Social Sciences faculty members honored with named, distinguished service professorships

Announcement Type: 

Three social scientists have received distinguished service professorships in recognition of their scholarly contributions and dedication to the University research and teaching mission. Additionally, two social scientists have been appointed to named professorships in the College and the Division, and another as the first to hold the Gary S. Becker chair, named in honor of Nobel Laureate Gary S. Becker, AM'53, PhD'55 (1930-2014).


Mark Bradley has been named the Bernadotte E. Schmitt Distinguished Service Professor in History.


Bradley is a leader in 20th-century history of the United States in international relations. In addition, his research and teaching focuses on the global history of human rights politics and postcolonial Southeast Asian history. 


He is the author of Imagining Vietnam and America: The Making of Postcolonial Vietnam (2000) and Vietnam at War (2009). His latest book, The World Reimagined: Americans and Human Rights in the Twentieth Century (2016), is already transforming how we understand international human rights in both legal and cultural contexts.


Bradley serves as Faculty Director of the Pozen Family Center for Human Rights, Chair of the Committee on International Relations, and on a number of critical university administrative committees. He has received fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and Fulbright-Hays.


Bradley was a member of the UChicago faculty from 1997-99 and returned to the Department of History in 2007.


William Mazzarella has been named the Neukom Family Professor in the College and the Division of the Social Sciences.


William Mazzarella’s professional scholarship has focused on the political anthropology of mass publicity, with special reference to India. Mazzarella’s work is located at the intersection of anthropology, media studies, and critical theory. He is an expert analyst on the censorship of Indian film, a very heavy regulated industry in the world’s largest democratic country.


In addition to over 58 scholarly articles, Mazzarella has written three important books on the topic of South Asian media policy. His most recent book is Censorium: Cinema and the Open Edge of Mass Publicity (Duke University Press, 2013), which is an analysis of Indian film censorship. A forthcoming book, The Mana of Mass Society, will be published by the University of Chicago Press in 2017.


Mazzarella has been a member of the faculty of the Department of Anthropology since 2001.


Magne Mogstad has been named the inaugural Gary S. Becker Professor in Economics.


Mogstad has made highly original contributions into large questions in

labor and public economics. He has made novel interventions to difficult questions on a broad range of topics, such as peer effects on welfare programs; intergenerational outcomes of child care and education programs; and productivity effects of technological change. In addition, Mogstad’s methodological innovations can be applied across the field of economics.


He has been awarded the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship and the Fridtjof Nansen Award for Young Scientists, as well as three peer-reviewed research awards from the Research Council of Norway, on topics ranging from the causes and consequences of the rise in disability insurance to a quantitative analysis of early childhood education and childcare.


Mogstad joined the faculty in 2014.


David Nirenberg has been named the Deborah R. and Edgar D. Jannotta Distinguished Service Professor in History, Social Thought, Middle East Studies, and the College.


David Nirenberg holds appointments in the John U. Nef Committee on Social Thought, the Department of History, and the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, and is one of the world’s leading scholars of interreligious community and cultural exchange among Jewish, Christian, and Muslim traditions. He specializes in the history of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam in medieval Europe and the Mediterranean and how these cultures constitute themselves by interrelating with or thinking about each other.


Nirenberg is author of many books, most recently, Communities of Violence: Persecution of Minorities in the Middle Ages (2016) which is a 20th anniversary edition with a new preface. Previously, he published Aesthetic Theology and Its Enemies: Judaism in Christian Painting, Poetry, and Politics (2015), Neighboring Faiths: Christianity, Islam, and Judaism in the Middle Ages and Today (2014) and A­nti-Judiasm: The Western Tradition (2013), which received the 2014 Ralph Waldo Emerson Award.


Nirenberg joined the faculty in 2006. He has held the appointment of Dean of the Division of the Social Sciences since 2014.


Nathan Tarcov has been named the Karl J. Weintraub Professor in the College and the Division of the Social Sciences. 


Nathan Tarcov is a scholar of the history of political theory, education and family in political theory, and principles of US foreign policy. In addition to over 65 articles and numerous lectures, Tarcov has written several influential books: Locke's Education for Liberty (University of Chicago Press, 1984), Machiavelli, Discourses on Livy (University of Chicago Press, 1996), and John Locke, Some Thoughts Concerning Education and On The Conduct of the Understanding (Hackett Publishing Co., 1996), for which Tarcov provided a concise introduction, a note on the texts, and a select bibliography of Locke. Finally, in The Legacy of Rousseau, (University of Chicago Press, 1996) Tarcov explored some fundamental polarities in Rousseau’s thought—nature versus society, self versus other, community versus individual, and compassion versus competitiveness.


In 1997 he won a Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching. Tarcov has also served with great distinction and effectiveness as Chairman of the Classics of Social and Political Thought Core Course in the College from 2011-2015. In this role, he has worked to strengthen the tradition of general education at Chicago. In addition, he has successfully trained several generations of graduate students in the art and practice of effective undergraduate teaching.


Tarcov has held appointments in the John U. Nef Committee on Social Thought and the Department of Political Science since 1992. He is also one of the coordinators of the Political Theory Workshop and the Director of the Leo Strauss Center.


Amanda Woodward has been named the William S. Gray Distinguished Service Professor in Psychology.


Woodward is a professor in the Department of Psychology and a leader in the field of cognitive psychology. She has pioneered the development of experimental methods to investigate social cognition in infants and young children. Her research has yielded fundamental insights into infants’ social understanding and the processes that support conceptual development early in life.


Woodward has received many awards for her research, including the Ann L. Brown Award for Excellence in Developmental Research, the APA Boyd McCandless Award for an Early Career Contribution to Developmental Psychology and the John Merck Scholars Award. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Association for Psychological Science, and the American Psychological Association.


Woodward joined the University of Chicago faculty in 1993, spent five years at the University of Maryland, and returned to UChicago in 2010. She was a founding member of the Center for Early Childhood Research and previously served as Chair of the Department of Psychology. She has held the appointment of Deputy Dean of Faculty Affairs for the Division of the Social Sciences since 2015.