Mellon Sawyer Postdoctoral Fellowship in Visual History at USC, deadline 1 February 2016

Mellon Sawyer Postdoctoral Fellowship in Visual History at the University of Southern California

The University of Southern California seeks applications for a one-year Mellon Sawyer Postdoctoral Fellowship on the topic “Visual History: The Past in Images.” The annual salary is $65,000. The fellow will be affiliated with the Visual Studies Research Institute (VSRI,

The successful candidate will take a leading role in a year-long John E. Sawyer Seminar funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation on “Visual History: The Past in Images.”  The seminar will be hosted by the VSRI and directed by Professors Vanessa Schwartz and Daniela Bleichmar. The Mellon Fellow will participate in all scholarly activities associated  with the Sawyer Seminar, which will include workshops and lectures; will help organize a  graduate class team-taught by the seminar directors in Spring 2017 (with minimal teaching duties of their own); and will advance their own research agenda while contributing to the seminar’s scholarly output through a public lecture and participation in a publication project. The fellow will be mentored by the seminar organizers and additional members of the USC faculty if appropriate depending on specialization.

Applicants may work in any period, medium, discipline, or geographical region. They should demonstrate a research agenda that examines the role of visual materials and/or practices in creating knowledge about the past. Their work may address such topics as the depiction of historical narratives, practices or cases of pictorial reporting, visualisations of the past, the role of visual archives in the production of history, or methodologies of visual history, among others. This research should engage deeply with visual sources and examine the visual representation of the past, and may involve not only writing about images but also writing “in” images in some capacity. The successful candidate will have excellent writing, analytical, and organizational skills and strong interdisciplinary interests.

Candidates must have received their Ph.D. no earlier than July 1, 2012 and must have degree in hand by July 1, 2016. To apply, please go to and submit: (1)  a cover letter that includes a summary of the dissertation, addresses the candidate’s interdisciplinarity, and  discusses how the candidate’s research aligns with the seminar’s theme of “Visual History;” (2) a CV; (3) two writing samples, at least one of which should be a dissertation chapter; and (4) the names of three academic references who will be prompted via email to submit letters electronically. The deadline for the receipt of all materials is February 1st, 2016. Inquiries should be directed to

USC strongly values diversity and is committed to equal opportunity in employment. Women and men, and members of all racial and ethnic groups, are encouraged to apply.

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