The College community was saddened by the deaths of two longtime faculty members this past academic year. Professor of Anthropology and Sociology Eugenia Shanklin, passed away in October 2007, and Professor of History Alan Dawley, died in March.
Shanklin arrived at the College in 1973 and taught courses in cultural anthropology and human evolution during her time on campus. Her colleagues remember her as a brilliant anthropologist and gifted ethnographer. Her specialty was sub-Saharan Africa, with a particular interest in the country of Cameroon, where she spent time doing fieldwork.
An avid traveler, Shanklin was also an opera buff, frequenting both the Metropolitan Opera and plays in New York City, Philadelphia, and Princeton, where she lived. She completed a manuscript on memories and short stories of her childhood in Kentucky. She also loved to paint in watercolor, and took numerous classes to further her artistic ability.
A fan of ghost stories and the macabre, Shanklin developed and taught a course called Vampires, Werewolves, and Witches. Her colleague in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Associate Professor Rachel Adler, noted, “That she passed away on Halloween was her special way of leaving this world.”
Dawley died during Spring Break from sudden heart failure. At the time, he was in Mexico studying Spanish to prepare for his next research project, and meeting with friends in the global justice movement. He was also revising his manuscript of a textbook on the history of the United States and its relations with the world during the 20th century. That book, titled Global America, is to be published by Houghton Mifflin.
Dawley joined the history department at the College in 1970. During his 38 years on campus, he was engaged in many campus forums and activities, and was instrumental in the establishment of the Center for the Study of Social Justice. He won numerous awards during his career and was widely respected in his field. He twice received National Endowment for the Humanities fellowships and earned Distinguished Research Awards from the College. His first book, Class and Community: The Industrial Revolution in Lynn, received the Bancroft Prize in 1976, considered by many as the most prestigious award in the field of American history writing.
Dawley remained an engaged scholar and activist throughout his life. Most recently, he was a leading member of Historians Against the War, an international group of concerned scholars that opposes U.S. military involvement in Iraq.