Vermont Humanities
music scholars James Lockridge, Melo Grant, and Reuben Jackson

Vermont Humanities Listening Party

Through generations, there is always a band, song, or album that inspires a love of music. In this Fall Festival 2023 event at Vermont Humanities in Montpelier, music scholars Reuben Jackson, Melo Grant, and James Lockridge take us through the tracks of some of their favorite artists. From the songs of Phoebe Snow to the beats of Public Enemy, this event will span the many genres and decades that continue to inspire us today.

From Piano Playing to the Player Piano, 1900 Through the Roaring 20s

In this Fall Festival 2023 event at the Main Street Museum in White River Junction, Artis Wodehouse pianolizes (foot-pump) a representative group of piano rolls from the early 1910s to the 1920s on the Main Street Museum’s player piano. They provide musical guideposts for her description of the significant cultural and musical impact of the play piano’s unprecedented ability to deliver a musical performance.

A green hill spotted with small colorful doors for Hobbit homes

Tolkien and Goddess Worship

In this First Wednesdays event recorded on November 2, 2022 at the Rutland Free Library, UVM lecturer Chris Vaccaro explores J.R.R. Tolkien’s devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and his occupation with female divinities such as Varda, Yavanna, Melian, Luthien, and Galadriel in his work. Vaccaro compares these divinities with goddesses within Greco-Roman, Celtic, and Norse mythologies and considers Tolkien’s influences.

Two elderly men sit in front of a white door on a red brick house while a dog watches through the window

Migration Pathways: Stories of Yesterday and Today

Andrew Ingall, creator of the project “Warlé, Yesterday, and Today,” presents a slide talk and storytelling exercise inspired by the lives and legacy of Warren Kronemeyer and Leon Ingall, a Vermont couple who were entrepreneurs and civic leaders in Townshend, VT during the 1980 and 1990s. Leon was a refugee twice: first fleeing the Bolsheviks in 1918 and then again from the Nazis in the late 1930s.

Illustration of people gathered around a document to discuss civics

Freedom and Unity Launch Party

Hosted by the Center for Cartoon Studies, this lively presentation about the making of Freedom and Unity, A Graphic Guide to Vermont Democracy features the cartoonists and scholars that helped create a comic book about the past, present, and potential of democracy and civics in Vermont.

A drone sits in a hangar looking out on a desert and mountain as a man in a jumpsuit walks towards it.

Dirty Work with Author Eyal Press

In his award-winning Dirty Work: Essential Jobs and the Hidden Toll of Inequality in America, journalist Eyal Press examines the morally troubling jobs that society tacitly condones, and the hidden class of workers who do them. Press, a contributor to The New Yorker and The New York Times, discusses his reporting for the book, which won the 2022 Hillman Prize for book journalism and appeared on numerous “best books of 2021” lists.

Drawing of people fleeing in terror during Midsummer Night's Dream

Vermont Teen Shakespeareans Save the Planet

Get Thee to the Funnery founder Peter Gould and a panel of informed, passionate, articulate, and wise Shakespeare campers describe examining global warming and climate justice through their study of “Midsummer Night’s Dream.”

Image of boat under green water with a rope tied around the bow

History in Hot Water: Climate Change and the Shipwrecks of Lake Champlain

Lake Champlain is home to hundreds of well-preserved shipwrecks that help tell the story of our region. But climate change is altering the lake’s underwater cultural heritage. Susan Evans McClure and Christopher Sabick from the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum consider the impact of historical objects changing before our eyes.

Person standing on a dock in the rain

NPR’s Eric Westervelt on Bigger Fires, Hotter Days, and Drier Lands

NPR national correspondent Eric Westervelt describes how mega fires, excessive heat and widening drought all underscore how climate change is fueling the routinization of extreme weather, with consequences for all of us.

Woman walking through a maze beside a seaside cliff

The Zone is Us: Sacrifice in the Space-Time of Climate Change

Gleaning from classical mythology, UVM professor Adrian Ivakhiv suggests three paths for navigating climate-related trauma: those of Chronos (science), of Aion (arts and humanities), and of Kairos (action without guarantee).