Clusters Defined



This website is no longer being updated, it serves as an archive for prior to 2018 Corridor Events and Information.


View the new website at the following web address:


Click on a cluster below to learn more and view its shared strengths.


The Philosophy Cluster is well established across the Corridor. Its working groups hold workshops and small symposia to which they invite visiting speakers, present papers, hold joint seminars, and form collaborative relationships. One group sponsors a summer conference around a theme. Another group used Mellon funds to design a Website so the group could keep in touch. A third group conducted a graduate class, drawing on graduate students and faculty from all three Corridor universities.

Shared Strengths:

  • Comprehensive philosophy faculties and doctoral programs in Anglo-American tradition; special strength in core field: Metaphysics & Epistemology

  • In addition, History of Philosophy with complementary faculty: Cornell University: Ancient Philosophy and Classics; Syracuse University: Kant and post-Kantian German Philosophy; University of Rochester: German Philosophy

  • Other shared areas of national scholarly presence: Ethics & Political Philosophy, Philosophy of Education, and Philosophy of Language

  • Continental Philosophy across literature, architecture, and arts faculties as well as complementary faculty in Corridor Philosophy Departments

  • Close collaboration in Philosophy of Education between Syracuse University and University of Rochester, an example of a cohesive faculty cluster: 2nd in national rankings

Historic and Existing Bridges Include:

  • Mutual interchange and cooperation

  • Graduate students take courses at each campus via exchange program

  • Faculty teach in each program or sit in on seminars on other campuses

  • Visiting lecturers, conferences, shared among programs on websites

  • Faculty and graduate students travel to attend events on each campus

  • Active role in a long established regional philosophy organization, the Creighton Club


Previously, well established before The Mellon Humanities Corridor began, collaboration among the Linguistics faculties has increased, strengthening their ties on all three campuses and developing new working groups. They have gathered semi-annually in workshops and were the first cluster to establish programming around a distinguished research collaborator. Working group proposals for Phase II foresee a continuation of those events, and an additional new working group, reformed after a 2009 event.

Shared Strengths:

  • Special foci in Computational Linguistics; Syracuse University and Cornell University especially strong in Syntax

Historic and Existing Bridges include:

  • Mutual interchange and cooperation

  • Graduate students take courses at each campus via exchange program

  • Faculty exchange to teach in each program or sit in on seminars on other campuses

  • Visiting lecturers, conferences, shared among programs on websites

  • Faculty and graduate students travel to attend events on each campus


The Visual Arts and Culture working groups have attracted faculty from various departments and disciplines in the Corridor across the fields of Visual Studies and Art History. They have sponsored workshops, conferences, film and speaker tours, joint graduate seminars, art exhibitions, and visiting collaborations. The cluster also includes the public humanities and architecture working groups; another area of future expansion and new working groups are planned for faculty in Arts and Music Histories, and significant amount of reserve has been set aside for this purpose in the budget allocation for this cluster.

Shared Strengths:

  • University of Rochester has international prominence for faculty in the Visual and Cultural Studies (VCS) program: combines faculty from Modern Languages, Film Studies, English, Art, Art History, and Anthropology: socio-historical perspective brings coherence, and electronic journal

  • Invisible Culture brings attention for their imaginative interdisciplinary approach to visual rhetoric; cognate programs at Cornell University (visual arts and culture) and (art, architecture, and art history, as well as languages, anthropology, and other departments)

  • Overlapping interests span several humanistic areas and constitute a regional opportunity to combine strengths at faculty and doctoral level

  • Cornell University has recently established a Visual Studies Concentration which links faculty in Faculty of Arts and Sciences with School of Art, Architecture, and Planning, along with the Institute for Comparative Modernities, across theory and practice. Cornell University also maintains the Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art, the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, and the Wen Pu Archive of Chinese Avant-garde Art, a major resource for the study of global digital arts

  • All three research institutions have strong national programs and scholarship in Arts and Music Histories and historical areas of research that will become the emphasis of new working groups and research collaboration


In an area full of very active musicians, musicologists and music historians, the discipline of Corridor funding has encouraged collaborative research and performance. The faculty members of the Musicology and Music History cluster have exchanged teaching and conducting podia, brought world-class musicians to play side by side with their graduate students, who composed the works being played. Through Corridor funding, the organ scholars have explored the historic instruments in the region. Chamber music groups have given workshops and performances. Exploring archives, film music scholars have held symposia and Syracuse University’s Bird Library archivist brought together artists, lawyers and producers to discuss copyright law and musicians.

