Anne Larsen, professor of French at Hope College, has been awarded a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) for her critical and annotated bilingual edition of Anna Maria van Schurman's letters on women's education.
Competition was intense for the NEH's year-long "2004-2005 Fellowships for College Teachers and Independent Scholars." Only 180 of 1,289 applications were funded. Larsen received the maximum, $40,000, award. This is her second NEH fellowship.
The award is one of two received from the NEH by members of the Hope faculty this year. Dr. John Cox of the English faculty also received a 2004-2005 fellowship for his book project, "Shakespeare Thinking."
Larsen's study is part of a larger project on women intellectuals in Early Modern Europe. Anna Maria van Schurman (1607-1678), commonly known as the "Star of Utrecht," was the most famous learned woman of her time in Europe. Beginning in the 1630s, she corresponded in Latin with André Rivet (1572-1651), a French Calvinist theologian, on the need for women of the leisured classes to study all the sciences and the arts. Schurman's fame rests in large measure on her strong defense of women's right to be educated.
The letters, published in Leyden in 1641, were translated into French and published in Paris in 1646. Larsen's bilingual edition of them will be the first since their original publication.
The NEH fellowship will support Larsen as she conducts research during the 2004-05 school year. She will make at least one trip to Paris to compare her transcripts with the original volumes.
Larsen joined the Hope faculty in 1984 as an associate professor, and holds a bachelor of arts degree from Hope, and a master's and a doctorate from Columbia University.
She has published a three-volume edition of the complete works of Madeleine and Catherine des Roches, and two co-edited collections of articles. Her publications also include many reviews of books, articles, and book chapters.
Larsen has presented papers at national and international conferences in Canada, France, and the Netherlands. She is on the editorial board of "Tulsa Studies in Women's Literature" and an executive board member of the "Société Internationale d'Etudes des Femmes d'Ancien Régime."