2011 Lindberg Award Recipient
Charlotte Witt, Professor of Philosophy and Humanities
Award Announced March 8, 2011
Charlotte Witt, Professor of Philosophy and Humanities, has been selected as the 2011 recipient of the Lindberg Award, given annually to the outstanding teacher-scholar in the College of Liberal Arts.
Professor Witt earned her undergraduate degree at Swarthmore College and her Ph.D. at Georgetown University. She was appointed to the UNH faculty in 1987. She has proved to be a consistently productive scholar with wide-ranging interests and a dedicated teacher praised for her dynamism and command of subject.
Professor Witt’s scholarly pursuits range from the ancient to the modern and are characterized by interdisciplinarity. She is an internationally-known specialist on Aristotle’s Metaphysics and has published two books in this field, Ways of Being: Potentiality and Actuality in Aristotle’s Metaphysics (Cornell University Press, 2003) and Substance and Essence in Aristotle (Cornell University Press, 1994). In addition, she has published several edited volumes and dozens of book chapters, journal articles, and reviews. Professor Witt is also a recognized feminist theorist with an important voice in contemporary feminist conversation. Her most recent book, to be published later this year by Oxford University Press, is The Metaphysics of Gender. Modeled on Aristotle’s idea of essentialism, Professor Witt argues, controversially, that gender is a unifying principle for a social individual and for that reason essential to the individual. Moving in the realm of contemporary social issues, Professor Witt has brought both philosophy and feminist theory to her treatment of adoption in her co-edited collection Adoption Matters: Philosophical and Feminist Essays (Springer Publishing, 2010).
Professor Witt’s varied scholarly interests have led to rich classroom experiences for her students as well as opportunities for cross-disciplinary study. She teaches not only in the Philosophy and Humanities programs, but also in the Women’s Studies program with “Philosophy and Feminism,” an extremely well-received course that students have described as “awesome.” Across the breadth of her courses, students have recognized her excellent teaching, praising her enthusiasm, her command of the material, her ability to explain complex ideas and lead discussion, and the stimulating nature of her courses.
Beyond the classroom, she is a dedicated advisor and director of theses and independent studies. She has particularly distinguished herself as a mentor for young women.
Professor Witt has demonstrated that she possesses the highest qualities of scholarship and teaching and is most deserving of the Lindberg Award. As a colleague summed up aptly, “Professor Witt is the complete package, as a person, as a scholar, as a teacher, and as an administrator. We are extremely lucky to have someone of her caliber on our faculty; we are even luckier to have her on our faculty.” Congratulations to Professor Witt on this prestigious award.