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NEH in the News

Selected articles on NEH-supported projects.
Posted: April 24, 2017 The local ripple: How Trump’s spartan budget could hit Nevada communities
Las Vegas Sun

In late March, the National Governors Association sent a letter to congressional leadership urging “meaningful consultation with states when considering any reduction or elimination of federal funding that will shift costs to states.” Gov. Brian Sandoval signed the letter as NGA’s vice chair.

The Trump administration has proposed eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, programs that provide large grants to the Nevada Arts Council and Nevada Public Radio. It would slash Community Development Block Grants and a wastewater disposal fund for rural areas. Trump’s budget also would reduce funding for PILT (Payments in Lieu of Taxes), which reimburses counties that forgo property tax on parcels owned by the federal government. This is an especially important tool for states in the West, where nearly half of the land is federally owned (in Nevada, it’s 85 percent).

Lyon County received about $2 million in PILT funding last year, and the county has seen the federal government adjust payments in the past. “We never put that $2 million in our operating budget, mainly because politicians do this (stuff) all the time,” Page said. But he said losing it would still be a “big deal” because it helps the growing county keep up with capital improvements.

Posted: April 24, 2017 March for Science draws thousands
Yale News

In a Friday email to the Yale community, University President Peter Salovey said that Yale will continue to fight for “federal funding that advances our national and human interests,” specifically addressing Trump’s proposed cuts to student aid, the National Institutes of Health and the National Endowment for the Humanities that will take effect in 2018.

Posted: April 24, 2017 Defending Science: Why America’s Scientists Were Marching This Weekend - See more at:
Tech Times

The March For Science - The initiative started on social media, where numerous users tried to convince peers who are interested in science to get out of their homes to protect the scientific community.

"This has been a living laboratory as scientists and science institutions are willing to take a step outside their comfort zone, outside of the labs and into the public spheres," said Beka Economopoulos, founder of the pop-up Natural History Museum and an organizer of the march.

The budget cut also affected non-scientific activities. The National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts were some of the programs that President Trump proposes to eliminate.

April 22 was President Trump's 100th day in office, and his measures were not received with as much popularity as he may have expected. As a result of these budget cuts, thousands of scientists and science supporters marched in Washington, D.C. in what was called "the March of Science."

Posted: April 24, 2017 NEH OKs contracts
The Daily Freeman Journal

School Nurse Cindi Sweedler presented the proposed NEH Wellness Policy. An ISU study of the district’s nutrition, recess, and physical activity programs received superior scores by the college researchers, said Sweedler. The school earned high marks on lunchtime activity while it was determined that the district does not have a strong staff wellness program, said Sweedler.

Using the university’s feedback, Sweedler wrote the school’s program. NEH’s Wellness Policy data will serve as a resource when NEH’s Food Service Program compiles its USDA report next year, said Sweedler.

By participating in the ISU study, NEH earned a $500 stipend from the university, reported Sweedler.

“It was a great pat on the back,” she told the board. “What we are doing and what we plan to do — we are well above board.”

Both Olson and Sweedler were acknowledged by Kruger for their work on developing the district’s policies.

Posted: April 21, 2017 The Power of the Arts
The Spectator

The first one hundred days of the Trump presidency have given us a taste of the style of governance we are to expect for the next four years. For many, this has been a cause of consternation as travel is restricted and our alliances wither. Next on the President’s firing line are the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, which are to be eliminated in Trump’s budget proposal. Now more than ever, the arts community has to show its fangs and demonstrate that it has the capacity to make lasting change, even if it must fight tooth and nail under adverse circumstances.

Hamilton’s latest mainstage production is an example of how theatre can both entertain audiences and subvert our commander-in-chief to great effect. Antigonick features a 2,000 year-old story, re-energized by Anne Carson’s translation and re-invented by Mark Cryer’s needlepoint direction. Yet the core message remains the same: a warning about the perils of demagoguery and the rulers who use it to circumvent justice. In a similar vein, Get Out has pushed the glaringly problematic nature of modern racism to the forefront of American cinema.

Posted: April 21, 2017 Trump’s “America First” Stance Puts Arts and Humanities Last
Jobs With Justice

Arts and humanities programs educate, enrich and shape our lives and communities. But these programs seem to have no place in Donald Trump’s America. His draft fiscal year 2018 budget calls to eliminate funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), which would go into effect this October.

