Humanities Institute

Director's Note

Picture of Pauline StrongWelcome to the website of the Humanities Institute at the University of Texas at Austin.

Since 2001, the Humanities Institute has offered an array of university and public humanities programs designed to bring people from various walks of life together to share perspectives and insights on the meanings, joys, and challenges of being human. We hope you will join the conversation.

At the Humanities Institute we are concerned with humanity across time, across languages, and across cultures. Every two years we choose a broad theme around which we organize our public lectures and faculty seminars: our theme for 2018-2020 is Narrative and Social Justice. A series of distinguished visiting lecturers has been chosen to engage this issue from the perspective of their own experience and intellectual practice—ranging from the classics and literature to anthropology and linguistics. The visiting lecturers also participate in a seminar with our Faculty Fellows, whose fields include the arts, social sciences, education, law, and medicine as well as the humanities.

We also offer distinctive programs for students (Difficult Dialogues courses and public humanities apprenticeships), faculty (the Faculty Fellows Seminar and Difficult Dialogues teaching workshops), and community leaders (the Community Sabbatical Grant Program). We partner with the Austin Public Library in offering the Controversy and Conversation film series, and worked with Foundation Communities and Austin Community College to design a Clemente-style humanities program (Free Minds). We are currently building a program in Health Humanities, including a research seminar, curricular initiatives, and community-based research.

The motto of the Humanities Institute is "thinking in community," and we warmly invite you to become a part of our dialogue. Explore our website, join our mailing list, attend our events, become a supporter. And by all means contact us about any ideas you may have for collaboration.

Looking forward to our conversations!

Pauline T. Strong