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Dr. Mark Waddell named Special Advisor to the Dean

February 4, 2019

Dr. Mark Waddell has just been appointed as Special Advisor to the Dean. Dr. Waddell is also an Associate Professor in Lyman Briggs College (75%) and the Department of History (25%).

Mark Waddell“Dean Jackson has some really exciting ideas for the direction of Lyman Briggs, and as Special Advisor I will act as a point of contact between college leadership and the rest of our community as we work to make those ideas a reality,” said Dr. Waddell. “Briggs has been my professional home for more than twelve years, and I’m honored to have this opportunity to repay the support and collegiality I’ve experienced here.”

Waddell received his Ph.D. in the History of Science, Medicine, and Technology from the Johns Hopkins University in 2006. As an historian of ideas specializing in Europe of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, he studies the complex interactions between science, medicine, and culture, particularly religion and esotericism. His first book, Jesuit Science and the End of Nature’s Secrets, appeared in 2015 with Ashgate, and examines the close ties between scientific innovation and spiritual practice among several highly-placed Jesuit intellectuals in the seventeenth century.

Dr. Waddell has also worked as an historical consultant on a traveling exhibition produced by the National Library of Medicine of the NIH: Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic, and Medicine. The exhibition, which has toured throughout the US, Canada, and the UK since 2009, explores important ideas in the history of science and medicine through the Harry Potter novels.

Dr. Waddell teaches a wide range of courses on topics that include: the history of magic, science and religion; cyborgism and technobiology; witchcraft and the occult in pre-modern Europe; the relationship between gender, race, and science; and LGBTQ studies.