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Addison and Bennington

Last Updated 4/24/2014 3:02:55 PM

Vermont Humanities Calendar of Events by County

Addison

May 7 — The Building of Middlebury. Middlebury College professor Glenn Andres illustrates the richness and significance of Middlebury’s buildings. On Saturday, May 10, he leads a walking tour of the sites (2:00-3:30 pm; meet at Middlebury Green bandstand). A First Wednesdays lecture. Hosted by the Ilsley Public Library. Middlebury, Ilsley Public Library, 75 Main St, 7:00 pm. Chris Kirby, (802) 388-4095.

May 14 — Vermont History through Song. Singer and researcher Linda Radtke, joined by pianist Arthur Zorn, brings Vermont history to life with engaging commentary about the songs found in the Vermont Historical Society's collection of sheet music. Dressed in period costume, Ms. Radtke takes listeners through state history, using the songs Vermonters published in their communities. Hosted by the Addison County Retired Teachers Association. Bristol, Howden Hall, 19 West St, 10:30 am. Susanne Slayton, (802) 989-7189.

May 21 — 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. Hosted by the Ilsley Public Library. Middlebury, Ilsley Public Library, 75 Main St, 4:00 pm. Chris Kirby, (802) 388-4095.

June 4 — Redeemer President: The Significance of Jimmy Carter. Dartmouth professor of American religious history Randall Balmer examines the rise of the Religious Right and the life and times of Jimmy Carter, a Southern Baptist Sunday school teacher elected president in 1976 with the support of evangelicals, most of whom were politically active for the first time but many of whom turned against him four years later.A First Wednesdays lecture (rescheduled from February 5). Hosted by the Ilsley Public Library. Middlebury, Ilsley Public Library, 75 Main St, 7:00 pm. Chris Kirby, (802) 388-4095.

September 15 — A Sense of Place: Vermont's Farm Legacy. The character of a place is shaped by its cultural heritage and folklife, the informal traditions of family and community that guide the ways in which a person plans a meal, treats a neighbor, or understands civic responsibility. In Vermont the cultural legacy of farming has strongly influenced the identity of Vermonters, and it is these distinctive traditions, which have persisted even with the decline in farm numbers, that help make the state unique. This lecture by Gregory Sharrow explores the fabric of farm culture in the past and probes its relationship to the world of Vermont today. Hosted by the Monkton Museum and Historical Society. Monkton, Fire Station, 3747 States Prison Hollow Rd, 7:00 pm. Gill B Coates, (802) 482-2277.

September 18 — Alfred Hitchcock and the Art of Suspense. Hitchcock famously said “Some films are slices of life; mine are slices of cake.” His career spanned forty years and many film eras. Film expert Rick Winston will discuss the evolution of Hitchcock’s craft, exploring his favorite themes, his relationship with his collaborators, and his wry sense of humour no matter how grisly the subject matter. By drawing on twelve film clips, starting with his 1925 silent The Lodger and continuing through to his Hollywood classics such as Notorious and Rear Window, Winston will illuminate the arc of Hitchcock’s brilliant career. Hosted by the Bristol Historical Society. Bristol, Howden Hall Community Center, 19 West St, 7:00 pm. Reg Dearborn, (802) 453-3526.

November 13 — Inventive Vermonters: A Sampling of Farm Tools and Implements. Vermonters have always been inventive, especially when it comes to agricultural innovations. Time- and laborsaving inventions that ease the hard work of farming have always been important in our rural, agricultural state. In this illustrated lecture, retired engineer Paul Wood presents a sampling of farm tools, implements, and artifacts invented or produced in Vermont, examining their use, uniqueness of design, and the often fascinating stories of the inventors themselves. Hosted by the Starksboro Historical Society. Starksboro, Starksboro Public Library, 2827 Route 116, 7:00 pm. Robert Stokes, (802) 453-3068.

Bennington

  April 27 — Robert Frost’s Spring Poems at the Dorset Inn. Join Vermont Humanities Council executive director Peter Gilbert for a discussion of three of Frost's greatest poems, each about spring and each warranting a closer look: "Nothing Gold Can Stay," "Two Tramps in Mudtime," and "Mending Wall." Participants may read the poems in advance or read them upon arriving. Peter Gilbert is the literary executor of the Robert Frost Estate. Hosted by the Dorset Village Library.  Dorset Inn Living Room, 3:00 pm. To learn more, 802.867.5774.

April 27 — Book Discussion: The Life and Times of Michael K. by J. M. Coetzee. Part of the Booker Prize Winners series. Established in 1968, England's Booker Prize is awarded annually to a citizen of the U.K., the Commonwealth, Ireland, Pakistan, or South Africa who has written the year's best novel according to a panel of critics, writers, and academics. In a short 35 years, the Booker has achieved an air of dignity and respect that rivals even the 86-year-old Pulitzer Prize. Graham Swift, who won the Booker in 1996, singled it out as the finest accolade a writer can receive. "It's the one which, if we're completely honest, we most covet." Led by Helene Lang. Hosted by the Martha Canfield Memorial Free Library. Arlington, Martha Canfield Memorial Free Library, 528 East Arlington Road, 2:00 pm. Phyllis Skidmore, (802) 375-6153.

