Patrick Shade and Marshall Boswell Win Clarence Day Awards

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Publication Date: 4/27/2007


Dr. Marshall Boswell (left) and Dr. Patrick Shade

Dr. Patrick A. Shade and Dr. James “Marshall” Boswell are the 2007 recipients of Rhodes’ highest faculty honors for outstanding teaching and research, presented April 27 at the annual Rhodes College Awards Convocation.

Shade, associate professor of philosophy, received the Clarence Day Award for Outstanding Teaching, which includes a $10,000 honorarium. Boswell, associate professor of English, received the Dean’s Award for Outstanding Research and/or Creative Activity, which includes a $6,000 honorarium. Both awards, first given in 1981, were established by Memphis businessman and Rhodes alumnus Clarence Day and are provided by the Day Foundation.

Also at the Rhodes Awards Convocation, departmental and service awards were presented to outstanding students and special fellowship and internship award winners were acknowledged.


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The Clarence Day Award for Outstanding Teaching is given to a member of the faculty who has demonstrated excellence in teaching over the previous three years as determined by the assessments of students and colleagues, the effective use of imaginative and creative pedagogy, and motivating students to embrace a life of continuing study. 

Shade has taught at Rhodes since the fall of 1996. His areas of interest include ethics, American philosophy, the history of philosophy, and philosophy of education. Shade encourages students to arrive at answers for themselves and has a loyal following of students who continue to sign up for his challenging courses semester after semester.

Known to use pop culture in lectures to demonstrate philosophical ideas, Shade has been featured in The Chronicle of Higher Education for his discussions on the television show “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”

Shade is author of Habits of Hope (Vanderbilt University Press, 2001). For the 2001-2002 academic year, the Rhodes Student Government named him Outstanding Faculty Member.

Shade holds B.A. and M.A. degrees in philosophy from Colorado State University as well as M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in philosophy from Vanderbilt University.

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The Dean’s Award for Outstanding Research and Creative Activity is presented to a member of the faculty who has demonstrated that research and/or creative activity is an integral part of his or her vocation and who has published or performed outstanding works over the previous three years that have gained scholarly recognition or creative acclaim.

A member of the Rhodes English Department since 1996, Boswell has published full-length studies of writers John Updike and David Foster Wallace as well as his own fiction. He is author of the novel Alternative Atlanta (New York: Delacorte Press, 2005) and Trouble with Girls (Chapel Hill, NC: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 2003).

Boswell teaches courses in twentieth-century American literature and fiction writing. In 2002, he won the Clarence Day Award for Outstanding Teaching.

Boswell holds a B.A. in English from Washington and Lee University, an M.A. in English from Washington University, and a Ph.D. in twentieth-century American literature from Emory University.