IHR Fellows

Fellows ProjectsThe IHR Fellows Programs bring together ASU faculty and visiting scholars to pursue research and writing in an environment designed to be stimulating and supportive. Fellows will be asked to contribute to the general enrichment of humanities scholarship by attending seminars and holding public events related to their research topics. Awards will be given at two levels: individual (up to $12,000) and team (up to $30,000).

The 2017-18 fellows theme is:


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? These are questions that have been central to scholarship in the health humanities as well as other disciplines. Humanities research often underscores the constructed and contested nature of categories surrounding health and how we define and attach value to those categories.  Moving from the scale of the individual biological being outward to the community and the environment as it is shaped in the Anthropocene, health is physical, mental, spiritual, environmental, social and political. Considering health as a social relation of power, for instance, humanities scholars have addressed how the body (politic) is the terrain that maps humanness and well being, and how precarity is woven into social policy and cultural competition. Drawing on scholarship in this area, healthcare institutions and policymakers can benefit from a thorough humanistic questioning of the nature of health itself.
The Institute for Humanities Research invites scholars (both from ASU and visiting scholars) to propose research projects related to health as a theme for the 2017-18 academic year. Because health lends itself to interdisciplinary and cross-cultural analysis, multidisciplinary approaches or groups of collaborators are especially welcome to apply. Fellows’ projects may focus on how value is attached to health, how health is understood, or how it is determined by social relations, structures or institutions, both in the present and throughout human history. Projects may also address the role of health as a concept in biopolitics or other areas of critical theory, or in the areas of medical or health humanities.
Possible research topics might include (but are not limited to):
• the history of health, healthcare, or medicine
• the politics of health or biopolitics
• healthy communities and what makes them
• media representations of health or disease
• health and the arts
• health and the imagination
• health and literature or storymaking
• disciplines of the body and hygiene
• the healthy and sick body
• disability and discourses of health
• health as a metaphor beyond the human
• narrative of health and illness
• cross-cultural analyses of health
• health disparities in the US or globally
• discourses of medicine
• subjective v. objective approaches to health
• health and human rights
• the relationship between health and well-being
• celebrity, the media, and health
• histories of care and carework
• geographies and spaces of health
• health and the environment, both the built and the natural
• health and the politics of race and/or gender
• pathologies and pathologizing discourses
• health, sustainability, and resilience
• questions of risk and precarity in relation to health
• health and cognition

2016-2017 ASU Fellows

The IHR ASU Fellows program provides funding for either individual tenured or tenure-track faculty or research teams (two to three faculty) to engage in a year of research related to the annual theme, share their research with the academic community (via lectures, a conference or symposium), and produce a strong application for a large external grant.

Deadline: March 1, 2016

SPRING 2017 Visiting Fellows

The Visiting Fellows program is for tenured and tenure-track scholars from other institutions of higher education in the U.S. and abroad to spend spring semester in residence at the Institute for Humanities Research (IHR), participating in the intellectual life of the IHR and the university community. The Visiting Fellowship provides the opportunity to conduct research, collaborate with ASU faculty, and write. The Visiting Fellowship also promotes an exchange of ideas among visitors and ASU Fellows also working on the annual theme, which in 2016-17 will be Money. Visitors will participate in weekly fellows meetings and give public lectures and seminars on their research topics while in residence at the IHR.

Deadline: February 15, 2016

View the Current and Previous IHR Fellows