Volume 75
Number 4












No more waiting for Jin

Emory creative writing professor and author Xuefei Jin couldn’t have been further off target when he told the Atlanta-Journal Constitution he thought Kent Haruf’s Plainsong would win the 1999 National Book Award for fiction. In fact, it was Jin’s novel Waiting, a lyrical love story set during China’s Cultural Revolution, that claimed the honor.

“I was lucky, so lucky,” says Jin, who, during the ensuing media storm, has fielded interviews with the Associated Press, countless newspapers and magazines, and Chinese radio and television programs.“I feel humbled by it all." Kirkus Reviews describes Jin’s novel as "a deceptively simple tale, written with extraordinary precision and grace.”

Hope rewarded

The decade of work that went into Leroy Davis’ book A Clashing of the Soul, a biography of John Hope, has been rewarded with a 1999 Lillian Smith Book Award from the Southern Regional Council. Davis, associate professor of history and African American studies, has chronicled the achievements of Hope, president of Morehouse College and Atlanta University and a contemporary of Booker T. Washington and W. E. B. DuBois.

Altman named
Pew Scholar

John D. Altman, assistant professor of microbiology and immunology, is among twenty young scholars nationwide selected as 1999 Pew Scholars in the Biomedical Sciences. The $200,000 award from the Pew Charitable Trusts in Philadelphia will support Altman’s research over a four-year period. By studying immune memory and T-cell response to disease, particularly to HIV, Altman hopes to develop and evaluate effective vaccines.






EM précis
A new beginning on the Quad

Beginnings, a 1985 sculpture by Isamu Noguchi, has been sited on the grounds of Emory’s Quadrangle as part of the Michael C. Carlos Museum’s outdoor sculpture program. The installation, a random placement of five andesite granite stones, is meant to evoke a Japanese rock garden, according to the artist. The sculpture is on loan from the Isamu Noguchi Foundation in New York City.


The gifts of the Greeks

Michael C. and Thalia Carlos have pledged $10 million to build the ancient Greek art collection of the Michael C. Carlos Museum. “This extraordinary gift,” said Carlos Director Anthony Hirschel, “ . . . will allow the museum to acquire superb works of art of the very highest quality, works that would never have come to Atlanta otherwise.” The first group of masterworks acquired with the pledge—including a Roman marble sarcophagus, painted Athenian vases, two marble statues, and a bronze statuette of a man resembling Alexander the Great—went on view in January.


An Emory Ironman

At age forty, Senior Lecturer of Physical Education Scott Murphy is still in his prime, as he recently demonstrated by competing in the Hawaii Ironman, a grueling triathlon in which participants swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles, and run 26.2 miles. Murphy competed as “a challenge to my body and mind” and in tribute to Jon Myers ’99C, who is recuperating from an automobile accident that rendered him temporarily paralyzed. Murphy coached Myers on the Emory cross country team for three years, and the two became good friends. In Hawaii, Murphy completed the swim portion in first place in the men’s masters division. He finished the triathlon with a time of eleven hours, eight minutes, and fifty-five seconds—or eighty-eighth place among the one hundred seventy masters competitors and 776th overall among fifteen hundred competitors. “When I was struggling, I thought about Jon,” says Murphy. “He does not have a choice in his current condition. But I did.”



© 2000 Emory University