Heyman Center Public Humanities Programming

The Public Humanities Initiative sponsors cultural events, discussions, and collaborative projects that advance public engagement with the humanities.  These projects involve faculty, undergraduate and graduate students, community organizations, and local artists.  In the coming months, programming will include events on a range of topics, including "narratives of inclusion" and "art as activism.”

  • The Public Humanities Initiative partners with Community Works NYC, a nonprofit arts and education organization with the mission to bridge schools and communities, enrich educational curricula, and celebrate neighborhood cultures and histories, to bring a humanities-based public program to Columbia’s campus. This program is presented with the help from a grant awarded by the New York Council for the Humanities and in collaboration with the Center for Justice at Columbia University.
  • The Public Humanities Initiative collaborates with the Aquila Theatre Company to present scenes from ancient literature, produced and performed by the School of General Studies military veterans in public spaces in the City.  This collaboration aims both to support our student veterans committed to careers in the arts and humanities and to offer arts and humanities programming to the public.  The Aquila Theatre Company specializes in bold reinterpretations of classical plays for contemporary audiences that emphasize themes of war and the experience of returning veterans, often performed by MilVet actors.  Aquila performances are typically followed by moderated audience discussion.
  • The Public Humanities Initiative sponsors a series of roundtable discussions on the criminal justice system in the United States organized by the Center for Justice at Columbia University.  This roundtable series, called The Justice Forum, addresses the complex issues of mass incarceration and justice that cut across institutions, systems, cultures, and communities.  The Justice Forum provides the opportunity for those from various disciplines and professions to think together about new approaches to policy, education, and research on issues of justice and mass incarceration.
  • In partnership with the Center for Justice at Columbia University, the Heyman Center Public Humanities Initiative provides small grants to develop new undergraduate courses in which issues of justice (including mass incarceration and criminal justice policy) are significantly addressed. These course development grants were created in response to growing faculty and student interest in issues of justice and incarceration in a number of diverse fields, such as sociology, moral philosophy, history, literature, ethnic and race studies, public health, women and gender studies, political science, and more.

Please visit the Heyman Center Public Humanities Initiative Events Page for a schedule of our events. 

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