | Associate Professor, School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies 

Damming Asia examines the history of Japan’s overseas dam construction and the reconfiguration of the rural and urban in various Asian nations from the age of Japanese imperialism before 1945 to the post-war era when Japan became a global overseas development power.

Feminista Frequencies: Chicana/o Community Radio Archive

Monica De La Torre | Assistant Professor | School of Transborder Studies

Feminista Frequencies: Chicana Radio Activism in Community Broadcasting is a book and online public archive that unearths a remarkable history of Chicanas and Chicanos who were architects of community radio stations as producers, on-air announcers, station managers, tech

Hopi Migration Stories: Uncovering the Legacy of the 1956 Indian Relocation Act on Hopi Identity and Sense of Belonging

Angela A. Gonzales | Associate Professor | School of Social Transformation

Beginning in the 1930s, Hopis began migrating to urban centers when the U.S.

Reclaiming the City: Art, Policy and Resistance in Urban Space

Johanna K. Taylor | Assistant Professor, The Design School, Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts

Cities are places of contestation and negotiation, where residents navigate policy structures defining urban space to establish their daily lives.

Salmon Wars on the Klamath River: Stories of Activism, Culture, and Resilience

Myla Vicenti Carpio | Associate Professor | Director of Graduate Studies | American Indian Studies

“Salmon Wars on the Klamath River: Stories of Activism, Culture, and Resilience” focuses on the fight for fishing rights (using traditional gill nets) on the Klamath River in the 1960’s and 1970s. Three neighboring Indian nations in rural northern California, the Y

Towards “Total Revolution”: Insights from the Bodhgaya land struggle of the late 1970s in Eastern India

Indulata Prasad | Assistant Professor | School of Social Transformation

The Bodhgaya land movement that resulted in Dalits (former untouchables) and women, securing rights to agricultural land, offers a unique and compelling backdrop to examine the socio-spatial transformations in rural Bihar through ‘peaceful’ means.

2017-18: Health
Affect, Place and Health Among Asian Immigrants

Karen Leong, Associate Professor, Asian and Pacific American Studies & Women and Gender Studies, School of Social Transformation
Kathy Nakagawa, Associate Professor, Asian and Pacific American Studies, School of Social Transformation
Aggie Noah, Associate Professor, Asian and Pacific American Studies & Justice and Social Inquiry, School of Social Transformation

The World Health Organization (WHO) clearly defines health as a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being rather than as the absence of sickness or frailty (WHO 1948).

Immovable Bodies: Women Writing Health and Disease in the British Romantic Era

Annika Mann, Assistant Professor of English, School of Humanities, Arts and Cultural Studies

My book project, Immovable Bodies: Women Writing Health and Disease in the British Romantic Era, posits that British women writers during the Romantic period (1780-1832) resist the universalizing, transdisciplinary claims of both medicine and poetics of this same perio

Integrative Health and Human Well-Being

Tyler DesRoches, Assistant Professor, School of Sustainability
Christopher Wharton, Associate Professor, School of Nutrition and Health Promotion

Philosophers have long argued over the relationship between health and human well-being.

The Barbershop Stories: Narratives of Health and Illness of African American Men in the Black Barbershop

Olga Davis, Professor, Hugh Downs School of Human Communication

The lived experience of African American men and the prominence of the Black Barbershop in African American culture, together offer a unique and compelling backdrop for examining discourses of health in Black communities.

The Life of a LARC: A Critical Analysis of LARC Promotion Practices and the Lived Experiences They Engender

Jenny Brian, Honors Faculty Fellow, Barrett Honors College

There is, at present, significant enthusiasm across the political spectrum for long acting reversible contraceptives (LARC), which promise an affordable, reliable, and safe means by which to reduce rates of unplanned pregnancy and abortion.

2016-17: Money
Bank Wars: The Contentious World of Money and Banking in the Early United States

Jonathan Barth, Assistant Professor, School of Historical, Philosophical, and Religious Studies

The history of early American money and banking sheds light upon far more than simply economic and financial development. It illuminates the roots of America's unique brand of political and cultural populism: both the good and the ugly.
Immaterial Growth: Energy and Economics in the American Century

Chris Jones, Assistant Professor, School of Historical, Philosophical, and Religious Studies

Contemporary sustainability challenges are exacerbated by a widespread belief among academics, policymakers, and the broader public that economic growth can continue indefinitely without accounting for environmental stocks and sinks.

New Directions for Economic Approaches to Renaissance Drama

Bradley Ryner, Associate Professor, Department of English

This project asks what new models of the relationship between English Renaissance drama and economic history are suggested by recent scholarship, and how might such models guide the next generation of scholarly work.
Yerba Mate: An Indigenous Stimulant, Money, and Empire Building

Julia Sarreal, Associate Professor, School of Humanities, Arts, and Cultural Studies, New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences

This project broadens our understanding of what can and cannot be considered money by exploring the use of a commodity (in this case, the South American beverage, yerba mate) as a form of money in a region lacking coinage.

Economies of Scale: Capitalism and Containment in 21st Century North America

Ann Keniston, Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies, Department of English, University of Nevada, Reno

The first book-length study of its topic, “Economies of Scale: Capitalism and Containment in Contemporary North American Poetry,” argues that economic language and imagery in diverse 21st century poems enables poets to comment on the relation between the arts and contemporary finance-based capitalism.


2019-2020: Borders and Boundaries

Disciplinary, spatial, ideological, virtual—the boundaries we imagine, construct, and confront are multiple and multi-faceted.

2018-19: Urban and Rural

As long as there have been cities, they have existed in complex relationship to the countryside; bound together in networks of trade and migration, politics and warfare, they have also been pitted against each other.

2017-18: Health

What is health and what is disease? What institutions generate or impede health? Who has access to the healthiest environments and what makes those environments healthy? How do communities construct, maintain or discipline health in individual bodies?

2016-17: Money

Money--what it is, how it works, who has it and who doesn’t--has concerned thinkers and researchers both inside and outside academia, and across a wide range of disciplines.

2015-2016 Fellows Theme: Monsters and Monstrosity

The word ‘monster’ derives from the Latin monstrum, meaning “something marvelous;” and ultimately from the verb monere, “to show and to warn.” In coordination with the multi-year celebration of the bicentennial of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, the IHR fellows program for the 2015-2016 academic yea

2014-2015: Affect and Reason

Humanists have been central to reconsidering the active role that emotions play in the constructions of reason, truth, subjectivity and narrative.

2013-2014: The Humanities and Home

When Dorothy Gale utters the last line of The Wizard of Oz, “There’s no place like home,” there seems little doubt that she speaks out of her joy at being safely ensconced on her family’s farm in America’s Heartland.

2012-2013: The Humanities and the Imagination/Imaginary

Now that the Enlightenment dream of generating perfectly rational human persons and utterly transparent social relations has crumbled, the humanities’ focus on human imaginary processes has become increasingly important. But the human imagination is a double-edged sword.

2011-2012: The Humanities and Immigration, Migration, and Movement

The purpose of the 2011-12 Institute for Humanities Research Fellowship is to engage humanities scholars from various disciplines in addressing and analyzing the role of the humanities in illuminating the interrelated concepts of immigration, migration, and movement, broadly conceived.

2010-2011: The Humanities and Human Origins

The purpose of the 2010-11 Institute for Humanities Research fellows theme is to engage humanities scholars from various disciplines in addressing and analyzing the role of the humanities in illuminating—and possibly enriching scientific inquiry into—human origins.