UGA’s second annual Humanities Festival scheduled for March 11-22

UGA Humanities CouncilIn 2023 the University of Georgia presented its first Humanities Festival, a series of public events showcasing the richness and diversity of research and practice in the humanities at UGA and throughout our extended community. The second annual UGA Humanities Festival will take place March 11-22, 2024, featuring lectures, conversations, performances, social gatherings, and bookend keynote events with Oxford Professor of Poetry A. E. Stallings and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Hua Hsu. The festival is organized by the UGA Humanities Council.

More events will be added to the festival schedule as they are finalized.

The UGA Humanities Council is supported by the Office of Research, the Office of the Provost, and the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, with the participation of more than 30 colleges, schools, departments, and units across the university.

 

Keynote Events

Mar 12 • 6 pm • UGA Chapel

UGA Humanities Festival Opening Lecture: A. E. Stallings

A.E. StallingsA.E. Stallings is an American poet who studied Classics at the University of Georgia and Oxford. In October 2023, she began her four-year elected term as Oxford Professor of Poetry, one of the world’s most prestigious academic honors in the field of poetry.

She has published four collections of poetry, Archaic SmileHapaxOlives, and most recently, Like, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. She has published three verse translations, Lucretius’s The Nature of Things (in rhyming fourteeners!), Hesiod’s Works and Days, and an illustrated The Battle Between the Frogs and the Mice. A selected poems edition, This Afterlife, has been published by FSG in the US and Carcanet in the UK.

Stallings has received a translation grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, and fellowships from United States Artists, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the MacArthur Foundation. She is also a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She speaks and lectures widely on a variety of topics, and has been a faculty member at conferences such as the Sewanee Summer Writers’ Conference and Breadloaf.

This event is presented by the Department of Classics, the Felson Classics Endowment, the Willson Center, the Jere W. Morehead Honors College, the UGA at Oxford Program, the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame, and by the UGA Humanities Council. It is also part of the Willson Center’s Global Georgia public event series and the Spring 2024 UGA Signature Lecture Series.

If you would like to inquire about accommodations for access to this in-person event, please contact Dave Marr at davemarr@uga.edu by March 5, 2024.

 

Mar 21 • 5:30 pm • Georgia Museum of Art

2023-24 Delta Visiting Chair for Global Understanding: Hua Hsu

The Willson Center welcomes Pulitzer Prize-winning author Hua Hsu to UGA March 21-22, 2024 as the annual Delta Visiting Chair for Global Understanding. This event, which will include a reading and conversation with Ed Pavlić, Distinguished Research Professor of English, African American studies, and creative writing, is part of the Willson Center’s Global Georgia public event series and the UGA Humanities Festival. Hsu’s visit is presented in partnership with the Institute for Asian Studies and the Georgia Review.

During his residency Hsu will also visit with students at UGA and Clarke Central High School, as well as participate in a public conversation on ‘zines co-hosted by the Georgia Review.

Hua Hsu is a staff writer at The New Yorker and the author of A Floating Chinaman: Fantasy and Failure Across the Pacific (2016) and the memoir Stay True (2022), which won the 2023 Pulitzer Prize for Memoir or Autobiography and the 2022 National Book Critics Circle award in autobiography. He is currently working on an essay collection titled Impostor Syndrome. Hsu is professor of literature at Bard College.

Hsu is a contributor to CBS News’s Sunday Morning; serves on the governance board of Critical Minded, a collaboration between the Ford Foundation and the Nathan Cummings Foundation; and serves as judge for various literary competitions and fellowships, including the PEN America Literary Awards, Rona Jaffe Fellowship, and Dayton Literary Peace Prize. He was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in criticism in 2018 (New Yorker); was a finalist for the James Beard Award for Food Writing in 2013 (for “Wokking the Suburbs,” Lucky Peach); and his work has been anthologized in Best Music Writing (2010 and 2012) and Best African American Essays 2010.

