Dec. 5, 2002
Vol. 22 No. 5

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    The Chronicle’s biweekly column In the News offers a digest of commentary and quotations by a few of the University faculty members, students and alumni who have been headlining the news in recent weeks. Chicago faculty members are some of the most frequently quoted experts, so space allows publishing references to only selected examples. To read many of the full newspaper articles mentioned in this column, visit the In the News column at the University News Office Web site at: http://www-news.uchicago.edu/.

    McGuire Gibson, Professor in the Oriental Institute and Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations, was quoted in a Wednesday, Nov. 27 story published in The Globe and Mail. The story reported on how warfare in Iraq could damage Mesopotamian archaeological sites throughout the country, which are filled with artifacts of Sumerian, Assyrian, Babylonian, Parthian and other cultures. “In the last war, there was some ‘military’ damage to a few sites, but we’re more worried about the aftermath,” said Gibson. The aftermath brings more than a handful of looters: crews of hundreds with heavy equipment gut sites of interest to archaeologists.

    Kimerly Rorschach, the Dana Feitler Director of the David and Alfred Smart Museum of Art, was quoted in a Monday, Nov. 25 New York Times story, which featured the opening of a new exhibition at the Guangdong Museum of Art in Guangzhou, China. The exhibition is titled “Reinterpretation: A Decade of Experimental Chinese Art (1990-2000)” and was curated by Wu Hung, the Harrie H. Vanderstappen Distinguished Service Professor in Art History and the College. “ ‘Global, political art’ is what’s happening right now, and China is at the forefront,” said Rorschach. “Chinese artists have had to deal with the invasion of Western pop and avant-garde cultures, and that makes for a lot of very interesting work right now.”

    Rashid Khalidi, Director of the Center for International Studies and Professor in Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations and the College, was interviewed for a story in the Sunday, Nov. 24 Chicago Tribune. Khalidi commented on American foreign policies, addressing the Bush administration’s possible preemptive strike on Iraq should Saddam Hussein not comply with weapons inspectors and disarm his country of any weapons of mass destruction. Most political scholars, including Khalidi, predict that the worst result of a war on Iraq will come in its aftermath–a U.S.-led occupation of Iraq. “I think that the occupation of another country and the installation of a puppet regime–because I’m afraid that’s what’s going to happen–is going to provide the kind of anger that we haven’t begun to see from the U.S. military presence in Saudi Arabia, which was at the invitation of the Saudi government after all, and from the U.S. policy toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It will cause Americans to be in danger everywhere,” Khalidi said. The story also cited Charles Glaser, Professor and Deputy Dean in the Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies; John Mearsheimer, the R. Wendell Harrison Distinguished Service Professor in Political Science; and Robert Pape, Associate Professor in Political Science and the College, who all endorsed an advertisement published in the New York Times, which stated: “Al Qaeda poses a greater threat to the U.S. than does Iraq. War with Iraq will jeopardize the campaign against al Qaeda by diverting resources and attention from that campaign and by increasing anti-Americanism around the globe.”

    The career of Janet Davison-Rowley, the Blum-Riese Distinguished Service Professor in Medicine, Molecular Genetics & Cell Biology and Human Genetics, was featured in the Wednesday, Nov. 27 i-zine Scene column in the Chicago Sun-Times. After raising her children, Davison-Rowley’s career in molecular genetics advanced with her research on chromosomal translocations. She discovered that the ends of specific chromosomes would break off and exchange places, resulting in chronic myeloid leukemia. She continued this line of research and discovered all the common types of translocations, which led to better diagnostic methods and treatments for leukemia and lymphoma. “From virtually all the common translocations, we know which genes are broken, how they are broken and the consequences,” said Davison-Rowley.

    News announcing the Andrew W. Mellon grant awarded recently to Sheila Fitzpatrick, Bernadotte E. Schmitt Distinguished Service Professor in History and the College, was reported in a story (See Chronicle story, Page 1) carried by the Associated Press Newswires Saturday, Nov. 23. Fitzpatrick was recognized as a “versatile and influential historian of 20th-century Russia.”

    Charles Lipson, Associate Professor in Political Science and the College, wrote an op-ed that was published in the Sunday, Nov. 17 Chicago Sun-Times about the language used in a letter written by Saddam Hussein in response to the United Nations’ letter demanding that weapons inspectors have access to sites in Iraq. Lipson wrote that Hussein’s response implies that he has no intention of complying with the UN.

    Linda Waite, the Lucy Flower Professor in Sociology and the College, was cited in a story that appeared in the Monday, Nov. 25 issue of U.S. News and World Report. The story reported that more parents are making the decision to quit work to stay home to raise their children.