We’ve done, supported, and engaged with a lot of great humanities related programming since our inception.  You can find information on some of those past activities by scrolling through our calendar of prior events below.

Note: The the most recent events are shown first. 

Calendar of Prior Events

Spring 2019

May 30-June 1
Maine Statehood and Bicentennial Conference

April 26
Franco Americans, Acadians, and the Great War: The Legacies of WWI

April 24
Handel’s Messiah in America

April 16
They Shall Not Grow Old

April 9
Memorializing WWI in Maine and Beyond

April 3
The Personal is Poetic: A Panel Event

March 1 & 2
Bangor Humanities Day

February 22
Cosmopolitan Sympathies: Poetry of the First Global War, A panel moderated by Dr. Jahan Ramazani

February 20
Spamalot Pre-Performance Lecture

February 12
Professor Don Zillman, “From Woodrow Wilson to Donald Trump: The Lessons of the First World War.”

Fall 2018

November 16
Modernism in Wartime: Avant-Gardes, Revolutions, Poetries

November 15
Modernisms: Past and Future

November 9
We are the Dead: the Legacy of Loss

November 2
Social Media and the #MeToo Movement

October 30
“The Nature of Forgetting” Pre-Show Panel Discussion

October 26
Maine Heritage Lecture

October 25
“Portland Cello Project” Pre-Performance Lecture

October 23
World War I: The Most Jewish War in History?

October 17
Wealth–Reader’s Theatre

October 11
The Evolution of Tejano Music: Chicano Movement

Spring 2018

April 24
Creativity in Art, Change and Survival

April 21
How Did You Think of That?

April 6-7 
New Native Tribal Plays with Madeline Sayet

April 4
Living a Full, Ethical and Sustainable Life in the 21st Century

March 29
Life of Ideas, Notions, and Concepts with Guest Enzo Traverso

March 6
Humanities Collaboration: Magdalene Laundries

March 6
Life of Ideas, Notions, and Concepts with Guest Éric Méchoulan

February 23
“Six Centuries, Six Years” Documentary Screening

February 22
Life of Ideas, Notions, and Concepts: Michael Lang, Anne Knowles, and Michael Howard

February 3
Bangor Humanities Day

January 18
Pre-performance lecture of Yamato Drummers with Stuart Marrs & Sake and Sushi reception

Fall 2017

November 16
Life of Ideas, Notions, and Concepts: Steve Evans, Justin Wolff

November 9
“Framing Maine” featuring Bill Green

November 5
Pre-performance lecture of King’s Singers with Francis John Vogt

October 12
Pre-performance lecture of Hamlet with Caroline Bicks

October 11
“Henry David Thoreau – Surveyor of Soul” A Film by Huey

October 6
Downtown Bangor ARTober kick-off event

October 5
New Writing Series: Claire Donato

October 2-6
Digital Humanities Week

September 28
Truth, Healing and Change in the Land of the Dawn

September 28
The Analog Age

September 14
Canadians Teaching in the United States

Spring 2017

June 24
FLOW Fort Knox

May 3
Exploring Maine History with Maine-Wabanaki REACH and UMaine Art Education Students

April 28 
Pre-performance talk: Richard Brucher on Hedda Gabler

April 27
1) 15th Annual POETS/SPEAK!

2) SPA & CCA Pre-performance lecture: Philip Edelman on the Combined Band Concert

April 25 
The Lipstick Project

April 10 
Sean Mills, “Transnationalism, Race, and Quebec” (CanAm Lecture Series)

April 8
National History Day

April 7
The Epic and the Novel: Saga and Story Symposium Final Event

March 30
1) Clickbait, Fake News and the Fourth Estate: Why Journalism is More Vital Than Ever.

2) Lecture by Svanhildur Óskarsdóttir: The Never-ending Popularity of Njáls Saga.

February 27
Shakespeare and Contemporary Cancer Narratives.

February 25
Edna St. Vincent Millay Birthday Celebration Reading.

January 29 
CCA Pre-performance lecture: Anatole Wieck with Marisa Soloman on The Danish String Quartet.

January 27-28
Bangor Humanities Day events: Humanities 20×20 PechaKucha: Bangor Humanities Day kick-off and Bangor Humanities Day.

January 15
CCA Pre-performance lecture: Dan Barrett on Pat Metheny.

Fall 2016

December 1
UMaine New Writing Series Fiction reading by Azareen van der Vliet Oloomi.

November 17
UMaine New Writing Series Student-curated reading celebrating The Open Field.

November 15
Climate Change & Humanity (.docx) An interdisciplinary discussion with Cindy Isenhauer (Anthropology and Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions); Michael Lang (History and Director of International Affairs); Paul Mayewski (Climate Change Institute).  The discussants will be focusing on a key work in the field, Dipesh Chakrabarty’s “The Climate of History: Four Theses.” The session will be followed by a reception. For questions contact Michael Lang, Presented by the International Affairs Program.

November 10
UMaine New Writing Series Poetry & fiction reading by Kristen Case & Tessa Mellas

November 7
“Sound Preservation: The Library of Congress Radio Preservation Task Force” with Michael J. Socolow. Part of the fall 2016 CMJ Colloquium. Established in 2014, the Radio Preservation Task Force (RPTF) of the National Recording Preservation Board of the Library of Congress is tasked with preserving the nation’s radio history. Co-Sponsored by the Department of Communication and Journalism and the CMJ Graduate Student Association.

November 3
1) Discussion by Drew Leder and Vincent Greco Prisoners: “They’re Animals” and Their Animals

2) UMaine New Writing Series Poetry reading by Joshua Edwards & Lynn Xu

November 2
Discussion by Drew Leder and Vincent Greco Can a Prison Be a College? A Home?

October 27
UMaine New Writing Series Poetry reading by Pattie McCarthy & Jenn McCreary

October 20
1) *Saga and Story: An Interdisciplinary Exploration from the Vikings to Our Time Joseph Harris, Francis Lee Higginson Research Professor of English and Research Professor of Folklore at Harvard University, will speak on “Eddic Poetry as World Literature.

2) *The Humanities Collaboration
A seminar-style discussion led by Michael Lang (Associate Professor of History and Director of International Affairs, UMaine) about Ivan Illich’s Deschooling Society. The discussion will include around 18 people (a mixture of students and faculty from both Orono High School and UMaine as well community members); participants will be given a copy of the book through a grant received by the  Humanities Collaboration from the University of Maine Humanities Center. RSVP

October 17
*Saga and Story: An Interdisciplinary Exploration from the Vikings to Our Time Stephen Mitchell, Professor of Scandinavian and Folklore at Harvard University, will speak on “Place and Past in the Sagas: Relique or Blank Slate?

October 14
1) UMaine hosts the Maine Archives and Museums conference. Keynote speaker, Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, Ph.D. Ulrich is a Pulitzer Prize Winner and 300th Anniversary University Professor at Harvard.

