Tonio Andrade ’92 and Shep Doeleman ’86 were named John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellows this spring, joining ranks with dozens of Reed alumni who have been recognized during their careers for their exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or creative ability in the arts.
Tonio intends to focus his fellowship research on the military history of Yuan and Ming China, a time when guns and gunpowder weapons revolutionized warfare. He will investigate how the weapons spread from China throughout the world and dramatically altered the scope of warfare and the societies where they took root. “This global military revolution has important implications for how we understand world history and the famous and much-debated question of the rise of the West. Perhaps our modern world began in China. Perhaps it will end there, too, but that’s a different story.” Tonio teaches at Emory University and writes on global history and the history of China. He is the author of How Taiwan Became Chinese and Lost Colony: The Untold Story of Europe’s First War with China, and is at work on a third book, The Age of Expansion.
Shep, principal research scientist at MIT and assistant director at Haystack Observatory, will advance his research on problems in astrophysics that require ultra-high resolving power—the ability to observe fine details of cosmic objects. His research employs the technique of Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI), which he uses to study the atmospheres of dying stars and stars newly born. At MIT, he has led the development of instrumentation that enables VLBI to achieve the greatest resolving power possible from the surface of the Earth. His global experiment using these new systems successfully measured the size of the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way Galaxy, and he now leads an international collaborative project, the Event Horizon Telescope, to image the event horizon of a black hole—the boundary where gravity is so strong that even light cannot escape.