The American Academy of Arts and Sciences has elected three New York University faculty as fellows: Susan Antón, a professor in the Department of Anthropology, Mary Carruthers, a professor emerita in the Department of English, and Gregory Murphy, a professor emeritus in the Department of Psychology.

The American Academy of Arts and Sciences (AAAS) has elected three New York University faculty as fellows: Susan Antón, a professor in the Department of Anthropology, Mary Carruthers, a professor emerita in the Department of English, and Gregory Murphy, a professor in the Department of Psychology.

Among the other 276 AAAS members elected this year is Vice-Chairman of NYU's Board of Trustees Chandrika Tandon, founder and chair of Tandon Capital Associates and chair of the NYU Tandon School of Engineering's Board of Overseers. 

Other 2020 AAAS fellows include the following: singer and songwriter Joan Baez, former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, Jr., filmmaker Richard Linklater, and author Ann Patchett.

The list of the new members may be found on the AAAS web site

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“The members of the class of 2020 have excelled in laboratories and lecture halls, they have amazed on concert stages and in surgical suites, and they have led in board rooms and courtrooms,” says David W. Oxtoby, the president of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. “With today’s election announcement, these new members are united by a place in history and by an opportunity to shape the future through the Academy’s work to advance the public good.”

Susan Antón, a biological anthropologist, uses clues from human fossils and the human skeleton to understand the causes and consequences of human evolution. She has described early fossil Homo in Africa. Her work on fossils and excavation sites in Asia and the Pacific, which has identified the last surviving Homo erectus, points to the flexibility of early human behaviors and bodies in variable climatic conditions as a key to the earliest spread of Homo from Africa to Eurasia as well as to our modern ability to survive and thrive in uncertain circumstances. 

Mary Carruthers, whose areas of research are medieval literature and rhetoric, memory and mnemonic technique, and the history of spirituality, has authored The Experience of Beauty in the Middle Ages (Oxford, 2013), The Craft of Thought (Cambridge 1998), and The Book of Memory (Cambridge, 2008 and 1990), as well as Rhetoric Beyond Words: Delight and Persuasion in the Arts of the Middle Ages (Cambridge 2010), a collection of essays.

Gregory Murphy is a cognitive scientist who investigates human thought and language. He has authored The Big Book of Concepts (MIT, 2002), as well as dozens of journal articles. Among his interests are how human concepts are learned, represented, and connected to broader knowledge of the world. He also studies the mental representations of word meaning, in particular, polysemy.

AAAS members have included: Benjamin Franklin (1781), Alexander Hamilton (1791), Ralph Waldo Emerson (1864), Maria Mitchell (1848), Charles Darwin (1874), Albert Einstein (1924), Robert Frost (1931), Margaret Mead (1948), Milton Friedman (1959), Martin Luther King, Jr. (1966), Antonin Scalia (2003), Michael Bloomberg (2007), John Lithgow (2010), and Judy Woodruff (2012).