The award is for a student conducting research using the “Bernstein Journals 1962-1993” 

Award:  Up to $3,000

Application Deadline: Friday, January 26, 2024

Funding period: March 2024 - September 2024

Research Topics

The research should focus on, though is not limited to the areas listed below. 

  • LGBTQIA Research:  conflict between religion and sexuality, especially in Judaism and/or Ireland
  • LGBTQIA life 1960-1990 esp. in the US, Ireland and Israel. Changes in attitude and legalities.   
  • Jewish studies: religion, with special attention to Orthodox Judaism. 
  • Family dynamics and psychology
  • History with special attention to Irish-Jewish community
  • UCSB 1970 -1993 
  • Film Studies
  • Religious philosophy
  • Journal writing, journal as artifact
  • Social & political issues in Israel, Zionism
  • Norman Mailer. (The Mailer papers including Bernstein’s correspondence with the author and other matters can be found in the Ransom Archives at the University of Texas, Austin.) 


The Fund shall support UCSB undergraduate students. Applicants must be:

  • Undergraduates with upper-division standing with a minimum GPA of 3.1
  • Preference will be given to students with majors in any of the following: Sociology, Feminist Studies, History, Religious Studies, Jewish Studies, Film & Media Studies, English Literature (and journal writing,) Psychology & Brain Sciences, Philosophy. L&S and CCS students

Proposals of 700-900 words and contain

  • Applicant’s background, UCSB experiences, future goals (brief bio)
  • Project brief - What are you hoping to research?
  • What is your objective in writing this paper? 
  • How will you refer to or utilize the Bernstein Journals—if possible. 
  • How will you utilize other resources in your project?
  • Optional: What are your goals for further use of this project e.g., publication, graduate studies etc.

Proposals should be accompanied with

  • Contact information for mentor. Must be UCSB faculty, instructor, or advanced graduate student. The committee will contact listed mentor in the final stage of the decision process.
  • Unofficial Transcript

Proposals are due: Friday, January 26, 2024

Students are expected to produce a 7,000 word research papers should be that follows the accepted proposal. If the project changes focus from the initial proposal, the committee should be informed.

Winner(s) will be expected to share their final paper in the UCSB URCA Journal.

​Application Form


Please direct any questions to Anita Stahl, PhD, Director of Undergraduate Research & Creative Activies.


Scholarship Background

Biography of Mashey Bernstein

Mashey Bernstein born in 1946 grew up in an Orthodox Jewish home in the relatively smally Jewish community of Dublin, Ireland. He received a B.A. in English Language and Literature from Trinity College, Dublin and a subsequent Diploma in Education.  Funded by a scholarship, he came to UCSB in 1971 and received his Masters and PhD in American Literature in 1978 with special attention to the works of Norman Mailer. After stints in Kansas City and the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, he returned to UCSB to teach in the Writing Program.  During his years at UCSB, he also led a Film Studies class to the Telluride Film Festival in Colorado, the first University to establish a link with the prestigious festival. He retired in 2015. Bernstein published extensively in both academic and popular journals and received a Simon Rockower Award for Excellence in Jewish Journalism. He was recognized in 2013 by the Santa Barbara Independent as a Local Hero for his work with Outrageous, the Lesbian and Gay Film Festival which he helped found and ran for over twenty years. He has also curated a special sidebar on Israeli cinema for the Santa Barbara International Film Festival and more recently co-chaired the Santa Barbara Jewish Film Festival.  Since his retirement, Bernstein has returned to UCSB to teach a class on the “Image of the Jew in American Cinema” for the RGST department. He serves on a number of Boards for communal organizations and is President of the Mesa Shul, a traditional synagogue. Bernstein is excited to leave a legacy at UC Santa Barbara to support undergraduate students through undergraduate research experiences that take students beyond the classroom and give them the skills they need to thrive in their UCSB careers as well as post-graduation.

The Bernstein Journals 1962-93

For over thirty years Bernstein kept a detailed journal, covering his life growing up in Dublin Ireland and subsequently his move to the United States. In the years 1962 -1971, the journal covers his deep involvement in the Jewish community and also his struggles with his emergent sexual orientation and its conflict with his Orthodox upbringing. In 1965 he lived on a kibbutz in Israel. The journal also depicts his strong commitment to Zionism. In 1970, he finally came out. The journal from 1971-78, cover his years at UCSB with a strong emphasis on his continuing struggles with his sexual orientation. The entries also introduce his work on the author Norman Mailer, who became his lifelong focus, and his friend. In 1978, Bernstein moved to Kansas City to assume a position as Education Director of a traditional synagogue. In 1979, he was part of the first LGBT tour of Israel. In 1988, he moved back to academics at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor and in 1990, he returned to UCSB to work in the Writing Program. The journals end in 1994 following the death of his mother. An ongoing theme is also the family dynamic, esp., his relationship with his older brother who was a charismatic figure and Rabbi who died in 1994. The journal also contains reviews of the hundreds of movies he saw in his lifetime.

Please note that the journal contains sexual, sometimes graphic, descriptions. Viewer discretion advised.

A more detailed breakdown of the journals can be found at:

Here is where to go to set up Library research accounts: