The University Record, October 9, 1995

FACULTY AWARDS: Lincoln B. Faller, Faculty Recognition Award

Lincoln B. Faller is a scholar and critic of great depth and range. He enjoys the admiration and respect of his colleagues and students, and he demonstrates a deep commitment to the University of Michigan and to the Department of English.

Professor Faller’s two recent books published by Cambridge University Press mark him as one of the most interesting, insightful students of the early novel, as someone who resists current fashionable theories of the early novel and yet contributes mightily to our sense of what the early novel was and how it came into being.

His first book, Turned to Account: The Forms and Functions of Criminal Biography in Late Seventeenth and Early Eighteenth-Century England (1987), is the definitive account of criminal biography for that period. Authoritative in its detailed command of huge numbers of narratives, Professor Faller’s book is exceedingly sophisticated in its analysis of their cultural significance. His Novel Criminals: Defoe, Crime, and a New Kind of Writing (1993) is a landmark in Defoe studies with important implications for those concerned more generally with the rise of the novel and with theories about relationships in ideology, literary form and reader responses.

Professor Faller’s courses in crime and literature and in surveys of early British literature rank among his department’s most popular undergraduate offerings. Lively classroom discussions often are extended with after-class invitations to the nearest coffee house.

Professor Faller has played a leadership role in the reinvigoration of the Department of English. As graduate program chair, Professor Faller has helped his colleagues devise a program that dramatically shortened time to degree and greatly improved student retention. As one Ph.D. candidate observed, “Professor Faller’s commitment to and concern for the education of his graduate students clearly involves more than inculcating methods of good scholarship; he prepares us to be active, contributing members of an academic community.” He also has invested much time and energy recruiting and mentoring talented minority students and finding financial support for them.

As associate chair of English, Professor Faller has worked to improve undergraduate education in the department by encouraging faculty discussion of modes of teaching and standards. His influence in the area of undergraduate education is expanding, as he begins a term as associate dean for undergraduate education in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts.

For his commitment to the finest scholarship, his efforts to improve graduate and undergraduate education, and his dedication to his department and the University, the University is honored to present to Lincoln Faller its Faculty Recognition Award.