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April 25, 2019 at 3:44 pm

Contemporary History Institute Announces Fellows for 2019-20

The Contemporary History Institute is pleased to announce the 2019-20 winners of the Klinder PhD Fellowship and the Baker Peace Fellowship.

Klinder PhD Fellows

Alex Lovelace and Samantha Peko have received Klinder PhD Fellowships for the 2019-20 academic year.

The Klinder’s endowment was established in the 1990s to fund a dissertation writing year for Ohio University doctoral students enrolled in the Contemporary History Institute Certificate program. It covers tuition and provides a stipend for the academic year.

Alexander Lovelace, portrait in office

Alexander Lovelace, PhD candidate

A PhD candidate in history, Lovelace is working with Dr. Ingo Trauschweizer, Associate Professor of History at Ohio University.

Lovelace’s dissertation, “Total Coverage: How the Media Shaped Command Decisions during World War II,” examines the American military and media during the war. It finds that although the military successfully used the press as a weapon, military leaders found their actions on the battlefield shaped by the media and public opinion. The military-media relationship formed during total war has translated differently into the more limited wars since 1945. Therefore, Lovelace argues, the current military-media relationship can be traced back to World War II.

Lovelace earned a BA in History from Messiah College and an MA in History from George Washington University. In addition to other competitive extra-departmental dissertation research funding awards, he previously received the John Cady Graduate Fellowship from Ohio University for the 2018-19 academic year.

Samantha Peko, portrait

Samantha Peko, PhD candidate

Peko is a PhD candidate in the EW Scripps School of Journalism working with Dr. Marilyn Greenwald, Professor of Journalism at Ohio University.

Peko’s dissertation, “New York Tribune’s Stunt Boy Reporter Investigates Fortune-Tellers,” focuses on a “stunt boy” reporter who was hired to have his fortune told for a series that exposed fraudulent clairvoyants who advertised in the papers. “Stunt reporters” often took on different personas to later provide audiences with eyewitness accounts of the experience, popular in the mid- to late-1800s. Peko will research the identity of fortune-tellers and how they used persuasive advertising by evoking racially charged images of exoticism to persuade the public to believe.

Already an Ohio University alum, Peko earned a BA in English Literature and an MS in Journalism, both from Ohio University. She has taught emerging media and reporting courses, including Strategic Social Media and Multiplatform Reporting and Writing, and has worked as a freelance reporter for community newspapers in Ohio, such as the Ashland Times-Gazette, Richland Source and Athens News.

Baker Peace Fellows

Doctoral candidates Robert Venosa and Amanda Nichols are the 2019-2020 Baker Peace fellows.

The John and Elizabeth Baker Peace Endowment funds the Baker Peace Fellowship through the Baker Peace Studies program, which was created in the 1980s to support teaching, scholarship, and conferences at Ohio University that promote the study of conflict and conflict resolution. The program offers at least one fellowship each year to a CHI certificate student. The award provides fellows with a stipend typically to facilitate dissertation completion or research.

Robert Venosa, portrait

Robert Venosa, PhD candidate

Venosa is a PhD candidate in the History Department working under the supervision of Dr. John Brobst.

His dissertation, “’Freedom Will Win – If Free Men Act!’: Making Liberal Grand Strategy in an Illiberal Age, 1936-1956,” analyzes liberal internationalism from its creation as a coherent worldview during the First World War through the onset of the Cold War. He argues that proponents and detractors of liberal internationalism have misunderstood its meaning and significance. His dissertation examines the unique domestic institutional roots of knowledge production and policymaking in liberal democracies—and the international context in which liberal democracies operated. Using primary sources from the Round Table Society, the Royal Institute of International Affairs, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Institute of Pacific Relations, Venosa analyzes discussions among academics and policymakers about the fundamental – and novel – strategic, political, and legal conditions that the liberal democratic powers faced from the late interwar period through the early Cold War.

Venosa earned a BA and an MA in History from State University of New York at Stony Brook and will soon receive a Contemporary History certificate from OHIO’s College of Arts & Sciences.

Amanda Nichols, portrait

Amanda Nichols, PhD candidate

Nichols is a PhD candidate in the History Department working under the supervision of Dr. Steven Miner.

Her dissertation, “Death to Hitler’s Butchers and Their Vile Accomplices: Soviet War Crimes Trials in Postwar Ukraine,” seeks to understand the Soviet interpretation of Ukrainian collaboration with Nazi forces and the measures the Soviet government took to identify and punish those collaborators at the war’s end. Soviet Ukraine is a unique case study, as it experienced high rates of collaboration during Nazi occupation. After the war, the Soviet government arrested an estimated 93,000 “betrayers of the motherland” in Ukraine and held thousands of war crimes trials, many of which ended in death sentences. By examining these trials, her research will contribute to a greater understanding of the Holocaust, Soviet postwar retributive justice, and the attempt to “return to normalcy” in the aftermath of World War II.

Nichols earned a BA in History from Mansfield University of Pennsylvania and an MA in History and a Contemporary History Certificate from Ohio University. She recently won this year’s College of Arts & Sciences Outstanding Teaching Assistant award.

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