Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

Role models

UN team expands competition schedule, wins awards

Abe Ziner ’17, Marcel Angliviel de la Beaumelle ’15, Michael Ratliff ’16 and Saba Mundlay ’17

Abe Ziner ’17, Marcel Angliviel de la Beaumelle ’15, Michael Ratliff ’16 and Saba Mundlay ’17

Wheaton’s Model United Nations team has had a busy academic year. Not only did they increase their competition schedule from one event to five, but they also brought home accolades at their first competition.

Saba Mundlay ’17 received an honorable mention for her outstanding work as a delegate at the National Collegiate Security Conference, held Oct. 23–26, 2014, at Georgetown University. She participated in the conference’s Japanese Diet session, a modern-day debate that examined Japan’s constitutional policy regarding the stationing of American troops and ships.

“In February 2014, one of the articles that was put in place in the Japanese constitution after World War II was reinterpreted, so the debate we were having was whether there needed to be an amendment made to the constitution,” Mundlay said. “I was a member of the Democratic Party of Japan. I defected from my party, and I and a lot of the other people formed a different party and managed to gather the majority vote.” [Read more...]

Practicing multi-perspective problem solving

Geology and international relations students debate real-world environmental issues in class simulation.

Geology and international relations students debate real-world environmental issues in class simulation.

The world’s biggest problems won’t be solved by politicians alone but by experts and advocates from many different fields.

That’s why professors Geoffrey Collins and Adam Irish are bringing today’s political science and geology students together in one room to debate real environmental issues in a simulated negotiation that shows them how complicated yet important these interactions are.

“For a lot of students, it’s hard to understand that when you confront a problem like watersheds or climate change, these aren’t problems that coercion or single-state behavior can solve. These are collaborative, cooperative issues,” said Irish, whose “International Politics” students were paired up with students in Collins’s “Geology” course through the “Politics and Global Chance” course Connection during the fall semester. [Read more...]

Matisse’s sculpture

Professor’s new book highlights artist’s lesser-known work

Ellen_McBreenFrench artist Henri Matisse is primarily known as a painter, but it is his lesser-known works that were highlighted last fall in both an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City and a new book by Wheaton art history professor Ellen McBreen.

Titled Matisse’s Sculpture: The Pinup and the Primitive, the book was released Oct. 14, 2014, by Yale University Press and coincided with the October 12 opening of “Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs,” an exhibition featuring the colorful cut-paper compositions the artist experimented with late in his life.

For McBreen, who wrote her Ph.D. dissertation on Matisse’s sculpture in 2007 and has been revising it into a book since then, the timing is exciting, albeit coincidental.

“It’s a good reminder that even with artists who are very canonical, there are still things left to discover,” she said. “My book is about early Matisse, before World War I primarily, and that exhibition is at the other end of his life, but Matisse talked a lot about the difference between sculpting and painting, working in two and three dimensions, and one thing that is often said about the cutouts is that they allowed Matisse to carve directly into color so that he was bringing together that work in two and three dimensions.” [Read more...]

Beyond the book

Professor examines cultural influence of Little Women

Beverly Lyon Clark, Spring 2014How does a classic piece of literature continue to grow, change and impact culture more than 140 years after its publication? Wheaton Professor of English Beverly Lyon Clark explores that question in her new book with Johns Hopkins University Press, The Afterlife of Little Women.

Organized by time period, the book discusses public response, stage and screen adaptations, fan fiction and other forms the famous novel, written by Louisa May Alcott in the late 1860s, has taken through the years.

“It’s such a rich text. It can be taken in so many ways,” Clark said. “It’s a text you will find on evangelicals’ home-schooling reading lists, but it’s also popular among groups interested in queer readings, people who are interested in goddess worship, all these different groups that make rather unusual bedfellows. They all seem to find something in the book that is quite exciting.”

Clark began working on the book as a “quick excursion” from another long-term project. [Read more...]