Events

    Black Women and the American University: Eileen Southern's Story

    Location: 

    Harvard Radcliffe Institute—Online

    Join us for a one-hour webinar exploring the legacy of Eileen Southern, author of The Music of Black Americans: A History and founder and editor of The Black Perspective in Music. In 1976, Eileen Southern became the first African American woman tenured in Harvard’s Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS). Southern played an important institutional role at Harvard. She was central in developing the Department of Afro-American Studies (now African and African American Studies), serving as an early chair, and was on the faculty of the Department of Music, where she taught...

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    Our Bodies, Ourselves Book Talk

    Location: 

    Harvard Radcliffe Institute—Online

    The final installment in the summer series of Virtual Radcliffe Book Talks will feature a discussion of Our Bodies, Ourselves, first published in 1971. This event is organized in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the book’s first edition and in connection with the Boston Women’s Health Book Collective Records housed in the Schlesinger Library. The event will also include audience Q&A.

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    Book Talk with Daniel Carpenter

    Location: 

    Harvard Radcliffe Institute—Online

    The third installment of the Virtual Radcliffe Book Talks will feature Daniel Carpenter, author of Democracy by Petition: Popular Politics in Transformation, 1790–1870 (Harvard University Press, 2021). Carpenter is the faculty director of the social sciences at Harvard Radcliffe Institute and the Allie S. Freed Professor of Government in the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences.

    Carpenter's reading will be followed by a discussion with Nikki M. Taylor, professor of history and chair of the Department of History at Howard University. The event will also include an...

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    Book Talk with Tiya Miles

    Location: 

    Harvard Radcliffe Institute—Online

    The second installment of the Virtual Radcliffe Book Talks will feature Tiya Miles, author of All That She Carried: The Journey of Ashley’s Sack, a Black Family Keepsake (Random House, 2021). Miles is a Radcliffe Alumnae Professor at Harvard Radcliffe Institute and a professor of history in the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences.

    Miles's reading will be followed by a discussion with Tomiko Brown-Nagin, dean of Harvard Radcliffe Institute, Daniel P.S. Paul Professor of Constitutional Law at Harvard Law School, professor of history in the Harvard Faculty of Arts and...

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    Book Talk with Clint Smith

    Location: 

    Harvard Radcliffe Institute—Online

    The first installment in the summer series of Virtual Radcliffe Book Talks will feature Clint Smith, author of How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America (Little, Brown and Company, 2021) and staff writer at The Atlantic. Smith's reading will be followed by a discussion with Kyera Singleton, executive director of the Royall House and Slave Quarters, in Medford, Massachusetts. The event will also include audience Q and A.

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    Racial Inequity and Housing Instability in Boston: Past, Present, and Future

    Location: 

    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard—Online

    Millions of Americans have long struggled to pay for housing, with communities of color additionally burdened by housing discrimination and historical race-based policies, such as legalized segregation, redlining, and mortgage discrimination. In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent economic crisis, the federal government instituted a moratorium on evictions that is currently set to expire on March 31, 2021. Despite this, the continuing public health emergency has exacerbated the national housing affordability crisis for people of color, who are more likely to have lost...

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    Resetting the Table: A Virtual Talk and Tour with the Curators

    Location: 

    Food Literacy Project—Online

    The "Resetting the Table: Food and Our Changing Tastes" exhibition at Harvard’s Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology explores food choices and eating habits in the United States, including the sometimes hidden but always important ways in which our tables are shaped by cultural, historical, political, and technological influences.

    Join us on this special virtual talk and tour at the Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology with Joyce Chapli, guest curator and Harvard University James Duncan Phillips Professor of Early American History; Janis Sacco, Director...

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    Recovering the Histories of Seven Enslaved Americans

    Location: 

    Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology—Online

    For seven seasons, award-winning Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. has uncovered the ancestral stories of celebrity guests on his hit-television series, Finding Your Roots. In this program, Gates will be joined by Dr. Gregg Hecimovich to discuss the process of unearthing the histories of formerly enslaved people. The focus will be on  Alfred, Delia, Drana, Fassena, Jack, Jim, and Renty, seven Black men and women who were photographed against their will in Columbia, South Carolina in 1850. These controversial photographs are the subject of a new book, To Make Their Own...

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    Race, Representation, and Agassiz’s Brazilian Fantasy

    Location: 

    Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology—Online

    How do we confront the history and legacy of Louis Agassiz’s extensive archive of images of African and Indigenous Brazilians made in Manaus, Brazil in 1865 and housed at Harvard’s Peabody Museum?

    Four distinguished panelists reflect on the historical moment when these pictures were taken, discuss racist displays of Indigenous people in Brazil and elsewhere, and, by bringing to light respect for different epistemologies, explore ways to contend with them today. Panelists will be writer and historian Christoph Irmscher (contributor to the recent Peabody Museum Press book about...

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    Marc Angélil and Charlotte Malterre-Barthes, "Migrant Marseille: Architectures of Social Segregation and Urban Inclusivity"

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    On November 5, 2018, a pair of dilapidated buildings in central Marseille collapsed, taking the lives of eight people, many of them from immigrant origin. This toll of urban decay reflects both the diversity of the district and the hardship of living in Marseille, a city marked for centuries by migration, poverty, and social inequality. Divided along ethnic and class lines, with wealthy conservatives dominating the south and an energetic but pauperized community of immigrant origins in the north, Marseille highlights the tensions stemming from discriminatory governance, lack of housing-...

