Faculty Focus – Archives

Ethnomusicology Under Sail — Professor Sharon Graf is on sabbatical in the South Pacific

Prof. Graf’s 2010/2011 sabbatical takes her to the South Pacific, where she is studying music and cultural performance in Polynesia. This complements her previous ethnomusicological research on American music and old-time fiddling. Prof. Graf’s new scholarly exploration involves an exciting physical voyage — she and her husband Michael Graf sailed to Polynesia in their 42 foot yacht the Larabeck! They traveled through the Panama Canal, to Galapagos Islands, French Polynesia, Cook Islands, Niue and Tonga in summer/fall 2010, meeting many musicians and performers. Larabeck is now weathering the Pacific cyclone season in New Zealand, in the southern hemisphere summer, where Prof. Graf’s ethnomusicological explorations include Festivals in the North Island and music archives at the University of Auckland. In April, Larabeck will return to Tonga and Fiji for the summer, before Prof. Graf returns to Springfield in August 2011. Watch for daily blogs at larabeck.com, and track the Larabeck’s voyages at this Google map. Smooth sailing, Larabeck!


 News on research and presentations by SOA faculty and students, summer 2010

Lynn Fisher presented two posters at the Society for American Archaeology meetings in St. Louis in April 2010. Co-authored with a German-American collaborative team, the posters presented new data on a flint quarry/mine site dating back to 5000 B.C. that the team excavated near Blaubeuren, Germany.

Shoon Lio presented two papers at the Pacific Sociological Association’s Annual Meeting in Oakland, CA, this spring. With Vince Bozonier, a former student, he presented “Uprooting the Peace, Conflict and Identity: A social Constructionist Analysis of the Destruction of Olive Trees.” Also, with Christopher Chase-Dunn, Professor Lio presented on “Global Class Formation and the New Global Left in World Historical Perspective.” This paper is available online.

Jennifer Manthei and Jonathan Isler presented a poster with SOA students Steven Chabak, Britanny Elder, and Pavan Ganapathiraju at the 1st Annual Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Symposium in April 2010. The poster, titled “Race and Ethnicity at UIS: Learning, Living, Friendship, and Dating,” was based on research conducted by students in their Social Research Methods course (SOA 411).

While she works on her book manuscript on immigrant legislative politics in California, Hinda Seif has also been conducting research with UIS students on Latina/o immigrant and 2nd generation youth activism. Professor Seif, graduate student Jimmy Peterson, and students from the Organization of Latin American Students (OLAS) and the SOA Department have been interviewing Illinois youth who participated in the 2006 immigration reform protests. She presented preliminary research findings in March, 2010 at the Society for Applied Anthropology 70th Annual Meeting in Mérida, Mexico with the theme of “Vulnerabilities and Exclusion in Globalization.”


SOA Professor Sharon Graf is off on her sabbatical journey to the South Pacific.

Professor Graf is sailing with her husband Michael Graf on the 42-foot Larabeck to the South Pacific, where she will conduct ethnographic research on Polynesian music and dance performance. Her sabbatical is for the 2010/2011 academic year. Track Professor Graf’s voyage here.


SOA welcomes Sociologist Dr. Shoon Lio.

Dr. Shoon Lio (Ph.D. University of California, Riverside) joined UIS as a new Assistant Professor of Sociology in August 2009. Dr. Lio comes to us with more than five years of experience teaching a broad range of sociology courses at UC Riverside and Riverside Community College. His research and teaching interests include social theory, race, class, gender and national identity, citizenship, political sociology, collective memory, social constructionism, and social psychology. Dr. Lio has applied his interests in social theory in collaborative research on themes as diverse as community sociology, social movements, historical sociology and world systems.

This fall, Dr. Lio is teaching SOA 101 Introduction to Sociology and SOA 405 Sociocultural Theories. In Spring 2010 he will offer the introductory course again while also adding new courses the Sociology of Organizations (SOA 431) and Social Movements (SOA 480, Topics in Sociology/Anthropology). -more-


SOA faculty and students in Springfield and around the world, Summer 2009.

