Kansas Humanities Council

The Kansas Humanities Council connects communities with history, traditions, and ideas to strengthen civic life. Since 1972, KHC has been a partner and advocate for the cultural life of the state.

Democracy demands wisdom and vision in its citizens, and the humanities provide a way to gain both. Healthy communities depend on the humanities to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas and viewpoints about historical and contemporary topics, opportunities to deepen understanding of our shared heritage, and encouragement for innovation in civic life.

To meet these needs, KHC makes available free humanities resources for community use. These include grant opportunities to create cultural events or preserve local historical artifacts and programs, including speakers on history topics, facilitators for book discussions, poet laureate presentations, and additional one-of-a-kind opportunities. KHC is the only organization dedicated to creating, supporting, and promoting the humanities as a resource for all Kansans.

  • Click here to see a map highlighting KHC activities
  • Click here for a two-page summary of KHC’s strategic plan and fiscal year 2013 data
  • Click here for a copy of KHC’s entire strategic plan

KHC is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization governed by a Board of Directors. Individual and corporate contributions, funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities, and funding from the State of Kansas supports our work. Become a Friend of the Humanities and join us.


Calling all poets and poets-to-be with Kansas roots for HomeWords,  a weekly poetry column, edited by Kansas Poet Laureate Wyatt Townley,  to be published in newspapers across this great state. Read more…

Truman Capote and the Search for Meaning

This summer, KHC features daily posts about the speakers and topics in the Humanities catalog. Today’s featured presentation is “Truman Capote and the Meanings of Kansas” by Dave Tell.

in cold blood“Many people know that Truman Capote came to Kansas to write In Cold Blood,” says Dave Tell. “But few people realize how Kansans used his presence to define—and redefine—the meaning of Kansas.”

Truman Capote’s 1966 book In Cold Blood rattled the state of Kansas. Kansans were so enraptured by Capote’s version of the 1959 murder of the Clutter family that one historian even called the western half of the state “Capote country.” In his Speakers Bureau presentation, “Truman Capote and the Meaning of Kansas,” Tell explores editorial and newspaper columns to uncover the reasons people cared about Capote, and how they refused to let him have the last word on the meaning of Kansas.

Dave Tell

Dave Tell

Dave Tell is an associate professor of Communication Studies at the University of Kansas and the author of Confessional Crises and Cultural Politics in Twentieth-Century America. He earned his PhD in Communication Arts and Sciences from Pennsylvania State University.

You can attend Dave Tell’s “Truman Capote and the Meanings of Kansas” on October 22nd in Wichita. You can also bring this or one of the other presentations in the Humanities catalog to your community for FREE with a Resource Center Support Grant. It’s quick and easy! Visit the Speakers Bureau page to get started or contact Leslie Von Holten, director of programs, at leslie(at)kansashumanities.org for more information.