Sources & Experts

The following Swarthmore professors and administrators can provide expert commentary on a wide range of issues in the news. Follow the links below to learn more about them or contact the Communications Office if you would like to reach them.

Higher Education

Art and Art History

  • Michael Cothren: stained glass; medieval art
  • Tomoko Sakomura: Japanese art history; Japanese visual culture, contemporary and late medieval; East Asian art

Astronomy

  • David Cohen: x-ray spectroscopy; radiation-driven stellar winds; stellar x-ray emission
  • Eric Jensen: planet formation; astrobiology or origin and distribution of life in the cosmos; protoplanetary disks

Biology

  • Scott Gilbert: stem-cell and cloning research
  • Sara Hiebert Burch: hypometabolic states; hibernation, daily torpor; stress hormones and behavior
  • Jose-Luis Machado: biodiversity; ecosystems; plant physiological ecology; metabolic ecology
  • Amy Cheng Vollmer: bacterial stress response, particularly in prokaryotes such as E. coli; microbiology; immune response; biotechnology
  • Kathleen Siwicki: neurobiology; neurobiology of circadian rhythms

    and neural basis of courtship and memory in the fruit fly

Chemistry

  • Kathleen Howard: biophysical chemistry; magnetic resonance spectroscopy; membrane protein structure determination
  • Robert Paley: modern organic synthetic chemistry; organic chemistry

Cognitive Science

  • Lisa Meeden: adaptive robotics; developmental robotics; artificial intelligence

Computer Science

  • Lisa Meeden: adaptive robotics; developmental robotics; artificial intelligence
  • Tia Newhall: parallel and distributed systems; performance measurement tools
  • Richard Wicentowski: natural language processing

Dance

  • Kim Arrow, dance: Taiko drumming; Afro/Caribbean drumming and East Indian rhythmic theory
  • Pallabi Chakravorty: South Asian dance
  • Sharon Friedler: history and theory of dance; choreography; choreographic notations on computer; traditional dance of Ghana; women and dance
  • Kemal Nance '92: African dance
  • Stephen Welsh '84: aerial dance

Economics

  • John Caskey: fringe banking such as pawn shops and check-cashing outlets
  • Stephen Golub: international trade and finance
  • Robinson Hollister: poverty; welfare reform; health care
  • Philip Jefferson: macroeconomics; poverty and inequality; Federal Reserve decisions
  • Ellen Magenheim: health economics and policy; behavioral economics and health and financial behavior; industrial organization 
  • Stephen O'Connell: political economy of Africa, macroeconomic policy in low-income developing countries, monetary policy management of surges in foreign aid
  • Frederic Pryor: changing structure of American economy

Educational Studies

Engineering

  • Erik Cheever '82: electronic circuit applications
  • Carr Everbach: wind power; green design; human nature and technology; thermofluid mechanics; physical effects of ultrasound
  • Lynne Molter '79: fiber optics; waveguide devices; electromagnetics; scientific literacy in the liberal arts
  • Faruq Siddiqui: structural theory and design; geotechnical design; mechanics of solids

English Literature

  • Nathalie Anderson: modern and contemporary poetry; libretti; creative writing
  • Anthony Foy: African American literature; literature of black Philadelphia
  • Bakirathi Mani: Asian American culture and literature; South Asian diasporas; transnational feminist studies
  • Peter Schmidt: American literature; fiction in the U.S. South during Reconstruction and Jim Crow eras; race, ethnicity, and literature in the U.S.
  • Patricia White: representation of women in film and visual media

Environmental Studies

  • Carr Everbach, engineering: wind power; green design; human nature and technology
  • Jose-Luis Machado, biology: biodiversity; ecosystems; Crum Woods
  • Mark Wallace, religion: Christian theology and environmental studies

Film & Media Studies

  • Marion Faber, German: Weimar film; European film
  • William Gardner, Japanese: Japanese film and media; the intersection of contemporary literature with visual and electronic media
  • Sunka Simon, German: cyberculture; German and European cinema
  • Patricia White, English literature: representation of women in film and visual media
  • Carina Yervasi, French: French and Francophone African film

