Vermont Humanities
A man in a black and white photo walks towards a bay of cows being milked in a barn while holding a piece of milking equipment

Before Your Time: Call it A New Life

Technological improvements, from butter churns to electricity, transformed life on Vermont farms from the 1890s through the mid-20th century. Many of these changes eased the workload of Vermont’s farming families. But other changes – done in the name of modernity – had long-term impacts on the future of dairy in our state.

Words in the Woods with Poet Linda Quinlan in Montpelier

Linda Quinlan reads three poems in Montpelier after historic flooding hit the city, including one in which she reminisced about her time living in New Orleans and Hurricane Katrina.

Dairy farmer loading hay on a wagon near Brandon, Vermont, August 1941. Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information Photograph Collection (Library of Congress)

Before Your Time: A Foot in Both Worlds

People speaking Spanish as they milk cows may not fit our traditional image of a Vermont farm. But workers from Mexico and Central America are crucial to the state’s economy. And such migrant labor has a long history in Vermont.

Poet Keysi Montas wears black framed glasses and a white shirt and holds a folder of poetry while standing on a bridge in front of green foliage and mountain views

Words in the Woods with Poet Keiselim (Keysi) Montás

In this video, Poet and author Keiselim (Keysi) Montás is joined by his daughter Mia Montás Antigua, a poet and author as well, for a reading at Lake Shaftsbury State Park in the fall of 2022 during a Words in the Woods event.

Man with shotgun leaning against a fake tree with a catamount at his feet

Before Your Time: The Curious Catamount

Though said to be extinct, catamounts live on in the minds of many Vermonters. In this episode we retrace a Barnard panther hunt from 1881 and consider the hold that these large cats continue to have on our imaginations.

Words in the Woods with Toussaint St. Negritude

Video: In this Words in the Woods event from July 9, 2022, Toussaint St. Negritude recites poems and plays music for an outdoor audience at Boulder Beach State Park in Groton, Vermont.

Words in the Woods with Abenaki Musician Bryan Blanchette

Video: In this Words in the Woods event, Abenaki singer-songwriter Bryan Blanchette is joined at Elmore State Park by a small electrified group to perform original and contemporary songs, some sung in the Abenaki language.

Woman in black and white photo touching her hair and looking down

Vermont Hairwork: Connecting Past and Present

19th century Americans often saved or exchanged locks of hair, constructing jewelry or keepsake wreaths of their kinship networks. In more recent decades, hair has become a powerful political medium. Middlebury professor Ellery Foutch shares the research about hair-based works in local collections and explores the meanings of hair in American culture, past and present.

Young Black Muslim woman in a black head scarf

Thinking Race, Religion, and Gender: Muslim Women and Islamophobia

UVM professor Ilyse Morgenstein Fuerst examines how race, religion, and gender affect the lives of Black Muslim women in the US. Exploring this diverse community helps illuminate how intersectionality functions, but also how one’s identity shapes religious practice and the experience of discrimination.