VERMONT HUMANITIES COUNCIL
Sharing Our Past . . . Shaping Our Future
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11 Loomis Street * Montpelier, Vermont 05602 * (802) 262-2626
[log in to unmask] * www.vermonthumanities.org
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Calendar of Events - May 1 through June 15, 2007
All events are free, open to the public, and accessible to people with disabilities, unless otherwise noted.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 2 ~ HENRY V: WAR IN SHAKESPEARE, OLIVER, AND BRANAGH. Part of the First Wednesdays series. Peter Saccio, Shakespearean scholar and Dartmouth professor, examines politics and war in Henry V and in the adaptations of Laurence Olivier (1944) and Kenneth Branagh (1989). Film clips will be shown. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Ilsley Public Library. Middlebury, Ilsley Public Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Chris Kirby, (802) 388-4095.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 9 ~ BEARING WITNESS: ART AS SOCIAL COMMENTARY AND ART AS PROPAGANDA. The art and posters of World War II will be the main focus of this slide lecture by Bob Manning. Every government engaged in that conflict - Axis and other allied powers alike - produced powerful art that glorified the struggle on their own side while vilifying the enemy. Drawings made in secret by inmates of concentration camps will also be shown. Special emphasis is given to Norman Rockwell's Four Freedoms paintings. Rockwell did these paintings in his Arlington, Vermont studio in 1943, using neighbors as models. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Addison County Retired Teachers Association. Middlebury, Ilsley Public Library, 11:00 a.m. Call Stanley Berger, (802) 388-4581.
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 13 ~ THE BRITISH BALLAD TRADITION IN NEW ENGLAND. The traditional British ballads as sung in New England are a rich part of the literary and musical heritage of our region, and yet they are little known today. Although these ancient songs present their often tragic narratives with a high level of poetic artistry, the texts are inexorably wedded to their melodies and must be heard as music to be fully appreciated. As Robert Frost observed, "The voice and ear are left at a loss what to do with a ballad until supplied with the tune it was written to go with. That might be the definition of a true poem ...Unsung, it stays half-lacking." Burt Porter, who is a singer and scholar of ballads, presents a program of New England ballads, with a focus on Vermont versions and with a commentary on the history and art of balladry. He accompanies the singing with fiddle and mandolin. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Addison County Retired Teachers Association. Mi!
ddlebury, Ilsley Public Library, 11:00 a.m. Call Stanley Berger, (802) 388-4581.
FRIDAY, MAY 11 ~ DISCOVERING CALIFORNIA: LETTERS OF A VERMONT FAMILY IN THE GOLD RUSH. A dramatic reading of letters written in California by Park family members and family friend Charley Lincoln and sent to Vermont during the Gold Rush. Performed by Eric Peterson, Producer/Director of Oldcastle Theatre Company in Bennington, and actress Janis Young. North Bennington, Park-McCullough House, Carriage Barn, 7:30 p.m. Call Mary Feidner, (802) 442-7845.
SATURDAY, MAY 19 ~ VERMONT READS DAY AT THE BENNINGTON MUSEUM. In conjunction with the Bennington Museum, Bennington Free Library, the Bennington and Pownal Historical Societies, and the 'Tell Me a Story' project, the Vermont Humanities Council presents the Vermont Reads '07 kick-off with Counting on Grace author Elizabeth Winthrop. Museum admission is waived for this fun-filled day of book-based activities, French-Canadian music, and a talk and reading by Ms. Winthrop. Part of Vermont Reads, the Vermont Humanities Council's statewide, one-book community reading program. Bennington Museum, 1-4 p.m. Call Larissa Vigue-Picard, 802-262-2626.
BOOK DISCUSSION SERIES: AMERICANS ABROAD. We've all heard the stereotype of the "ugly American," but what really happens when Americans travel abroad? How are they perceived on foreign soil? How do they perceive themselves, displaced from their homeland? Led by Elayne Clift. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by John G. McCullough Free Library. North Bennington, John G. McCullough Free Library, Thursdays, 7:00 p.m. Call Mary Feidner, (802) 442-7845.
