University of Baltimore

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University of Baltimore

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Professor's Book Examines Photos of Women in France During World War I

Nicole Hudgins, assistant professor in the University of Baltimore's Yale Gordon College of Arts and Sciences and director of its undergraduate history program, has shed light on the role of women in France during World War I with her new book, Hold Still, Madame: Wartime Gender and the Photography of Women in France during the Great War. The book, which combines text and period photographs, investigates the various ways that women were portrayed throughout the conflict, which lasted from 1914 to 1918 and claimed the lives of 9 million combatants and millions of civilians far beyond the battlefield.

In photo after photo, Hudgins builds a portrait of the women of France of that era as "that Divine Consciousness," as the writer Maxence Van der Meersch described them in his epic World War I novel, Invasion. The images represent ideals, Hudgins says, but they served to obscure more complicated realities. As she points out, since the Middle Ages, "the history of female suffering in French art has included altar pieces of saints and martyrs, sculpted pietàs, images of Joan of Arc, and modern female visionaries." With the addition of wartime photographs depicting women tending to wounded soldiers, marching for peace, and managing humanitarian crises, the overarching theme is "female suffering as symbolic of social redemption."

"These are photographs produced by soldiers, police, and commercial photographers during the war," Hudgins says of the collected works, which she researched in libraries in both the U.S. and France, in public and private archives, and in university collections. "The camera operators all being men, what we have here is a masculine projection of how unenfranchised women should appear during wartime. Drawing from religious and secular imagery, they created modern images of devoted damsels in distress."

Some of the photos are strikingly candid, showing women doing traditionally masculine jobs such as mail delivery or wine making. Others seem to celebrate the participation of women in manufacturing weapons. Some of the more disturbing photos capture women and children as refugees. One photo from a 1918 edition of Le Miroir magazine centers on a group of nuns, who have been rounded up and temporarily imprisoned by Germans who accused them of hiding French soldiers in Belgium. The women's lives were later spared when they reentered France through neutral Switzerland.

This side of World War I—now in its centenary year—has rarely been seen, Hudgins says. The enormous brutality of the war, when layered with images of women as angelic, self-sacrificing or grieving figures, takes on a heightened, almost surreal sense.

Hold Still, Madame also establishes a visual path to the similar iconography used during World War II. While the technology was somewhat primitive, and the photos generally restricted to black and white or hand-colored treatments, the message is similar in both of these global conflicts: The role of women in war is to both relieve the suffering, and to remind men of the vitality and stability that peace can bring. The quintessential "We Can Do It" message of World War II's Rosie the Riveter is more subtle in these early pictures, she says, but it is there.

And yet, "the photographers' images did not represent the emancipation of the French woman, but rather her virtuous self-sacrifice," Hudgins writes.

In fact, some of the images include a subtle message that is likely not welcomed: that women actually inspire violence. "Never forget, Marianne, this is all for you!" reads the caption of an illustrated French postcard from World War I.

"Presenting women as vulnerable to German crimes was one important way the media rationalized the war's continuation after the stalemate set in in 1915," Hudgins says.

Hold Still, Madame is available in an electronic version from St Andrews University Studies in French History and Culture, a peer-reviewed academic publishing concern that is part of the Centre for French History and Culture. As part of a series of shorter monographs and studies, the works collected under the St Andrews appellation represent a new frontier in scholarly publishing: free, for private use or educational purposes, and available for downloading, printing and circulation. Hudgins says she expects the subject matter to be of interest to educators and researchers who may seek insights into an aspect of World War I that previously was relegated to boxes of old magazines and postcards.

"The shorter length and digital accessibility of works in this series make them great for course assignments. But what I especially like is the fact that anyone researching World War I on the Internet can find my book—and search within it," she says.

Learn more about Hold Still, Madame and the other books in the St Andrews Studies in French History and Culture series.

Learn more about Nicole Hudgins and the Yale Gordon College of Arts and Sciences at UB.

The University of Baltimore is a member of the University System of Maryland and comprises the College of Public Affairs, the Merrick School of Business, the UB School of Law and the Yale Gordon College of Arts and Sciences.

University of Baltimore

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Law Professor: Federal Subpoenas in Md. Health Exchange Case May Signal Something 'Serious'

In an interview in The Baltimore Sun, University of Baltimore School of Law Professor Charles Tiefer says that newly announced federal subpoenas in an ongoing investigation of the Maryland health exchange may signal that a "serious" problem has been uncovered by agents.

Tiefer and other sources quoted in the article say that federal investigators may be examining a number of issues, including the way the state exchange's contract with private vendors was managed, or whether the progress on creating the exchange's website was falsified.

"What [the issuing of subpoenas] does show is a suspicion of something more serious," Tiefer said.

Read the article.

Learn more about Prof. Tiefer.

University of Baltimore

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Eubie Goes for Sports

This fall, look for an updated brand identity for the University of Baltimore's competitive sports program. The updated identity provides a fresh look for Eubie the UB Bee, the University’s mascot, and it sets the visual direction for the University of Baltimore Bees for years to come.

"This new identity will assist in better defining and distinguishing UB within and outside of the University community," said Nick Owens, the director of student center and recreation programs.

The new identity will roll out on sports apparel through Campus Recreation and Wellness over the coming months. It can also be spotted in advertising at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. The first person to take a photo of the new identity at Camden Yards and post it to social media using the University's official hashtag, #ubalt, will win a $15 gift certificate to Barnes & Noble at the University of Baltimore. Images must be posted to public Instagram or Twitter profiles, or on UB’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/universitybaltimore.

