Alumni Update: Belle Stoddard Tuten (PhD, ’97) and Jim Tuten (PhD, ’03)

Belle Stoddard Tuten (PhD, 1997) recently shared an update about her life and work, along with the same of her husband, Jim Tuten (PhD, 2003). Enjoy her reflection below:

“I have been a faculty member at Juniata College in Huntingdon, PA since my graduation in 1997. Right now, I am Charles A. Dana Professor of History, which I have been since (I think) 2017. I serve as the chair of our department of history and art history. I am the only premodern scholar at my school and try to spread the ancient history and medieval history around as much as I can. My most popular class right now is Medieval Medicine, which counts for our Medical Humanities minor and attracts a lot of STEM students. Ancient Rome runs a close second! Since 2010 I have mostly worked in the history of medicine, although I published a book, Daily Life of Women in Medieval Europe, in 2022 for the Greenwood Press’s imprint on Daily Life. I am considering whether to condense my research on the breast in the Middle Ages into book form.

“Jim Tuten has been at Juniata since 1998. He held an administrative role for some years before moving into the faculty. He is Charles and Shirley Knox Professor of History and has his fingers in tons of pies, including recently publishing a guide book to a local historic railroad (written 80% by students!) and serving as the chair of the Major Fellowships committee. He continues his work in food history, recently speaking in Madeira, Portugal, at a conference on the history of Madeira wine.”

Are you an Emory History alumnus? Please send us updates on your life and work!

Alumni Update: Kelly Damon Caiazzo (MA/BA, ’05)

The History Department was delighted to receive an update from Kelly Damon Caiazzo, a 2005 graduate. Read Kelly’s update below:

“When I graduated from Emory’s History program, I had a great appreciation for history but hadn’t taken much part in it myself. Almost 2 decades later, I find that my background in history has helped me look for meaningful ways to contribute as I live through it. During the PPE shortage in the early phases of Covid-19,  my community mobilized to sew cloth PPE for essential workers, then family and friends. I have never felt as close to the women who inspired Rosie the Riveter as I did bent over my sewing machine late at night wondering if my work could save a life. Cars pulled in and out of my driveway as people picked up sewing kits I created, or dropped off fabric donations.

Masks that Kelley sewed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

We were part of history, contributing what we could as we worried about the world. Our background in history provides us with context for how things have been achieved in the past. It can empower us with ideas for how to spark change and remind us that that the small actions of many individuals create movements that are necessary for progress. In the time since I’ve graduated, I’ve knocked on doors and written letters to encourage voter turnout, called senators, volunteered for a rape crisis hotline, and created a dinner and documentary series to promote environmental activism in my town. I’ve led efforts that brought speakers on anti-racism and LGBTQUIA+ inclusion to my children’s school and served on the board of several non-profits. I do this in part because I learned from my professors at Emory how important we all are. We are all part of history. We are bystanders, witnesses, activists, writers and teachers. From Bowden Hall out into the world, we can use what we’ve learned to make progress.”

Are you an Emory History alumnus? Please send us updates on your life and work!

Alumni Update: Rafael Ioris (Ph.D., ’09)

Dr. Rafael Ioris, a 2009 doctoral program alum and Professor of History at the University of Denver, recently sent an update to the History Department. Since completing his PhD, Ioris has authored Qual Desenvolvimento? Os Debates, Sentidos e Lições da Era Desenvolvimentista (Paco Editorial, 2017) and Transforming Brazil: A History of National Development in the Postwar Era (Routledge, 2014). He has also published two edited volumes on the history of development in Brazil and in the Amazon region, Frontiers of Development in the Amazon: Riches, Risks, and Resistances (Lexington Book, 2020) and Amazonia no Seculo XXI: Trajetorias, Dilemas e Perspectivas (Alameda, 2022). Ioris has, additionally, expanded his collaborations as a Research Fellow with two institutions: the Institute for the Study of the United States in Brazil and the Washington Brazil Office. He spent the fall of 2022 as a Visiting Professor at the Institute of Advanced Latin American Studies at the Sorbonne University (l’Institut des Hautes Études de l’Amérique latine). Now he is preparing to undertake a new book project on Brazil-US relations in the Cold War.  He writes that he hopes everyone is doing well back at Emory and looks forward to staying in touch!

