Night Moves: Discovering the Wonders of Bird Migration
Home » Night Moves: Discovering the Wonders of Bird Migration
Many of us are dazzled by autumn colors during the daytime. But we can be just as dazzled by the night moves of thousands of birds passing quietly overhead during their fall migration. Join “bird diva” Bridget Butler to discover this almost-silent world.
Recent First Wednesdays Recordings
The Legacy of “The Notorious RBG”
Vermont HumanitiesJune 15, 2022
Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a feminist superhero who could still do a plank at 87 and who survived pancreatic cancer long beyond expectations. Dartmouth history professor Annelise Orleck examines the life of the brilliant jurist who remained fiercely progressive, unapologetically liberal, and committed to equality to the end, and who loved her status as a pop culture idol.
Disability and the Poetry of Natural and Supernatural Worlds
Vermont HumanitiesJune 6, 2022
Three poets—Eli Clare, Judy Chalmer, and Toby MacNutt—reflect on the ways disabled poets write about natural and supernatural spaces. In this wide-ranging discussion, they consider how poetry invites us into an embodied experience, and how supernatural poetry can expand or question traditional understandings of the “natural.”
Artist and legislator John R. Killacky shares his journey of overcoming paralysis from spinal surgery complications 25 years ago. He also reflects on how reentering the world in a disabled body radically changed his perspective in his artistic practice as well as in his advocacy for artists with disabilities.
In this fascinating talk, the author of our Vermont Reads 2021 choice, “We Contain Multitudes,” examines the writing and reading of letters as a literary device and also as a forum for self-expression and self-creation.
From Little Jerusalem to the Lost Mural: Preserving Jewish and Immigrant Heritage
Vermont HumanitiesMarch 25, 2022
In 1885, a group of Lithuanian immigrants settled in Burlington’s Old North End, where they transplanted their religious traditions and culture. Archivists Aaron Goldberg and Jeff Potash describe the “Lost Mural,” a rare survivor of the lost genre of European painted synagogues, and tell the story of conserving the mural in Burlington.
“Rebel Music:” Afro-Caribbean Music and Political Thought
Vermont HumanitiesMarch 23, 2022
Middlebury College professor Kemi Fuentes-George traces the development of pan-African political theory in the early 20th century and discusses how Afro Caribbean “rebel music” helped these ideas challenge established assumptions about nonwhite people and global relations.
Andrew Aydin, co-author of The March Trilogy with civil rights icon John Lewis, describes the creation of the next book in the series, RUN! Aydin also relates becoming an author, how he became involved in politics, and his experiences working with Congressman Lewis.
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.
Thinking Race, Religion, and Gender: Muslim Women and Islamophobia
Vermont HumanitiesJanuary 12, 2022
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.
Scholar Barry Deitz looks at the life and times of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of Sherlock Holmes. He discusses the inspiration for Holmes and examines what other writers, actors, and directors have done with the character over the past 30 years.
Artist Ed Gendron shares and discusses images from his photo project about World War II reenactors in the United States. Gendron later produced Playing Soldier, a feature-length documentary on the same topic. “The re-enactors assert that ‘history is a personal thing,’ says Gendron. “And for them, it may be quite true.”
Artist, legislator, and former director of the Flynn Center in Burlington, John R. Killacky draws on commentaries from his book Because Art to relate his experiences as dancer in New York in the late 1970s and ’80s, the maelstrom of the culture Wars of the 1990s, and his work advocating for artists with disabilities.