- May 10, Ernest Hemingway's A MOVEABLE FEAST
- May 24, Paul Bowles' UP ABOVE THE WORLD
- June 7, Mary Morris' NOTHING TO DECLARE
WEDNESDAY, MAY 2 ~ WAR VS. TRUTH: FREEDOM'S DILEMMA. Part of the First Wednesdays series. Veteran journalist Barrie Dunsmore discusses the contradictions inherent in time of war between the First Amendment rights of the news media and national security responsibilities of the federal government. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by St. Johnsbury Athenaeum, 7:00 p.m. Call Lisa von Kann, (802) 748-8291.
THURSDAY, MAY 3 ~ AMERICA AND THE MIDDLE EAST. How is the United States perceived in the Middle East? What do people in the Arab world believe America's priorities are in the region? How might the United States overcome the hostility that some currently feel toward the United States? Mansour Farhang will consider these questions and discuss the history of American relations in the Middle East. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Osher Lifelong Learning Institute of St. Johnsbury. St. Johnsbury House, 1:30 p.m. Call June Elliott, (802) 748-9165.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 9 ~ BOOKSIGNING AND AUTHOR TALK: A GUIDE TO FICTION SET IN VERMONT. Meet author Ann McKinstry Micou and learn more about her book - the first book published by VHC. Davies Memorial Library, Lower Waterford, 6:30 p.m. Call (802) 748-4609.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 2 ~ OUR BODIES, OURSELVES: AFTER 35 YEARS OF WOMEN'S HEALTH EDUCATION AND ADVOCACY, HOW FAR HAVE WE COME? Part of the First Wednesdays series. Co-Founders of the Boston Women's Health Book Collective, Judy Norsigian and Jane Pincus explore the history of this extraordinary book that helped to launch the women's health and self-help movements in the 1970s. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Fletcher Free Library. Burlington, Fletcher Free Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Barbara Shatara, (802) 865-7211.
THURSDAY, MAY 10 ~ BOOK DISCUSSION: LOUNG UNG'S FIRST THEY KILLED MY FATHER. Part of the Other Cultures Within Our American Culture series. These books have been chosen to reveal some of the different cultures that exist in our "melting pot" society. Led by Lesley Wright. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Charlotte Library and Friends of the Charlotte Library. Charlotte Library, 7:30 p.m. Call Sherrie Simmons, (802) 425-3864.
TUESDAY, MAY 15 ~ 'I HAVE DOCTORED MYSELF AS WELL AS I COULD': LAYWOMAN AS MEDICAL PRACTITIONER ON THE WESTERN FRONTIER. Whether using wet sheets to break a threatening fever, enticing a very long tape worm from a toddler's bowels, midwifing the birth of a neighbor's child, nursing a baby through dysentery, or using herbs to combat their own bouts of depression, frontierswomen practiced a folk medicine - and a folk wisdom - that served themselves, their families, and their communities well. Linda Peavy and Ursula Smith place these women within the context of nineteenth-century medical practice and invite discussion of parallels between folk remedies of yesteryear and alternative medicine practices of today. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Colchester Historical Society and Burnham Memorial Library. Colchester, Burnham Memorial Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Suzanne Furst, (802) 658-3706.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 16 ~ GEORGIA O'KEEFFE: AN AMERICAN MASTER. Georgia O'Keefe (1887-1986) early in her career, clearly demonstrated her fierce independence as she charted her own course between representation and abstraction. O'Keeffe's greatly enlarged flower paintings of the 1920s brought her fame, and her long and productive life transformed her into an American icon. In 1946 she became the first woman to be the subject of a one-person retrospective exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. O'Keeffe and her husband, Alfred Stieglitz belonged to that vanguard of modernists who profoundly changed America's cultural landscape in the first half of the 20th century. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Essex Free Library. Essex, Memorial Hall, 7:00 p.m. Call Eileen Corsaro, (802) 879-0313.
MONDAY, MAY 21 ~ BOOK DISCUSSION: MARK JUERGENSMEYER'S TERROR IN THE MIND OF GOD: THE GLOBAL RISE OF RELIGIOUS VIOLENCE. Part of the Comprehending Today's Middle East series. This six-part lecture and book discussion series focuses on the culture, heritage, religion and policies of the countries of the Middle East and their relationships with the United States. Led by John R. Turner. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Dorothy Alling Memorial Library. Williston, Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Martine Fiske, (802) 878-4918.