The competitive sports program at the University of Baltimore includes intramural sports and sport clubs programs, representing basketball, boxing, golf, jiu jitsu, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming and more. For additional information, visit www.ubalt.edu/campusrec.

University of Baltimore

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Spotlight UB's 2014 Fall Season a Mix of Music and Theater

The University of Baltimore announces its fall Spotlight UB series, featuring an eclectic mix of arts and entertainment that spans music from classical to video games, and plays that encompass Irish themes to theatrical stories from the dawn of the AIDS crisis. All Spotlight UB events take place in the Wright Theater, an acoustically oriented space on the top floor of UB's Student Center at 21 W. Mt. Royal Avenue.

The fall schedule showcases University of Baltimore voices with the Reflections and Echoes plays and the November Baltimore Stories performance, and also resumes its successful partnerships with the Aspen String Trio and theatrical director John C. Wilson. Taken all together, the University continues to provide Baltimore's student population with a varied and engaging performance arts selection.

Spotlight UB's fall schedule is as follows:

Soprano Danielle Buonaiuto and pianist Bethany Pietronio perform songs to the texts of E.E. Cummings
Thursday, Sept. 18
7 p.m.
$5 general admission, students free   
    
Eat and Learn Program: Reflections and Echoes, featuring short plays developed in the Armagh Project 2014, a month-long playwriting residency in Northern Ireland. The works will be read along with accompanying slideshow with images from Ireland, and historical context. The plays also will be read at the Maryland Irish Festival on Saturday, Nov. 8.
Wednesday, Oct. 1
Noon
$5 general admission

Spotlight UB furthers its local reputation for social justice theater with a production of Rebecca Ranson's early AIDS play, Warren. Directed by John C. Wilson and featuring local actors, the play explores themes of care-giving and family.
Oct. 23-26
7 p.m., plus a 2 p.m. performance on Oct. 23
$15 general, $10 senior citizens and UB staff and faculty, and $5 students and alumni

Aspen String Trio returns to campus with a concert of Degenerate Composers: Hans Gal, Gideon Klein and Hans Krasa. Radio personality and historian Jonathan Palevsky explains how these Holocaust survivor composers composed under brutal Nazi conditions.
Tuesday, Nov. 4
7 p.m.
$15 general, $10 senior citizens and UB staff and faculty, and $5 students and alumni
    
UB veterans read their work as part of the campus Salute Our Troops initiative, in partnership with the Maryland Humanities Council.
Nov. 10-12
Veterans’ Week
Times to be announced

UB memoirists perform their urban monologues in Baltimore Stories
Thursday, Nov. 13
7 p.m.
$5 general, free to students

The Triforce Quartet, a chamber music group that plays video game themes, performs a concert co-sponsored by the Digital Designers Guild
Thursday, Nov. 20
7 p.m.
$5 general, free to students

For tickets and additional information about these performances, visit www.ubalt.edu/spotlightub or call 410.837.4053. Online ticketing is available via www.etix.com.

The University of Baltimore is a member of the University System of Maryland and comprises the College of Public Affairs, the Merrick School of Business, the UB School of Law and the Yale Gordon College of Arts and Sciences.

University of Baltimore

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International Affairs Professor: U.S. Must Keep an Eye on Iran

Ivan Sascha Sheehan, assistant professor in the University of Baltimore's School of Public and International Affairs, delivers advice to the White House in both The Hill and Bloomberg TV regarding a way forward in the Middle East. Sheehan, director of UB's M.S. in Negotiations and Conflict Management program and co-director of the M.A. in Global Affairs and Human Security program, says the United States must remain aware of the difficulties posed by Iran in crafting a peace process for the region.

"What is worrisome is that White House officials seem to lack a strategy to counter the larger threat posed" by Iran, Sheehan writes in an op-ed in The Hill.

On Bloomberg, Sheehan says that while many in the U.S. are focused on the rise of the organization known as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), some of the region's top policy experts say that Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons is the real worry.

Read Sheehan's op-ed in The Hill.

Watch the Bloomberg TV coverage with Sheehan.

Learn more about Ivan Sascha Sheehan.

University of Baltimore

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Law: Deadline for filing for December graduation

University of Baltimore

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We CARE: Trivia Game

CARE stands for community, accountability, responsibility and excellence. Play this trivia game to discover how the Office of Community Life and the Dean of Students can help you reach your goals. The first 100 participants each day will win a prize; play all three days for a chance to win the grand prize.

For a full schedule of events, visit www.ubalt.edu/welcomeweeks.

University of Baltimore

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Meet UB

Find out about campus departments, offices and organizations at this all-campus resource fair. Eubie will make an appearance for photo opportunities, and a raffle for Baltimore Orioles’ tickets will be held.

For a full schedule of events, visit www.ubalt.edu/welcomeweeks.

University of Baltimore

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Official Welcome

A University-wide welcome with remarks by our new president, Kurt L. Schmoke. Get to know the University creed and sing along to the UB alma mater.

For a full schedule of events, visit www.ubalt.edu/welcomeweeks.

University of Baltimore

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Picnic on the Plaza

Enjoy picnic fare—including hamburgers, hot dogs and veggie burgers—with your classmates.

For a full schedule of events, visit www.ubalt.edu/welcomeweeks.