Public Programs and Events

The Center promotes understanding of the humanities and highlights their vital role in a vibrant, democratic society through a variety of public programs and initiatives, podcasts, and events.

Humanities in Action

humanities in action

The Center’s Humanities in Action initiative highlights perspectives from leading humanists on compelling issues; provides ​​information about public policies affecting humanities research, education, and public programs; and supports humanities advocacy with a variety of tools and resources.

Pursuing Justice and Preserving Open Debate

How do we balance our pursuit of a more just and equitable society with our desire to protect freedom of expression?

Calling on the Humanities in the Midst of a Pandemic

What role do the humanities play in confronting a crisis like COVID-19?

Loss, Grief, and the Humanities in the Time of Pandemic

The humanities demonstrate we are never alone in our experience, but are always caught up in recurring and collective cycles of life, death, and suffering.

100 Years and Counting: The Continuing Struggle for Gender Equality

As we observe the centennial of the Nineteenth Amendment, it’s clear that the march toward equality is far from over.

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Humanities Moments

The Humanities Moments project is an ongoing effort to gather and share personal accounts of the ways the humanities illuminate our lives, help us better understand ourselves and each other, and allow us to more fully appreciate where we came from and where we are going.

A National Reckoning

Contributors to this collection reflect on the long, and often overlooked, history of racial inequality with an eye towards how the humanities can help overcome past injustices.

Creating Shelter: Moments from Home

In this collection of moments, contributors imagine home as a place, a feeling, a set of relationships, and as a site of learning and personal growth.

Homeschooling and the Humanities

College freshman Isabella Kemp shares her self-realizations and new understandings gained through homeschooling family members during the quarantine.


Using Language to Humanize Healthcare

Dr. Michael Stanley celebrates a principle of healthcare that draws from philosophy, mythology, and literature to understand individuals and their circumstances.

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Center podcasts explore a range of fascinating topics and feature conversations with scholars discussing their work—the questions that intrigue and perplex them, the passion that drives them, and how their scholarship may change the ways we think about the world around us.


Discovery and Inspiration

Podcast Series

What makes scholars so passionate about the subjects they pursue? What is it like for them to make a new discovery? To answer a confounding question? And what can we learn by taking the time to ask scholars about the research they are doing?


Activism Beyond the City: Women, Rural Communities, and the Struggle for Black Freedom

Katherine Mellen Charron (Fellow, 2019–20)

Charron discusses her research into the legacies of local, community-based, rural Black women’s activism in North Carolina.

PODCAST humans and the environment

Home Matters: Picturing and Understanding Place

Confronting contemporary challenges is impossible unless we understand the ways that humans interact with their environments and the repercussions those interactions have both locally and globally.

PODCAST the Caribbean and its relation to the Atlantic

Excursions: Revisiting the History of the Caribbean

This podcast features conversations with several recent Fellows whose scholarship deals with the Caribbean and its relation to the Atlantic slave trade as well as a birthplace for not only revolutionary democracy but reggae music.

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The Center hosts an ongoing slate of events designed to explore important topics, showcase the work of scholars, and foster greater appreciation for the value of the humanities in our lives.


The NHC’s Virtual Book Club Series: Race and Injustice

July 15–August 19, 2020

This installment in our virtual book club series features six gifted scholars whose work helps illuminate the long history, bitter realities, and complex dynamics surrounding racial oppression in the United States.

For Ourselves and Our Posterity: The U.S. Constitution, Then and Now

January and February, 2020

NHC Fellows discuss how their work helps us better understand the creation and living legacy of the U.S. Constitution as we endeavor to form a more perfect union.


The Trial of Lizzie Borden

November 19, 2019 at 6:00 pm

Cara Robertson (Fellow 2004–05; 2005–06) discusses one of the most famous trials in American history, offering not only a detailed account of events but a window into life in America’s Gilded Age.

VIDEO addressing environmental change

Beyond Despair: Theory and Practice in Environmental Humanities

April 3–5, 2019

This unique three-day summit of environmental humanities scholars and experts from across the country featured a dynamic intersection between discussion, presentations, and exhibitions, grounded in practical site excursions.

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Many of the Center’s public events are made available via video streaming, and recordings may be found on the Center’s channels on YouTube and Vimeo along with other Center-produced content.

VIDEO Madness in the City of Magnificent Intentions

NHC Virtual Book Club: “Madness in the City of Magnificent Intentions”

Martin Summers (Fellow, 2013–14)

Summers charts the history of Saint Elizabeths hospital and demonstrates how race was central to virtually every aspect of its existence.


NHC Virtual Book Club: “The Contested Murder of Latasha Harlins”

Brenda E. Stevenson (Fellow, 2015–16)

Stevenson explores the long-simmering resentment within LA’s Black community that ultimately erupted in the 1992 LA Riots.


Educating Citizens and Reforming Generations

Alan Taylor (Fellow, 1993–94)

In the wake of the American Revolution, republican reliance on popular sovereignty complicated efforts by elites to improve voters through education.


An Evening with Seymour Hersh

NHC Public Event

Seymour “Sy” Hersh, one of our nation’s most important investigative journalists, discusses his most recent book, Reporter: A Memoir.

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NHC entrance at night

For additional news and information about the Center as well as other things happening in the humanities, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. We also encourage you to share what you find here with others and help us draw attention to the value of the humanities for everyone.