Peggy McCracken, director of the U-M Institute for the Humanities, is one of five University of Michigan faculty members who have been recognized for their outstanding teaching and service with one of U-M’s most prestigious honors: the Distinguished University Professorship.

The Board of Regents approved the appointments July 21. They begin Sept. 1, last throughout the recipient’s period of active service at the university and may be retained after retirement.

Each professorship bears a name determined by the appointed professor in consultation with his or her dean. Newly appointed Distinguished University Professors are invited to give an inaugural lecture.

The Board of Regents established the Distinguished University Professorships in 1947 to recognize senior faculty members with exceptional scholarly or creative achievements, national and international reputations for academic excellence and superior records of teaching, mentoring and service.

About Peggy McCracken:

Peggy S. McCracken, the Anna Julia Cooper Distinguished University Professor of Medieval French Literature. Her current title is the Mary Fair Croushore Professor, Domna C. Stanton Collegiate Professor of French, Women’s and Gender Studies and Comparative Literature, and professor of French, of women’s and gender studies, and of comparative literature in LSA.

McCracken is an internationally recognized scholar of medieval French literature and culture. Solomon and McCauley said her 2017 book, “In the Skin of a Beast: Sovereignty and Animality in Medieval France,” was “field-defining.” It examines medieval Latin and French vernacular fictional writing to explore how literary texts use accounts of human-animal encounters to raise questions about mastery, submission and inferiority.

“Professor McCracken’s scholarly work also encompasses wide-ranging examinations of literature and culture, and she has achieved distinction in her contributions to understandings of issues that lie at the heart of both medieval and contemporary cultures,” they said.

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