Research Apprenticeships

2020 Research Opportunities

To apply for one of these research apprenticeships please fill out an application and return it to iph@wustl.edu or 231 Umrath Hall.

Graphic Novel First Year Seminar

Professor of Italian seeks a research assistant to help draft the syllabus for a first year seminar built around the graphic novel, The Hunting Accident. The RA will be tasked with identifying readings to complement the primary text; these will include historical, philosophical, and literary texts. Other tasks will include research on high-profile crimes in St. Louis. No language skills besides English are necessary. 2-4 hours per week.

Love in Religion, Ethics, and Political Thought

Assistance needed for work on a book on Love in Time, which proposes a view of love for religious, ethical, and political thought. The project spans different literatures in philosophy, critical theory, religious thought, literary theory, and art criticism. The research assistant will be asked to conduct literature reviews for sources concerning the central interlocutors in the text, and to extract formal bibliographies and citations for the textsunder discussion. The R.A. may also be asked to assist with light editorial work necessary for preparing manuscripts for submission.  The work requires strong organizational skills and research skills; no foreign languages required. Roughly 4 hours per week.

Black Kings and Queens in the Festive Practices of Colonial Mexico

Assistance needed for a book on black kings and queens in the festive practices of colonial Mexico City, 1539-1640. The tasks will include work on the bibliography and index, along with some reference-checking. The workload would be 2-4 hours a week. 

Leftists in Postcolonial Algeria

This research project explores the participation of leftist intellectuals and authors from the Middle East in Algerian, French-language print culture networks (particularly in journals and newspapers) during the 1960s and 1970s. The RA will identify and summarize articles by leftist authors in key Algerian publications from the period. S/he must be comfortable reading in French and be willing to work with microfilm sources. Hours are negotiable (approx. 3-5 per week).

Radio Plays in Post-War Germany

Assistance needed for a book project on the soundscapes of German-language radio dramas composed between 1945-1960. I would like help creating a database of plays, including titles, authors, and broadcast dates. The RA will also be asked to locate recordings and possibly contact archives or radio stations to secure copies. Reading knowledge of German and familiarity with Microsoft Excel preferred. Approximately 3 hours a week, biweekly meetings.

Queer Theory and Modernism

Undergraduate research assistant sought for remote work on a developing project about modernist studies, queer theory, and digital humanities. No experience in these scholarly fields is required, but some familiarity with navigating journals and databases through our library website is recommended. Student should be comfortable working with Excel, meeting deadlines, and asking questions. All other skills will be developed over the course of the semester. Approximately 4 hours/week, with one biweekly meeting via Zoom. Possibility to continue work for multiple semesters.

How to Ask for A Job, in the 18th-Century French Atlantic World

RA needed to do preliminary work for a project on patronage and the rhetorical strategies in "asking for a job" in the 18th century French Atlantic World.  The R.A. will analyze one or two sample years taken from a letterbook from the French Ministry of the Navy, preparing a database on patrons and protégés. This requires the student to be able to read French at least well enough to recognize standard formulations requesting "protection" or a posting for someone.  Approximately 3 hours per week (hours negotiable).

Tennessee Williams Project

Professor of Drama seeks assistant for a project focused on American playwright Tennessee Williams, entitled The Plastic Theatre of Tennessee Williams: Expressionist Drama and the Visual Arts. Assistant will help with organization and scheduling; locating materials in various collections; arrange for permissions and reproductions of paintings and photographic materials; assist with compilation of historical and bibliographical materials. Approximately 4 hours per week, including weekly meetings.

History of Galen of Pergamum

Professor of Classics seeks an assistant for compiling a database of case histories in the written corpus of Galen of Pergamum (2nd century CE). Working from an existing index, the assistant will produce a short narrative for each of  histories (ca. 200) and compile them into a master document.

The undergraduate assistant must have at least a working knowledge of ancient Greek. Some Latin would be desirable. Workload will be 4-6 hours per week with meetings weekly or biweekly.

"Translational": A Critical History

Research assistance sought for a book project that examines the historical emergence and usage of the term “translational” within English-language texts, as well as across contemporary science (translational science) and medical fields (translational medicine) using Digital Humanities tools (data compilation using Google NGram Viewer and other textual analysis tools). Interest in Digital and Medical Humanities a plus. Hours are negotiable, but are likely to approximate 3 hours/week with monthly meetings.

Music in Greek and Roman Theatre

Professor of Classics seeks assistance examining and interpreting evidence for music in the performance of ancient Greek and Roman theatre.  Assistant will read ancient plays looking for evidence of music, find relevant bibliography in electronic databases, print bibliographies, and other works, and help compile a database of rhythmic variation in ancient drama.  The following skills are desirable but not required: some knowledge of ancient Greek and/or Latin, experience in theatre, and the ability to read music.  3-4 hours per week, including a weekly meeting.

Humanities Digital Workshop

IPH assists the Humanities Digital Workshop (HDW) in recruiting students to work with faculty on computationally-assisted research projects in the humanities. The HDW offers opportunities to join humanities "labs." Visit the HDW website for a comprehensive information on active investigations. Some of the projects on the table are:

The Spenser Project

The professor and five editors are producing the Complete Works of Edmund Spenser for Oxford UP. The work is being developed as an electronic edition, from which two print versions, and an online archive will be generated. Student RAs do a wide range of research depending on the tasks at hand, ranging from pure research projects, to proofreading the edited text against original witnesses, to writing software to process images and texts. RAs work five hours a week and attend a weekly project meeting. Visit the Spenser Archive for more information.

Nineteenth-Century Literary Internationalism

Assistance is needed on two projects: a study of German translations and adaptations of Jane Eyre (1848-1920), and the final development of a digital library of 19th-century German books in English translation. Most of the work will involve data-cleanup and proofreading. Prerequisite skills: at least third-semester German, the ability to play close attention to textual detail, the ability (and willingness)  to learn to read typographical characters in German blackletter (Fraktur). 3-5 hours per week (hours flexible).

Creating a Federal Government

 Principal Investigator: Peter Kastor

Creating a Federal Government explores the functional realities of governance during the early American republic.

Rethinking the History of German Literature, 1731-1864

Principal Investigator: Matt Erlin

This project employs the techniques of probabilistic topic modeling to test a set of longstanding assumptions about the periodization of German literary history.

The Dada Networks Project

Principal Investigator: Kurt Beals

Drawing on databases and bibliographies of Dada and Expressionist periodicals, the Dada Networks Project uses network analysis to better understand the structure of these movements and the roles of key individuals who mediated between groups of artists and writers.

Early Modern Print

Principal Investigator: Anupam Basu

Early Print offers a range of tools for the computational exploration and analysis of English print culture before 1700. It includes a set of visualizations of the EEBO-TCP as a collection of publications, as well as a historical N-gram browser and a reporting tool for Key Words in Context.

Gender Violence Database

Principal Investigator: Jami Ake

The Gender Violence Database is an accessible searchable tool designed for researchers, practitioners, and the general public interested in the multidisciplinary field of Violence Against Women. Applicants with NGO experience, specialized training (SARAH, Uncle Joe’s, etc.), or coursework related to these topics are preferred. No prior computer skills are necessary (though they are welcome). Visit the Gender Violence Database project page for more information.