THURSDAY, MAY 31 ~ BEATRIX POTTER REVISITED. Using books, props, and bibliography, Helene Lang presents the life of Beatrix Potter, highlighting her artistic talent, her writing ability where every word is appropriate and perfectly arranged, and finally, her years as a countrywoman raising Herdwick sheep. The presentation takes her from her Victorian childhood, through the years of her little books, to her final thirty years of farming in England's Lake District. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Shelburne Museum. Shelburne Museum, Pleissner Gallery, 6:30 p.m. Call Renee Compagna, (802) 985-3348.
BOOK DISCUSSION SERIES: VERMONT WRITERS. This series uses literature set in Vermont between World War I and the 1990s to open conversation. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Enosburg Public Library. Enosburg Falls, Enosburg Public Library, Tuesdays, 7:00 p.m. Call Alan Stirt, (802) 933-2125.
- May 1, Walter Hard's A MOUNTAIN TOWNSHIP. Led by Cheryl Heneveld.
- May 15, Mari Tomasi's LIKE LESSER GODS, Archer Mayor's OPEN SEASON. Led by Ward Heneveld.
GRAND ISLE COUNTY
MONDAY, MAY 7 ~ NEW ENGLAND FIDDLE MUSIC: HISTORY AND CHARACTERISTICS. Yankee fiddling is one of America's most distinct musical traditions, differing from that of other regions in style, types of tunes, and general musical approach. Burt Porter presents both an explanation of the definitive characteristics of the music, illustrated with lively fiddling, and a discussion of the geographic, economic and cultural factors that have shaped the music. The various tune categories - jigs, hornpipes, clogs, etc. - are explained, and a consideration of how our hills and rivers, our transportation systems, and the culture of the early settlers affected our fiddle music provides insights into many aspects of our traditions. The relationships with New England fife-and-drum music and with classical violin music are also examined. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Grand Isle Historical Society. Grand Isle, Block School House, 7:00 p.m. Call Maggie Lawliss, (802) 372-9099.
BOOK DISCUSSION SERIES: MIDDLE EASTERN VOICES. This series focuses on four cultures that make up the Middle Eastern region - Arabic, Iranian (Persian), Jewish, and Turkish. Led by Arthur W. Biddle. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by South Hero Community Library. South Hero Community Library, Wednesdays, 7:00 p.m. Call Annie Brabazon, (802) 372-6209.
- May 9, Sahar Khalifeh's WILD THORNS
- June 13, A. B. Yehoshua's THE LOVER
WEDNESDAY, MAY 9 ~ ORAL HISTORY AS DISCOVERY RESEARCH. Oral history is a research method that can be used to explore the fabric of everyday experience, past or present. Want to know what life on a farm was like in the 1940s? An older farmer can tell you. He or she can also describe the complex changes that led us from then to now. Gregory Sharrow of the Vermont Folklife Center explores the richness and the significance of oral history as a documentary research method, illustrated with excerpts from his field recordings, featuring remarkable people and memorable stories. This program is also available in a workshop format to help community groups prepare for an oral history project. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Cambridge Historical Society. Jeffersonville, Second Congregational Church, 7:00 p.m. Call Roberta Marsh, (802) 644-2678.
SUNDAY, MAY 20 ~ CLARINA HOWARD NICHOLS AND WOMEN'S RIGHTS IN THE 1850s. Clarina Howard Nichols is known among Vermont historians as an early advocate of women's rights and the first woman to address the Vermont Legislature. What drove her to the Vermont Statehouse and later to the Kansas Constitutional Convention Hall of 1859? How did she confront the social taboos against women speaking in public? This program, by Lyn Blackwell, will explore the origins of Nichols' extraordinary political career and her relationship with the broader campaign for women's rights in the 1850s. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Brookfield Free Public Library. Brookfield Elementary School, 5:00 p.m. Call Jennifer Beaudin Ring, (802) 276-3352.