SOA faculty Sharon Graf, Jonathan Isler, and Jennifer Manthei will be teaching courses in the 2009 summer session — check out SOA offerings including Introduction to Sociology (online, Isler), Culture, Heath and Power (online, Manthei), and American Musics (on-campus, Graf). SOA faculty will also be traveling for research and conferences this summer — Lynn Fisher will spend two months at the University of Tübingen in Germany, working on analysis of stone artifacts recovered in last year’s excavations, and Jonathan Isler will present a paper entitled “Are Realtors Professionals? Decoding Professional Claims-Making Narratives” at this year’s American Sociological Association conference in San Francisco. SOA students are spreading out to make an impact, too — Bethany Doolin has an exciting Applied Study Term internship at the State’s Attorney’s office in her home county, and Craig Pelka, Hannah Ryan, Monti Mueller, Stan Lipski, and Randi Brewbaker are in Peru participating in Professor Veronica Espina’s “Spanish Language and Culture in Peru” Global Experience class. Keep us posted about your activities, and have a great summer!


SOA faculty scholarship, 2008/2009

SOA faculty member Jennifer Manthei is writing a book about adolescent girls in Brazil, race, gender, and class. She presented this research in conferences and colloquia in St. Louis, Urbana-Champaign, and Cincinatti. SOA faculty and colleagues Veronica Espina, Lynn Fisher, Sharon Graf, Jonathan Isler, Jennifer Manthei, and Brian Pryor gave a panel presentation on “Collaborative Teaching and Learning in a Joint Department” at the annual meeting of the Association for Integrative Studies in Springfield in October 2008. Jennifer Manthei and Jonathan Isler are expanding on this theme as they write an article regarding the integration of sociology and anthropology in a hands-on methods course. Sharon Graf and Brian Pryor gave a poster presentation on “Using Creative Computer Technology to Cultivate Global Music Appreciation” at the Society for Ethnomusicology meeting at Wesleyan University in October 2008. Lynn Fisher presented on her archaeological research on Neolithic chert quarries and settlement on the Swabian Alb in Germany at the Society for American Archaeology meetings in April 2009.


SOA welcomes new faculty members Hinda Seif – August 2007

SOA is delighted to welcome a new faculty member who joined us in full-time tenure-track positions beginning August 2007. Dr. Hinda Seif (Ph.D. Anthropology, University of California-Davis) has a joined appointment in SOA and Women and Gender Studies. -more-


Lynn Fisher named University Scholar – October 2006

Associate Professor of Anthropology Lynn Fisher was named 2006/2007 University Scholar. The prize, awarded for teaching and scholarship by the University of Illinois, comes with a grant of $10,000 each year for three years for research and scholarly activities. Fisher gave a presentation about current archaeological research in Germany at the Faculty Recognition Luncheon. -more-


SOA welcomes Sociologist Dr. Jonathan Isler

Dr. Jonathan Isler (Ph.D. University of California-Davis) joined UIS as a new Assistant Professor of Sociology in August 2006. Dr. Isler’s research and teaching interests include work and occupations, gender and work, inequality, labor process, complex organizations, and social theory. His current research focuses on social stratification, new technologies, and unstable labor markets.

Dr. Isler teaches SOA 221 Social Problems and co-teaches SOA 411 Social Research Methods with anthropologist Dr. Jennifer Manthei. In Spring 2007 he will offer SOA 461 Social Psychology and a new online sociology elective (SOA 480, Topics: Social Stratification). He is also preparing a new Sociology course on Work and Occupations that will be offered online in Summer 2007.


Faculty Recognized at University Luncheon

Heather Dell and Sharon Graf were recognized for their creative performance, scholarly presentations, and publications October 4 at the University Faculty Recognition Luncheon. Here is a list of those honored at the luncheon.


Dr. Manthei develops new courses on Brazil and teens.

Dr. Jennifer Manthei (Ph.D. University of Arizona) joined UIS as a new Assistant Professor of Anthropology in August 2005. Dr. Manthei’s expertise is in cultural and medical anthropology. Her current research focuses on race, racism, and adolescence in Brazil.

Dr. Manthei teaches SOA 302 Understanding Other Cultures and co-teaches SOA 411 Social Research Methods with new sociologist Dr. Jonathan Isler. She will offer a new upper-division elective courses in cultural anthropology (SOA 480, Topics: Brazilian Studies) in Spring 2007. She is also preparing a new SOA course called Teen Talk that will be offered online during the 2007/2008 academic year.