Hsu previously wrote for Artforum, The Atlantic, Grantland, Slate, and The Wire; his scholarly work has been published in American Quarterly, Criticism, PMLA, and Genre. He previously taught at Vassar College and was formerly a fellow at the New American Foundation and the Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center at the New York Public Library. Professor Hsu’s research and academic interests include Asian American studies, transpacific studies, critical ethnic studies, popular culture and subculture, and literary nonfiction.

 

Full Calendar of Events

Founders Memorial GardenMarch 11 • 5 pm • Founders Memorial Garden

UGA Humanities Festival Kickoff Reception and Faculty Appreciation Event

A public gathering with refreshments and conversation to begin the UGA Humanities Festival in its second year, with recognition of outstanding achievements by members of the UGA humanities community. Program begins at 5:30 p.m. with remarks by UGA Humanities Council co-chairs Jeanette Taylor, vice provost for academic affairs, and Nicholas Allen, Baldwin Professor in Humanities and director of the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts.

This event is presented by the UGA Humanities Council.

 

A.E. Stallings

Mar 12 • 6 pm • UGA Chapel

UGA Humanities Festival Opening Lecture: A. E. Stallings

A.E. Stallings is an American poet who studied Classics at the University of Georgia and Oxford. In October 2023, she began her four-year elected term as Oxford Professor of Poetry, one of the world’s most prestigious academic honors in the field of poetry.

She has published four collections of poetry, Archaic SmileHapaxOlives, and most recently, Like, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. She has published three verse translations, Lucretius’s The Nature of Things (in rhyming fourteeners!), Hesiod’s Works and Days, and an illustrated The Battle Between the Frogs and the Mice. A selected poems edition, This Afterlife, has been published by FSG in the US and Carcanet in the UK.

This event is presented by the Department of Classics, the Felson Classics Endowment, the Willson Center, the Jere W. Morehead Honors College, the UGA at Oxford Program, the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame, and by the UGA Humanities Council. It is also part of the Willson Center’s Global Georgia public event series and the Spring 2024 UGA Signature Lecture Series.

 

Mar 13 • 3 pm • Miller Learning Center, Room 150

Conversation: Lives and Careers of Humanities Graduates

A discussion with UGA alumni who have achieved happiness and success in careers spanning a diverse variety of fields, who will reflect on how their scholarship in the humanities prepared them for life after graduation.

Panelists: Jianna Justice, A24 (Film Studies and English); Christopher Jones, Secure Record Solutions (Comparative Literature); Jack May, Rio Carrabelle (Philosophy); Jenn Lee-Luccin, Sony Sucker Punch Productions (Women’s Studies and Social Work); and Conrhonda Baker, Howard Gilman Foundation (African American Studies and Sociology).

This event is presented by the Willson Center, the UGA Mentor Program, the Career Center, the Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities (CURO), the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, and the UGA Humanities Council.

 

Mar 13 • 5:30 pm • Miller Learning Center, Room 248

Women’s History Month lecture: Kate Manne – “The Authority of Hunger”

Preeminent feminist philosopher and social critic Kate Manne, associate professor in the Sage School of Philosophy at Cornell University, will present a talk on “The Authority of Hunger,” drawing from her recently published book Unshrinking: How to Face Down Fatphobia.

This event is presented by the Institute for Women’s Studies with support from the Willson Center, the department of Philosophy’s Scott and Heather Kleiner Lecture Series, a Mellon Foundation MultiVocal Humanities Grant, and the UGA Humanities Council. It is part of the Spring 2024 UGA Signature Lecture Series.