TUESDAY, MAY 22 ~ BOOK/FILM DISCUSSION: STEPHEN KING'S RITA HAYWORTH AND THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION and the SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION (film). Part of the From Page to Screen II series. When is it true that the movie's good, but the book is better? What makes it so? What does a book or the script of a play have to offer that its film version does not? Conversely, what does film offer that print cannot? Led by Helene Lang. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Kimball Public Library. Randolph, Kimball Public Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Lynne Gately, (802) 728-5073.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 30 ~ SPRIGHTLY STEPS: VERMONT'S CONTRA AND SQUARE DANCING TRADITION. Early settlers may have frowned upon the merriment of dancing as the work of the Devil, but the tradition found its way to the Green Mountains nevertheless. From fancy balls or cotillions to kitchen junkets or tunks, people of all ages and backgrounds fell under the spell of the fiddle. Changes of musical styles and culture have made old-time dancing nearly extinct, but some practitioners keep the old styles alive. Presented by Adam Boyce. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Williamstown Historical Society and Ainsworth Public Library. Location: "The Gardens,'" VT Route 14, Williamstown, 4:00 p.m. Call Becky Watson, (802) 433-1283.
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 6 ~ BOOK DISCUSSION: BA JIN'S FAMILY. Part of the Window to China series. Chinese literature has often focused on the family as a central theme. These books examine the family from the era of the warlords to the aftermath of the 1989 Democracy Movement. Led by Suzanne H. Brown. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Bradford Public Library. Bradford Public Library, 6:30 p.m. Call Irene Mann, (802) 222-4536.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 2 ~ INDIA: CRADLE OF RELIGIONS. Part of the First Wednesdays series. Distinguished museum curator and anthropologist Stephen Inglis considers the role of religion in the development of society in India. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Stanstead College. Stanstead, Quebec, Stanstead College, Pierce Hall, 7:00 p.m. Call Ross Murray, (819) 876-7891 ext. 270.
MONDAY, MAY 14 ~ BOOK DISCUSSION: P. L. GAUS' BLOOD OF THE PRODIGAL. Part of the Mysterious Lens on American Culture series. In these mysteries, mayhem and murder play out against a cultural/ethnic backdrop - illuminating more than simply whodunnit. Led by Francette B. Cerulli. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Dailey Memorial Library.
Derby, Dailey Memorial Library, 10:30 a.m. Call Barbara Whitehill, (802) 766-5063.
MONDAY, MAY 21 ~ BOOK DISCUSSION: PETER TAYLOR'S A SUMMONS TO MEMPHIS. Part of the Pulitzers II series. This series invites readers to curl up with a diverse array of award-winning novels and ask themselves: Why did they win? And would I have chosen them if I had been a judge? Whether it's the well-drawn characters, evocative settings, rich language - or all of the above - the ensuing discussion is sure to be dynamic. Led by Peter Burns. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Barton Public Library. Barton Public Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Andrea Poe, (802) 525-6524.
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 6 ~ FORWARD FROM HERE. Part of the First Wednesdays series (this event is rescheduled from April 4). As author Reeve Lindbergh turns sixty, her thoughts turn to the present and to the future, with a nod to her childhood with aviator father, Charles Lindbergh. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Goodrich Memorial Library. Newport, Goodrich Memorial Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Gary Mason (802) 334-7902.
SATURDAY, MAY 12 ~ VERMONT AND THE CIVIL WAR. Vermont author and Civil War historian Howard Coffin will speak on the Civil War and its effect on Vermonters. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Genealogical Society of Vermont. Rutland, Holiday Inn, 1:30 p.m. Call Joann Nichols, (802) 254-9554.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 16 ~ BOOK DISCUSSION: BECAUSE IT IS BITTER AND BECAUSE IT IS MY HEART. One of America's most prolific authors, Joyce Carol Oates's tale of a murder mystery laced with racial hatred brings to life the turbulence of the 1950s and '60s in New York City. Led by Lesley Wright. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Brandon Free Public Library. Brandon Free Public Library, 6:30 p.m. Call Lynn Wilson, (802) 247-8230.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 2 ~ PRESIDENTS COME TO VERMONT. Part of the First Wednesdays series. Since Vermont Statehood, American Presidents have traveled to the Green Mountain State - at birth, for vacations, seeking votes. Willard Sterne Randall, six-time Pulitzer Prize nominee, explores whether they found what they expected in Vermont. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Kellogg-Hubbard Library. Montpelier, Kellogg-Hubbard Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Rachel Senechal, (802) 223-3338.