2) *Panel: “Acadia as Eden”: Naomi Jacobs (Professor of English) “Myths of Arcadia”; Justin Wolff (Associate Professor of Art History) “Painting Acadia”; Richard Judd (McBride Professor of History) “Inventing Acadia: Bar Harbor and the Creation of a Tourist Landscape.”

October 14
The CLAS Homecoming Reception. Students, faculty, and staff are all invited. If your research or projects have been supported by UMHC monies (or even if not), come brag about them!

October 13
1) UMaine New Writing Series
Fiction reading by Rion Amilcar Scott.

2) Pre-opera talk
Pre-opera discussion on Tristan and Isolde with Beth Brand at the Orono Public Library. The opera itself is Sunday the 16th at the Collins Center for the Arts at noon.

October 6
Hispanic Heritage Month Lecture Series 2016
Juan Carlos Hernandez, State Conservationist, Misha Vargas, Soil Conservationist, and Luis Aponte, Soil Conservationist, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, “Hispanics Helping People Help the Land Throughout Maine.”

September 30-November 11
The Lord Hall Gallery at the University of Maine presents an exhibition of humorous and politically charged ceramic sculpture by internationally known artist Gary Greenberg. Greenberg’s exhibition “THINGS RE: Stuff” will be the University of Maine’s Lord Hall Gallery from Sept. 30–Nov. 11. This event is free and open to the public.

September 29
1) Hispanic Heritage Month Lecture Series 2016
Dr. Stuart Marrs, Professor of Music, UMaine, “The Pluralism of Latin American Music.”

2) UMaine New Writing Series
Poetry reading by Trevor Joyce.

3) Internationally known artist Gary Greenberg will give a public presentation on his work and creative process in Lord Hall, Room 100. This event is free and open to the public.

September 22
1) Hispanic Heritage Month Lecture Series 2016
Silvestre Guzmán, Director of Multicultural Program, UMaine, “My experience in Maine as a Non-English Speaking Immigrant.”

2) UMaine New Writing Series
Fiction reading by Amber Sparks

September 19
“Truth, Healing and Change in the Land of the Dawn” led by Barbara Kates of Maine-Wabanaki REACH. The discussion will focus on the shared history of Maine and Wabanaki people, and particularly on two key events of 2015: the findings and recommendations of the Maine Wabanaki State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Penobscot Nation v. Mills case.

September 15
Hispanic Heritage Month Lecture Series 2016
“Status of Latinos in Higher Education”. Presented by: Ángel Martínez Loredo, Higher Education Specialist, Maine Department of Education. Sponsors: College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Department of Modern Languages and Classics, The University of Maine Humanities Center, and CHISPA Centro Hispano. Ángel Martínez Loredo Website.

Summer 2016

August 11-14
World premiere performances of “Transformer Tales: Stories of the Dawnland,” a collaboration among Wabanaki artists, the Penobscot Theatre Company, and the University of Maine.  Multimedia performances held on Indian Island, at the Penobscot Theatre, and at the Blackwoods Amphitheater in Acadia National Park.  For more information, visit or contact English Professor Margo Lukens at

August 4
“The Promise and the Need: Humanities in the 21st Century,” lecture, video presentation, and facilitated discussion by Liam Riordan (Professor of History and Director, UMHC), annual Pulliam Lecture at the Castine Historical Society.

July 12
“What did we Celebrate on July 4?: Understanding the Declaration of Independence,” lecture by Liam Riordan (Professor of History), Bangor Historical Society, noon.

June 16
Panel and public discussion (with dinner) about how best to celebrate the bicentennial of Maine statehood in 2019-20. Hosted by the UMaine Humanities Center at the Penobscot Marine Museum in Searsport from 5-7. For more information, please visit the program page. For more information, please email Liam Riordan at

Spring 2016

April 13
Lecture by Bob Patrick (Director, Veterans History Project, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress), “Veterans History Project – Collecting the Story of the Veteran in Your Life.” Reception at 1:00 p.m., lecture at 1:15 p.m., and audience discussion to follow all in the McIntire Room, Buchanan Alumni House, UMaine. Co-hosted with the History Department, Veterans Education and Transition Services (VETS), Maine Folklife Center, and the Cole Land Transportation Museum.

April 12
1) National History Day Student Recognition Ceremony. Celebrate NHD students with a reception and student work on display in the atrium of the Cultural Building at the Capital Complex. Co-hosted with the Maine State Museum, Library, and Archives. Free Museum admission all day to NHD students, parents, and teachers.

2) Maine Humanities Summit. The fourth annual statewide summit will focus on the relationship between veterans and the humanities. This event is open to the public and aims to put state legislators in dialogue with humanities professionals from across the state. Co-hosted with the Cole Land Transportation Museum with additional financial support from UMaine-Augusta, the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center at UMaine, and the Maine Folklife Center, UMaine.

April 11
History Department Public Lecture
Abby Chandler (UMass-Lowell), “The Interconnected Atlantic World.” 3:15 p.m., Hill Auditorium, Barrows Hall, UMaine. Annual Babcock Lecture by a UMaine graduate.

April 9
Statewide Maine National History Day contest for grade 6-12 students at UMaine. For more info, please visit

April 7-8
Muslim programs
1) Lecture: Feminism in contemporary Iran by Reza Jalali (Coordinator, Multicultural Student Affairs, USM), playwright of “The Poets and the Assassin,” 12:30-1:45 p.m., Bangor Room Memorial Union, UMaine, part of the Socialist and Marxist Studies Lecture Series.

2) Free Performance: “The Poets and the Assassin,” 7:30 p.m., Minsky Recital Hall. Although women in Iran have historically been in the forefront of national struggles for liberation and democracy, their stories of courage, resistance, and survival are unknown to most in the West. This play offers insight about the plight of women in Iran and portrays their struggle against religious and cultural tyranny while countering stereotypes about Muslim women. The performance will conclude with the cast, director, and playwright taking questions from the audience. Co-hosted with the School of Policy and International Affairs; College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; Honors College; Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies; History Department; Wilson Center; International Affairs; and others. Click here to download a poster for the play (pdf).

3) Panel and audience discussion over breakfast of “The Poets and the Assassin” and related issues, 8:30 a.m., Colvin Hall, Fourth Floor. The Honors College hosts this event. Panelists include: Reza Jalali (playwright and Coordinator, Multicultural Student Affairs, USM), Maryam Kashkooli, Simin Khosravani, Niloofar YousefI, Emily Haddad (Dean, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, UMaine).

April 2
One day bus trip to Portland. 8:45 a.m. Bus departs from Collins Center for the Arts (CCA) parking lot at UMaine. 11:00 a.m. Arrive Osher Map Library, Portland, for two guided tours: Tour the “Golden Age of American Pictorial Maps” exhibit that he curated in the Gallery and Osher staff will show us Shakespeare-era maps in the Reading Room. 1:00 p.m. Bus takes us downtown to the Portland Public Library (PPL) for a late-lunch and exploring on our own. 3:00 p.m. Reassemble at PPL for a public lecture by Dick Brucher (UMaine Professor), “Learning from the First Folio” in the Rines Auditorium. Tour the Shakespeare First Folio exhibit before or after the lecture. 5:00 p.m. Bus departs from PPL. 7:00 p.m. Approximate return to CCA at UMaine. For more information click here.

