WAUKESHA, WIS.—Kyle Kirchhoff, a senior history and religious studies double major at Carroll University, won the Undergraduate History Prize for Best Paper at the 48th Northern Great Plains History Conference in September 2013.
He accompanied Dr. Kimberly Redding, chair of the Department of History, Politics and Religious Studies, as well as senior history major Dane Mariani, and junior history and sociology double major Emily Claflin. The conference included contributions from faculty, graduate students, public historians and undergraduate students. Each Carroll student presented a paper at a session chaired by Dr. Robert Zeidel, who earned a bachelor’s degree in history at Carroll in 1979, and teaches at the University of Wisconsin-Stout.
Kyle’s paper explores Lutheran exorcisms during the 16th and 17th century with an emphasis on the impact performing the exorcism had on the community. Kyle’s research revealed that Martin Luther’s view of exorcisms worked to unite the community and congregation; however, Luther also believed the rite combated demons, which directly influenced the world. Further, the paper shows that Luther adapted his exorcism rite from Catholic doctrines on exorcisms and both rites represent their respective traditions’ leadership style and theology.
With Dr. Abby Markwyn, associate professor of history, Dane completed a summer 2013 Pioneer Scholars project. His paper is a product of their work. “Performing Progress: Native Americans at Chicago’s 1933 World’s Fair” examines the ways that different groups at the fair presented Indians to realize their respective ideas of what it meant to be “Native American.”
Emily’s paper, “Religion Reinvented: The Indian Shaker Church as a Social Institution,” focused on the Indian Shaker church, founded by American Indians in 1881. She explored its role in the community and how it worked to improve social conditions for local Indian tribes in Washington state.