TUESDAY, MAY 15 ~ GEORGIA O'KEEFFE: AN AMERICAN MASTER. Georgia O'Keefe (1887-1986) early in her career clearly demonstrated her fierce independence as she charted her own course between representation and abstraction. O'Keeffe's greatly enlarged flower paintings of the 1920s brought her fame, and her long and productive life transformed her into an American icon. In 1946 she became the first woman to be the subject of a one-person retrospective exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. O'Keeffe and her husband, Alfred Stieglitz belonged to that vanguard of modernists who profoundly changed America's cultural landscape in the first half of the 20th century. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Kellogg-Hubbard Library. Montpelier, Kellogg-Hubbard Library, Hayes Room, 7:00 p.m. Call Rachel Senechal, (802) 223-3338.
THURSDAY, MAY 17 ~ THE GRANITE WORKERS OF BARRE. This slide presentation and lecture by John Johnson illustrates the granite workers of Barre and explains the images within the context of America's industrial heritage using six themes: influence of cultural groups on the character of the industry; granite art as an expression of cultural values; role of the granite industry in the industrialization of Vermont; role of labor unions; merging of science and technology; and environmental changes. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Woodbury Historical Society. Woodbury Town Hall, 7:00 p.m. Call Tom Beers, (802) 456-1950.
MONDAY, MAY 21 ~ BOOK DISCUSSION: KANAN MAKIYA'S THE ROCK: A TALE OF SEVENTH-CENTURY JERUSALEM. Part of the series, Religious Experience: A Multicultural Exploration. Many of the conflicts in the world have some root in religious strife. This series proposes to explore just a few of the varieties of religious experience and the clashes between religious cultures in some outstanding works of fiction, using Huston Smith's book on world religions as a reference guide. Presented by Kellogg-Hubbard Library and supported in part by a grant from the Vermont Humanities Council. Montpelier, Kellogg-Hubbard Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Rachel Senechal, (802) 223-3338.
THURSDAY, JUNE 7 ~ OF BURQAS AND BIKINIS: AFGHANI WOMEN AND THE WAR ON TERROR. This slide presentation by Sanjukta Ghosh focuses on how media constructions of Afghani women were used to mobilize war against an already beleaguered nation. Using images from mainstream as well as alternative media such as the feminist press, it shows that the rhetoric of the media and their neat cultural icons was reminiscent of that used by Victorian feminists. In making this analogy, the presentation brings into focus how Muslim women's images have been used throughout history to further social and political ends. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Woodbury Community Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Woodbury Community Library, (802) 472-5710.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 2 ~ LOOKING AHEAD TO THE 2008 ELECTION AND BEYOND. Part of the First Wednesdays series. Olin Robison, NPR commentator and public policy expert, considers the 2008 presidential election and explores what the issues and candidates say about our current American culture. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Brooks Memorial Library. Brattleboro, Brooks Memorial Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Jerry Carbone, (802) 254-5290.
THURSDAY, JUNE 7 ~ 27 RUE DE FLEURUS. Part of the First Wednesdays series (this event is rescheduled from April 4). Dartmouth College Professor Barbara Will describes the Salon Gertrude Stein created on the Left Bank in Paris that included literary luminaries of the 20th century. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Brooks Memorial Library. Brattleboro, Brooks Memorial Library, 7:00 p.m. Call Jerry Carbone, (802) 254-5290.
THURSDAY, MAY 3 ~ BOOK DISCUSSION: MARI TOMASI'S LIKE LESSER GODS. Part of the Vermont Writers series. This series uses literature set in Vermont between World War I and the 1990s to open conversation. Led by Suzanne H. Brown. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Friends of the Norwich Public Library. Norwich Public Library, 7:30 p.m. Call Suzanne Laaspere, (802) 649-1708.
FRIDAY, MAY 18 ~ SUSPENDED WORLDS: VERMONT'S PAINTED THEATER CURTAINS. Between 1880 and World War II, painted theater curtains were artistic features of most New England villages and towns. In Vermont, painted curtains graced stages in town and grange halls, opera houses, and community theaters. A culture of local variety shows and traveling, professional talent flourished in front of those curtains in some very remote places. A tour of some of the 177 curtains in Vermont provides a glimpse into the world of talented and often sophisticated artists who were part of the rural cultural scene. Focusing on Charles Henry and his family troupe, with their blackface, their assortment of musical instruments, and their comedies, this program examines the cultural history of small town Vermont before World War I. A Vermont Humanities Council event hosted by Hawks Mountain Grange. Perkinsville, Hawks Mountain Grange, 7:00 p.m. Call Cathy Pollack, (802) 472-2236.
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