Are you an Emory History alumnus? Please send us updates on your life and work!

Alumni Update: Ashleigh Dean Ikemoto (Ph.D., ’16)

Dr. Ashleigh Dean Ikemoto, a 2016 alum of the doctoral program, recently sent an update on her career trajectory since graduating from Emory. As she discusses below, Dean recently published her first book, Pedro de Alfaro & the Struggle for Power in the Globalized Pacific, 1565-1644 (Rowman & Littlefield, Lexington Books). The book derives from her dissertation, which was advised by Dr. Tonio Andrade. Enjoy Ashleigh’s update below!

“Since finishing my PhD, I taught at Monmouth College in New Jersey and at Gordon State College in Georgia before beginning at Georgia College in 2018. My doctoral research was on Spain’s frustrated attempts to conquer Ming Dynasty China. This year I published a book based on my dissertation. It examines the career of Pedro de Alfaro (d. 1580), a Spanish Franciscan whose illegal entry into China sparked a chain of events that contributed to the development of an interconnected Pacific economic and diplomatic maritime zone.

“I am still engaged in the field of early modern history and still teach East Asian history, but I currently spend most of my time working on food history. I teach courses on the historical methodology of foodways, Asian and Asian-American food, Jewish food, Mediterranean food, and the history of alcohol.

“Beginning in January 2023, I will be Co-Director of Georgia College’s Global Foodways Program, which provides an undergraduate certificate and opportunities for community outreach and study abroad. I have also done two research fellowships in pursuit of food-related research and pedagogy: one in Mongolia as a Henry Luce Foundation American Center for Mongolian Studies Field School participant in 2022, and one this past summer as a Brandeis University Schusterman Center for Israeli Studies Fellow in Israeli & the West Bank.

“My time at Emory prepared me to see history as a universally-applicable discipline, letting me branch out beyond my dissertation research and broadening my perspective as an educator.”

Are you an Emory History alumnus? Please send us updates on your life and work!

PhD Alum Claudia Kreklau Receives Honorable Mention for Article

Dr. Claudia Kreklau (PhD, ’18), Associate Lecturer at the University of St Andrews, recently received an honorable mention for an article from the Central European History Society. Krelau’s article “The Gender Anxiety of Otto von Bismarck, 1866–1898,” published in the journal German History in 2022, was named an honorable mention for the Annelise Thimme Article Prize. That prize recognizes the best article in the field of Central European History published by a North American scholar. Kreklau completed her dissertation, “‘Eat as the King Eats’: Making the Middle Class through Food, Foodways, and Food Discourses in Nineteenth-Century Germany,” under the advisement of Dr. Brian Vick.

Alumni Update: Justin Rubino (C ’22), from History in ATL to Science in NYC

Honors History alum Justin Rubino recently shared news with us about his professional path since graduating in the spring of 2022. Rubino is currently working at Success Academy, a charter school in NYC, as a 6th grade science teacher. Success Academy is the top-performing public school system in NYC with locations in the Bronx, Harlem, Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens. While Rubino had originally planned to teach history, he is enjoying teaching science and helps out the students with their history questions from time to time ;).

Are you an Emory History alumnus? Please send us updates on your life and work!

