The UNLV Center for Gaming Research, part of the UNLV University Libraries Special Collections and Archives, has selected seven researchers to receive the 2017-18 Eadington Fellowships.
This year’s Eadington Fellows include Colleen O’Neill, associate professor of history at Utah State University; Kim Manh, a doctoral student in political science at the University of Houston; Paolo Bernadini, professor of early modern European history at the School of Law of Insubria University, in Como, Italy; Dana Herrera, associate professor of anthropology at St. Mary’s College of California; Cynthia Van Gilder, associate professor of anthropology at St. Mary’s College of California; Michelle Malkin, doctoral student in the School of Criminal Justice at Michigan State University; and Tim Simpson, associate dean of faculty of social sciences and associate professor of communication at the University of Macau.
A former coeditor of the Western Historical Quarterly, O'Neill received her Ph.D. in History from Rutgers University. She is the author of Working the Navajo Way: Labor and Culture in the Twentieth Century, and a coeditor of Native Pathways: American Indian Culture and Economic Development in the Twentieth Century. She is currently writing Labor and Sovereignty, a book examining the changing meaning of wage work for American Indian communities. Drawing from the Katherine A. Spilde Papers on Native American Gaming, O’Neill is researching how union organizing in Indian casinos has complicated decolonization efforts and has challenged American Indian governments to create new governing institutions.
Manh is analyzing the diffusion of gaming policy and the expansion of gaming rights in both commercial and tribal arenas. He is currently working on his dissertation, “The Determinants of Gaming Policy Diffusion & Expansion.” He completed his undergraduate work at Texas A&M University, where he was a President’s Endowed Scholar, and earned his master’s degree from the University of Houston. His research interests include public policy, policy diffusion, inequality, and immigration. Most recently, he presented his work, “How the House Always Wins: The Impact of Democratic Mechanisms on State Casino Gambling Expansion” at the Midwest Political Science Association Annual Meeting.
Bernardini is also a fellow of the "Centro Segre" at the Accademia dei Lincei, Rome, and has been a member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, and an inaugural fellow of the Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study at the University of Notre Dame. He studies global history, Christian-Jewish relations, and the history of political thought. He received his Ph.D. in History from the European University Institute (Florence) in 1994. A collection of essays, “Episodes in Early Modern and Modern Christian-Relations: Diasporas, Dogmas, Difference” was published in 2016, and, “La libertà, per esempio. Questioni mediterranee e idee liberali” (Freedom, for Instance. Mediterranean Issues and Liberal Ideas) was published in Italian in 2017. He will be exploring the intellectual and moral dimensions of gaming in his research.
Van Gilder and Herrera will focus their research on how Las Vegas, affectionately termed the “Ninth Island,” has become the vacation destination of choice for residents of Hawaii. The duo will be using the Boyd Gaming Corporation Records Collections to study the California Hotel, with its island themed décor, banquet rooms labeled in the Hawaiian language, and multiple eateries offering Hawaiian favorites, which has become the preferred sleeping, gambling, eating, and socializing venue for Hawaiian tourists. Van Gilder earned her master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of California, Berkeley, where she researched the sociopolitics of Polynesian archaeology, ethnic identity, and narratives of cultural heritage. Since St. Mary’s College of California, she has published on gender and household archaeology in Hawaii, the use of practice theory in archaeology, and the anthropology of tourism. Herrera earned her master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of California, Davis, where she conducted ethnographic research on the intersections of race, gender, and religion with political affiliation in the Philippines. Since joining St. Mary’s College of California, her research has included identity construction in online gaming communities, the Filipino diaspora in Central Europe, and the anthropology of tourism.
Malkin holds a J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law, an M.S. in Criminal Justice from Michigan State University, and a B.A. in Sociology from Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Malkin’s research interests include gambling motivated crime; queer criminology; women’s experiences in the criminal justice system; and convict criminology. Malkin is currently conducting a research study on the consequences of gambling addiction and intends to expand the study to focus on those convicted of gambling motived crimes to better assess their experiences in the criminal justice system and the criminal consequences of gambling addiction. Malkin will focus on exploring the lives and experiences of people who have a history of compulsive gambling.
Simpson is the co-author of Macao Macau, and editor of the book Tourist Utopias: Offshore Islands, Enclave Spaces and Mobile Imaginaries. He is currently working on a monograph, under contract with University of Minnesota Press, entitled Macau: Casino Capitalism and the Biopolitical Metropolis. His research will explore cross-cultural and transnational analysis of relationships among sovereignty and casino gaming in Asian and North American gaming groups. It specifically compares Macau’s unique “sort-of sovereignty”, which stems from the city-state’s historical status as a jointly-administered Sino-Luso locale, with the “inherent sovereignty” of North American tribal nations, which has enabled the development of Native American casino gaming in the United States.
Eadington Fellowships foster scholarship focused on gambling issues and encourage the use of the rare and unique collections housed in Special Collections at UNLV University Libraries. This year’s fellows are encouraged to utilize collections recently made available online through a $129,600 grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). These include the Harrah’s Entertainment Corporate Archives, Eugene Martin Christiansen Papers, Gary W. Royer Collection, and the Katherine Spidle Papers on Native American Gaming.
The Eadington Fellows complete an onsite residency in UNLV University Libraries Special Collections and Archives, deliver a public colloquium which is recorded as part of the center’s podcast series, and contribute a brief paper to the center’s Occasional Paper Series.
Since 2007, 46 researchers from across the globe have completed fellowships through the UNLV Center for Gaming Research. In 2013, the fellowships were renamed in honor of William R. Eadington, who pioneered the academic study of gambling, both in Nevada and worldwide. He was the first holder of the Philip J. Satre chair in Gaming Studies, a professor of economics, and founding director of the Institute for the Study of Gambling and Commercial Gaming at the University of Nevada, Reno.
For more information about the Eadington Fellowships, past research, and the UNLV Center for Gaming Research, visit http://gaming.unlv.edu/. All presentations are held in the Goldfield Room at Lied Library and are free and open to the public.