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Elizabeth Maddock Dillon Honored by the ASECS

Associate Professor of English Elizabeth Maddock Dillon has been selected as the recipient of this year’s Jay Fliegelman Excellence in Mentorship Award by the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS) Graduate Student Caucus.

The award, now in its fourth year, is given to a faculty member who has provided exceptional mentorship and guidance to graduate students, and in so doing has helped them to pursue their scholarship, teaching, and professionalization.

“Professor Dillon’s intellectual enthusiasm and professional generosity encompass present and future colleagues alike,” said Professor Laura Green, Chair of the Department of English at Northeastern University. “We are all delighted by this deserved acknowledgment.”

Professor Dillon, who was selected from a record number of nominations this year, will receive this award at the annual ASECS meeting.

“I enjoy working with graduate students immensely,” said Dillon. “Graduate students are on the edge of entering the professional world of scholarship and teaching, and they are typically scrambling hard to learn everything they need to know to enter the professoriate. But graduate students are also the leading intellectual edge of the field, though they often don’t realize this.”

Professor Dillon has served as the Coordinator of Graduate Studies in the English Department for the past two years.  Following her current appointment as a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow at the American Antiquarian Society in Worcester, Massachusetts—where she is completing research for a book titled Gender, Sex, and Modernity: Geographies of Reproduction in the Eighteenth-Century Atlantic World—she will return to her position at Northeastern next year.

“I like to help students realize the value and significance of their own ideas, and to help them frame their work such that they are able to contribute to the ongoing conversation of scholars and the development of new horizons in literary studies,” she noted.

Professor Dillon received her PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, and her research interests include Early American literature, Atlantic colonialism, the early novel, feminist theory, political theory, aesthetics, transatlantic print culture, Caribbean literature, and early American drama.  Author of The Gender of Freedom: Fictions of Liberalism and the Literary Public Sphere (Stanford University Press, 2004), Professor Dillon is currently completing the manuscript of New World Drama: Theatre of the Atlantic, 1660-1850, which will be published by Duke University Press.  Professor Dillon was also the recipient of the “Heyman Prize for Outstanding Publication in the Humanities” at Yale University in 2003, and the “Society of Early Americanists Essay Prize” in 2005.

“I am honored and touched to receive this award,” said Professor Dillon. “Jay Fliegelman is legendary for his mentoring in the field of literary studies, and I aspire to have the kind of positive impact in the lives of individuals that he has had and to emulate his spirit of intellectual generosity.”

About the Jay Fliegelman Excellence in Mentorship Award

“In 2007-08, the Graduate Student Caucus established the Excellence in Mentorship Award, recently renamed the Jay Fliegelman Excellence in Mentorship Award.  Jay Fliegelman, who passed away in Fall 2007, is widely recognized as one of the most important scholars of eighteenth century British North America.” (Description provided by the ASECS Graduate Student Caucus.)

– Courtesy of CSSH Dean’s Office

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