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NEH in the News

Selected articles on NEH-supported projects.
Posted: May 16, 2017 Medievalist Karen Graubart and Two Arts and Letters Faculty Offered NEH Fellowships
Medieval Institute News, University of Notre Dame

Three Notre Dame faculty members—Associate Professors Karen Graubart, fellow of the Medieval Institute, Darren Dochuk, and Sean Kelsey—were offered fellowships last week from the National Endowment for the Humanities, continuing the University’s record success winning support for humanities research.

Faculty in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters have won a total of 61 NEH fellowships since 1999—more than any other private university in the country.

“Notre Dame’s remarkable success in earning NEH fellowships is the result of the outstanding quality of our faculty across a range of disciplines,” said John McGreevy, I.A. O’Shaughnessy Dean of the College of Arts and Letters, “as well as an excellent support structure in the Institute for Scholarship in the Liberal Arts.”

Posted: May 16, 2017 Sharing the stories of the women of Route 66
Missouri State News

The oral history project will continue this fall when Parks visits Springfield to talk to more women who had a connection to Route 66.

Excerpts from those interviews will be included in “The Women on the Mother Road” documentary that Parks is creating. Missouri State will also add the complete interviews to its archival collections and make them available to researchers.

There will be a public program showing excerpts from the St. Louis interviews during Parks’ visit to Springfield. More details will be announced in the summer.

Missouri State is sponsoring this program in partnership with the Missouri Humanities Council and with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Posted: May 12, 2017 Private Philanthropy Cannot Replace the NEH
Mellon Foundation News

When President Trump proposed defunding the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), some voices called upon private philanthropy to assume full responsibility for funding the arts and humanities. We were not one of those voices.

To the contrary, that approach would be neither smart nor productive. NEH’s role in shaping and promoting the preservation, study and development of American culture is larger than its relatively small budget suggests. Since 1965, and affirmed by a 1981 Presidential Task Force, the public-private partnership that pairs NEH funding with private philanthropy has served the nation’s interests. Therefore, the preservation and advancement of American culture in its effervescent diversity is not a job the private sector can or should shoulder alone.

We are gratified that Congress this week, as part of a last-minute measure to avoid a government shutdown, reached agreement on a budget that fully funds the NEH, along with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. We cannot, however, fallback on justifying this work only when it’s under threat, as it surely will be again. We need to constantly educate the public and policy makers about the critical role the endowments play as catalysts for other institutions, like Mellon, to engage in and support the humanities. 

Posted: May 12, 2017 Yiddish Book Center video features U.S. venues
San Diego Jewish World

The series can be viewed on the Yiddish Book Center’s website (yiddishbookcenter.org). A full collection of interview excerpts about Jewish neighborhoods can be viewed on the Center’s YouTube channel.

The Wexler Oral History Project is a growing collection of interviews with more than 700 people—writers and musicians, scholars and students, native Yiddish speakers and cultural activists—about their family histories, involvement with Yiddish language and culture, Jewish identity, and the transmission of culture and values across generations and communities. The project was recently awarded a $170,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Posted: May 12, 2017 Russian ‘Architecture at the End of the Earth’ draws American audience
Russian Beyond the Headlines

On May 6, William Craft Brumfield - professor of Slavic Studies at Tulane University - gave a lecture on Russian architecture as part of a public symposium at the University of Washington, Seattle. The talk was introduced by Dr. Michael Biggins, a Slavic, Baltic and East European studies specialist at the University of Washington Libraries.

The lecture was followed by a discussion devoted to the significance of Brumfield’s photographic documentation for the study of medieval and Baroque art.

The symposium also celebrated the completion of a major documentary project involving Brumfield’s photography. Over the past decade the University of Washington Library has collaborated with Professor Brumfield in producing a freely accessible database of some 30,000 of his Russian architectural images. With the support of a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the William Brumfield Russian Architecture Digital Collection of is now available to the public

Posted: May 12, 2017 Franco-American distinguished speakers at May 23 Veterans Program
Franco-American News and Culture

Severin Beliveau is a Franco-American and the Honorary French Consular to Maine. He will speak about Albert Beliveau, his father who was a World War I Officer, who served with the army in France.  Severin was born in Rumford to a distinguished family of Maine lawyers and judges. His father, Albert J. Beliveau, Sr., was a justice of the Maine Supreme Court.

Severin is the recipient of the French Legion of Honor Award, the highest distinction France awards civilians, for his leadership on key projects to improve the relationship between Maine and France (2008)

President of the American Association of the Forum Francophone des Affaires, the Maine-based United States chapter of a worldwide alliance of 36 French-speaking nations working to promote economic development through business, industry and technology exchanges.