May 7 — Words We No Longer Use: A Study in Language and Culture. Dr. Ronald Sobel, Senior Rabbi Emeritus of Temple Emanu-El in New York City, the largest synagogue in the world, explores how, from the Biblical period to our own time, language has influenced culture and the way people relate to each other.A First Wednesdays lecture. Hosted by the Mark Skinner Library. Manchester, First Congregational Church, 7:00 pm. Cindy Waters, (802) 362-2607.

May 11 — Book Discussion: The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy. Part of the Booker Prize Winners series. Established in 1968, England's Booker Prize is awarded annually to a citizen of the U.K., the Commonwealth, Ireland, Pakistan, or South Africa who has written the year's best novel according to a panel of critics, writers, and academics. In a short 35 years, the Booker has achieved an air of dignity and respect that rivals even the 86-year-old Pulitzer Prize. Graham Swift, who won the Booker in 1996, singled it out as the finest accolade a writer can receive. "It's the one which, if we're completely honest, we most covet." Led by Helene Lang. Hosted by the Martha Canfield Memorial Free Library. Arlington, Martha Canfield Memorial Free Library, 528 East Arlington Rd, 2:00 pm. Phyllis Skidmore, (802) 375-6153.

May 25 — Book Discussion: The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje. Part of the Booker Prize Winners series. Established in 1968, England's Booker Prize is awarded annually to a citizen of the U.K., the Commonwealth, Ireland, Pakistan, or South Africa who has written the year's best novel according to a panel of critics, writers, and academics. In a short 35 years, the Booker has achieved an air of dignity and respect that rivals even the 86-year-old Pulitzer Prize. Graham Swift, who won the Booker in 1996, singled it out as the finest accolade a writer can receive. "It's the one which, if we're completely honest, we most covet." Led by Helene Lang. Hosted by the Martha Canfield Memorial Free Library. Arlington, Martha Canfield Memorial Free Library, 528 East Arlington Rd, 2:00 pm. Phyllis Skidmore, (802) 375-6153.

June 4 — The Examined Life. Socrates famously proclaimed, "The unexamined life is not worth living." Philosophy and classics scholar Susanne Claxton explores what constitutes the examined life and how we, in the twenty-first century, may best pursue it.A First Wednesdays lecture (rescheduled from February 5). Hosted by the Mark Skinner Library. Manchester, First Congregational Church, 7:00 pm. Cindy Waters, (802) 362-2607.

June 8 — The Neolithic World of Stone: From Gobekli Tepe to Stonehenge. Art historian Bob Manning will examine two neolithic sites, Stonehenge, and Gobekli Tepe, which predates Stonehenge by 6,000 years. Sharing modern speculation as to their functions, Bob will focus on these “stone circles” as two distinctly different windows through which to view ancient humankind. Hosted by the Mark Skinner Library. Manchester Center, Equinox Village, 49 Maple St, 4:00 pm. Cindy Waters, (802) 362-2607.

June 11 — A High Price to Pay, A Heavy Burden to Bear: One Family’s Civil War Story. Abel Morrill, Sr., was an early settler of Cabot, Vermont. He was a respected farmer and maple sugar producer for much of the 19th century. His story reflects the hardship and heartbreak suffered by those who lived at the time of America’s greatest conflict, the Civil War. David Book’s portrayal of Abel Morrill profiles life before the war and life as it was affected by the war. Drawing on primary resources, Book’s monologue describes with historical accuracy life in mid-19th century Vermont and is a story that could be repeated by many families in every town in Vermont during this era. Hosted by the Bennington Senior Center. Bennington Senior Center, 124 Pleasant St, 1:00 pm. Susan Hoag, (802) 442-1052.

July 17 — The Old Country Fiddler: Charles Ross Taggart, Vermont’s Traveling Entertainer. Having grown up in Topsham, Vermont, Charles Ross Taggart went on to a forty-year career performing in countless stage shows across the country, including the famous Red Path Chautauqua circuit. A fiddler, piano player, humorist, singer, and ventriloquist, he made at least 25 recordings with the Victor, Edison, and Columbia companies, and appeared in a talking movie picture four years before Al Jolson starred in The Jazz Singer. Fiddler Adam Boyce portrays Mr. Taggart near the end of his career, circa 1936, sharing recollections of his life and career interspersed with live fiddling and humorous sketches. Hosted by the Dorset Historical Society. Dorset, Bley House Museum, Route 30 At Kent Hill Road, 12:00 pm. Judith Harwood, (802) 362-3708.

August 15 — A Sense of Place: Vermont's Farm Legacy. The character of a place is shaped by its cultural heritage and folklife, the informal traditions of family and community that guide the ways in which a person plans a meal, treats a neighbor, or understands civic responsibility. In Vermont the cultural legacy of farming has strongly influenced the identity of Vermonters, and it is these distinctive traditions, which have persisted even with the decline in farm numbers, that help make the state unique. This lecture by Gregory Sharrow explores the fabric of farm culture in the past and probes its relationship to the world of Vermont today. Hosted by the Landgrove Meetinghouse. Landgrove Meetinghouse, 88 Landgrove Rd, 4:00 pm. Priscilla Grayson, (802) 824-6867.

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