Humanities Institute

Distinguished Visiting Lecture Series in the Humanities

Past Lectures

2011-13 Lectures
Public & Private

  • Ann Cvetkovich, University of Texas at Austin, "The Secret Life of the Counterarchive: Queer Artists and Their Archives"
  • Elaine Scarry, Harvard University, "On Beauty and Social Justice"
  • Kathleen Stewart, University of Texas at Austin, “Worldlings: Scenes of Life in the U.S. Now”

2009-11 Lectures
Intellectual Life at Moments of Crisis

  • Stephen Sonnenberg, University of Texas at Austin, "War, Violence, and the Humanities"
  • Rosalyn Deutsche, Barnard College, "Hiroshima after Iraq: A Study in Art and War"
  • Wendy Brown, University of California, Berkeley, "Privatizing the Public and the Future of the Humanities"
  • Richard Schechner, New York University, "Dionysus in '69 and '09: Looking Back, Looking Forward"
  • Martín Espada, University of Massachusetts-Amherst, Poetry reading

2008-9 Lectures
Ethical Life in a Global Society

  • Andrew Nathan, Columbia University, "China’s Challenge to Human Rights: Repression at Home and ’Peaceful Rising’ Abroad"
  • Javier Kane, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, "Addressing the Needs of Suffering Persons in Our Modern Health Care System"
  • Steven Collins, University of Chicago, "Civilization and the Single Woman: Buddhism in South and Southeast Asia"
  • Colin (Joan) Dayan, Vanderbilt University, "Where are the Animals? Understanding Torture, Abuse, and Correction"

2007-8 Lectures
Imagining the Human

  • Katherine Hayles, Professor of English, University of California, Los Angeles, "Re-envisioning the Human in an Information-Intensive Era"
  • Michael Mann, Professor of Sociology, University of California, Los Angeles, "Ethnic Cleansing and Racism: How Often Are the Victims Considered Non- or Sub-human?"
  • Erik Mueggler, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of Michigan, "'A World of Slobber and Slime': British Imperial Botany, Technology, and Bewilderment in the Sino-Tibetan Borderlands"
  • Marc Bekoff, Professor Emeritus of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Colorado, Boulder, "Animal Passions and Beastly Virtues: Animal Emotions and Why They Matter"
  • Paula Findlen, Professor of Italian History, Stanford University, "After Leonardo: The Artist as Scientist in Seventeenth-Century Italy"

2006-7 Lectures
Labor & Leisure

  • Jim Kakalios, Professor of Physics, University of Minnesota, "Can One Learn Science by Reading Comic Books?"
  • Gail Hershatter, Professor of History, University of California, Santa Cruz, "The Gender of Memory: Rural Women, Labor, and Collectivization in Early Socialist China"
  • Michael Zweig, Professor of Economics, State University of New York at Stony Brook, "Class, Values, and Interests in U.S. Politics"
  • Victoria de Grazia, Professor of Contemporary Civilizaton, Columbia University, "How Democratic are Consumer Societies?"
  • Robin D. G. Kelley, Professor of Anthropology, Columbia University, "Exploiting Jazz Musicians: The Case of Thelonious Monk"

2005-6 Lectures
Remembering and Forgetting, Collecting and Discarding

  • David Blight, Professor of American History, Yale University, "The Historical Memory Boom: Why? And Why Now?"
  • James Young, Professor of English and Judaic Studies, University of Massachusetts at Amherst, "Memory and the Monument Before and After 9/11"
  • James Clifford, Professor of History of Consciousness, University of California, Santa Cruz, "Remembering Indigenous Futures"
  • Marita Sturken, Professor of Culture and Communication, New York University, "Teddy Bears, Snow Globes and the Kitschification of Memory"

2004-5 Lectures
The Work of Religion: Past, Present, and Future

  • Wendy Doniger, Professor of the History of Religions, University of Chicago, "Magic Rings in Mythic Narratives"
  • James Cone, Professor of Theology, Union Theological Seminary, "Martin, Malcolm, and Black Theology"
  • David Tracy, Professor of Theology, University of Chicago Divinity School, "The Open, The Void, The Face: Visions of Reality"
  • Daniel Boyarin, Professor of Talmudic Culture, University of California at Berkeley, "Why is Rabbi Yohanan a Woman: Platonic Love in the Talmud"

2003-4 Lectures
Modernity: Contexts and Contests, Forms and Futures

  • Emily Martin, Professor of Anthropology, New York University, "Cultures of Mania: Toward an Anthropology of Mood"
  • Susan Stanford Friedman, Professor of English and Women's Studies, University of Wisconsin at Madison, "Whose Modernity? The Global Landscape of Modernism"
  • Achille Mbembe, Professor of History, University of Witswatersrand, "On the Idea of Mass Destruction"
  • Michael Denning, Professor of American Studies, Yale University, "The Rhetoric of Class in an Age of Globalization"
  • Lila Abu-Lughod, Professor of Anthropology and Middle Eastern Studies, Harvard University, "In the Name of the Nation: Soap Operas and the Management of Islamic 'Extremists' in Egypt"

2002-3 Lectures
Texas in Global Contexts

  • Ruth Wilson Gilmore, Professor of Geography, Rutgers University, "What is the Prison Industrial Complex?"
  • David Harvey, Professor of Anthropology, City University of New York, "Geographical Knowledges/Political Powers"
  • Saskia Sassen, Professor of Sociology, University of Chicago, "Repositioning Citizenship in a Global Age"

2001-2 Lectures
The Future of Disciplinary Knowledges

  • Khaled Abou El Fadl, Professor of Law, University of California at Los Angeles, "Authority and Islamic Law Today: Reflections on the Voice of God"
  • Thomas Cleveland Holt, Professor of History, University of Chicago, "Competing Visions of Race and Nation at the Dawn of the 'American Century'"
  • Marjorie Garber, Professor of Visual and Environmental Studies, Harvard University, "Who Owns 'Human Nature'?"
  • Anne Norton, Professor of Political Science, University of Pennsylvania, "Is Responsibility a Vice: Reparations, Retaliations and Revenge"
  • Stanley Fish, Dean of Arts & Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago, "Holocaust Denial and Academic Freedom"

  • Humanities Institute

    University of Texas at Austin
    HRC 3.360
    Mailcode F1900
    Austin, Texas 78712