Humanities, Publics, and the State explored the philosophical, political, and pragmatic dimensions of public humanities in the context both of current challenges to the university and emerging responses. What is the public mission of the research university? What role should the university play in the political and social transformation of the state of which it is part? What is the relationship between the university and other state humanities bodies, and how does this relationship differ internationally? What is the relationship between the humanities center and the public it serves? What are the implications of the arts and humanities having for long served in the role of sustaining national culture? How can we restore the democratic vision of the university’s service to the social and public good? How can we defend the public value of our teaching and research?

The role and value of public humanities is an especially urgent topic at this time. The threats are familiar: declining state support for public education: reductions in public and private funding sources; rising tuition costs and student debt; the growing strength of instrumental attitudes to education; the casualization of academic labor; and the broader devaluation of the arts, humanities, and social sciences. These identified problems take different forms across institutions and in diverse international situations, but the urgency of their force is a shared concern.

The Hall Center for the Humanities at the University of Kansas

The Hall Center's primary mission is to stimulate and support research in the humanities, arts and social sciences, especially of an interdisciplinary kind, at the University of Kansas. The Center brings together faculty and graduate students with common interests from various disciplines to enable them to build on each others' ideas and to share their knowledge within the university and with the wider community.

The Center's collateral mission is to sponsor special programs that engage the university and the wider community in dialogue on issues that bring the humanities to bear on the quality of life for all citizens. It creates events on and beyond campus that seek to understand our past, present and future, our values and identities and the essential issues we face as individuals and communities.



1:00 pm
The Commons, Spooner Hall

1:30 - 2:40 pm
Member Initiative Meetings
Adams Alumni Center

Digital Humanities(Bruckmiller Room)
Humanities for the Environment(Summerfield Room)
Public Humanities(Philips Board Room)

3:00 - 4:15 pm
Member Group Meetings
Adams Alumni Center

Associate Directors & Administrators (Paul Adam Lounge)
New Directors (Philips Board Room)

5:00 – 5:15 pm
In Remembrance of Susan Manning: James Chandler, Franke Institute for the Humanities, University of Chicago

5:15 – 6:15 pm
Opening Discussion: Framing the Annual Meeting: Humanities, Publics, and the State
Chairs: Shuchi Kapila (Grinnell College) and Sidonie Smith (University of Michigan)
The Commons, Spooner Hall

To ensure that we have an enriching discussion, we recommend reviewing the following pieces:

Gregory Jay, Univ. of Wisconsin-Milwaukee: What (Public) Good are the (Engaged) Humanities?
Academy of Science of South Africa: Consensus Study on the State of the Humanities in South Africa (Chapter 2)

6:30 – 8:30 pm
Opening Reception
Hall Center for the Humanities

Unless otherwise noted, programs on 26 April take place at The Commons, Spooner Hall

8:00 – 9:00 am

9:00 – 9:30 am
Welcome remarks: Bernadette Gray-Little, Chancellor, University of Kansas
Opening remarks: Ian Baucom, CHCI/Duke University, and Victor Bailey, Hall Center for the Humanities

9:30 – 11:00 am
Plenary: The Future of the Public University
Christopher Newfield, University of California, Santa Barbara
Chair: Sara Guyer, Center for the Humanities, University of Wisconsin, Madison

11:00 – 11:30 am

11:30 am – 1:00 pm
Panel: Global Humanities & the State
Chair: Debjani Ganguly, Humanities Research Centre, Australian National University

The Absent Center: Homo Oeconomicus, Nationalism and the Humanities after Apartheid
Premesh Lalu, Center for Humanities Research, Univ. of the Western Cape

Global Humanities in Europe and its Paradox Settings: States, Nations, Communities, Markets
Rudiger Klein, European Alliance for the Social Sciences and Humanities (EASH)

Taking the Humanities (and Social Sciences) to Europe: The trials and Tribulations of Securing EU Research Funding
Angela Schindler-Daniels, Net4Society

Arts and Humanities in a Global Asian University
Alan Chan, Nanyang Technological University

1:00 – 2:30 pm
Lunch with Member Breakout Groups
Oread Hotel

2:30 – 3:00 pm

4:00 – 5:30 pm
Panel: The Public Role of the Arts
Chair: Saralyn Reece Hardy, Spencer Museum of Art, University of Kansas
Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City

Are Museums the New Public Square?
Julian Zugazagoitia, Director, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

Pre-Texts for Moving In and Out of Class
Doris Sommer, Cultural Agents, Harvard University

Politics, Arts, and the University
Timothy Murray, Cornell University

5:30 – 6:30 pm
Docent Tours of Museum Collections
Nelson-Atkins Museum

6:30 – 7:30 pm
Noguchi Court, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

7:30 – 9:30 am
Annual Meeting Dinner
Rozzelle Court, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

Unless otherwise noted, programs on 27 April take place at The Commons, Spooner Hall

8:45 – 9:00 am
Welcome: Steven Warren, Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Studies, University of Kansas

9:00 – 10:30 am
Plenary: The Humanities & the Public Good
Helen Small, Pembroke College, Oxford
Chair: Margaret Kelleher, University College Dublin

10:30 – 11:00 am

11:00 am – 12:30 pm
Workshop: Collaborating with Public Knowledges
Chair: Teresa Mangum, Obermann Center for Advanced Studies, University of Iowa

Higher Education, Prison, and the Abolition Undercommons
Gillian Harkins, University of Washington, Transformative Education Behind Bars

Working Alongside Community Partners in Garden City, Kansas
Don Stull, University of Kansas

12:30 – 2:00 pm
Lunch and Discussion
University of Kansas Alumni Center

Talk: Private Foundation Support of Humanities Centers – Cultivating Relationships
Angela McClelland, Vice President, Hall Family Foundation

Reports from CHCI Member Initiatives

2:00 – 3:30 pm
Workshop: Virtual Research Environments/Networks
Spencer Museum of Art Auditorium
Chair: Robert Gibbs, Jackman Humanities Institute, University of Toronto

Networking the Networks: Building Inter-American Collaborations Through Cyber-HASS
Kevin Franklin, University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign

Balancing Access, Participation, and Security in Virtual Research Environments
Arienne Dwyer, Institute for Digital Research in the Humanities, University of Kansas

Political Environments: Making Things Public
Sharon Daniel, Film & Digital Media, University of California, Santa Cruz

3:30 – 4:00 pm

4:00 – 5:30 pm
Integrating the Humanities Across National Boundaries
An Update on the CHCI/A.W. Mellon Foundation Project
Spencer Museum of Art Auditorium
Chair: Ian Baucom, President, CHCI

5:30 pm
Closing Reception
Spencer Research Library, North Gallery