Alumni Update: Scott Benigno (C ’22), from Atlanta to D.C., Kampala, and Kyiv

The History Department recently received an alumni update from Scott  Benigno, a former Honors student who graduated in the spring of 2022. From May 2022 through July 2023, Scott worked as a Program Associate in the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative’s Africa Division in Washington, DC. There, he supported the administration/operations and technical work of programs in Sudan, the Gambia, and their regional East Africa programs in Uganda and Tanzania. These were development programs on topics such as supporting freedom of expression, protecting environmental defenders, transitional justice initiatives, and more. In June 2023, Scott had the amazing opportunity to travel to Kampala, Uganda, to work from their Kampala office, meet with local partners, and support a programmatic closeout.

In August 2023, Scott took a new job as a Project Manager at Management Systems International (MSI), a private international development firm. There, Scott works on USAID-funded contracts in Ethiopia and Ukraine on topics relating to monitoring and evaluation and anti-corruption. This fall, he traveled to Kyiv, Ukraine, for two weeks to support his project’s administrative and operational pre-closeout measures.

Scott writes: “It has been a busy 1-2 years since graduating and, while not technically history work, it is impossible to work internationally without using the past to make sense of the present.”

Explore his latest Foreign Brief article, where Scott provides insights and analysis on the Niger junta’s legal appeal to lift ECOWAS sanctions on humanitarian grounds: “ECOWAS Court Rules on Niger.”

Are you an Emory History alumnus? Please send us updates on your life and work!

Abrahamson (PhD ’22) Wins Best Dissertation Prize from NECLAS

Abrahamson (center) accepting Best Dissertation Prize at the annual NECLAS meeting.

Dr. Hannah Rose Abrahamson (PhD 22) was recently awarded the prize for best dissertation from the New England Council of Latin American Studies. Abrahamson’s thesis, “Women of the Encomienda: Households and Dependents in Sixteenth-Century Yucatan, Mexico,” was also awarded the Maureen Ahern Award from the Latin American Studies Association – Colonial Section. Abrahamson is currently Assistant Professor of History at the College of the Holy Cross. Her dissertation was advised by by Dr. Yanna Yannakakis, Professor and Associate Department Chair.

Johanna Luthman (PhD ’04) Publishes New Book with Oxford UP

Why would a woman falsely accuse her husband’s youthful step-grandmother of attempting to murder her with a poisoned enema? Dr. Johanna Luthman, Professor of History at the University of North Georgia, first learned of this accusation, which took place at the court of James I of England in 1618, while she was writing her dissertation at Emory. Now, she has explored the question fully in her new book, Family and Feuding at the Court of James I: The Lake and Cecil Scandals (Oxford UP). The sensational accusation was one of many levied between the families of Sir Thomas Lake, Secretary of State, and Thomas Cecil, Earl of Exeter, both members of the king’s Privy Council and at the pinnacle of power at the Jacobean court. The two families were joined by the marriage of Sir Thomas’s daughter Anne to Exeter’s grandson William Cecil, Lord Roos. The souring of that marriage led to a years-long feud between the families, which caused sensational scandals, political downfalls, international man-hunts, and lengthy trials where King James himself sat as a judge, a Biblical Solomon dispensing justice. This is the first detailed account of the Lake and Cecil feud. It provides a window into Jacobean society, politics, religion, medicine, ideas about gender and sexuality, and more.

Alumni Update: Bronwen Boyd (C22), from Atlanta to Tunisia, the US Senate, and Sciences Po

Bronwen Boyd, a History Honors student and French Studies major, graduated from Emory College in May 2022. Boyd took a gap year following graduation, during which she worked for the Carter Center as a nonpartisan elections observer on the 2022 Tunisian Parliamentary Elections and for US Senator Jon Ossoff and the Congressional Commission on Emerging Biotechnology. She is currently pursuing a Master’s in Political Science as a Shepard Scholar from Emory at Sciences Po’s Paris School of Research. Her thematic interests include violence against women, LGBTQIA+ rights, human rights, law, and global history and politics. In 2022 Boyd was named a Graduating Woman of Excellence by the Center for Women at Emory. Boyd writes that she is a “Proud Emory History alumna— now and always!”

Are you an Emory History alumnus? Please send us updates on your life and work!