March 24-31
Pulitzer Week. Three Pulitzer Prize winners will give public lectures at UMaine and at Bangor Public Library: Amy Ellis Nutt (feature writing, Star-Ledger), March 24; Kathleen Kingsbury (editorial writing, Boston Globe), March 29; Jim Sheeler (feature writing, Rocky Mountain News), March 30. Complete schedule details here. These events are organized by the Department of Communication and Journalism at UMaine with financial support from the Maine Humanities Council, the Alan Miller Fund for Excellence in Communication and Journalism, and the UMaine Humanities Center. Community partners are Bangor Daily News and Bangor Public Library.

March 21
History Department Public Lecture
Claire Campbell (Bucknell University), “‘Because it’s 2016’: Rethinking the Frontier Myth and ‘Canada’s National Interest’.” 3:15 p.m., Wells Conference Center, Room 3, UMaine. Co-hosted by the Canadian American Center with UMHC co-sponsorship.

March 19
Humanities Panel at the Maine Science Festival, Bangor Public Library. Maine’s River Fisheries: Sustenance, Science and Conservation
Panelists will include Denise Buckley (Fishery Biologist, Craig Brook National Fish Hatchery), Catherine Schmitt (Communications Director, Maine Sea Grant), and Erik Reardon (Ph.D. candidate, History, UMaine).

March 8
Workshop for grade 6-12 Maine National History Day participants.
One-on-one coaching about your NHD project from UMaine faculty, grad students, staff, and NHD judges.

February 29
Pre-performance lecture and reception co-hosted with the Collins Center for the Arts. 5:30 p.m. Presentation by Laura Artesani (Associate Prof. of Music, UMaine), location Bodwell Lounge. 7:00 p.m. Concert by Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn with the Del McCoury Band.

February 20-22 and 26-28
School of Performing Arts production of the satirical comedy Urinetown: The Musical.

February 25
Panel discussion “Urinetown: The Musical as Political Satire”. Presentations by Carla Billiteri (dramaturge and English Dept., UMaine), Tom Mikotowicz (director and Theatre Dept., UMaine), and an undergraduate performer about their collaboration on the major spring campus production, which runs Feb. 19-21 and Feb. 25-28.  Co-organized with the UMaine Humanities Center as part of the Socialist and Marxist Studies Series

February 12
History Department Public Lecture. Chris Bilodeau (Dickinson College), “Executing an Indian in Seventeenth Century Maine.” 3:15 p.m., Hill Auditorium, Barrows Hall, UMaine. Co-hosted by Native American Programs with UMHC co-sponsorship.

February 11
Discussion of pre-circulated paper. Joseph Hall (Bates College), “Declarations of Sale but not Departure: Wabanaki Claims to Place in Four Land Sales, 1660-1672.”   Co-hosted with Native American Programs and the History Department, please contact Liam Riordan for more information (

February 6
Cadenzato—UMaine Faculty Chamber Music, free reception to follow.

January 30
Downtown Bangor Public Humanities Day For more information about the Downtown Bangor Public Humanities events click here. 12:15 p.m. Gallery talks and film screenings at the UMaine Museum of Art through mid-afternoon. The museum is at 40 Harlow St. or enter on the bridge over the Kenduskeag Canal. 2:30 p.m. Screening of film Hugo (inspired by Méliés and set in Paris) with River City Cinema at the Maine Discovery Museum (74 Main St.) 3:30 p.m. Readings by Norumbega Collective authors Chris Becker, Joe Linscott, and Tyler Nute at Bangor Public Library (145 Harlow St.)

January 29
Downtown Bangor Public Humanities Kickoff Event PechaKucha. Presentations on music, art, history, travel and literature by four UMaine faculty and four local non-academic practitioners. Entry is free, food and drink provided. Come early it will be a packed house!

Note: all of the following events are chronological order within their semester. 

Fall 2015 Events

Tuesday, September 15
Humanities Academy discussion about the Digital Humanities. The UMHC is initiating a small-group program for the general public (especially for high school students and teachers) to meet to discuss a short reading in advance of a campus lecture. Please read the captivating 6-page essay by Richard White, “What is Spatial History?” before participating in this discussion. Bumps Room, Memorial Union, 4:00 PM. Related lecture to follow on Sept. 21. The document can be downloaded below. Click here to download the essay (pdf).

Wednesday, September 16
Public lecture by John Burns (Rockford University), “Behind The Savage Detectives: The Infrarrealist Movement” at 4:00 p.m. in Hill Auditorium, Barrows Hall. Join the discussion of neo-avant-garde Latin American writers of the 1970s. Co-hosted by the Department of Modern Languages and others.

Thursday, September 17
Public lecture and discussion by John Burns (Rockford University), “Aesthetic of the Rain” on the translation into English of the contemporary Chilean poet Raúl Hernández, 6:30 p.m., Hill Auditorium, Barrows Hall. Co-hosted by the Department of Modern Languages, The Centro Hispanico of the Bangor Area, and others.

Friday, September 18
Open mic readings of William Butler Yeats’ poetry to celebrate his 150th birthday. Bear’s Den and Pub, Memorial Union, 6:30 p.m. Emcee John Burns (Rockford University).

Saturday, September 19
Student bus trip to Portland. Guided tour of the Portland Museum of Art’s exhibit the Directors’ Cut. For more exhibit info online, please visit: This trip is co-sponsored by the UMaine Museum of Art, the departments of Art, English, and History as well as the Honors College.

Monday-Friday, September 15-25
Digital Humanities Week at the University of Maine. For complete details of events each day, plus our kickoff event on September 17, please visit the UMHC online at

Thursday, September 24
Professor Nathan Stormer: “On the Origins of Violence and Language.” Free and open to the public. Did language develop after violence as a means of exerting power?  Under what conditions can it be said that violence and language have origins at all?  The belief that the origin of language was a transcendent moment when humans really became human is strongly held in the study of rhetoric and communication.  In this lecture, Prof. Stormer re-reads a little known essay of Friedrich Nietzsche, “On the Origins of Language,” to argue that language and violence share an original condition, negation, and that an origin of language is impossible to pin down.  He then poses the question, if negation is the “mother of language” as Nietzsche argues, where does negation does come from?

Thursday, October 1
Liam Riordan, “Does the American Revolution Look Different from the Penobscot Valley?” This event initiates the month-long arts and humanities ARTober celebration in Bangor.

Thursday, October 1
Jim Hightower, “Twenty-First Century Populist Movements are Flourishing at America’s Grassroots,” annual Howard Schonberger Peace and Social Justice Lecture.Reception to follow.

