Five Queen's University professors elected as fellows to the Royal Society of Canada

Five Queen's University professors have been elected as fellows to the Royal Society of Canada (RSC), one of the highest honours for Canadian academics in the arts, humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. The five newest fellows from Queen's have a wide variety of research interests, including drama, philosophy, art history, and mathematics.

“The five newly elected fellows have made important contributions to their respective fields and represent a diverse mix of areas of study,” says Queen’s Principal and Vice-Chancellor Daniel Woolf. “This award is a testament to their excellent work and I wish to congratulate them.”

The five new RSC members are:

Daniel David Moses (Dan School of Drama and Music) – With a career spanning four decades, the Delaware Indian is hailed as an artist, teacher, playwright, poet, and essayist, and as a trailblazer for Canada’s First Nations writing and storytelling community.

“This is a wonderful vote of confidence,” says Mr. Moses. “When I started writing, it was in part in response to being told there was no such thing as Indian stories. This fellowship indicates my friends and I have managed to change more than a few minds about the nature of the country.”

Mr. Moses’s award-winning works – 13 produced and published plays, four poetry book collections, dozens of poems, and four editions of an anthology of Canadian Aboriginal literature – insist on the humanity and variety of viewpoints of Canada’s Indigenous Peoples.

Craig Walker (Dan School of Drama and Music) – The Director of the Dan School of Drama and Music, Dr. Walker is a leading scholar in Canadian drama as well as a creative theatre practitioner. He has received considerable admiration as a playwright, director, composer, artistic director, and educator.

“This is an opportunity to meet other people in my field who may want to collaborate and it will also invigorate my own work,” says Dr. Walker.

As a scholar, he is recognized as an authority on Canadian theatre, and sparked international appreciation for Canada’s most eminent playwrights with his book The Buried Astrolabe: Canadian Dramatic Imagination and Western Tradition.         

David Bakhurst (Philosophy) – The Charlton Professor of Philosophy at Queen’s is an internationally recognized scholar who has made unprecedented contributions to the understanding of 20th century Russian thought, as well as to ethics, philosophical psychology, and philosophy of education. His work is highly interdisciplinary and shows remarkable versatility and creativity.

“Russian philosophy is not a well-known field, so I am delighted to receive this recognition, and I thank Queen’s and my department for creating an environment in which unusual research interests can be fruitfully pursued,” he says.

Dr. Bakhurst is the recipient of various honours, including a visiting fellowship at All Souls College, Oxford. 

Joan Schwartz (Art History and Art Conservation) – Recognized internationally for her pioneering work as a photographic historian, archival theorist, and historical geographer, Dr. Schwartz has made distinctive, original contributions to scholarship in the history of photography in Canada and professional practice in the management of archives.

“Of course, it’s enormously rewarding to be recognized in this way, especially since my work straddles three fields, my career path has been far from traditional, and my field of inquiry is taught in so few places,” says Dr. Schwartz. “After a career in archives, I have Queen’s to thank for the opportunity to pursue my interests in photography, geography, and history in a university setting, and I feel this honour is very much a reflection on the Queen’s National Scholar program and my department.”

Her multi-disciplinary perspective has challenged long-standing assumptions and forged new understandings about the role of photographs in society, their preservation in archives, and their place in Canadian historiography.

Troy Day (Mathematics and Statistics) – Dr. Day is recognized for his interdisciplinary contributions to mathematics and the life sciences, particularly in the area of evolutionary theory. His analyses of a diverse array of topics – including the evolutionary biology of infectious disease and the evolutionary consequences of antimicrobial drug treatment – have greatly advanced our understandings of these subjects.

“The award is fantastic recognition of my whole team of students and post-docs,” says Dr. Day. “Anything like this raises the profile of my entire research group.”

For more information visit the RSC website.

The original story was posted in the Queen's Gazette.