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August 2020

“That the People May Live”: The Life and Legacy of Nicholas Black Elk, Holy Man of the Lakota

August 13
7:00 pm
Black Elk with his wife and family

This lecture explores the life and legacy of Nicholas Black Elk (c1866-1950), the Lakota holy man made famous by the book Black Elk Speaks. Damian Costello begins with Black Elk’s Great Vision and his struggle to discern his calling during the events of the Great Sioux War. Read More »

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September 2020

Book Discussion: The Education of Henry Adams by Henry Adams

September 20
1:30 pm
Image of painting of Eudora Welty

Part of the Memorable Memoirs series. Memoirs come in all shapes and sizes, but they all have one thing in common: They are not autobiographies. Rather than a straight chronology of the author’s life, memoirs hone in on a specific feature of that life. The memoirs in this series use both traditional and unconventional formats to do just that. Read More »

October 2020

Merely Bystanders: The Psychology of Courage and Inaction

October 7
7:00 pm
Woman taking photo of burning car

Amherst College psychology professor Catherine Sanderson examines the factors that lead most of us to stay silent in the face of bad behavior, and how this tendency to stay silent allows such acts to continue. Sanderson will provide practical strategies that we can all use to speak up and take action. Read More »

Book Discussion: Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

October 12
6:30 pm
Image of Zora Neale Hurston

During the 1920s, New York's Harlem neighborhood hosted an explosion of African-American cultural expression. This series features a history of the era alongside texts that have come to define it. Read More »

Finding Jesse: A Fugitive from Slavery in Vermont

October 14
7:00 pm
Image of Jesse

“Finding Jesse: A Fugitive from Slavery in Vermont” traces Jesse’s life from enslavement in North Carolina to freedom in Vermont. This illustrated talk by Jane Williamson brings the narrative of one slave out of anonymity and explores his life and pursuit of freedom. Read More »

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Alexander von Humboldt and the United States: Art, Nature, and Culture

October 14
7:00 pm
Portrait of Alexander von Humboldt

Renowned Prussian naturalist and explorer Alexander von Humboldt was one of the most influential figures of the nineteenth century. He visited the United States in 1804 and met with our leading thinkers. Eleanor Jones Harvey, senior curator at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, illuminates Humboldt's lasting impression on American visual arts, sciences, literature, and politics. Read More »

Book Discussion: One Writer’s Beginnings by Eudora Welty

October 18
1:30 pm
Image of painting of Eudora Welty

Part of the Memorable Memoirs series. Memoirs come in all shapes and sizes, but they all have one thing in common: They are not autobiographies. Rather than a straight chronology of the author’s life, memoirs hone in on a specific feature of that life. The memoirs in this series use both traditional and unconventional formats to do just that. Read More »

November 2020

Book Discussion: Growing Up by Russell Baker

November 8
1:30 pm
Image of painting of Eudora Welty

Part of the Memorable Memoirs series. Memoirs come in all shapes and sizes, but they all have one thing in common: They are not autobiographies. Rather than a straight chronology of the author’s life, memoirs hone in on a specific feature of that life. The memoirs in this series use both traditional and unconventional formats to do just that. Read More »

Book Discussion: Cane by Jean Toomer

November 16
6:30 pm
Image of Zora Neale Hurston

During the 1920s, New York's Harlem neighborhood hosted an explosion of African-American cultural expression. This series features a history of the era alongside texts that have come to define it. Read More »

December 2020

Book Discussion: Before I Say Goodbye by Ruth Picardie

December 6
1:30 pm
Image of painting of Eudora Welty

Part of the Memorable Memoirs series. Memoirs come in all shapes and sizes, but they all have one thing in common: They are not autobiographies. Rather than a straight chronology of the author’s life, memoirs hone in on a specific feature of that life. The memoirs in this series use both traditional and unconventional formats to do just that. Read More »

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