Saturday, October 10
Pre-Performance lecture by Elizabeth Neiman (English and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies), “Literary Monsters: Bram Stocker’s Dracula and the Fiction of the 1890s,” 6:30 p.m. Bodwell Area of the Collins Center for the Arts (CCA) with reception. L.A. Theater Works production of Dracula follows in the CCA at 8:00 p.m.

Wednesday, October 14
Humanities Academy Discussion: “What is a Land Grant University?”
A small-group discussion for the general public to share their thoughts about a very short set of related readings. Click here to download the readings for discussion (pdf).

Friday, October 16
Public lecture by Edward Baptist (Cornell University), “How to Save American Higher Education from its Saviors: The Morrill Act and What it Can Teach Us Today.” This lecture is part of UMaine’s Open University programs for the 150th anniversary homecoming.  It has received funds from the Office of the President, Cultural Affiars/Distinguished Lecture Series on behalf of the Northeastern Americas: Humanities Research and Educaion, and the History Department.

Drunken fireworks Maine Campus adSaturday, October 17
Maine humorist Tim Sample will be on campus for UMaine’s 150th anniversary homecoming. Tim Sample Free public lecture.
A discussion of his career as a Maine humorist, and his recent collaboration with Stephen King on the audiobook Drunken Fireworks. Sales and signing to follow.

Wednesday, October 21
Carlo Villacorta: “Is translation a bridge?: The fisction of Daniel Alacron reimaging Peru.” Free and open to the public

Thursday-Saturday, October 22-24
Black Mountain College Symposium. This major public conference brings together UMaine and national scholars to discuss the impact of Black Mountain College (BMC) upon the visual arts, poetry, educational reform, and democratic theory. It will be followed by a bus trip to a BMC exhibit at the ICA in Boston on Nov. 7 (see below) and coincides with related undergraduate courses taught in Fall 2015 by Steve Evans (English and National Poetry Foundation) and Justin Wolff (Art History). For additional information, please contact:  Steve Evans at or at 581.3818.

Saturday, November 7
UMHC student trip to the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston. We will enjoy a pre-arranged tour of the “Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933-1957” exhibit at the ICA.

Thursday, November 12
Jennifer Moxley: “Different Languages, Hidden Transcripts, and the Distrust of the Translator.”  Free and open to the public.

Thursday, November 12
NYC-based group Theater of War provides dramatic readings of ancient Greek drama with panel comments and audience discussion about war’s trauma and its consequences. Penobscot Theatre, Downtown Bangor, 7:00 p.m. The UMHC joins co-hosts the Maine Infantry Foundation, Acadia Hospital, the Maine Masonic College, and the Penobscot Theatre in making this event free to the public. Ticket details TBA.

Friday, November 13
Free UMHC student bus trip to attend the ArtWalk in downtown Bangor. The bus will depart campus at 4:30 p.m. from the CCA parking lot and return by 8:00 p.m. Featuring an art installation by UMaine faculty member Gene Felice. An annual partnership with the Maine Discovery Museum, the University of Maine Museum of Art, and the Division of Student Life at the University of Maine.

Thursday, December 3
Enjoy and learn about jazz in three related events.
5:00 pm: Reception in Miller’s Café of the Collins Center for the Arts. 5:30-6:30 pm: Demonstration and discussion by UMaine students led by Jack Burt (Director, UMaine Jazz Ensemble) in Minsky Recital Hall. FREE. 7:00 pm: Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis in the CCA.  Tickets required.

Monday, December 7
Nathan Godfried (Professor of History, UMaine), “William S. Gailmor: Rabbi, Thief, Propagandist, Fellow Traveler, Social Justice Activist?
The Popular Front, Journalism, and the Red Scare, 1941-1952,” 3:15 p.m. Bangor Room, Memorial Union.  FREE.

Thursday, December 10
Salon discussion of Traer Scott’s natural history photography at the
UMaine Museum of Art in Bangor.  6:00-8:00 pm, FREE but RSVP required.

Summer 2015 Events

Thursday, August 13
Celebrating the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Humanities in Maine. Point Lookout, Northport, Maine. Chairman William “Bro” Adams of the National Endowment for the Humanities will be the keynote speaker at a public program that will also include a panel discussion about the Historical Atlas of Maine (University of Maine Press, 2015). A free reception and book signing will follow with the Atlas sold at a discounted price. For more information, please contact UMHC Director Liam Riordan at or 207-581-1913.

Sunday-Wednesday, July 12-15
Celebrating the Voyage of the Hermione a Replica French Frigate from the Revolutionary Era. UMHC Director Liam Riordan will speak on “Why the French were Essential for the American Revolution, and Why We Should Care,” July 12, 4:00-5:00 p.m. at the Delano Auditorium of the Maine Maritime Academy in Castine. For online information about multiple events in Castine, please visit the Castine Historical Society website.

Thursday-Saturday, July 23-25
16th Annual Northeast Historic Film Summer Symposium
Wunderkino 5: Moving Images of War and Peace
Location: Alamo Theatre, 85 Main Street, Bucksport, ME 04416
For more information and to register please visit NEHF‘s website.

Spring 2015 Events

Tuesday-Thursday, May 12-14
Dr. Jonathan Shay on Combat Trauma and the Trials of Coming Home. The role of the humanities to better support veterans will be featured in a series of programs that builds to events at the University of Maine on May 13 and 14. For more information online about the Veterans and the Humanities at UMaine, click here.  For additional information, please contact UMHC Director Liam Riordan at or 207-581-1913.

Tuesday, April 7
1) Please join us to honor the statewide winners of the National History Day in Maine on April 7, from 3:30-4:30 in the Central Building Atrium of the State House Complex, 230 State Street, Augusta. All NHD students, teachers, and parents (not just prizewinners) are also invited to tour the Maine State Museum free of charge before or after the reception. Click here to download the flyer (pdf).

2) Third Annual Maine Humanities Summit, 5:00-7:30 PM, State Room, Senator Inn, 284 Western Avenue, Augusta.  Co-hosted with the Maine Humanities Council and the Colby College Center for the Arts and Humanities, and the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center.  For more info, please contact Liam Riordan on FirstClass ( or at 581-1913. Click here for more information (pdf)

Sunday, March 29 through Thursday, April 16
Eight terrific events on the theme of “Beyond Auschwitz: New Perspectives on the Holocaust” have been organized by UMaine’s Judaic Studies Program.  For full details click here or download the schedule of events.  For more inforamtion, please contact Melissa Ladenheim at or 207.581.3308. Click here to download the full schedule (pdf)

Friday-Saturday, April 24-25
Language Revitalization, Treaties, and the Future of Tribal Sovereignty, public conference. The conference will integrate the work and concerns of scholars, native groups, and state agencies to facilitate an unprecedented exchange among regional indigenous language specialists. The Afternoon of the 24th will be on Indian Island and the evening of the 24 and day of the 25th will be at the University of Maine in the Bodwell area. For more info, please contact Darren Ranco, Chair, Native American Studies, on FirstClass ( or at 581-9485.

