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Humanities for Everyone

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Springfield Town Library

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43 Main St
Springfield, VT 05156 United States

April 2016

Endangered Alphabets, Cultural Erosion, and the Future of the Written Word

April 28, 2016
6:30 pm

What does the age of digital convergence, Facebook, and globalization mean for the future of the written word? Writer/carver/painter Tim Brookes offers remarkable and thought-provoking perspective on this question by looking at a range of forms of writing from all over the world that are in danger of extinction. Read More »


October 2016

Antarctica and South Georgia: 100 Years after Shackleton

October 6, 2016
6:30 pm

Vermont resident and adventurer, Peter LaBelle, will chronicle his trip to the Falklands, South Georgia Island, and Antarctica with a slide show and discussion of Ernest Shackleton’s ill-fated voyage aboard the Endurance in 1914. Read More »


Rediscovering Wooden Boats

October 27, 2016
6:30 pm

Self-described as a "euphorically wandering helmsman," Norwich resident and former boat builder Jay Whitehair will guide a conversation inspired by images and objects that connect Shackleton’s doomed barquentine, the Endurance, with the history of wooden ship building and with life aboard ship in the early days of global discovery. Read More »


November 2016

Endurance Book Discussion

November 9, 2016
12:00 pm

Bring a bag lunch and join Library Director Amy Howlett and fellow readers to discuss Caroline Alexander’s The Endurance: Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition. Read More »


Endurance Book Discussion

November 10, 2016
6:00 pm

Bring a bag lunch and join Library Director Amy Howlett and fellow readers to discuss Caroline Alexander’s The Endurance: Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition. Read More »


March 2017

A Poet’s Work: Can it be Defined?

March 30, 2017
6:30 pm

Poet and educator Dan Heller will give a poetry reading followed by a lively and educational poetry mini-workshop. Read More »


April 2017

Vermont Reads: Introduction to Genealogy

April 20, 2017
6:30 pm

Have you always wanted to research your family tree, but don't know where to start? Hugh Putnam of the Springfield Art and Historical Society will present an Introduction to Genealogy. Hugh will cover the various aspects of getting started in genealogy. Read More »


September 2018

Solidarity Forever: Songs of Unions and Labor

September 13, 2018
7:00 pm
Image of Rebel Girl poster

For centuries, working people have used songs to express protest and hope and as an organizing tool. Mark Greenberg surveys American labor songs from the beginnings of the Industrial Revolution, through the Wobblies, and into the coal wars of the 1930s. Read More »


September 2019

Reading Frederick Douglass 2019 – Springfield

September 30, 2019
12:15 pm

Join us as we read together the fiery July 5, 1852 speech in which the great abolitionist orator Frederick Douglass took exception to being asked to commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence. This is a participatory event. Community members are invited to witness and/or join in the reading. Copies of the speech will be provided. Read More »

October 2019

Vermont Reads 2019: Discussion with Cartoonist Jason Lutes

October 2, 2019
6:30 pm

Ever wonder what it would be like to create a graphic novel or write a book of historical fiction? How about creating a historical/graphic novel? Jason Lutes will discuss his journey to becoming a cartoonist, including the process of conceiving, researching, writing, and drawing his graphic novel Berlin, a work of historical fiction about the rise of fascism in Weimar Germany. Read More »


Vermont Reads 2019: Civil Rights Songs Sing-along

October 16, 2019
6:30 pm

Singing was an important part of the Civil Rights movement at meetings and during marches. Paul Ippolito will lead a sing-a-long of songs from the era. Each song will be introduced with its historical importance. Read More »


December 2019

Soup to Nuts: An Eccentric History of Food

December 14, 2019
11:00 am
Image of painting of medieval kitchen helpers

The history of what and how we eat encompasses everything from the prehistoric mammoth luau to the medieval banquet to the modern three squares a day. Presented by writer Rebecca Rupp, this talk let attendees find out about the rocky evolution of table manners, the not-so-welcome invention of the fork, the awful advent of portable soup, and the surprising benefits of family dinners . Read More »


March 2020

**POSTPONED** The Genealogy of Happiness: From Aristotle to Positive Psychology

March 25, 2020
6:30 pm
Image for The Genealogy of Happiness

What is happiness? Can it be measured? And what is the relationship between happiness and virtue, money, pleasure, relationships, mindfulness, and satisfaction? This program with William Edelglass will begin with an overview of different conceptions of happiness in Western philosophy, religion, and political theory. Read More »


July 2020

*DIGITAL* Bearing Witness and Endurance of Voice: The Legacy of Lucy Terry Prince

July 29, 2020
6:00 pm
Painting of Lucy Terry Prince

In this presentation, Shanta Lee Gander illustrates the life of Lucy Terry Prince—born in Africa, transported to Rhode Island by slave traders, and eventually living free in Vermont. Gander discusses Prince's importance as a poet and orator, and as author of the oldest known poem in the United States written by an African American. Read More »


September 2020

*DIGITAL* The Value of Our Stories

September 25, 2020
6:00 pm
Rajnii Eddins beside a brick wall

Each one of us has a story that is valuable. Poet Rajnii Eddins utilizes spoken word as a tool for engagement in conversations about race, culture, equity and the richness to be found in each of our stories. Read More »

October 2020

*DIGITAL* A History of the Concept of Race

October 6, 2020
7:00 pm
Image of multiple faces combined

The first European to divide the peoples of the world into distinct races, in the seventeenth century, claimed that the Sami people of northern Scandinavia were one of four races on earth. Professor William Edelglass will trace the intellectual history of the concept of race in the West, from its prehistory to today. Read More »


February 2021

*DIGITAL* The Black Presence at the Battle of Bennington

February 24
6:00 pm
Image of painting of black soldier on horseback.

Most Vermonters might be surprised that among the 30 men killed at the Battle of Bennington was a Black man, Sipp Ives, a member of Seth Warner’s Continental regiment of Green Mountain Boys. And Ives was not the only patriot of African descent who played a role in the fighting and its aftermath. Read More »


September 2021

Do We Still Need Armed Citizenry?

September 21
6:00 pm

For most of its life, the Second Amendment was a very sleepy amendment. Unlike the First Amendment, which quickly raised the vexing problem of what speech is protected, the Second Amendment received very little attention from cities and states until after the 9/11 attacks. Read More »

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