St. John’s College Masters graduate Thaddeus Thaler has been awarded a full Fulbright grant to study in Russia. Thaler plans to study how Russia’s image of Latin America was shaped by film and telenovelas between 1959 and 2009.
Thaler, a native of Madison, Wisconsin, received his Masters in Liberal Arts from St. John’s College last month. Upon the completion of his Fulbright grant, Thaler plans to enroll in a joint JD/MA Russian and East European Studies program that also enables him to pursue related topics in a university's Latin American Studies department.
“Film and television have been underutilized as historical sources, yet they provide a unique vision of ideologies that traditional text sources cannot achieve. Film and television popularize perspectives by bringing the world’s cultures to an audience otherwise incapable of experiencing them,” Thaler wrote in his application. “Aside from being thrilled with the honor of being awarded a Fulbright grant, I hope that my Fulbright research and future study will lead to a career as a State Department specialist with work in both Russia and Latin America,” said Thaler.
Since its establishment in 1946, under legislation introduced by the late Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, the Fulbright Program has provided opportunities for approximately 294,000 people from the United States and from countries around the world to observe each others' political, economic, educational, and cultural institutions, to exchange ideas, and to embark on joint ventures of importance to the general welfare of the world's inhabitants. The program operates in more than 155 countries worldwide.
St. John's College President Michael Peters announced, “We are thrilled that Thaddeus has been awarded a prestigious Fulbright grant to study in Russia, a country that played an important part in my own professional career. During his tenure at St. John’s College, Thaddeus has been a remarkably creative thinker and now is poised to bring his commitment to inquiry and the search for knowledge to a new area.”
For more information about the Fulbright Program or the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, please visit the organization's website at www.fulbright.state.gov.