The University Record, October 1, 2001

Tobin Siebers—Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award

A distinctive voice in literary criticism and theory for many years, Tobin Siebers also is strongly influencing large non-academic audiences through his creative non-fiction and foundational writing in the emerging field of disability studies.

Professor Siebers is one of the University of Michigan’s most prolific writers. The author of seven books, thirty-eight scholarly articles, and three personal essays, and the editor of three collections of scholarly essays, his writing is distinguished for its simplicity, fluency and forcefulness. His highly acclaimed memoir Among Men (University of Nebraska Press 1999) has been nominated for many awards, including the American Book Award, Society of Midland Author Award, Adult Literacy Award Program, and the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for the Art of Memoir.

Professor Siebers writes about issues with urgency and teaches from that same sense of the importance and weight of everyday life—all with a sense of humor and admirably high standards for his work and for the work of others. A dedicated, effective and highly valued teacher of students at all levels, Professor Siebers is one of those rare professors who changes the course of students’ lives. He continues to mentor long after his students find academic positions.

After joining the Michigan faculty in 1980, Professor Siebers left briefly to teach at Columbia University, returning in 1986. He currently directs the Program in Comparative Literature and the Global Ethnic Literatures Seminar. Professor Siebers is a highly motivated and conscientious administrator who has provided strong leadership in the English Department and the Institute for the Humanities.

Professor Siebers serves on the editorial boards of several of the top journals in comparative literature and is a member of the Modern Language Association’s Committee on Disability Issues in the Profession.

A winner of several fellowships, including the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, Professor Siebers has received both the Michigan Humanities Award and the LS&A Excellence in Research Award twice.

For the range and originality of his literary criticism and writing, the personal and professional interest he takes in students and colleagues, and his generous service on behalf of the humanities at the University and nationally, the University of Michigan presents to Tobin Siebers its Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award.