Princess Therese of Bavaria Prizes 2017

9 Feb 2018

This year, seven female academics at LMU have been selected to receive the Princess Therese of Bavaria Prize 2017 for their outstanding contributions to research.

The Princess Therese of Bavaria Prize was instituted by the eponymous Foundation with the aim of honoring the achievements and highlighting the careers of exceptional female researchers at LMU Munich. The Prize is awarded annually and the selection criteria stipulate that each awardee should have a distinguished research record, but should also have inspired younger women to pursue academic careers. The Foundation was set up at LMU in 1997. It was named after the anthropologist and zoologist Princess Therese of Bavaria (1850-1925) who carried out field research in both Europe and America. She was an active supporter of higher education for women, and was herself the first woman to receive an honorary doctorate from LMU.

This year, seven female scholars in the Humanities and Cultural Sciences have been chosen to receive the Prize, which will be presented on 9 February 2018. The awards are sponsored by the Heidehof Foundation.

The winners:

Prof. Dr. Beate Kellner holds a Chair in Medieval German Literature in the Faculty of Languages and Literatures. Her research is devoted to the history of knowledge transfer during the Middle Ages and the Early Modern Period, with a special focus on the links between the vernacular culture of the majority of the population and the Latin-based culture of the learned. She is particularly interested in the development of medieval love poetry in Europe as a whole and in the German Sangspruch (verse that was set to music and was predominantly concerned with moral, religious and sociopolitical themes). She studied German, Classical Philology and Catholic Theology at LMU, and obtained her PhD in 2001. She went on to complete her Habilitation at the Technical University of Dresden. Having held faculty positions both there and at the University of Zürich in the meantime, she moved back to LMU in 2010. Kellner places special emphasis on the training of junior researchers, encouraging her female students by helping them to find a workable balance between career development and family life. Her research is supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft and the Thyssen Foundation.

Dr. Urte Krass is a research associate in the Art History Institute at LMU. She studied History and Art History at Hamburg University and obtained her MA there with a thesis on anti-Semitic propaganda in popular woodcuts during the 15th century. She then took a position as research assistant to the Director of the Institute of Art History in Florence, and later obtained a doctoral fellowship. She earned her PhD from Hamburg University in 2009 for a thesis on “Innovations in the Cult of Relics and the Depiction of Italian Saints in Renaissance Art”. She then took up her present post at LMU, where she has continued to pursue her research with the help of several grants. In December 2017, she submitted her Habilitationsschrift on the political use of images in Portugal’s colonial empire in the 16th century. Her commitment to supporting young researchers is documented by the fact that she is a qualified academic advisor, and has served as the Faculty’s Deputy Women’s Officer for the past 8 years.

Dr. Kristina Liefke studies issues that lie at the interface between logic, formal semantics and the philosophy of language. Having studied English and Philosophy in Kiel and at the University of California in Los Angeles, she began her doctoral studies at the Tilburg Center for Logic and Philosophy of Science in the Netherlands before moving in 2012 to the Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy at LMU in 2012, where she later worked as a postdoc. In 2014 she obtained her PhD with a thesis on the Typological and Ontological Bases of Formal Linguistic Semantics. In recent years her research interests have led to visits to Harvard University and Stanford University. Since then she has been engaged on a DFG-funded project entitled “Unity and Unification in Intentional Semantics”. Kristina Liefke was one of the initiators of the Summer School on Mathematical Philosophy for Female Students, and is currently working at the Institute for Linguistics at Frankfurt University.

Prof. Dr. Isabelle Mandrella is Professor of Philosophy in the Faculty of Catholic Theology at LMU, and focuses specifically on fundamental philosophical issues relating to theology in the philosophy of the Middle Ages. However, her teaching duties encompass all the significant philosophical topics and epochs that are relevant to the study of Theology. She studied Catholic Theology and Philosophy at Bonn University and obtained a doctoral fellowship from the Cusanus-Werk set up by the German Conference of Catholic Bishops. She completed her doctorate in 2001 and worked as a research fellow at the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences and in the Institute of Philosophy in Bonn. She completed her Habilitation in 2011 with a thesis on “Nicholas of Cusa’s Practical Philosophy”. Isabelle Mandrella is a member of the editorial boards of the Herder Library of Medieval Philosophy Fontes Christiani and the Philosophical Yearbook and is also active in the German Association of Medieval Scholars and the Görres Society and serves on the Advisory Council of the Cusanus Society.

Dr. Simone Mühl is a research fellow at LMU’s Institute for Near Eastern Archaeology. She heads an Emmy Noether Junior Research Group, which is currently engaged on a long-term research project which is exploring Migration and Interaction Among Diverse Communities in Mesopotamia During the 2nd and 3rd Millennia BCE. She obtained a master’s degree in Near Eastern Archaeology, Assyriology, Prehistory and Early History at Heidelberg University Heidelberg. She went on to earn her PhD there in 2011 with a thesis on the “Early History of Settlement in the Middle Tigris Region”, before moving to LMU. For the past several years, she has conducted archaeological investigations in Iraqi Kurdistan, and these activities are now focused on the excavation of a settlement mound in the area called Gird-i Shamlu in the Shahrizor Plain. In response to the political situation in the region and the manifold threats to its archaeological heritage, she set up an association dedicated to the protection of Iraq’s cultural legacy.

Dr. Denise Reitzenstein is a lecturer in Ancient History in the Department of History at LMU. She studied Ancient History, Historical Sciences and Art History in Munich before spending several months at the German Archaeological Institute in Rome. She then went to the University of Exeter as a Fellow of the Gerda Henkel Foundation. In 2007 she returned to LMU and obtained her doctoral degree with a dissertation on “The Lycian Elite During Rome’s Imperial Age” in 2010. She is now working on her Habilitationschrift, which deals with the evolution of color designations in Latin, and what they reveal about the social and cultural history of the Roman Republic. In the course of her career, Denise Reitzenstein has been awarded several grants for her research.

Dr. Verina Wild now works at the Institute for the Ethics, History and Theory of Medicine in LMU’s Faculty of Medicine, having previously been a research fellow in the Department of Philosophy IV. Her research focuses on the field of medical ethics, and more specifically with the process of ethical decision-making, and issues relating to justice and vulnerability in contexts such as forced migration. She studied Medicine in Göttingen, and worked in countries as far flung as Argentina, Scotland, Spain and Tanzania. She obtained her PhD in 2007 at the University of Zürich with a thesis on ethical aspects of pharmaceutical research on pregnant women. From 2008 until 2016 she served as a Senior Research Fellow in the Institute of Biomedical Ethics and the History of Medicine at the University of Zürich, where she also completed her Habilitation. Among her many awards, Verina Wild has won fellowships to carry out research at Columbia University in New York and the University of Sydney. She is currently a member of three of the World Health Organization’s Expert Advisory Groups. She also serves as a student advisor for the Heinrich Böll and is a designated student mentor at LMU.

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