Harry Caplan Travel Fellowship Award - Summer 2011
Harry Caplan was one of Cornell's most beloved teachers for about fifty years. He earned his undergraduate degree from Cornell in 1916 and -- except for a few months of basic training during World War I -- never left. As a faculty member (and bachelor), he breakfasted every morning (late) at Willard Straight Hall and arrived in his office by noon. There he stayed until late at night. His love of Greek and Latin classics and his availability for conversation inspired many a student -- undergraduate and graduate alike. He was a particular specialist in ancient and medieval Latin rhetoric and never approved of separating the study of rhetoric from its roots in the Western tradition of the liberal arts. He was also interested in ancient Jewish culture. Everyone who knew him had Harry Caplan stories, sometimes about his chain smoking, often about how he traced the etymology of their names, always about his great-mindedness.
After Harry died in 1980, former students contributed to an endowment in his honor. Prof. Isaac Kramnick, government, suggested that instead of using the income to buy books or bring lecturers to campus, the college use the income to send students away from campus. Hence the Caplan Travel Fellowships became the first in the college to make it possible for students sharing one of Harry's intellectual passions to travel around the Mediterranean. Grants can subsidize particular academic projects or intense and informed tourism.
This year’s recipients of the Harry Caplan Travel Fellowship:
Elias Kraushaar (Economics & College Scholar) will conduct research on ancient Jewish culture, economy, and society in modern Israel for a published research paper.
Daniel Ranweiler (Classics, German Studies, & Philosophy) will take part in a six week summer session put on by the American School of Classical Studies at Athens. This program serves as an intensive introduction to Greece from Antiquity through the modern period.