Saturday, March 28
Maine National History Day statewide contest for grade 6-12 students on the UMaine, Orono campus.  For more info visit or contact State Coordinator John Taylor by email at or by phone at 474-7133.

Sunday, March 29
Pre-performance lect
re and discussion by Phillip Silver, Professor of Music.  1:30 PM in the Cafe of the Collins Center for the Arts (CCA) prior to the performance by the Amernet String Quartet with Professor Silver at 3:00 PM in Minsky Recital Hall.  The performance focuses on music by Jewish composers forced into exile or murdered in concentration camps. A free reception follows the discussion co-hosted with the CCA.  For more info, contact Liam Riordan on FirstClass ( or at 581-1913.

 Sunday, February 8
Pre-performance lecture and discussion by Laura Artesani, Associate Professor of Music.  2:00 PM in the Cafe of the Collins Center for the Arts (CCA) prior to the performance by the British ensemble Voice at 3:00 PM in Minsky Recital Hall. A free reception will follow the concert co-hosted with the CCA.  For more info, contact Liam Riordan on FirstClass ( or at 581-1913.

Saturday, January 31
Can movies help us understand the past?: Selma as movie and history, Bangor Mall Cinemas, 6:20 pm. Please join us for a one-time public screening of the film Selma with a brief discussion by historians with expertise about this period: Nathan Godfried (Univ. of Maine) & Dave Haus (Husson Univ.). Regular admission will be charged to the theater.

Friday, January 23
Public Humanities Day Kick-Off Event: A humanities-themed powered by PechaKucha. Coe Space (48 Columbia Street in downtown Bangor). Doors open at 6:00 p.m., Show starts 6:30 p.m., suggested donation $6. Refreshments provided by Izzy’s Catering and State Street Wine Cellar. Anticipated speakers and tentative topics include: Chuck Donnelly (Acadia School of Music), Building Bridges and Community with Traditional Music; Michael Grillo (Art, UMaine), Inside Viewers: Paintings of Place for Local Inhabitants; Greg Howard (English, UMaine), Fiction and Image; Pauleena MacDougall (Folklife, UMaine), The Airline Road; Erin Rhoda (Bangor Daily News), Digital Postcards from Maine; Josh Roiland (Communications & Journalism and Honors, UMaine), Understanding David Foster Wallace; Jane Smith (Modern Languages and Classics, UMaine), Languages and the Humanities; Kate Webber (Maine Humanities Council), LOL Humanities: Finding Meaning in Social Media

Saturday, January 24
Downtown Bangor Public Humanities Day. Event Schedule Co–hosted with the Maine Folklife Center and the UMaine Museum of Art.  For more info, please contact Pauleena MacDougall on FirstClass ( or at 581-1848.  Free bus transportation will be provided from Orono to Bangor to support student participation.

Fall 2014 Events

Friday, Sept. 12
UMaine Student Bus Trip to Bangor Artwalk, 4:30-8:00PM. Co-hosted with the Office of Student Life, Maine Discovery Museum and UMaine Museum of Art.  For more info, please contact John Mascetta on FirstClass ( or at 581-1957

Wednesday, Sept. 16
Where are women in violent conflicts? Finding out will make us smarter. Cynthia Enloe, Research Professor in the International Development, Community, and Environment Department at Clark University, Worcester, Massachusetts.Student meet and greet: FFA Room, Memorial Union Sept. 16, 2–3:30 p.m. Lecture: Minsky Hall Sept. 16, 6–8 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 18
Latino Heritage Month lecture by Luis Millones (Colby College).  For more info, please contact Maria Sandweiss on FirstClass ( or at 581-2072.

Wednesday, Sept. 24
New Media and the Humanities lecture “The Ecology of Games” by Alenda Chang (University of Connecticut), 4:00PM Hill Auditorium, Barrows Hall.  Co-hosted with Music, New Media, and more.  For more info, please contact Nancy Ogle on FirstClass ( or 581-4703.

Tuesday, September 30
Pre-performance lecture and discussion by Naomi Jacobs, Professor of English.  5:30 PM in the Bodwell Lounge of the CCA prior to the Aquila Theatre Company’s performance of Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights.  A free reception follows the discussion co-hosted with the Collins Center for the Arts (CCA).  For more info, contact Liam Riordan on FirstClass ( or at 581-1913.

Friday, Oct. 3-Sunday, Oct. 5
UMaine-University of New Brunswick Graduate Student Conference.  Co-hosted by the History Graduate Students Association and the Canadian-American Center.  For more info, please contact Ian Jesse on FirstClass (

Tuesday, Oct. 7
Lecture by Bill McKibbon, 3:30PM.  Organized by the Honors College.  For more info, please contact Mimi Killinger on FirstClass ( or at 581-3263.

Saturday, Oct. 25
Arts & Humanities Bus Trip to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.  Co-hosted with the departments of Art, English, History, and the Honors College.  For more info, please contact Liam Riordan on FirstClass ( or at 581-1913.

Tuesday, December 9
Author lecture and book signing to celebrate the publication of The Historical Atlas of Maine.   Richard Judd (McBride Professor of History, University of Maine), “Reflections on Editing the Historical Atlas of Maine: A Scholarly Epic,” Maine Historical Society, 489 Congress Street, Portland.  Noon-130PM.  For more info, please contact Larissa Vigue Picard at 774-1822 ext. 215 or

Thursday, December 11
3:30-5:00 p.m. at the Buchanan Alumni House, University of Maine, Orono. A public celebration of the newly published Historical Atlas of Maine, with UMaine President Susan J. Hunter, editors Stephen J. Hornsby and Richard W. Judd, and cartographer Michael J. Hermann.

Friday, December 12
“Saving Endangered Native Languages” Buchanan Alumni House,  7 p.m. This evening panel will address the state of the several endangered Algonquian languages in the Northeast, and the efforts communities are engaged in to preserve them. In addition, the panelists, representing a number of Native communities from across the Northeast, will talk about the various methods they are using for language pedagogy in what are primarily oral languages. Saving Native Languages

2013-2014 EVENTS

Title: Downtown Bangor Public Humanities Day
Date: May 17, 2014
Time: 9:00AM-5:00PM
Location: Downtown Bangor

The University of Maine Humanities Initiative is pleased to cosponsor the second annual Downtown Bangor Public Humanities Day. Various events will feature conversations and demonstrations involving UMaine faculty and staff of Bangor cultural organizations. For more information, please contact Associate Professor of History Liam Riordan (

Title: Maine Humanities Summit: The Humanities and Public Policy
Date: May 16, 2014
Time: 9:00AM-5:00PM
Location: Governor Hill Mansion, Augusta, Maine

The University of Maine Humanities Initiative and the Maine Humanities Council will host the second annual Maine Humanities Summit at the Governor Hill Mansion in Augusta on Friday, May 16, 2014. The topic of this year’s Summit is “The Humanities and Public Policy.” More information and details forthcoming. Please contact Justin Wolff, Director UMaine Humanities Initiative, with questions (

Title: How to Shrink the World: Using Virtual Technologies to Bring the World Together
Date: May 1, 2014
Time: 6:00PM-8:00PM
Location: CoeSpace, 48 Columbia Street, Bangor, Maine

Please join UMHI graduate assistant Amy Cross for a presentation about using Virtual Technologies to bring the world together. Free and open to the public.

