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University of Iowa News Release


Dec. 20, 2007

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Davies and Jones receive Stanley International Programs-Obermann Fellowships

University of Iowa professors William Davies of linguistics and William LaRue Jones of the School of Music are the fall 2007 recipients of Stanley International Programs-Obermann Center Research Fellowships. Davies and Jones are faculty members in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

These awards are given to select Obermann Center scholars whose research focuses on international issues. Fellows receive an award of $3,000 for travel and research support and present their research at a public lecture co-hosted by UI International Programs and the Obermann Center.

Davies' work involves writing a comprehensive description of the grammar of the Madurese language spoken by one of the largest ethnic groups in Indonesia, primarily on the island of Madura. More than 14 million people speak the language, but little is known about its sentence structure. Davies will focus on a detailed account of the key phonological and morphological features of Madurese and produce a catalog of the syntactic structures. He will include folk tales and historical narratives to illustrate the language in the context of a larger discourse and provide insight into Madurese culture.

The fellowship will allow Davies to travel to Indonesia for linguistic fieldwork with native speakers to complete his monograph, which will be published by Mouton de Gruyter. The work will be of interest to language scholars and government cultural affairs employees in the United States and Madura.

Jones will assemble a collection of materials related to Chinese-Western Fusion concertos. These are musical compositions written for Chinese solo instruments performing with Western orchestras. The compositions represent an emerging genre of musical composition that is generally unknown in the United States. His project requires travel to Shanghai, Beijing and Shenyang to research Chinese composers, conductors and performers, and to obtain scores and recordings of Chinese-Western Fusion music.

Long-term goals of Jones' project include the creation of an annotated list that can serve as a resource for orchestral programming. Additionally, a lecture demonstration/concert of Chinese-Western Fusion concerto is planned for the fall of 2008 that will illustrate the possibilities of these musical collaborations.

These fellowships are supported by the Stanley-UI Foundation Support Organization, UI International Programs and the C. Esco and Avalon L. Obermann Fund.

UI International Programs enables UI students, faculty, staff and the public to learn from and about the world. Its offices, degree programs and events provide life-changing opportunities on campus and abroad, heighten intellectual and cultural diversity, and give all university constituents access to vital international knowledge. For more information, visit or call 319-353-2700. International Programs is part of the UI Office of the Provost.

The Obermann Center for Advanced Studies provides an environment and resources for reflection and writing and for the exchange of ideas. Scholars from a broad range of disciplines and institutions interact with one another and with the public to create and communicate new knowledge and to establish a vibrant intellectual community. For more information, visit or call 319-335-4034.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Diana Baculis, UI Obermann Center for Advanced Studies, 319-335-4360,; Nicole Riehl, University News Services, 319-384-0070,; Writer: Diana Baculis