NEH grants led to the creation of books, films, museum exhibits, and other exciting discoveries, over the past 50 years. Humanities programs play a key role in supporting and engaging urban, at-risk youth across the country. PRIME TIME, created by the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities, is one such program. It was designed to build literacy skills and encourage family bonding through storytelling, using “award-winning children’s books that include culturally diverse stories.” A commissioned impact study revealed students who participated in PRIME TIME from grades 1-4 scored higher on Louisiana state exams. Parents also reported that PRIME TIME gave them the opportunity to bond with their child, made them more comfortable going to the library, and caused their child to want to read more books.

The NEH also invests in significant social, cultural and public health research ventures that could disappear if Congress approves Trump’s budget plans. The agency backed grants to Indiana University for projects as diverse as tracking the spread of HIV/AIDS throughout society to the preservation of heritage materials from Native Americans, and indigenous groups across the world.

Posted: April 21, 2017 VFH Announces New Executive Director Matthew Gibson
Charlottesville Tomorrow

The Virginia Foundation for the Humanities (VFH) Board of Directors is pleased to announce the appointment of Matthew S. Gibson as executive director. With deep knowledge of and passion for the public humanities, experience leading diverse and innovative programs, and extensive relationships with humanities scholars and partners across Virginia and the nation, Gibson will lead VFH after having served as the organization’s director of digital initiatives and creator and editor of its Encyclopedia Virginia for eleven years.

A nationally recognized expert in digital humanities, Gibson succeeds VFH’s founding president, Robert C. Vaughan III, who will retire in June after forty-three years of exceptional leadership. Gibson was selected through a national search yielding more than 70 applications, led by the University of Virginia’s executive vice president and provost Thomas C. Katsouleas.

“Matthew will build on the spirit of innovation, inclusion, and excellence that Rob has inspired here at VFH,” says VFH Board chairwoman Barbara J. Fried. “The humanities help us understand each other and what it means to be human in a changing and complex world. This work has never been more important than it is today, and Matthew is the perfect steward of our mission to connect people and ideas, sharing Virginia’s diverse stories so we can create a better future together.”

Posted: April 21, 2017 April 4 proves momentous
The Montgomery Advertiser

In 1948, when George Orwell was writing a novel, he transposed two numbers to come up with the title “1984,” and he chose April 4 as the date protagonist Winston Smith began writing a diary, which in that faraway time was against the rules.

On April 4, 1968, a life-ending bullet struck the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther Jr., the leader of the Montgomery Bus Boycott and other events of the civil rights movement.

On april 4, a few blocks away at the Capri Theatre in Old Cloverdale, a crowd almost filled the theater to see a cinematic version of “1984,” which was filmed in the title year.

Capri Director Martin McCaffery and members of several arts organizations spoke briefly before the movie. They were united in opposition to President Donald Trump’s proposed elimination of funding for the National Endowment for the Arts. He also wants to drop the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Minority Business Development Agency.

The Capri was among theaters in 180 cities to show the movie on April 4 as part of a protest against removal of funding.

Posted: April 21, 2017 Nussbaum to Give Prestigious Jefferson Lecture
The Chicago Maroon

Philosopher and University professor Martha Nussbaum has been selected for the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)'s 2017 Jefferson Lecture in the Humanities on May 1 in Washington D.C.

Nussbaum’s lecture will be entitled “Powerlessness and the Politics of Blame.” It will focus on emotion in politics and the way “uncertainty leads to the blaming of outsider groups.”

“It is urgent for us to understand ourselves better, to see why we have arrived at this state of division, hostility, and non-communication. A philosophical approach, focused on a close look at human emotions, offers that understanding of ourselves...I believe it also offers us strategies of hope and connection,” Nussbaum said in the NEH’s press release.

Posted: April 21, 2017 Lineage thinking: The complexity of Nuevomexicano identity
The New Mexican

Like most children raised by Nuevomexicano parents in the 20th century, historian John Nieto-Phillips was raised to take pride in a Spanish conqueror heritage — even if it seemed at odds with his family members’ brown skin, their Mexican cooking, and the presence of a Native American great-grandfather.

“How could we be Spanish and Indian at the same time, but not Mexican? How could Spaniards have made it to New Mexico without first mixing with the Indians? And what did all this matter anyhow?” Nieto-Phillips writes in the introduction to his book The Language of Blood: The Making of Spanish-American Identity in New Mexico, 1880s-1930s.

In his academic work, Nieto-Phillips has focused on the ways in which U.S. Latino identities have been shaped through race, language, and educational methods. He has received fellowships from the Fulbright Scholar Program and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He appears in connection with the Latino Studies Initiative of the School for Advanced Research.