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Humanities in a Changing Climate

2018 Grand Research Challenge: 

The Work of the Humanities in a Changing Climate

The Humanities Without Walls consortium invited applications for funding from cross-institutional teams of faculty and graduate students wishing to collaboratively pursue research topics related to "The Work of the Humanities in a Changing Climate."

In its narrowest interpretation, this rubric invites research in the field of environmental humanities as well as the development of new humanities-centered paradigms for thinking through the limits and possibilities of climate change policy: its deep historical roots; new philosophies and theories of the human and the anthropocene; and how fictions and visual cultures bear on its material consequences, past, present, and future.

As a metaphor, the theme of climate change also offers the opportunity to consider the pressure of other forms of contemporary “climate change” on fields of inquiry—from a changing racial or economic climate to the changing notion of “the public” and what it means for the intellectual work environments of humanists.

2018 Northwestern Award Recipients

Congratulations to two Northwestern scholars who were awarded 2018 Humanities Without Walls grants for projects related to humanities work in a changing climate:

Kelly Wisecup (English and Center for Native American and Indigenous Research) for Indigenous Art and Activism in Changing Climates: The Mississippi River Valley, Colonialism, and Environmental Change. Kelly will service as Project Leader and Principal Investigator on the project that studies the shifting environmental, political, economic and racial climates that define the Mississippi River's course, meanings, and relation to Native peoples. The research will focus on how indigenous art and activism maintain intellectual traditions and exert continued rights to homelands, constituting strategies of persistence and resistance. Northwestern faculty member Doug Kiel (History and Humanities) and graduate students Bonnie Etherington and Sara Černe (English) will serve as project members, along with institutional partners from University of Minnesota (co-principal investigator) and University of Mississippi. Faculty and graduate student collaborators from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, University of Iowa, and University of Maine will also join the project.

Mary G. Dietz (Political Science) for Arendt on Earth: From the Archimedean Point to the Anthropocene. Mary will serve as project leader and principal investigator, and Political Science doctoral student Alexandra Neame—who co-authored and originally conceived the project—will serve as program coordinator and co-editor. Arendt on Earth examines the pluralistic concept of Earth and the crisis of "earth alienation" in the work of the twentieth century political theorist Hannah Arendt. Northwestern doctoral students Gina Giliberti (Political Science) and Harrison King (Religious Studies) will partner on the project as researchers and graduate lab practicum leaders. Other collaborators include scholars from the University of Chicago, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Pennsylvania State University, and Williams College.

Each professor will receive $138,360 from Humanities Without Walls for their projects which both include a graduate student lab practicum and culminate with a symposium and edited collections to share research findings with undergraduates and the general public. Read more here.


2017 Northwestern Award Recipients

Northwestern faculty Geraldo Cadava (History) and Ramón Rivera-Servera (Performance Studies) received funding for their project, "Building Sustainable Worlds: Latinx Placemaking in the Midwest." They will pursue this research with colleagues from eight other universities across the Midwest.

Their grant was one of seven awards made by the Humanities Without Walls consortium to cross-institutional teams of faculty and graduate students for research projects related to "The Work of the Humanities in a Changing Climate."

Read about the other 2017 project awards at the Humanities Without Walls website.


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