12 Months of the Humanities

Happy New Year from the Kansas Humanities Council!

As we embark upon a new year, KHC has 12 months of hometown humanities experiences to keep you engaged and inspired in 2017.

12-months-of-humanities

Twelve Communities to Host Poet Laureate of Kansas™ Events

Eric McHenry Photo courtesy of Kelly Magerkurth

Eric McHenry
Photo courtesy of Kelly Magerkurth

KHC announced the 12 Kansas communities that will host Poet Laureate of Kansas events in 2015-2016. Presentations and discussions exploring the humanities through poetry will be led by Eric McHenry of Lawrence, Kan., who was named the 2015-2017 Poet Laureate of Kansas in May.

Sept. 19, 2015: Leavenworth Public Library (Cindy McGuire, project director)

Sept. 26: Glasco Community Foundation (Joan Nothern, project director)

Oct. 5: Newton Public Library (Dan Eells, project director)

Nov. 10: Cimarron City Library (Sara McFarland, project director)

Nov. 11: Dodge City Public Library (Michael Biltz, project director)

Jan. 21, 2016: Kansas Cosmosphere & Space Center, Hutchinson (Mimi Meredith, project director)

Apr. 8: Hays Public Library (Lucia Bain, project director)

Apr. 12: Pioneer Memorial Library, Colby (Melany Wilks, project director)

Apr. 19: Kinsley Public Library (Joan Weaver, project director)

Apr. 19: Larned Correctional Mental Health Facility, Larned (Lana Hopkins, project director)

May 7: Pioneer Bluffs, Matfield Green (Lynn Smith, project director)

June 16: Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library (Miranda Ericsson, project director)

Support for the Poet Laureate of Kansas has been provided by the Friends of Naomi Patterson; the Barton P. and Mary D. Cohen Charitable Trust; and KHC Friends of the Humanities.

For more information or to donate to the Poet Laureate of Kansas program, click here.

Kansans Heart the Humanities

heart_humanitiesOver 120 Kansans have added their signatures to the letter to the House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee in support of funding for the National Endowment for the Humanities and State Humanities Councils, including the Kansas Humanities Council. Here is what they are saying about the impact of KHC and the humanities in their communities:

We are big fans of the Kansas Humanities Council. – Sublette

I firmly support the funding for KHC to continue the enrichment of all Kansas communities and the future of our families. Thank you for your efforts in this worthwhile cause. – Wichita

We feel the state humanities are vital to the quality of life in rural and urban areas of our great state of Kansas. -Elkhart

I definitely want to add my name to the letter! Without NEH funds, I doubt our museum would have ever started, much less continued with our mission. -Concordia

We have had numerous programs from both our State Humanities Council and the NEH on the Road exhibits program. These have allowed us to bring programs and exhibitions to our small community that we would not have been able to do otherwise. Not only do these events offer something new to our community, they also bring people to our town that in turn help our local economy. – Hiawatha

To add your signature to the letter, please send the following information to Julie Mulvihill at julie(at)kansashumanities.org by April 24:

  • Name
  • Position/Title
  • Institution or Organizational Affiliation
  • City
  • State

Thank you for helping KHC make the case to Congress for continued support. For NEH funding updates, continue to follow #humanitiesmatter on Twitter.

 

We Heart the Humanities. Do You?

heart_humanitiesThe House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee is currently deliberating the FY 2015 funding bill. The current version of the bill eliminates all funding for the National Endowment for the Humanities and the state humanities councils, including the Kansas Humanities Council.

What You Can Do

Join over 110 Kansans and add your signature to a letter from the Federation of State Humanities Councils to the House Appropriations Subcommittee to let them know that the Humanities Matter in Kansas. Your participation is easy and will demonstrate the variety and reach of the friends of the humanities in Kansas and across the nation.

Click here to read the letter.

To add your signature to the letter, please send the following information to Julie Mulvihill at julie(at)kansashumanities.org by April 24:

  • Name
  • Position/Title
  • Institution or Organizational Affiliation
  • City
  • State

Thank you for helping KHC make the case to Congress for continued support. For NEH funding updates, continue to follow #humanitiesmatter on Twitter.

Let Freedom Ring

Frederick Douglass Mural in Washington, D.C. by G. Byron Peck.

Frederick Douglass Mural in Washington, D.C. by G. Byron Peck. Library of Congress.

Inspired by our colleagues in Massachusetts, the Kansas Humanities Council would like to encourage Kansans to commemorate America’s independence by reading Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation and Frederick Douglass’s 1852 speech “The Meaning of the Fourth of July for the Negro” out loud with our family and friends. Will you join us? MassHumanities offers a wealth of resources on their website to help you create your own formal or informal reading on July 4th.

Why read these texts out loud?  Here’s some background about Douglass’s speech from the Mass Humanities website:

In his fiery July 5, 1852 speech, the great orator famously took exception to being asked to commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence. What brought him to this moment? What did he try to achieve? Was he un-patriotic or ultra-American? Did he actually dissociate himself from American citizenship or embrace it with this speech? It behooves us to read the speech and learn.

So, grab a hot dog, gather with friends and neighbors, and take a moment to reflect on the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, the 161st anniversary of Douglass’s speech, and the meaning of freedom – then and now.

Happy Fourth of July.

P.S. If reading these texts whets your appetite for more, check out KHC’s “Undergound Railroad in Missouri and Kansas” reader’s theater script.

The Heart of the Matter

Ready to be inspired?

In 2010, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences created a Commission on the Humanities and Social Sciences to address the importance of the humanities in the 21st century. The result is the Commission’s report, The Heart of the Matter. The report’s companion seven-minute film offers perspective about the role of the humanities in creating “a more civil public discourse, a more adaptable and creative workforce, and a more secure nation.”