History Professor Receives Presidential Fellowship for Faculty Scholarship

History Professor Receives Presidential Fellowship for Faculty Scholarship

Dr. John Hunt, assistant professor of history and political science, was recently awarded the Presidential Fellowship for Faculty Scholarship. This $8,000 fellowship will allow Hunt to continue his research into gambling and play in early modern Rome.

Hunt came to UVU in 2012 after working at the University of Louisville and the University of North Florida. He decided to make the change after being impressed by UVU’s mission of helping students from diverse backgrounds. He currently teaches about world history, the Italian Renaissance, and the Mediterranean Basin and its peoples.

His research focuses on the social and cultural history of the Italian peninsula and the Mediterranean Basin. “I have mostly focused on ritual, magic, protest, violence, immigrants, and play in Italy and the surrounding regions from 1400 to 1700,” Hunt said. “I love discovering stories in the archives of people generally ignored by most historians. I study the marginalized people of the Renaissance, from the artisans and working-class women to the immigrants and petty thieves.”

While working on his first book,The Vacant See in Early Modern Rome, Hunt examined the papal election and the liberties the Romans took during the time between the pope’s death and the election of his successor. What Hunt found inspired him to continue his research into gambling and play. “I found that Romans liked to place bets on the election’s outcome,” he said. “I started investigating other forms of gambling and found that gambling opened a window into the culture of ‘the forgotten peoples’ of the Italian Renaissance.”

Using his Presidential Fellowship for Faculty Scholarship, Hunt plans to further pursue his research into gambling and sociability in early modern Italy, with the intent to publish a book that will be accessible to scholars, students, and the broader public alike. 



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