Monday, February 13, 2012

President Obama to award National Humanities Medal to medievalist

UCLA’s Teofilo F. Ruiz, an internationally recognized historian whose work focuses on medieval Spain and Europe, will be awarded the National Humanities Medal by President Barack Obama today.

Ruiz, who is among nine intellectuals nationwide selected this year for the prestigious honor, will receive the medal at a White House ceremony, after delivering brief remarks about his work at the headquarters of the National Endowment for the Humanities. A reception with the president and first lady will follow the ceremony.

The National Humanities Medal, inaugurated by the National Endowment for the Humanities in 1996, honors individuals or groups whose work has deepened the nation’s understanding of the humanities, broadened the engagement of American citizens with the humanities, or helped preserve and expand access to important resources in the humanities. Previous medalists have included Nobel Prize–winning author Toni Morrison, novelist John Updike, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and author Elie Wiesel, and filmmaker Steven Spielberg.

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