Kudos to Diana Senechal!

by Robert Pondiscio
September 14th, 2011

Diana Senechal, whose frequent contributions and comments enliven this blog has been named the 2011 recipient of the Hiett Prize in the Humanities. The award from the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture recognizes an “emerging leader in the humanities” and will be presented to Diana on October 26 at the Dallas Institute. The Institute’s announcement reads:

“The Hiett Prize is among the nation’s most prestigious honors in the humanities. The $50,000 annual award was created by The Dallas Institute in 2004 in collaboration with philanthropist Kim Hiett Jordan to recognize a person who has not yet reached his or her potential, but whose work in the humanities shows extraordinary promise and is already making a difference in the way we think about the world. The purpose of the Hiett Prize is to encourage future leaders in the humanities—recognizing their achievement and their promise and assisting their work through a cash award. Overall, it represents the counterpart of lifetime achievement awards by aiming at the discovery of new talent in the humanities on its way toward full maturity.

A former New York city public school teacher and a keen observer of classroom practice and academic life. Her many contributions to this blog challenge classroom orthodoxies on curriculum, assessment, and teaching practices. Her most recent post offered a critique of Steven Brill’s Class Warfare. A full collection of her blog posts is available here. Her debut book Republic of Noise: The Loss of Solitude in Schools and Culture, will be published in January.

“Diana Senechal is a rare find: she is not only a scholar of Slavic Languages and Literatures but also a brilliant mind in other literatures, poetry, philosophy, mathematics, science, technology, theology and music,” said J. Larry Allums Ph.D., Executive Director of The Dallas Institute, in announcing her selection for the Hiett Prize. “Her distinctive achievements and original plans for future projects in the humanities made such a resounding impact on our selection committee that they were unanimous in their final decision that she had to be the recipient of this year’s Hiett Prize.”

A singular honor for an extraordinary scholar. Take a bow, Diana!