 

Frank GundersonMar 14 • 9 am • UGA Chapel

2024 African Studies Spring Lecture: Frank Gunderson

In this presentation, “(Stories About) Stories About Mlimani Park Orchestra,” Dr. Frank Gunderson will discuss the making of the film “Stories about Mlimani Park Orchestra.” Active since 1978, the band Mlimani Park Orchestra (aka Sikinde) has been acclaimed as one of the greatest rhumba bands on the African continent. Three of the original 12 members are still in the group, and several other original members are currently active in bands in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The filmmaker will discuss issues pertaining to the intersections of documentary filmmaking and research in the humanities.

This event is presented by the African Studies Institute, the Willson Center, and the UGA Humanities Council.

 

Humani-ties spoken word event flyerMar 14 • 5:30 pm • Willson Center for Humanities and Arts

Humani–ties: A Student Spoken Word Event

Calling all students: Please join attendees for the sharing of creative works by UGA students, centered on the theme of “Comparison.” Students are invited to create their own idiosyncratic expressions of identity in relation to their experiences with literature – whether through writing, reading, or listening. Please sign up here to participate. Whether a performer or audience member, there is something for everyone at this event, including refreshments and a raffle with fun literary prizes for everyone to enjoy.

This program is organized by the comparative literature department’s senior seminar students, and is presented in partnership with the Willson Center and the UGA Humanities Council.

 

Mar 14 • 5:30 pm • Peabody Hall, Room 115

Reading and Discussion – Engaging “The Sisterhood” with Courtney Thorsson

Courtney Thorsson is an associate professor in the English department and Clark Honors College at the University of Oregon, where she teaches, studies, and writes about African American literature from its beginnings to the present using Black feminist methods.

Her new book The Sisterhood: How A Network of Black Women Writers Changed American Culture tells the story of how a remarkable community of Black women writers and intellectuals transformed political, literary, and academic cultures.

This event is presented by the Institute for African American Studies, in partnership with the Institute for Women’s Studies, the department of English, the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts, and the UGA Humanities Council.

 

Mlimani Park Orchestra

Mar 14 • 6:30 pm • Miller Learning Center, Room 148

African Studies Spring Lecture Screening: Beloved Youth of Many Days: Stories about Mlimani Park Orchestra

Since their debut in 1978, critics have hailed Mlimani Park Orchestra as one of Africa’s greatest rhumba bands. The group recently received the 2022 Honorary Award from the Music in Africa Foundation, marking a monumental achievement in their long and storied history.

The film features rehearsal and performance footage, archival stills and interviews with band members, fans, producers, managers, media personalities and political figures, including the former President of Tanzania, Jakaya Kikwete. Edited with a musician’s timing, the film weaves the past and present to create an all-encompassing profile of the Mlimani Park Orchestra.

This event is presented by the African Studies Institute, the Willson Center, and the UGA Humanities Council.

 

Mar 14 • 7:30 pm • Hodgson Concert Hall

Concert: “The Poet Sings” – UGA Hodgson Singers

Join the UGA Hodgson Singers for an evening celebrating the unforgettable chemistry of two great art forms: poetry and vocal music. Choral music has set the words of some of history’s most beloved poets to music. This concert will feature composer John Corigliano’s “Fern Hill” (poem by Dylan Thomas) as well as pieces based on the poetry of e.e. cummings, Shakespeare, and several more.

This event is presented by the Hugh Hodgson School of Music and by the UGA Humanities Council.

 

Mar 15 • 12:40 pm • Miller Learning Center, Room 250

Lecture: Evelyn Saavedra Autry

Evelyn Saavedra Autry is a 2020-2021 American Council of Learned Societies Emerging Voices Fellow and a Presidential Postdoctoral Fellow in Race, Racism, and Inequality at the Department of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Rutgers University. She received her Ph.D. in Romance Languages with a specialization in Latin American Studies and a Graduate Certificate in Women’s Studies from the University of Georgia. Her research creates a conversation between various fields of knowledge, particularly Indigenous epistemologies, and pedagogies, literature, cultural studies on (de)coloniality, and gender studies, through the analysis of Andean women’s identity formations.

