Princeton Weekly Bulletin   October 22, 2007, Vol. 97, No. 6   prev   next   current

Two transfer to emeritus status

Princeton NJ — Robert Darnton and John Suppe were transferred to emeritus status in recent action by the Board of Trustees. Darnton’s transfer was effective July 1, 2007; Suppe’s transfer was effective Sept. 1, 2007.


Robert Darnton

Darnton, the Shelby Cullom Davis ’30 Professor of European History, joined the Princeton faculty in 1968. This summer, he was named the Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor and director of the University Library at Harvard University. 

Darnton is a renowned social and cultural historian of Europe whose research focuses on 18th-century France, the history of books and censorship. In 2002, he helped to establish the Center for the Study of Books and Media at Princeton and served as its director. He is acknowledged to be one of the founders of the field known as the history of books. 

Through his many publications and lectures, Darnton’s work has reached audiences around the world. His scholarship includes books on topics ranging from “The Great Cat Massacre and Other Episodes in French Cultural History” to “Berlin Journal, 1989-1990,” which records his sabbatical in Berlin during the lead-up to the reunification of Germany. His book “The Forbidden Best-Sellers of Pre-Revolutionary France” won the National Book Critics Circle Award for criticism in 1995. 

Among his many honors, Darnton received a MacArthur Fellowship in 1982 and was named a chevalier of France’s Légion D’Honneur in 1999. In 2004 he was awarded the Gutenberg Prize by the International Gutenberg Society, and in 2005 he received an award for distinguished achievement by the American Printing History Association. 

Darnton is a graduate of Harvard University. He received his Ph.D. from Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar. 


John Suppe

Suppe, the Blair Professor of Geology, joined the Princeton faculty in 1971. He served as chair of the Department of Geological and Geophysical Sciences from 1991 to 1993. Suppe has been named Distinguished Chair Research Professor at National Taiwan University, where he previously had been a visiting professor. He also taught as a visiting professor at the California Institute of Technology and the Universitat de Barcelona.

Suppe’s work has offered important applications to petroleum structural geology, earthquake hazard assessment and planetary geology. His research has focused on tectonics, particularly in processes that related to folding and faulting. A significant part of his research was investigating the active formation of mountain belts, especially in Taiwan and California. Another area of interest was measuring the states of stress in the Earth, for example along fault lines. He also served as a guest investigator for NASA in examining the geological formations of Venus using high-resolution imagery from the Magellan mission.

He wrote about his research in numerous publications, and twice received the Best Publication Award in Structural Geology and Tectonics from the Geological Society of America. In 1995 he was elected to the National Academy of Sciences. 

Suppe received his bachelor’s degree from the University of California-Riverside and his Ph.D. from Yale University. On Oct. 9 he received the Wilbur Lucius Cross Medal, the highest honor bestowed by the Yale Graduate School, in recognition of his contributions to the field of geology.  

Faculty submit resignations

The following faculty members have submitted their resignations:

Effective July 1, 2007: Giovanni Maggi, associate professor of economics, to accept a position at Yale University; James McDougall, assistant professor of history, to accept a position at the University of London.

Effective Aug. 1, 2007: Pierre Raphael, assistant professor of mathematics, to accept a position in Toulouse, France.

Effective Sept. 1, 2007: Paul Firbas, assistant professor of Spanish and Portuguese languages and cultures, to accept a position at Stony Brook University; Tymon Tatur, assistant professor of economics, to accept a position at the University of Bonn.

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