Gender and Sexuality Studies

  • Sunka Simon, German: cyberculture; German and European cinema

History

  • Diego Armus: Latin American history; history of disease and public health in urban settings
  • Timothy Burke: popular culture, including advertising, cartoons, and video games
  • Allison Dorsey: Southern and African American history, inc. slavery, Reconstruction, women in civil rights movement
  • Bruce Dorsey: early American history, gender and sexuality, masculinity, American culture
  • Pieter Judson '78: nationalism and nationalist movements in Central Europe; nationalist conflict; revolutionary and counterrevolutionary movements; history of sexuality in Europe ; European Fascism
  • Marjorie Murphy: public education, labor and women's history
  • Robert Weinberg: Russian history since the 18th century; history and experiences of Jews in Soviet Union and Russia

Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies

  • Farha Ghannam, anthropology: contemporary Islamic practices and identities; gender and sexuality in the Middle East
  • Tariq al-Jamil, religion: medieval Islamic social history and law, with particular focus on Shi'ism

Latin American Studies

  • Diego Armus, history: Latin American history, history of disease and public health in urban settings, particularly Buenos Aires
  • Aurora Camacho de Schmidt, Spanish: Latin American and Mexican social movements and politics; Latin American women writers
  • Kenneth Sharpe, political science: Latin American politics; U.S. foreign policy; U.S. drug enforcement policies

Linguistics

  • Ted Fernald: Navajo language; Navajo syntax, semantics, reference grammar; Navajo Language Academy
  • K. David Harrison: endangered languages; connections between language and biodiversity, ethnoecology; Turkic languages of Inner Asia
  • Donna Jo Napoli: language use, including slang and catch phrases

Mathematics and Statistics

  • Phil Everson: statistics; sports editor of Chance magazine (an American Statistical Association publication) and writes the column, "A statistician reads the sports pages"
  • Stephen Maurer '67: discrete mathematics (author of textbook, Discrete Algorithmic Mathematics ); writing in mathematics; precollege curriculum and enrichment activities
  • Steve Wang: statistical techniques in paleontology and evolutionary biology; mass extinctions

Modern Languages and Literatures

Music

Peace and Conflict Studies

Physics

Political Science

  • Benjamin Berger: modern political theory; democratic politics; ethics in politics; civic engagement
  • Raymond Hopkins: world food supply and food politics
  • James Kurth: U.S. defense policy and foreign policy; world political history
  • Carol Nackenoff: electoral politics; political rhetoric
  • Keith Reeves '88: the impact of race on electoral politics and public affairs
  • Kenneth Sharpe: U.S. foreign policy; Latin American politics; U.S. drug enforcement policies
  • Dominic Tierney: international politics; U.S. foreign policy; public opinion and war; security issues
  • Richard Valelly '75: electoral law and the 1965 Voting Rights Act; the party system; Congress
  • Tyrene White: China; women and culture, birth planning in China; East Asian politics

Psychology

  • Kenneth Gergen: personal identity; language and communication
  • Barry Schwartz: social and psychological effects of free-market economic institutions
  • Andrew Ward: self-regulation and control, including strategies for control of eating, smoking, aggression, depressed mood, and obsessive thoughts; psychological barriers to conflict resolution; bargaining and negotiation

Religion

  • Yvonne Chireau: African-based religions such as Santeria and Voodoo in America; religion and healing; black American religion; religion and comics, manga, and graphic novels
  • Steven Hopkins: Hinduism and Buddhism in South Asia; South Indian devotional literature in Sanskrit and Tamil; religion and literature
  • Tariq al-Jamil:

    medieval Islamic social history and law, with particular focus on Shi'ism

  • Helen Plotkin '77: classical Jewish texts; director, Beit Midrash
  • Ellen Ross: Quaker religion
  • Mark Wallace: religion and ecology

Sociology and Anthropology

  • Farha Ghannam, anthropology: contemporary Islamic practices and identities; gender and sexuality in the Middle East; urban ethnography
  • Michael Mullan, sociology: sports sociology; war, sport and construction of male identity
  • Braulio Muñoz, sociology: sociology of culture, Latin America, author of Peruvian Notebooks
  • Michael Reay, sociology: embedded and unconscious social knowledge; social perceptions of the roles of economic experts
  • Lee Smithey, sociology: nonviolent social movements; ethnopolitical conflict; Northern Ireland
  • Sarah Willie-LeBreton, sociology: race, social inequality, higher education, and the sociology of work

Theater