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Dr. John Recchiuti Speaks on Fulbright Experience

October 23, 2013

Dr. John Recchiuti, chair of the Department of History and professor of history at the University of Mount Union, spoke of his experience as a Fulbright Scholar in Pakistan during Tuesday’s LINC luncheon event at Mount Union.

Recchiuti was selected by The United States Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board earlier this year on the basis of his academic and professional achievements. While in Pakistan, he worked with faculty and graduate students at Quaid i Azam University in Islamabad, attended a conference at Fatima Jinnah Women University in Rawalpindi, visited the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad and toured ancient historical sites at Taxila. 

Recchiuti, a member of the faculty at Mount Union since 1998, is the John and Helen Saffell Endowed Chair in Humanities and Professor of History at Mount Union. He is author of  Civic Engagement: Social Science and Progressive Era Reform in New York City (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2007), a book nominated for the Bancroft and Parkman Prizes, and is author of a number of articles and book reviews. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy and English from Wesleyan University in Connecticut, a Master’s degree from Warwick University in the United Kingdom and a Doctor of Philosophy degree from Columbia University.

During his talk, Recchiuti discussed Pakistan’s location in relation to the United States and Islamabad’s location within Pakistan. He noted that Pakistan is the sixth largest country in the world with a populait’s nice to just relax sometimes tion of 83 million. Pakistan is a nuclear-armed nation.

“There’s a great deal of violence going on there all the time,” Recchiuti said. “Men, women and children are assassinated on a daily basis.”

Because of the extreme violence, Recchiuti was under intense security and was guarded 24 hours a day, seven days a week. He was driven in an armored car everywhere he went.

As he showed photographs from his time in Pakistan, Recchiuti discussed many aspects of the Pakistani culture with those in attendance. He noted that the country is 97% Muslim and people are called to prayer five times a day by loudspeakers across the city. Recchiuti was in Pakistan during a national election and shared his thoughts on the political process as well. He said that since so many people in Pakistan are illiterate, photos and symbols appear on the ballot along with candidates’ names.

“This was the first time in Pakistani history that one political party gave way to another political party through a political process,” he said. “It was fascinating.”

The community luncheon series was conceived to take advantage of the local expertise from Mount Union faculty and staff that exist in Alliance, in light of Mount Union’s exceptional academic reputation. This is an opportunity to gain practical knowledge on current topics and interact with members of the University and greater Alliance community. The next LINC luncheon speaker will be professor Kevin Kern, assistant professor of theatre, who will speak on the topic, “Why Shakespeare Would Fail an English Class, but Ace a Business Course” on Tuesday, Nov. 26 in Hoover-Price Campus Center.

The cost of lunch is $10. Payment will be accepted at the door, but space is limited. Lunch begins at noon, the program begins at 12:20 p.m. and the event concludes by 1 p.m. For more information or to make a reservation, contact Abby Honaker at Mount Union at (330) 829-8168 or honakeal@mountunion.edu.

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