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Miranda Cooper '12
2011-2012 Honors Student

Miranda CooperName:  Miranda Cooper '12
Honors in: Art History and French
Hometown: Levittown, Pa.
Major/minor: Art History and French/Religion

Title of project: Art History and French

Project advisors: Joanne McKeown and Diane Radycki

Abstract or brief description: I am translating Catherine Perrot's treatise on miniature painting, called Les Lecons Royales. Also, I am researching her as an artist, academician, and a woman, as well as her association with important figures in France at the time, such as Nicolas Robert and Charles Le Brun. I am analyzing the difficulties women faced in the academic culture of France and attempting to put her treatise into the context of its time.

How did you get interested in your topic? Dr. Radycki owns this rare book and proposed its translation to Madame McKeown. They both proposed the topic to me because it fits so perfectly with my majors and areas of interest. For me, it seemed like a perfect way to keep up with French after studying abroad.

Do you intend to research your topic further? If so, how? We intend to publish one day. It will definitely require more research. This is a long-term project.

How did you benefit academically by conducting research/participating in honors? This has been a real test of my abilities in time management. It has been an exercise in balancing several deadlines and tasks at one time, but I can only say that such a challenge is beneficial. It has also reinforced my study of the French language and given me a personal connection to some of the art history that I?ve studied over the years.

How has the department (or faculty advisor) prepared you for the future? I had the opportunity, within my French major, to study abroad, which was a real challenge linguistically, but also was an opportunity to find confidence and independence as a young woman. My participation in the art department and the opportunity to intern at a local museum have helped me develop my skills in the museum field and given me the knowledge I need to find my place in the museum within the near future.

What advice do you have for other students interested in Honors? The Honors program will prove to be a challenge, but it will definitely be a wonderful challenge. This is an opportunity to delve into something that really interests you, as well as to connect with a faculty member. Try to take a light course load, so you can really concentrate on this project!

My future plans: I have applied to some national service programs: City Year and AmeriCorps. I am looking for internships for this summer. Graduate School is in the near future, perhaps with a concentration in Curatorial Practice or Museum Studies.