In her current book project, Race, Gender, and Memory in Narratives of the Andes, Dr. Saavedra Autry constructs a genealogy of gender-based violence that offers an in-depth examination of the colonial mechanisms behind the objectification of Indigenous women. This book asks, in what ways do cultural productions configure racialized women? How do traditional and contemporary narratives of gendered violence represent indigenized female bodies? How is knowledge production about Indigenous women’s experiences shaping memory politics and human rights discourses? Responding to these questions, the book is propelled by the necessity to examine a diverse corpus that includes chronicles of the Spanish conquest, foundational indigenista works, popular Indigenous art, and literature of Peru’s armed conflict. By reading these materials together and drawing from the fields of literature, history, and studies on coloniality, gender, and memory, the book traces how Indigenous female bodies have been understood, constructed, and commodified as sites of conquest, free labor, sexual availability, and justified violence.

This event is presented by the Institute for Women’s Studies, the Department of Romance Languages, and by the UGA Humanities Council.

 

Mar 18 • 6 pm • Ciné

Humanities Trivia Night

The most raucous event of the UGA Humanities Festival returns as hosts Usha Rodrigues (Professor of Law) and Aaron Meskin (Professor and Head of Philosophy) do their best to officiate an evening of humanities-related trivia, prizes, fun, and chaos. As a festive bonus, this year’s trivia will include a St. Patrick’s Day theme.

Form a team in advance or on the spot to compete at trivia on humanities-related topics that last year ranged from “Athens Music” to “Things Oscar Wilde Might Have Said.” Free and open to all.

This event is presented by the UGA Humanities Council.

 

Stephanie DinkinsMar 19 • 5 pm • Lamar Dodd School of Art, Room S151

Visiting Artist Lecture: Stephanie Dinkins

Artist and inclusive artificial intelligence advocate Stephanie Dinkins delivers a public lecture on her use of emerging technologies and AI to probe their impact on communities of color and advance “ecosystems based on care and social equity.” Dinkins is a Visiting Artist at the Lamar Dodd School of Art, invited by the school to participate in a three-day interaction with students, faculty, and members of the UGA campus community.

Stephanie Dinkins is a transmedia artist who creates experiences that spark dialog about race, gender, aging, and our future histories. Her work in AI and other mediums uses emerging technologies and social collaboration to work toward technological ecosystems based on care and social equity. Dinkins’ experiences with and explorations of artificial intelligence have led to a deep interest in how algorithmic systems impact communities of color in particular and all of our futures more generally.

Dinkins’ experiments with AI have led full circle to recognize the stories, myths, and cultural perspectives, aka data, that we hold and share form and inform society and have done so for millennia. She has concluded that our stories are our algorithms. We must value, grow, respect, and collaborate with each other’s stories (data) to build care and broadly compassionate values into the technological ecosystems that increasingly support our future.

This event is presented by the Lamar Dodd School of Art, the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts, and by the UGA Humanities Council as part of the UGA Humanities Festival.

 

Eric Morales-FranceschiniMar 19 • 7 pm • Ciné

Reading and Discussion: Éric Morales-Franceschini

Éric Morales-Franceschini, associate professor of English and Latin American and Caribbean studies in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, will discuss and read selections from his new poetry collection Syndrome, published in January 2024 by Anhinga Press after being selected by Juan Felipe Herrera for the 2022 Philip Levine Prize for Poetry.

Morales-Franceschini’s chapbook Autopsy of a Fall (Newfound, 2021) was awarded the 2020 Gloria Anzaldúa Poetry Prize, and his poems have appeared in MokoSomos en escritoChiricúWitnessDrylandAcentos ReviewKweliBerkeley Poetry ReviewBodegaMatterMuzzlesx salon and reviews at NewfoundTropics of MetaThe RumpusBoston Review, and AGNI.