Title: In and Out of Place: Finding Home in Franco America
Date: April 25-26, 2014
Time: TBA
Location: University of Maine, Orono

In and Out of Place: Finding Home in Franco America is a symposium sponsored by the University of Maine Humanities Initiative and organized by the Franco-American Centre and Franco American Studies program at UMaine. Keynote speaker Clark Blaise will read from a work-in-progress, “The Kerouac Who Never Was.” The symposium will feature readings from acclaimed New England writers; panels on “Franco Elections, Activism, and Public Opinion,” “Historical Reflections on Place and Identity,” and “Franco American Archives and Collections in New England”; and a screening of the film Le grand Jack (Jack Kerouac’s Road: A Franco-American Odyssey), directed by Herménégilde Chiasson. 

Title: Bridging the Gap: Knowledge Production in the Humanities and the Sciences
Date: April 22, 2014
Time: 2:00-4:00PM
Location: Wells Conference Center

“Bridging the Gap: Knowledge Production in the Humanities and the Sciences” is the Spring UMHI Faculty Seminar. The seminar co-leaders are Elizabeth Neiman, Assistant Professor of English, and Jacquelyn Gill, Assistant Professor of Paleoecology and Plant Ecology. Seminar readings include excerpts from Ann Fausto-Sterling’s Sexing the Body: Gender Politics and the Construction of Sexuality. For more information contact Elizabeth Neiman ( To register for the seminar, please email UMHI Graduate Assistant Amy Cross ( More information.

Title: Francophone Film Series
Date: January 23-April 17, 2014
Time: Thursdays 7:00PM
Location: Black Box Performance Space, IMRC Center, UMaine

The University of Maine Humanities Initiative is a cosponsor of the Francophone Film Series. Films include January 23, Les 400 coups de François Truffaut (France, 1959); February 13, Les amours imaginaires de Xavier Dolan (Québec, 2010); February 20, Entre les murs de Laurent Cantet (France, 2008); February 27, Incendies de Denis Villeneuve (Québec, 2010); March 20, Milou en mai de Louis Malle (France, 1990); April 10, Monsieur Lazhar de Philippe Falardeau (Québec, 2011); and April 17, Après Mai, d’Olivier Assayas (France, 2012). For more information, please contact Frédéric Rondeau, Assistant Professor of French (

Title: The Age of Discovery from Spain to Space
Name: Mary Doria Russell
Date: Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Time: 4:00-6:00PM
Location: Hauck Auditorium

The University of Maine Humanities Initiative is pleased to cosponsor the 2014 John M. Rezendes Visiting Scholar in Ethics. Critically acclaimed author Mary Doria Russell will give a lecture entitled “The Age of Discovery from Spain to Space.” Her talk will focus on the ethics of discovery and other ethical issues brought up in her novel and this year’s Honors College Read The Sparrow.

Title: Working and Belonging in Indian Country
Name: Brian C. Hosmer
Date: Monday, April 14, 2014
Time: 3:15PM
Location: Hill Auditorium, Barrows Hall

The University of Maine Humanities Initiative is pleased to cosponsor a lecture by Professor Brian C. Hosmer, H.G. Barnard Associate Professor of Western American History, University of Tulsa. As a leading scholar on American Indians in the marketplace, Professor Brian C. Hosmer will visit three Native communities in Maine where he will meet key tribal officials. On Monday, April 14, he will have a discussion with history graduate students about conducting research in Native American communities. In the afternoon, Professor Hosmer will deliver his talk entitled, “Working and Belonging in Indian Country.” The term “work” has a complex history in Indian Country. If Americans are familiar with anything about Native communities it is the (genuine and supposed) high rate of unemployment in Indian country. At the same time, federal Indian policies, from mission work to boarding schools and allotment, reorganization, termination and self-determination, all revolve around assumptions about Indian laboring. Policies are enacted to instruct Indians in how to work (as if they didn’t know already), and in some cases governments design and implement work programs. The lecture is part of the Department of History’s symposium series. For more information contact Micah A. Pawling, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of History and Native American Studies at (207) 581-1424.

Title: Maine National History Day Competition
Date: Saturday, April 12, 2014
Time: 10:00AM-4:00PM
Location: TBA

The University of Maine Humanities Initiative is pleased to be a cosponsor of the Maine National History Day Competition. For more information about Maine National History Day, please visit the UMHI’s Maine National Day History site.

Title: The Juvenile Work of World-Class Artists: Can We Tell from their Work that these Children are Bound for Glory?
Name: Dr. David Pariser
Date: Thursday, February 27, 2014
Time: 6:00PM
Location: Lord Hall 100

Dr. David Pariser, Professor of Art Education, Concordia University, Montreal, will present his current research on children’s graphic development, specifically using artifacts and interviews gathered from Jaime Wyeth, with respect to juvenilia from Pablo Picasso, Paul Klee, and Toulouse-Lautrec. Dr. Pariser is one of the few scholars publishing in English on aspects of giftedness in the visual arts and in children’s graphic development. Additional details are forthcoming. For more information, please contact Associate Professor of Art Education Connie Albertson (

Title: On Being Cute, On Being Prey: Exploring the Two Poles of Animal/Human Interaction
Date: Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Time: 4:00PM-6:00PM
Location: Wells Conference Room 3

“On Being Cute, On Being Prey: Exploring the Two Poles of Animal/Human Interaction” is the Fall UMHI Faculty Seminar. The seminar co-leaders are Gregory Howard, Assistant Professor of English, and Sarah Harlan-Haughey, CLAS-Honors Preceptor in English.

Title: National History Day Teacher Institute
Date: Thursday, October 24, 2013
Time: 9:00AM-2:00PM
Location: Wells Conference Room 3

For more information about Maine National History Day and the Teacher Institute, please visit the UMHI’s Maine National Day History site.

Title: Surfacing: Digital Humanities Week
Date: October 7-10, 2013
Location: University of Maine campus

The UMHI is pleased to co-sponsor Surfacing: Digital Humanities Week and THATCamp Maine 2013. A THATCamp (The Humanities and Technology Camp) is an unconference: an open, inexpensive meeting where humanists and technologists of all skill levels learn and build together in sessions proposed on the spot. See below for featured events. For up-to-date information, complete schedule, and registration guidelines, see THATCamp Maine 2013.

Title: Nineteenth-Century Books and the Challenges to a Global Digital Library
Name: Andrew Stauffer (University of Virginia)
Date: Thursday, October 10, 2013
Time: 11:00AM
Location: Hill Auditorium, Barrows Hall

For more information about this lecture and Digital Humanities Week, see THATCamp Maine 2013.