Franco-Americans in International Service is a program sponsored by the University of Southern Maine Lewiston Auburn College (USM LAC) with a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Posted: May 12, 2017 NU Libraries receives federal grant to digitize folk music festival archive
The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University Libraries received nearly $300,000 from a federal grant, which will be used to digitize, describe and make available online a historic folk music archive, the University announced Wednesday.

According to a news release, the digitization of the Berkeley Folk Music Festival Archive will be funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, an independent federal agency that funds humanities programs in the U.S. The archive –– which features more than 30,000 items, including photographs, audio and film recordings, brochures, buttons, posters, tickets and business records documenting the festival between 1957 to 1970 –– was acquired by NU’s Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections in 1974, the release said. The archive was compiled by the festival’s founder, Barry Olivier.

Scott Krafft, curator of the Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections, said in the release that the archive will benefit the fields of history, American studies, music studies and performance, African American studies, digital humanities and political science.

Posted: May 12, 2017 Historian to tell about "Forgotten Abilene"
Abilene Reporter-News

Events, places, people and animals that most Abilenians know nothing about will be front and center May 18 when Jay Moore presents “Forgotten Abilene” at the Paramount Theater.

The presentation, which has been a year in the making, is scheduled to last 90 minutes, with Moore’s talk and 200 photos in a PowerPoint or “modern day slide show,” as Moore puts it. Moore promises some surprises and amazing historical tidbits.

The stories were gleaned from Abilene Reporter-News files and from stories that people told Moore or sent to him. They fall into four categories — crowds, unseen spaces, commotions, and animals. One of the unseen places is the federal courtroom in the downtown Post Office building.

Few people have been inside it. Those who have are amazed at the area where prisoners are held while awaiting their day in court.

“The holding cell looks like it’s straight out of Mayberry,” Moore said, referring to the fictional rural town where the 1960s Andy Griffith Show was set.

Moore, an Abilene High School history teacher and creator of the “History in Plain Sight” DVD series, recently was selected to serve on the board of Humanities Texas, an educational nonprofit that is the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Posted: May 12, 2017 Torrington Historical Society plans movie screenings, events marking WWI
The Register Citizen

In conjunction with the centennial anniversary of World War I, the Torrington Historical Society will present a screening of two films, both related to Torrington’s World War I history.

The program will begin with the screening of “Never Forgotten,” a World War I documentary, produced by the American Battle Monuments Commission. This 24-minute film follows the story of Sergeant Paul Maynard, a Torrington doughboy who died on the last day of the war.

Among the first to volunteer for the Army, Maynard survived some of the most brutal fighting American forces endured, including the Battle of Belleau Wood, the Saint-Mihiel Campaign, and the Meuse-Argonne Offensive. In “Never Forgotten,” Maynard’s grandniece, Lisa Ann Maynard, and ABMC Superintendent, Dave Bedford, tell Maynard’s story in an effort to ensure that his legacy, and the legacies of all Americans who fought during the Great War, are never forgotten. The film highlights the role that letters have in telling a person’s story as well as reuniting family that had been separated through the years. This program will also feature a panel discussion about the film and the legacy of Sgt. Maynard. Panelists will include the filmmaker, Michael Shipman and Rick Maynard, a relative of Maynard. “Never Forgotten” has been made possible by the Connecticut State Library and a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor.

Posted: May 11, 2017 NEH video features CSUSB’s ‘Dialogues on the Experience of War’ program
California State University San Bernardino News

A program at Cal State San Bernardino funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities is featured by the endowment in its “In the Field” video series.

In The Field: Dialogues on the Experience of War,” posted on the NEH’s YouTube channel, focuses on “From Ancient Greece to the Contemporary Middle East: Dialogues on the Experience of War,” a reading, viewing and discussion program on classical literature and the Greek-Trojan wars in dialogue with letters, articles, literature and documentaries about more recent conflicts. Events have been held at CSUSB, San Bernardino Valley College and the CSUSB Palm Desert Campus.

“We have tried to create a series of campfire-like conversations with veterans where we share compelling storytelling around the experience of war,” said Jennifer Andersen, CSUSB professor of English who designed the curriculum discussions with veterans, recruited, hired and trained the trainers and discussion facilitators, and coordinated events all year at CSUSB, PDC and San Bernardino Valley College.

“Homer’s Iliad and the civic tradition of free, public performances of Greek tragedy ensured an ongoing discussion about war in a culture where no citizen escaped the duty of military service. I think that the NEH Dialogues on the Experience of War program is an effort to stimulate this kind of civic discussion about war in our country where now only a tiny percentage of the population experience it firsthand,” she said.

The NEH interviewed faculty members and students who facilitated discussions with veterans from September 2016 to May 2017.