Congratulations to Sam Lasman, who received the 2021 Dean’s Distinguished Dissertation Award for his dissertation chaired by NELC faculty member Franklin Lewis. Sam defended his dissertation, "Dragons, Fairies, and Time: Imagining the Past in Medieval Welsh, Persian and French Narratives," in April 2020 in the Department of Comparative Literature with Lewis (NELC), Daisy Delogu (Romance Languages and Literatures) and Michael Sells (Divinity School) as his committee members. Sam took many classes in Persian and Arabic literature in NELC and is well known to students in our department, with whom he helped to host conferences (Great Lakes Adiban Society) and conference panels (International Medievalists Congress in Kalamazoo) and the Persian Circle here at the University of Chicago.
The Dean's Distinguished Dissertation Award acknowledges outstanding scholarly contributions of a doctoral student’s dissertation project in the Division of the Humanities, and recognized Dr. Lasman's dissertation for its transformative impact, noting: “Sam is able to engage with a wide range of works in their original languages, and in consequence he can access untranslated and unedited material that eludes other scholars. His associative methods invite critical thinking about recurrent themes or concerns of his texts without attempting to fix meaning or to force causal connections between textual and cultural traditions. In short, Sam is an exceptional young scholar…” Sam spent the current year as a Humanities Teaching Fellow at Chicago and will assume the Donnelley Fellowship at Corpus Christ College at Cambridge University for the next three years. Congratulations, Sam!