Morales-Franceschini’s scholarly research specializes in postcolonial theory and criticism, decolonial aesthetics, Marxist critical theory, Caribbean and Latinx literary and cultural studies, and radical thought in the Américas.

In December 2023, he was named the winner of the Modern Language Association of America’s thirty-third annual Katherine Singer Kovacs Prize for an outstanding book published in English or Spanish in the field of Latin American and Spanish literatures and cultures, for his book The Epic of Cuba Libre: The Mambí, Mythopoetics, and Liberation, published by the University of Virginia Press.

This event is presented by the department of English, the Creative Writing Program, the Willson Center, and the UGA Humanities Council.

 

Barry McCreaMar 20 • 12:30 pm • Graduate Reading Room, 3rd Floor, Main Library

Barry McCrea: “The Young, the Old, and the Ancients: The European Gen-X Epic”

Barry McCrea is the Donald R. Keough Family Professor of Irish Studies and professor of English, Romance languages and literatures, and Irish language and literature at the University of Notre Dame. His research and teaching interests include the novel, comparative literature, modernism, gay and lesbian studies, Irish literature, western European literature, Latin American literature, and world literature.

McCrea is the author of three books: Languages of the Night, winner of the American Comparative Literature Association’s René Wellek prize for the best book of 2016; In the Company of Strangers, which was awarded the Heyman prize for scholarship in the humanities; and a novel, The First Verse, which won a number of awards including the Ferro-Grumley prize for fiction and a Barnes and Noble “Discover” prize. The First Verse was published in Spanish and in German.

This event is presented by the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts in partnership with the departments of English, comparative literature, and Romance languages, and with the UGA Humanities Council as part of the 2024 UGA Humanities Festival.

 

Cover of Prophet Song by Paul LynchMar 20 • 7 pm • Willson Center for Humanities and Arts

Post-St. Patrick’s Day Dystopian Book Club: Prophet Song by Paul Lynch

Join attendees for a discussion of Irish author Paul Lynch’s Prophet Song, the winner of the 2023 Man Booker Prize. This near-future dystopian novel describes events following a fascist government coming to power in Ireland, a seemingly unlikely place for such an occurrence. The novel promises to provide interesting and timely topics to discuss. The book club is open to all. Refreshments will be provided.

This program is organized by the comparative literature department’s senior seminar students, and is presented in partnership with the Willson Center and the UGA Humanities Council.

 

Mar 21 • 5:30 pm • Georgia Museum of Art

2023-24 Delta Visiting Chair for Global Understanding: Hua Hsu

The Willson Center welcomes Pulitzer Prize-winning author Hua Hsu to UGA March 21-22, 2024 as the annual Delta Visiting Chair for Global Understanding. This event, which will include a reading and conversation with Ed Pavlić, Distinguished Research Professor of English, African American studies, and creative writing, is part of the Willson Center’s Global Georgia public event series and the UGA Humanities Festival. Hsu’s visit is presented in partnership with the Institute for Asian Studies and the Georgia Review.

Hua Hsu is a staff writer at The New Yorker and the author of A Floating Chinaman: Fantasy and Failure Across the Pacific (2016) and the memoir Stay True (2022), which won the 2023 Pulitzer Prize for Memoir or Autobiography and the 2022 National Book Critics Circle award in autobiography. He is currently working on an essay collection titled Impostor Syndrome. Hsu is professor of literature at Bard College.

Hsu is a contributor to CBS News’s Sunday Morning; serves on the governance board of Critical Minded, a collaboration between the Ford Foundation and the Nathan Cummings Foundation; and serves as judge for various literary competitions and fellowships, including the PEN America Literary Awards, Rona Jaffe Fellowship, and Dayton Literary Peace Prize. He was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in criticism in 2018 (New Yorker); was a finalist for the James Beard Award for Food Writing in 2013 (for “Wokking the Suburbs,” Lucky Peach); and his work has been anthologized in Best Music Writing (2010 and 2012) and Best African American Essays 2010.