Humanities Center Director: Thomas Wilson

The Humanities Center continues its collaboration with colleagues in Burke Library with a new series of talks at the Humanities Salon, Library Edition. The talks will be followed by wine, cheese, and conversation in the library’s All Night Reading Room.

Fall 2017 Humanities Salon: Library Edition schedule (all events will begin at 3:00 p.m.)

9/15: Surveying the Stacks: African-American History and Burke Library by Celeste Moore (History), a talk on the Ten Negro Artists from the United States, First World Festival of Negro Arts, Dakar, Senegal, 1966.

Celeste Day Moore teaches courses in African-American history as well as the histories of race, empire, and U.S. international relations. She received her doctorate from the University of Chicago and has been a fellow at the Institut d’Études Politiques in Paris and the Carter G. Woodson Institute for African-American and African Studies at the University of Virginia. She is currently completing a manuscript, Soundscapes of Liberation: Race, Music, and the Making of the Postwar Atlantic World, which reframes African-American history within the commercial, political, and diasporic networks that comprised the twentieth-century Atlantic World.

10/20: The Book Before Print: Medieval Manuscripts from the Hamilton Special Collections by John Eldevik (History)

John Eldevik holds the Licence in Mediaeval Studies from the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies. His primary research and teaching interests are in medieval social and religious history, particularly the role of the bishop in the early Middle Ages, the Crusades and the history of political and religious dissent. His first book, Episcopal Lordship and Ecclesiastical Reform in the German Empire, 950-1150, examines how medieval bishops used the collection of tithes to foster social and political relationships. Eldevik is working on a study of the manuscript transmission of texts on the Crusades and Islam in medieval Bavaria. He received his doctorate from UCLA.

11/16: Illustrating America in the Late 19th and Early 20th Centuries by Jay Williams (Religious Studies)

Jay Williams will introduce the development of illustration as an art and discuss what the massive number of illustrations tell us about America during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He holds degrees from Hamilton (A.B.), Union Theological Seminary (M.Div.) and Columbia University (Ph.D.). He is the author of several books including: Ten Words of Freedom (1970), Understanding the Old Testament (1972), Yeshua Buddha (1978), Judaism (1980), The Riddle of the Sphinx (1990), A Reassessment of Absolute Skepticism and Religious Faith(1996), The Times and Life of Edward Robinson (1999), The Way of Adam (2002) and The Secret Sayings of Ye Su (2004), The Voyage of Life (2007), The Way and Its Power (2008), Religion: What it has been and what it is (2008), The Stupa: Buddhism in Symbolic Form (2010), How to Determine the Meaning of a Sacred Text (2011), The Quest:Questions, Questions, Questions (2013) and Thomas Nast, America’s Greatest Political Cartoonist (2014).

12/8: Teaching & Learning Visuality in Special Collections by Nhora Serrano (Literature)

From maps, illuminated manuscripts, woodblock illustrations to early print culture, I use the wonderful treasures in Special Collections to construct meaningful conversations that focus on the discovery and exploration of literature as an interdisciplinary apparatus of transculturation and visuality. Not only do students enjoy seeing and handling these incredible items, but they appreciate the material book and its illustration as a window into a past. My brief talk will touch upon a few of the items from Special Collection and discuss how students learn to be visually fluent.

Nhora Lucía Serrano's areas of research include visual studies, medieval and Renaissance studies, Latin America, women artists, women writers and comics. She is an executive member of the Modern Languages Association Forum on Comics and Graphic Narratives and a board member and treasurer of the Comics Studies Society. Serrano received the 2014 Smithsonian National Postal Museum and Washington 2006 World Philatelic Exhibition Scholarship. She is co-editor of Curious Collectors, Collected Curiosities(2011) and has written several articles and essays that focus on visual studies and medieval studies. She received her bachelor's degree in French from Amherst College, her master's degree in French language and civilization (art history) from New York University and a doctorate in medieval and renaissance studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Before coming to Hamilton, Serrano most recently was a visiting scholar of comparative literature at Harvard University.