Title: Affordances of the Digital: Mapping, Geotagging Texts, and Early Modern Digital Methodologies
Name: Mary Erica Zimmer (Boston University)
Date: Wednesday, October 9, 2013
Time: 4:00PM
Location: IMRC 112

For more information about this workshop and Digital Humanities Week, see THATCamp Maine 2013.

Title: Putting the Public Back in Publication
Name: Anne Goodyear (Bowdoin College Museum of Art)
Date: Wednesday, October 9, 2013
Time: 10:00AM
Location: IMRC 104

For more information about this lecture and Digital Humanities Week, see THATCamp Maine 2013.

Title: The Assignable Nothingness of All Swerve and the Work of Adjacency
Name: Eileen Joy (Southern Illinois University Edwardsville)
Date: Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Time: 4:00PM
Location: Hill Auditorium, Barrows Hall

For more information about this lecture and Digital Humanities Week, see THATCamp Maine 2013.

Title: Surface and Infrastructure: Mapping the Hidden Worlds of Undersea Cables
Name: Nicole Starosielski (New York University)
Date: Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Time: 11:00AM
Location: Bangor Room, Memorial Union

For more information about this talk and Digital Humanities Week, see THATCamp Maine 2013.

Title: National History Day Information Session
Date: Thursday, September 26, 2013
Time: 5:00PM
Location: Bangor Public Library

To learn more about Maine National History Day, please join us for a Pizza & Information Session at Bangor Public Library. This will be an informal discussion and presentation for teachers, students, and parents. Also visit the UMHI’s Maine National History Day site.

2012-2013 Events

Title: Maine Humanities Summit
Date: May 17, 2013
Time: 9:00AM – 4:30PM
Location: Governor Hill Mansion, Augusta, Maine

The University of Maine Humanities Initiative announces a daylong Maine Humanities Summit, to be held at the Governor Hill Mansion in Augusta, Maine, on Friday, May 17, 2013. For more information, please visit

Title: Faculty Development Seminar
Date: May 13-16, 2013

The most recent UMHI faculty development program was a four-day seminar (May 13-16, 2013) featuring UMaine faculty, staff, and graduate students presenting their research in lectures, panels, and interdisciplinary events. A highlight of the week is a day of programs in downtown Bangor on Wednesday, May 15.

Title: The Umbrellas of Cherbourg
Date: April 12, 2013
Time: 7:00PM
Location: Bangor Room, Memorial Union

The UMaine Humanities Initiative is pleased to co-sponsor a screening of The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964), a film directed by Jacques Demy. This event, free and open to the public, is part of the International Film Festival: “Movie-ing through Cultures,” also co-sponsored by Department of Modern Languages and Classics and the German Club. For more information, please contact Nora Gortcheva, Visiting Assistant Professor of German and Film Studies (

Title: Maine History from the Archive to the Digital Humanities
Name: Kevin Murphy
Date: April 8, 2013
Time: 12:00 – 1:30PM
Location: Bumps Room, Memorial Union

A free public lecture, “Maine History from the Archive to the Digital Humanities,” by Kevin Murphy, professor of architecture and art history at the CUNY Graduate Center, will take place from 12–1:30 p.m., April 8, Bumps Room, University of Maine Memorial Union. Professor Murphy is being brought to UMaine by the university’s Department of History in collaboration with the Farnsworth Art Museum and the Humanities Initiative, in support of its exhibit on Jonathan Fisher’s Scripture Animals. For more information about the presentations or to request disability accommodations, please contact Liam Riordan (

Title: Jonathan Fisher’s Paper: The World of Print on the Eastern Frontier
Name: Kevin Murphy
Date: April 8, 2013
Time: 3:15 – 4:45PM
Location: Hill Auditorium, Barrows Hall

A free public lecture, “Jonathan Fisher’s Paper: The World of Print on the Eastern Frontier,” by Kevin Murphy, professor of architecture and art history at the CUNY Graduate Center, will take place from 3:15–4:45 p.m., April 8, Hill Auditorium, Barrows Hall, University of Maine. Professor Murphy is being brought to UMaine by the university’s Department of History in collaboration with the Farnsworth Art Museum and the Humanities Initiative, in support of its exhibit on Jonathan Fisher’s Scripture Animals. For more information about the presentations or to request disability accommodations, please contact Liam Riordan (

Title: Ballads in Maine Workshop
Date: April 9, 2013
Time: 4:00 – 6:00PM
Location: University Club, Fogler Library

The Maine Folklife Center will present a “Ballads in Maine” workshop. The program will feature scholarly discussion and performances relating to the British Ballads tradition. The panel will include Honors Preceptor Sarah Harlan-Haughey, who will discuss ballads as a form of literature, and Maine Folklife Center director Pauleena MacDougall, who will discuss the history of ballad collecting in New England. Julia Lane, a harpist, singer of ballads, and a member of Castlebay will perform Scottish, Irish, and English ballads, and Jeff McKeen, a folk musician who performs with Old Grey Goose, will perform ballads from the Maine woods. Both Julia Lane and Jeff McKeen have collected ballads in Maine as well. We invite the audience to bring their favorite ballads and questions about ballads for an informal discussion about ballad scholarship and ballad performance.

Related Events:

Tuesday, April 2, 2013, 6:30-8:30PM, Belfast Community Library.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013, 6:30-8:30PM, Rines Auditorium, Portland Public Library.

Title: Bibliopoetics: The Art and Future of the Book
Date: April 5-6, 2013

Bibliopoetics: The Art and Future of the Book was the UMHI spring symposium. Organized by UMHI Postdoctoral Fellow in Digital Humanities, Christopher M. Ohge, Bibliopoetics featured clusters of scholars, from UMaine and beyond, in seminars and workshops on topics including “The Book as Object,” “Editing and Publishing in the Digital Age,” “Digital History and the Future of the Critical Edition,” and “Poets on Books: A Reading and Discussion.”

Title: 21st-Century Libraries: A Virtual Renaissance
Date: March 27, 2013
Time: 5:30pm
Location: Bangor Public Library

Please join UMHI Graduate Assistant Amy Cross for a presentation on virtual libraries and Second Life. This event, co-sponsored by the Bangor Public Library, is a satellite program of the UMHI’s spring symposium Bibliopoetics: The Art and Future of the Book, which will be held at UMaine on April 5-6, 2013. Free and open to the public, Bangor Public Library, 145 Harlow Street.

Title: Angie Abdou: “Skating Against a Ghost”: Anxiety of Influence, Women’s Hockey, and Cara Hedley’s Twenty Miles
Date: February 21, 2013
Time: 4:30pm
Location: Soderberg Lecture Hall

Angie Abdou teaches English and Creative Writing at the College of the Rockies in British Columbia. She is a scholar of Canadian Literature and Middle English, and a celebrated novelist. She has published three books: Anything Boys Can Do (a collection of short stories); The Bone Cage (a novel); and The Canterbury Trail (a novel). She also researches and writes about athletics in higher education. During her visit, Ms. Abdou will visit classes at UMaine and lecture on gender and athletics in higher education. She will also read from her fiction.