Shared Strengths:

  • CNY has rich, ethnically diverse musical tradition, and the three research institutions have outstanding faculty in music, musicology, and music history

  • University of Rochester’s Eastman School of Music stands among the very top-ranked programs in musicology in the country; Syracuse University Setnor School of Music in The College of Visual and Performing Arts (emphasizing composition and performance); Syracuse University Department of Arts and Music Histories in the College of Arts and Sciences (containing eminent music historians) has been identified as an institutional priority by both the deans and by Chancellor Cantor

  • Syracuse University has developed the endowed Goldring Arts Journalism Program hosted jointly by S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, the College of Visual and Performing Arts, the School of Architecture, and The College of Arts and Sciences to elevate the quality of reporting on the arts in America

  • Musicology/Music History is a focal area in which our regional university library archives present a strong catalyst for the faculty initiative

  • University of Rochester’s Sibley music library at Eastman is the largest academic music library in North America with strengths in individual composers; Belfer Audio Laboratory and Archive is one of the four largest archives of recorded sound in the country with rich holdings from early period of sound recording; Cornell University Music Library has rich holdings. These audio, manuscript, and print archives form an exceptional scholarly resource in support of this cluster


PIs Gregg Lambert, Thomas DiPiero and Timothy Murray have sponsored successful events in the digital humanities within their respective humanities programs and they are nurturing working groups of local faculty with planning grants.

Shared Strengths:

  • As a result of its programming in 2010-2011, the cluster has identified common interests on all campuses in digital theory and culture; computing for literary and historical research; as well as artistic explorations in music, architecture, and art

  • The cluster benefits from the Digital Humanities Initiative at Cornell’s Society for the Humanities and its collaboration in this area with the University of Toronto

  • Initial events have included participants from all three campuses, shared visitors (Laura Mandel’s successful visit to Cornell University in 2010 resulted in her return to University of Rochester in 2011), with participation from Information Science to Africana Studies)


This is a new cluster proposed on the basis of shared strengths and faculty resources in languages and literatures across the Corridor, including faculty from regional liberal arts colleges and universities. Three already established CNY groups have been identified and will be approached to be working groups in the new cluster: Victorian, 18th Century and Early Modern. The fourth group could be ethnic/radical studies, international literature, or some other area, to be determined. In addition to new working group proposals for 2012, an open call for new proposals is planned to take place on all campuses at the beginning of the fall in order to establish new working groups and expand this area of collaboration and research.


New cluster area proposed to supplement archival research in any of the other cluster areas (e.g., Visual Arts and Culture, Musicology/Music History), and to support research in new media as well as issues of preservation and exchange of historical media archives.

Shared Strengths:

  • In the past two years, importantly scholarly works on the history of recorded sound have appeared and there is much interest inside and outside of academia in this area of research

  • Cornell University and Eastman School of Music are positioned to become a leader in this emerging field of study. University of Rochester's Sibley Library, Belfer Audio Laborartory and Archive, Cornell University Ornithology Lab, Cornell Kroch Library (Hip Hop and Goldsen Archive) are together among the largest collections of recorded sound material in North America. In addition, the Sibley contains many special collections related to early periods of sound recording

  • The Cornell University Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art is the country's largest archive of new media and sound art. It is engaged in collaborations with regional not-for-profit- institutions, such as the Experimental Television Center (Oswego, New York) and Visual Studies Workshop (Rochester, New York), and has engaged in collaborations with faculty in regional liberal arts colleges (Colgate University, Hobart & William Smith College, Ithaca College)

  • University of Rochester has recently concluded a memorandum of understanding to engage in teaching, research, and public outreach with the George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film

  • In the research of issues pertaining to practices of exchange and the changing issues around the archive, a potential area of collaboration between the schools of architecture at Syracuse and Cornell, as well as related projects in history, comparative literature, visual studies, anthropology, and art