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    Ana María León and Torsten Lange, "Bodies of Work: Activism, Gender, Architecture"

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    In this conversation, architectural historians Ana María León and Torsten Lange consider the labor of organizing around issues of gender in architecture. Based on three precedents, they will reflect on their work and practice and highlight how the present has allowed scholars and practitioners to revise architectural historiography. Building on intersectional feminist theory, the discussion considers architecture and urban space as well as architectural discourse as forums where white heteronormative systems of planning can become subverted by empowered labor and living practices....

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    Racially Charged: America’s Misdemeanor Problem (Film Screening and Panel Discussion)

    Location: 

    Harvard Law School—Online

    Join the Harvard Law School Library for a live screening and panel discussion of “Racially Charged: America’s Misdemeanor Problem,” a new documentary about the racial history and modern discrimination of the American misdemeanor system. The film, produced by Brave New Films and directed by Robert Greenwald, was inspired by HLS Professor Alexandra Natapoff’s book, “Punishment Without Crime: How Our Massive Misdemeanor System Traps the Innocent and Makes America More Unequal.”

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    Think like a Historian, Imagine Like a Designer: A Conversation on Landscape History and Design Education

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    History is a manner of thinking about the world, grounded in the places we design, construct, and inhabit. Design offers the opportunity to re-imagine the world around us, today and for the future. We might draw from history, or draw upon it; certainly, it is to be hoped that we are drawn to it, as designers and historians. The purpose of landscape history—not reducible to memory nor timelines nor styles—is to produce and share knowledge of how we have come to be who and where we are. We will gather across studios we collectively inhabit to draw attention to and lessons from the...

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    2020 Visions

    Location: 

    Online Event

    Too often, the story of women’s suffrage unfolds in a vacuum, seemingly unconnected from the general contours of American history. This panel discussion looks back from the present, asking experts working in a variety of disciplines and organizations to briefly unfold, TED-talk style, a single “big idea” that captures the significance of the 19th Amendment for voting rights, citizenship, and democracy today.

    This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required.

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    Education Justice: Why Prison Classrooms Matter

    Location: 

    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard—Online

    “What college does, it helps us learn about the nation,” said Rodney Spivey-Jones, a 2017 Bard College graduate currently incarcerated at Fishkill Correctional Facility in New York, in the docuseries College behind Bars. “It helps us become civic beings. It helps us understand that we have an interest in our community, that our community is a part of us and we are a part of it.”

    The Bard Prison Initiative and programs at other institutions of higher learning across the country have brought together teachers and learners in incarcerated spaces for years. This panel will gather...

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    The Architecture of Democracy

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design—Online

    In the week before the U.S. general election, Harvard and MIT will share a public discussion on the role of architecture in a representative democracy. Colleagues and students from across both institutions will join in dialogue on the profession’s role in supporting democratic society, now and in the future.

    Panelists participating in this event will be announced in the coming weeks.

    Learn more about and RSVP...

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    New Blocs, New Maps, New Power

    Location: 

    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard—Online

    By the early 1980s, a new political landscape was taking shape that would fundamentally influence American society and politics in the decades to come. That year, the long-standing effort to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment—championed by suffragist Alice Paul and introduced to Congress in 1923—ran aground, owing in significant measure to the activism of women who pioneered a new brand of conservatism.

    This panel will draw together strands and stories that are often kept separate: the ideas and growing influence of conservative women, the political activism of gay communities...

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    The Enduring Legacy of Slavery and Racism in the North

    Location: 

    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard—Online

    Although Massachusetts formally abolished slavery in 1783, the visible and invisible presence of slavery continued in the Commonwealth and throughout New England well into the 19th century. Harvard professor Louis Agassiz’s theory about human origins is but one example of the continued presence and institutionalization of racism in the North.

    Taking as a starting point the new book To Make Their Own Way in the World: The Enduring Legacy of the Zealy Daguerreotypes, this panel of experts will examine the role and impact of slavery in the North and discuss the influence...

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    On Account of Sex (1920)

    Location: 

    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard—Online

    The passage of the 19th Amendment in 1920 did not "give" women the vote. Rather, it established a negative: that the right to vote could not be abridged on account of sex alone. This session brings together diverse participants who will each illuminate one facet of women’s political history at this key transitional moment. Together, participants will emphasize the radical achievement of the amendment, exploring the full implications of what it meant to remove sex as a barrier to voting, which resulted in the largest-ever one-time expansion of the electorate and mobilized a...

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    Schlesinger 75th Anniversary Celebration

    Location: 

    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Knafel Center, 10 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA

    In this performance and discussion, “The Suffragists” captures the power and passion of American women’s fight for the vote through song. Created by the acclaimed singer-songwriter Shaina Taub, the musical tells the story of the last decade of the struggle through the rivalry between Carrie Chapman Catt and Alice Paul. Taub’s musical gives voice to these women in ways that powerfully resonate in today’s political landscape. The performance will be followed by a multidisciplinary panel discussion.

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