Title: Digital Humanities Camp
Date: November 14, 2012
Time: 3:00 – 5:00PM
Location: Bangor Room, Memorial Union

An open informational session and forum intended for all faculty and students interested in the digital humanities. No prior experience with digital humanities required. Free refreshments served.

Title: UMaine Humanities Initiative Orientation
Date: November 1, 2012
Time: 4:30 – 6:00PM
Location: University Club, Fogler Library

An informal orientation session at which the UMHI introduced its Sponsorship Grants program, the Faculty Development seminar to be held May 13-16, 2013, and other projects.

Title: Voltaire and Frederick: A Life in Letters
Date: October 30, 2012
Time: 7:00 – 9:00PM
Location: Collins Center for the Arts

A new play commissioned by the Geothe-Institut Boston in partnership with the Consulate General de France. The play was commissioned in honor of Frederick II’s 300th birthday and is an overview of the pen-pal friendship between these two great thinkers that spanned almost half a century. Their intensive correspondence covers everything from questions of torture and human rights, effective and ineffective forms of governance and global finances.

Title: “The Enlightenment Then and Now”
Date: October 30, 2012
Time: 5:00 – 6:00PM
Location: Bumps Room, Memorial Union

A panel discussion with Guy Ben-Aharon, Israeli State and Goethe Institute; Alexander Grab, Department of History; David Gross, Honors College; and Raymond Pelletier, Department of Modern Languages and Classics.

Connecting Our Worlds: The Contemporary Role of the Humanities

Keynote Speaker:  Professor Christopher Newfield (UC – Santa Barbara)

Title: “Humanities in the 21st Century and the Land-Grant University”
Date: February 21, 2012
Time: 4:00 – 6:00PM
Location: Leonard and Renee Minsky Music Recital Hall, the Class of 1944 Hall

This event is supported in part by a grant from the Cultural Affairs/Distinguished Lecture Series.

UMHI Seminars:

UMHI Seminars bring together campus scholars for discussion of humanities readings on a topic of broad interest. Each seminar is proposed and facilitated by a team of scholars.

Seminar I Topic: “The Meaning of Death and End of Life Care”

Date: February 13, 2012
Time: 4:00 – 6:00PM
Location: University Club, Fogler Library

Seminar Organizers:
Jessica Miller, Associate Professor of Philosophy
Kirsten Jacobson, Assistant Professor of Philosophy

Despite important advances in caring for patients at the end of life, such as the Hospice movement and the Palliative Care movement, Americans still struggle in many ways at life’s end and in considering issues pertaining to their dying prior to this point. As philosophers, we feel that a still under-explored dimension of end of life care involves the meaning of death. We propose exploring the end of life from phenomenological, narrative and ethical perspectives. These perspectives are often underexamined owing to the contemporary emphasis on reducing pain, minimizing suffering, understanding the patients’ wishes, and even, from a societal viewpoint, cost savings. We are particularly interested in discussing the existential significance of dying with the goal of suggesting further innovations and possible correctives to contemporary practices in end of life care.

Seminar I Readings:
“Death in the First Person” by “Anonymous”
“Being – toward – death” by Martin Heidegger
“Body Medical Ethics” by David Schenck
“Seeing the Difference” by Christina Marsden Gillis

Seminar II Topic: “Critical Theory and the Humanities”

Date: March 26, 2012
Time: 4:00 – 6:00PM
Location: 3 Wells Conference Center

Seminar Organizers:
Steven Evans, Associate Professor of English
Justin Wolff, Assistant Professor of Art History
Michael Lang, Assistant Professor of History

This seminar will consider the role of critical theory in the humanities today.  It is open to UMaine faculty, post-docs, and graduate students who are interested in discussing the function of critical theory in their research, collaborations with colleagues, and teaching.  The readings are intended to stimulate discussion among participants about the state of critical theory and the humanities, about the uses of critical theory in pedagogy, and about ways to increase interdisciplinary research and teaching collaborations at UMaine.  The hope is that the seminar will initiate a “critical theory” group on campus that will continue to meet formally and informally to discuss these issues.  The session organizers would like to emphasize that this is intended to be a collaborative discussion that could potentially lead in many directions. The organizers are pleased to facilitate the discussion but do not intend to “lecture” on the selected readings — they hope, rather, that participants will use the readings to make connections across disciplinary boundaries and between research and teaching.

Seminar 2 Readings:
Adorno, Theodor W.  “Why Still Philosophy”
Derrida, Jacques. “The Future of the Profession or the Unconditional University (Thanks to the ‘Humanities,’ What Could Take Place Tomorrow)”

Co-Sponsored Events:

Fall 2011

  • School of Performing Arts:  Performance:  “America in the Poetic Imagination,” with John Burns, Narrator, Nancy Ellen Ogle, soprano, and Ginger Yang Hwalek, pianist (co-sponsored with the University of Maine School of Performing Arts, the departments of Foreign Languages and Classics, English, History, and the Honors College.)
  • Digital Humanities Week – 2011:  Lecture:  “Many to Many Engagement in Digital Humanities,” Professor Craig Dietrich, Institute of Multimedia Literacy, University of Southern California; Lecture:  “Taking History to Cyberspace: Maine Memory Network and Public History,”  Dr. Candace Kanes, Maine Historical Society (co-sponsored with the Departments of English, History, New Media and Sociology, and the University of Maine Digital Curation Program.)
  • Maine Heritage Lecture:  Lecture:  “Saving Second Nature:  The Environmental Movement in New England,”  McBride Professor of History  Richard Judd, Department of History, University of Maine (co-sponsored with College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.)

Spring 2011

  • Women in Curriculum/Women’s Studies:  Lecture: “Therapeutic Amnesias: Medical Rhetoric about Abortion from the 1930s to the 1960s”; Nathan Stormer, Associate Professor, Communication and Journalism, University of Maine
  • Canadian-American Center  [with Maine Folklife Center and numerous contributors]:  Public Presentation: “Everything is Connected: Environment, Economy, Foreign Policy, Sustainability, Human Rights and Leadership in the 21st Century”; Sheila Watt-Cloutier, Nobel Peace Prize Nominee and World Leader on Global Climate Change and Human Rights; Visiting Professor, Bowdoin College
  • Department of English: Public talk and screening of documentary film: Hey, Boo: Harper Lee and “To Kill a Mockingbird”; Mary McDonagh Murphy, Independent film and television writer/producer
  • Department of Modern Languages and Classics [also Anthropology and Project Opportunity]: Public showing and forum discussion of The Linguists; Jane Smith, Associate Professor, Modern Languages and Classics, University of Maine; Cynthia Fox, University of Albany
  • Department of Philosophy: Lecture: “Paranoia and Policy: Reading Popular Fiction as Bioethics”; Catherine Belling, PhD, Assistant Professor of Medical Humanities and Bioethics, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University
  • Department of History: Lecture: “Military History at American Universities and Colleges”; John Lynn, PhD, Professor of History, Northwestern University