Three UC Berkeley faculty win Guggenheim fellowships

Three UC Berkeley professors are among this year’s 175 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation fellows. The prestigious annual Guggenheim fellowships recognize scholars with impressive past achievements who show promise for future accomplishments in fields ranging from the natural sciences to the creative arts.

The three UC Berkeley recipients are:

Shari Huhndorf

Shari Huhndorf, chair and professor of Native American Studies. A native Alaskan of Athabaskan and Yupik ancestry, Huhndorf will use the fellowship to pursue work on her third book, Indigeneity and the Politics of Space: Gender, Geography, Culture. She is also the author of Going Native: Indians in the American Cultural Imagination (Cornell, 2001) and Mapping the Americas: The Transnational Politics of Contemporary Native Culture (Cornell, 2009). 

Nicolas Tackett

Nicolas Tackett, associate professor of East Asian Studies. An expert on China during the Tang, Song and Liao dynasties, Tackett will work on his third book, The Rise of the Chinese Meritocracy: The Transformation of Elite Culture in Tenth-Century China. The book is a sequel to his first book, The Destruction of the Medieval Chinese Aristocracy (Harvard University Asia Center, 2014) and will examine the rise of merit over ancestry as a primary marker of status in China during the 10th and 11th centuries.

Fei Xu

Fei Xu, professor of psychology. An expert on cognitive and language development in children, Xu will use the fellowship to continue her research in these areas, including an approach known as “rational constructionism” that examines the mechanisms of language and symbol learning, Bayesian inductive learning and constructive thinking. Among other honors, Xu is a fellow of the Association for Psychological Science and the Cognitive Science Society.

Of 3,000 Guggenheim applicants this year, fellowships were awarded to 175 U.S. and Canadian scholars. A complete list of the 2018-19 fellows can be found at this link.

Guggenheim fellowships are one-time-only grants that allow recipients the time and creative freedom to complete their research, book or other projects. The program was established in 1925 by U.S. Sen. Simon Guggenheim and his wife in memory of their son John Simon Guggenheim who died at age 17 in 1922.