Conversation: Dr. Robert Newman

Conversation with Robert D. Newman

In this wide-ranging interview with ​​Conversation host Mitchell Lewis, NHC​ ​President Robert D. Newman discusses the significance of the humanities in everyday life, the enduring importance of humanities scholarship, and the mission of the National Humanities Center to advance humanities research, teaching, and public engagement. This program originally aired on UNC-TV’s NC Channel, June 27, 2017.

Robert D. Newman, “Rage and Beauty: Celebrating Complexity, Democracy and the Humanities”

On October 5, 2016, NHC director Robert D. Newman delivered a keynote address as a part of the ongoing Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Speaker Series at North Carolina Central University. ​In his remarks Newman touched on events as seemingly disparate as the workings of the Continental Congress and the social media origins of the Black Lives Matter movement and discussed the ways that the humanities help us understand the world, relate to one another, and come to terms with the most profound experiences and questions — on the nature of beauty, the search for justice, and the meaning of life in the face of horrific violence and our own mortality.

Robert D. Newman, “On a Sense of History, the Salvation of Poetry, and the Power of the Humanities”

In a wide-ranging talk to alumni Fellows that incorporated stories about figures as distinct as H. L. Mencken, Georgia O’Keefe, and Mary Oliver, ​NHC president Robert Newman ​discussed how the humanities lend perspective to current events, refine our sense of the world and all it contains, and provide wisdom for navigating the future.

What Does the Future Hold for the Humanities?

On Tuesday, February 9, NHC president and director Robert Newman joined Lloyd Kramer from UNC-Chapel Hill and Victoria Gallagher from NC State University to discuss the humanities’ future as part of a town hall meeting. The event, held at Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh, NC, and moderated by retired philosophy professor Clay Stalnaker, drew an engaged crowd who challenged the participants about role of the humanities in an environment that has become increasingly concerned with financial outcomes from academic activities, technologically-focused, and oriented toward the concerns of the individual rather than the common good.

NHC Director Robert D. Newman Speaks in Greensboro, NC

National Humanities Center President and Director Robert D. Newman was the featured guest at an event held January 14, 2016 at Scuppernong Books in Greensboro, NC. Newman discussed the ways the humanities give meaning to our lives, shape historical events, and help address the most complex challenges of modernity.

Robert D. Newman, “How the Humanities Give Moments Their Meaning”

Robert Kennedy

Humanities moments are the unexpected miracles that provide meaning, sharpen purpose, and offer depth — profound pauses in the otherwise frantic and self-absorbed scurrying that characterizes our gettings and spendings. When the personal harmonizes with the collective, the anomalous with the essential, humanities moments occur. When we recognize their exquisite and resounding centrality, we better understand the foundation of the democratic society of which they are a product.

Robert D. Newman, “Mickey Mouse, Vonnegut and Humanities Moments”

Robert Newman, National Humanities Center

At a recent dinner with Center Fellows alumni, President Robert Newman recounted several “humanities moments,” including Kurt Vonnegut’s response to the 1973 burning of his book Slaughterhouse Five by school officials in Drake, North Dakota.

Robert D. Newman Installed as President and Director of the National Humanities Center

Robert D. Newman, National Humanities Center

At a celebration October 22, 2015, Robert D. Newman was installed as the sixth president and director of the National Humanities Center. In his inaugural remarks, titled “Humanities Moments and the Heroic,” Newman shared his vision for the Center as the premier destination for humanities scholars, a national leader in the effort to strengthen teaching, and a vital resource for all who seek greater understanding of themselves and the world in which they live.