The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Samantha Davis has accepted a Mellon Post Doctoral Position at Oberlin College, beginning Fall 2022. This position, focusing on Black Political Thought, will be situated as a joint appointment in the Africana Studies and Politics departments at Oberlin. Samantha is currently completing a dissertation on the tradition of Black Statescraft, focusing on the thought of Toussaint L'Ouverture, Jean-Jacques Dessalines, Frederick Douglass, and C.L.R. James.

Tatishe Nteta, Associate Professor of Political Science and Director of UMass Poll is quoted in an article about how the questioning faced by Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson during her confirmation hearings reflects the everyday experiences of Black women across America. “You saw those types of lines of questioning, which reflect the Republican Party’s connection to a very conservative position on issues of race, and a particular viewpoint regarding African Americans’ place within society,” Nteta says. (San Francisco Chronicle, 3/28/22)

Tatishe Nteta, Associate Professor of Political Science and Director of the UMass Poll is quoted in an article examining the potential of single-party rule by Democrats in Massachusetts following the announcement that Gov. Charlie Baker will not seek a third term this fall. Should a Democrat win the governorship, Massachusetts “will become a beacon for what progressive politics can do” Nteta says. (The Atlantic,, 3/27/22)

Paul Musgrave, assistant professor of Political Science at UMass Amherst is quoted in an article examining the impacts economic sanctions and voluntary corporate boycotts against Russia have had on businesses and life in Moscow following the country’s invasion of neighboring Ukraine. “Western brands are part of the lifestyle of a particular segment of Russian society. So some Russians will see the loss of foreign trade as a big disruption, while others won’t care,” Musgrave says. “But even people who aren’t affected by the symbolism will be affected by the broader sanction.” Referring to the Western corporate optimism following the end of the Cold War, “CEOs talked about deepening commercial ties with Russia in terms of bringing peace and capitalism. The deep dream of the ‘90s is over in Moscow.” (The Washington Post, 3/25/22)

It is with great pleasure to announce Paul M. Collins Jr. recipient of the 2022-2023 Samuel F. Conti Faculty Fellowship Awards. This fellowship provides tenured Professors with a unique opportunity to focus on their research or creative activities. Conti Fellows are chosen based on their record of outstanding accomplishments in research and creative activity and on their potential for continued excellence, particularly regarding the project that would be undertaken during the Fellowship period and as proposed in their nomination materials. Accomplishments in research and creative activity as a UMass Amherst faculty member are paramount. (Research, Samuel F. Conti Faculty Fellowship Awards)

The Center for Teaching and Learning is very pleased to announce that Maria T. Puppolo has been chosen as one of the 10 members of the 2022-2023 TIDE Ambassadors (Teaching for Inclusiveness, Diversity, & Equity) Faculty Fellowship cohort. The directors of the program wrote: "We were very impressed by the exceptional strength of the applicant pool. Maria T. Puppolo was chosen to be a part of the 2022-23 cohort of TIDE Ambassadors because of the perspectives and experiences she will bring to the fellowship, and her proposed contributions to campus‐wide efforts to enhance teaching for inclusiveness, diversity, and equity." (TIDE Ambassadors Fellowship Cohorts)

The Center for Justice, Law, and Societies (CJLS) invites applications for 4–6 Graduate Fellow positions 2022–23. CJLS is an interdisciplinary group of scholars who focus on the creation, implementation, and real-world applications of law. We welcome applications from graduate students in all departments and colleges throughout UMass!


Professor of Legal Studies and Political Science Paul M. Collins Jr. says “Judge Jackson was no more responsive to questions on her legal views than earlier nominees had been". In fact, Professor Collins said “it seems she closely studied how Justice Barrett handled the committee, and repeatedly referred to Barrett’s responses when dodging the senators’ questions.” Lori A. Ringhand, a law professor at the University of Georgia who co-authored with Professor Collins “Supreme Court Confirmation Hearings and Constitutional Change" adds “One thing that is striking about this hearing is how little effort we are seeing to engage the nominee on her views about actual legal issues.” (New York Times, additional distribution via Politpost.comWRAL, 3/23/22)

Paul M. Collins Jr., Professor of Legal Studies and Political Science is quoted in a collection of questions from legal scholars about what they would ask during the hearings. Collins says he would ask, “Would you be willing to pledge to serve no more than 18 years on the court, hopefully starting a tradition of self-imposed, 18-year term limits for Supreme Court justices?” (Law360, 3/21/22)

As a legal expert on the Supreme Court nomination and confirmation process, Professor of Legal Studies and Political Science Paul M. Collins Jr. weighs in on Judge Jackson’s confirmation prospects. “My sense is that Judge Jackson will get confirmed and she may pick up a very small number of Republican votes, I’m thinking maybe 2 or possibly 3. So this will be a very tight confirmation vote, but as long as the Democrats hold together, Judge Jackson will become the 116 justice on the Supreme Court.” To watch the news segment, click the link: WCVB-TV 5 Boston, 3/21/22