BMCC Professors Earn CUNY Book Completion Awards

May 29, 2019

Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC/CUNY) faculty members Christine Jacknick, associate professor in Academic Literacy and Linguistics and Carla Macchiavello, assistant professor in Music and Art, are among 20 professors awarded the Book Completion Award from the CUNY Office of Research.

Each spring semester, the CUNY Office of Research invites proposals from CUNY faculty who are working on research or creative projects they are developing into publishable book manuscripts. Funds are awarded on a competitive basis to faculty in the arts, humanities and social sciences to develop or complete a book manuscript for publication.

This grant program welcomes applications from faculty for book projects that are in the development and prospectus stage, as well as for manuscripts that have been accepted for publication and are nearing the completion and submission stage.

Examining the full range of how students engage in class

Jacknick was awarded $5,000 in Research Foundation funds to complete her book, “Social Interaction and Learner Participation.” She says her book aims to show the full range of student actions in the classroom – “moving beyond a conception of ‘participation’ as simply verbal contributions to understand how students demonstrate engagement with their voices and ​their bodies (e.g., through posture, eye gaze, gesture, etc.).”

“My manuscript will be published as part of the Studies in Social Interaction series at Edinburgh University Press,” Jacknick says, “and this book broadens research on classroom interaction in the series and in the field more generally by its dedicated focus on student actions.”

This summer Jacknick plans to integrate newly collected data (video recordings of classroom interaction at BMCC made during Spring 2019) into her existing data analysis chapters. By the end of summer, she will send the drafted analysis chapters to colleagues at CUNY and beyond for comment, revising during Fall 2019 and submitting her full draft in January 2020.

Investigating art practices during a Chilean dictatorship

Macchiavello was awarded a $5,000 in Research Foundation funds to complete her book, “Marking the Territory, Chilean Art Between 1975-1985.” Macchiavello says her book delves into experimental art practices developed in Chile in the midst of the military dictatorship that took hold of the country between 1973 and 1990.

“It focuses on how territorial and nationalistic discourses permeated the art scene in the city of Santiago in particular, including the arts that defined themselves as avant-garde and opposing the dictatorship,” Macchiavello says. “I take a close look at works that have become mythical in Chilean art history (and by extension in the work of art historians internationally) and their  context of production, and offer a point of view that does not reduce them to mere reactions to the dictatorship or as evidently radical. It both questions how these works have been typically interpreted and the terminology employed (“escena de avanzada” or advanced scene) but also cares deeply about the artworks, the impact they had, and the importance they still hold in the present. In this book I seek to present a more nuanced and complex view of these works, employing a variety of primary sources, hoping to also open up questions to be explored by others.”

The CUNY Book Completion Award will help Macchiavello expedite completion of her book.

“It has taken me a long time to complete this project, since I’ve worked on its edition in a piecemeal manner due to the heavy teaching load I have during the academic year,” she says. “I have parallel research and writing projects too, so usually my summers have been devoted to them. Getting the award is an important motivator to focus solely on finishing the book manuscript for a couple of months and get it ready to be published.”

BMCC’s Office of Sponsored Programs was instrumental in helping Jacknick learn about the Book Completion Grant opportunity, she says. “I knew that if I could get this award, I would not need to teach in the summer, which would allow me the time I needed to get the book to completion. The title of the award itself has also been a great motivator. Especially now that I’ve received it, it feels very clear that all my energies should be on completing the book!”


  • Book Completion Grant from CUNY Office of Research enables Professors Christine Jacknick and Carla Macchiavello to publish their research projects as full-length books
  • Jacknick’s book project, “Social Interaction and Learner Participation,” looks beyond the verbal to examine the full range of student actions in the classroom
  • Macchiavello’s book-in-progress, “Marking the Territory, Chilean Art Between 1975-1985” will examine art practices developed in Chile in the midst of a military dictatorship

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