Undergraduate Fellowships

The Center administers the Ahmanson Undergraduate Research Scholarships to support undergraduate students.

Ahmanson Undergraduate Research Scholarships

Up to ten undergraduate scholarships are offered every year to support undergraduate student research at the Clark Library. These are intended for UCLA upper-division students who enroll in a designated course (usually open to upper division students from any UCLA department) or in a recognized departmental honors program in which an assigned research project requires the use of Clark materials. Program details, seminar descriptions and requirements, and application procedures are announced each year.

2013-2014: Winter Quarter
Legacies of The Castle of Otranto 1764–2014
(Class #: English 184.1)
Instructor: Professor Alice Boone, English.

Legacies of The Castle of Otranto 1764–2014 will be directed by Alice Boone, UCLA Department of English. Sessions will be held at the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library on Wednesdays, from 1:00 to 3:30 p.m. Students will participate in class discussions, give presentations about collaborative work they are doing in the Clark’s collections, and write and revise a research paper. Enrollment is limited to ten participants, and those who successfully complete the course will receive an award of $1000.
When Horace Walpole published The Castle of Otranto in 1764, he claimed the book to be a translation of a mysterious manuscript discovered in a distant library. Readers were captivated by the novel’s fantastic accounts of treachery, illicit trysts, secret societies, murder, and possibly supernatural events—even after Walpole admitted that the story of the ancient manuscript was fiction, a way to increase the spooky aura of the tale.

Using materials from the Clark library, our seminar will study the publication of this first Gothic novel as part of an antiquarian craze in the mid to late eighteenth century: what’s the allure of a rare book, a text with a hazy provenance, a fragment that portends greater mysteries? Gothic novels are full of stories of characters unearthing, restoring, studying, translating—and even forging—mysterious manuscripts.

We will read The Castle of Otranto and other Gothic texts from the period that comment on and participate in the antiquarian spirit, but we will also be asking critical questions about our own practices in studying the history of the book: why do we invest books as physical objects with special powers? What do we believe are the (sometimes conflicted) duties of historians, storytellers, translators, and editors in mediating this materiality of texts? What kinds of contests are waged among those mediators of texts, and how might the ghosts of the Gothic novel be ways of displacing some of those anxieties? Students will participate in class discussions, give presentations about collaborative work they are doing in the Clark’s collections, and write and revise a research paper.

Interested applicants should submit the following documents to Alice Boone's mailbox in the English department:

  • a letter about their interest in Gothic literature and the study of rare books and manuscripts
  • a print-out of their DPR
  • a resumé containing contact information

These documents are due Friday, November 15, 2013; interviews will be held the following week. Please send any questions about the application or course to aliceboone@ucla.edu.

The annual Ahmanson undergraduate seminar is held 13 miles east of campus at the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library. Complimentary shuttle service between campus and the Clark Library to attend the class can be arranged if enough students indicate they need transportation.

Questions about the program:
Center for 17th- & 18th-Century Studies
310 Royce Hall, UCLA

Questions about the Library:
William Andrews Clark Memorial Library
2520 Cimarron Street, L.A. 90018

Download the flyer here