May 4, 2016 at 8:15 am

Clouse Wins University Professor Teaching Award

Dr. Michele Clouse

Dr. Michele Clouse

The University Professor Selection Committee recently selected Dr. Michele Clouse, Associate Professor of History at Ohio University, as one of the four annual University Professor Award recipients for 2016-17.

The award recognizes “outstanding teaching at the university.” Students initially nominated Clouse as part of a university-wide open call by the Center for Teaching and Learning during Fall 2015. She was then selected as one of eight finalists through a statistical process of weighting the number of votes received with the total number of students each nominee taught in the past three terms.

As part of her University Professor Award, Clouse will be offering a new course in Spring 2017: “Marked By Difference: Medicine, Culture and the Body in Pre-Modern Europe.”

Course Description: This course seeks to expand our understanding of the fascinating history of the human body—that history goes well beyond the basic biological features we rely on today to identify ourselves. How did societies identify difference before the advent of DNA testing? What role did/does culture play in body identification? How did/does science and medicine influence body politics? If the eyes are the window to one’s soul, then I suggest that the body is a portrait of one’s culture. This course allows us to become more critical consumers of knowledge while forcing us to rethink our own notions about bodily difference. What cultural assumptions do we bring to the table and how do those assumptions influence the way we interact with our peers?

“It is not my place to change your beliefs; rather, to encourage you to understand the root of those beliefs from different perspectives,” says Clouse says about the course. “History can be a valuable tool for exploring contemporary concerns in a less confrontational, yet equally valuable way. We can make connections between certain patterns of behavior in the past to today’s world.”

A student-comprised University Professor Selection Committee then selected Clouse as one of four award recipients after an interview, in-class observation, and course proposal. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Clouse currently serves as the Director of Undergraduate Studies in the History Department. During the past three years, she has taught a broad array of courses:

  • HIST 1320: Introduction to World History before 1750
  • HIST 3111J: Historical Research and Writing
  • HIST 3501: Nature, Science, and Religion to 1800
  • HIST 3542: The European Reformation
  • HIST 3560: Italian Renaissance
  • Tier III: Plagues, Diseases and Public Health in History to 1800

Much of Clouse’s teaching expertise draws on her scholarly work and that of her broader field. Her research focuses on the history of medicine in early modern Europe, 1400-1700. In particular, she is interested in the intersection between medical ideas and practices with politics, law and society. Clouse’s first book is titled Medicine, Government, and Public Health in Philip II’s Spain: Shared Interests, Competing Authorities (Ashgate, 2011). She is currently working on a project that examines medical services, personnel, and patients in early modern Spain.

During Fall 2016, Clouse is teaching the following course:

  • HIST 3715: Sex, Crime and Deviance in Europe, 1200-1800 (Next offered Fall 2016)

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