American Academy of Arts and Sciences elects nine UChicago scholars

The American Academy of Arts and Sciences announced its 2011 class of fellows on Tuesday, April 19. Nine University of Chicago faculty members and one Argonne National Laboratory scientist have been elected to the Academy and are among 212 new fellows. The newly elected members are:

Philip V. Bohlman, the Mary Werkman Distinguished Service Professor in Music, the Humanities and the College
Alex Eskin, Professor of Mathematics
Franklin I. Gamwell, the Shailer Mathews Distinguished Service Professor of Religious Ethics, the Philosophy of Religions and Theology
Kazuya Kato, Professor of Mathematics
John A. List, the Homer J. Livingston Professor of Economics
Margaret M. Mitchell, Dean of the Divinity School and Professor of New Testament and Early Christian Literature
Trevor Price, Professor of Ecology & Evolution
Michael H. Schill, Dean of the Law School and the Harry N. Wyatt Professor of Law
Hisashi Yamamoto, the Arthur Holly Compton Distinguished Service Professor in Chemistry
George Crabtree, Associate Director of Argonne National Laboratory’s Materials Science Division

The Chicago scholars join one of the nation’s most prestigious honorary societies and a leading center for independent policy research. Members contribute to Academy studies of science and technology policy, global security, social policy and American institutions, the humanities, and education.

“It is a privilege to honor these men and women for their extraordinary individual accomplishments,” said Leslie Berlowitz, Academy President and William T. Golden Chair. “The knowledge and expertise of our members give the Academy a unique capacity — and responsibility — to provide practical policy solutions to the pressing challenges of the day. We look forward to engaging our new members in this work.”

Ethnomusicologist Philip V. Bohlman studies a wide range of topics related to music and modernity, particularly Jewish music and the politics of religion and race in the music of the Middle East and South Asia. He also has written extensively about the Eurovision Song Contest in Music, Nationalism, and the Making of a New Europe and other publications. Bohlman also is artistic director of the New Budapest Orpheum Society, a Jewish cabaret ensemble at the University of Chicago.

Mathematician Alex Eskin specializes in ergotic theory, lie groups and number theory and is known among colleagues for the aesthetics of his mathematics. A faculty member since 1994, Eskin received the Clay Research Prize from the Clay Mathematics Institute in 2007 for his contributions to two unrelated fields, rational billiards and geometric group theory.

Franklin I. Gamwell studies the intersection of philosophy, Christian theology and political theory, with a particular interest in 20th-century thinkers Reinhold Niebuhr, Paul Tillich and Alfred North Whitehead. Gamwell served as Dean of the Divinity School from 1980 to 1990. His most recent book, Existence and the Good: Metaphysical Necessity in Morals and Politics, is forthcoming in June from State University of New York Press.

Mathematician Kazuya Kato conducts research in modern number theory and algebraic theory. Kato, who received the 2005 Imperial Prize and Japan Academy Prize for “Research on Arithmetic Geometry,” joined the Chicago faculty in 2009. He co-authored Fermat’s Dream, originally published in Japanese in 1996 and translated into English in 2000.

Economist John A. List has pioneered the use of field experiments in economics. His work has stimulated a new area of study that explores economic behavior in naturally occurring environments with controlled experimental methods. He also served as a senior economist on the President’s Council of Economic Advisers in 2002–03, when he worked on multinational market institutions to address climate change. List also is interested in incentives that boost school performance and recently launched a preschool project that will be part of a long–term effort to learn more about improving school achievement among disadvantaged students.

Dean Margaret M. Mitchell studies early Christian writing up to the 4th century, the Pauline letters, and the politics and poetics of biblical interpretation. In 2010, she received a Guggenheim Fellowship to complete a translation of Greek sermons written by John Chrysostom, an influential early Christian thinker. Mitchell is the author of four books, including Paul and the Rhetoric of Reconciliation and The Heavenly Trumpet: John Chrysostom and the Act of Pauline Interpretation, and co-editor of The Cambridge History of Christianity, Volume 1: Origins to Constantine.

Professor Trevor Price studies the roles of sexual selection and natural selection in speciation in birds. His work combines field research, mostly in India, with molecular lab work and some theoretical studies. Most of his fieldwork is focused on a single genus of birds, the Phylloscopus warblers, which breed in the Himalayas and temperate Asia and in winter in tropical Asia. In 2008, he published a book on Speciation in Birds, which evaluates the contributions of sexual selection, natural selection, geographical isolation, ecological differentiation and genetic drift on bird speciation.

Dean Michael H. Schill is a national expert on real estate and housing policy, deregulation, finance and discrimination. He has written or edited three books and more than 40 articles on various aspects of housing, real estate and property law. Before joining the faculty of the Law School in 2010, Schill was Dean of UCLA School of Law. He also taught at New York University and the University of Pennsylvania and was director of the Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy.

Chemist Hisashi Yamamoto joined the Chicago faculty in 2002. He maintains a longstanding research program on Lewis and Bronsted acid catalysis chemistry, which play key roles in triggering or driving chemical reactions in the synthesis of new organic molecules that are biologically important or that contain interesting physical properties.

George Crabtree, a Senior Scientist and Argonne Distinguished Fellow, the laboratory’s highest scientific and engineering rank, is noted for his groundbreaking research on the physics of vortices in high-temperature superconductors; his work on nanoscale superconductivity and magnetism; and his leadership of sustainable energy science and technology. Crabtree also is a member of the National Academy of Sciences.

Among the 2011 class of scholars, scientists, writers, artists, civic, corporate, and philanthropic leaders are winners of the Nobel Prize, the Pulitzer Prize, and Pritzker Prizes; the Turing Award; MacArthur and Guggenheim fellowships; and Kennedy Center Honors, Grammy, Golden Globe, and Academy awards.

The Academy also elected 16 Foreign Honorary Members from Argentina, Canada, France, Germany, Israel, Japan, Peru; Portugal, South Africa, and the United Kingdom.

The new class will be inducted at a ceremony on Oct.1, at the Academy’s headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Since its founding in 1780 by John Adams, James Bowdoin, John Hancock, and other scholar-patriots, the Academy has elected leading “thinkers and doers” from each generation, including George Washington and Benjamin Franklin in the 18th century, Daniel Webster and Ralph Waldo Emerson in the 19th, and Albert Einstein and Winston Churchill in the 20th.

The current membership includes more than 250 Nobel laureates and more than 60 Pulitzer Prize winners. A list of the newly announced Academy members is at: