Vermont Humanities Events
May 14 — Book Discussion: America's War and other books from the Part of the Making Sense of the American Civil War series. Developed by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the American Library Association, this Civil War sesquicentennial commemorative series uses works of historical fiction and interpretation, speeches, diaries, memoirs, biographies, and short stories to examine a broad range of perspectives in an exploration of the American Civil War. Led by Suzanne H Brown. Hosted by the Norwich Public Library. Norwich Public Library, 7:00 pm. Mary McKenna, (802) 296-2191.
May 15 — Poetry Reading and Discussion. A Vermont Reads Event. Vermont's Poet Laureate Sydney Lea will read and discuss poetry. Refreshments will be provided. Hosted by the Quechee Library. Wilder Club and Library, 78 Norwich Ave, 5:30 pm. Kate Schaal, (802) 695-6341 or (802) 295-1232.
May 17 — Alfred Hitchcock and the Art of Suspense. Hitchcock famously said “Some films are slices of life; mine are slices of cake.” His career spanned forty years and many film eras. Film expert Rick Winston will discuss the evolution of Hitchcock’s craft, exploring his favorite themes, his relationship with his collaborators, and his wry sense of humour no matter how grisly the subject matter. By drawing on twelve film clips, starting with his 1925 silent The Lodger and continuing through to his Hollywood classics such as Notorious and Rear Window, Winston will illuminate the arc of Hitchcock’s brilliant career. Hosted by the Weathersfield Proctor Library. Ascutney, Weathersfield Proctor Library, 5181 Route 5, 7:30 pm. Nancy Tusinski, (802) 674 -2863.
May 19 — Alec Turner: A Trek from Slavery to Freedom. Alec Turner was born a slave in 1845 on the John Gouldin plantation of Port Royal, Virginia. He died a freeman, farmer, and landowner in Grafton, Vermont in 1923. His is a remarkable narrative, told by Alec to his family and recounted to Jane Beck by his daughter, Daisy, who was born in Grafton in 1883. Alec Turner's saga is rich in detail, with compelling anecdotes painted on a well-textured canvas. We are drawn to the power of Alec Turner's spirit, his humanity, and the measure of the man himself. Hosted by the Hartland Historical Society. Hartland, First Congregational Church of Hartland, 10 Station Rd, 2:00 pm. Carol Mowry, (802) 436-3383.
June 5 — American Oracle: The Civil War in the Civil Rights Era. David Blight, Yale professor and acclaimed author of Race and Reunion, considers how Americans looked on the War’s centennial during the early 1960s and explores the gulf between remembrance and reality.A First Wednesdays lecture (rescheduled from December 5). Hosted by the Norwich Public Library. Norwich Congregational Church, 15 Church St, 7:00 pm. Lucinda Walker, (802) 649-1184.
June 10 — Dorothy Canfield Fisher: A Vermonter for the World. Dorothy Canfield Fisher wrote often about Vermont, but she was a writer beyond our region who communicated to the world and to the human spirit. She celebrated the book as the surest tool for thought. In her forty books of fiction and nonfiction, she attacked discrimination, intolerance, brutality, and fraud. Her writing was vibrant and heartening with glorious aspects of living life with courage and joy. This living history presentation by Helene Lang showcases her life's works. Hosted by the Woodstock Historical Society. Woodstock History Center, 26 Elm St, 7:00 pm. Jennie Shurtleff, (802) 457-1822.
July 14 — Vermont and the Civil War. From Cedar Creek to Gettysburg, Vermonters were central to the Union cause. Vermont author and Civil War historian Howard Coffin addresses the Vermont contribution to the Civil War. Hosted by the American Precision Museum. Windsor, American Precision Museum, 196 Main St, 3:00 pam. Sheila Brannan, (802) 674-5781.
August 10 — The Western Abenaki: History and Culture. Who were the native people of Vermont and how did they live? This lecture, by Jeanne Brink, examines the importance in Abenaki society of elders and children, the environment, and the continuance of lifeways and traditions. Hosted by the Hartford Historical Society. White River Junction, Lyman Point Park, 171 Bridge St, 1:30 pm. Martha Knapp, (802) 295-2713.
August 19 — A Vermont Music Sampler. Vermont has a significant and fascinating musical folklore. John Philip Sousa wrote "Stars and Stripes Forever" in Isle La Motte; Justin Morgan was first a composer and secondly a horse breeder; many Vermont folk songs and ballads were gathered by Helen Flanders; electronic music was discovered at Bennington College; and there's more! This slide presentation includes listening to music on tape and commentary from musician and scholar William Tortolano. Hosted by the Woodstock Historical Society. Woodstock Historical Society, 26 Elm St, 7:00 pm. Jennie Shurtleff, (802) 457-1822.
September 8 — 400 Miles Down the Connecticut River. New England's longest river, the Connecticut, is rich in history. Michael Tougias, author of fourteen books about New England, offers a narrated slide presentation that takes the viewer down the entire 410 miles of the river, discussing history from the days of loggers, Indian wars, steamships, and canals. Hosted by the Green Mountain Perkins Academy and Historical Association. South Woodstock, Green Mountain Perkins Academy, 1 Academy Circle, Main Classroom, 2:00 pm. Mark Curran, (802) 457-3251.
September 19 — Alfred Hitchcock and the Art of Suspense. Hitchcock famously said “Some films are slices of life; mine are slices of cake.” His career spanned forty years and many film eras. Film expert Rick Winston will discuss the evolution of Hitchcock’s craft, exploring his favorite themes, his relationship with his collaborators, and his wry sense of humour no matter how grisly the subject matter. By drawing on twelve film clips, starting with his 1925 silent The Lodger and continuing through to his Hollywood classics such as Notorious and Rear Window, Winston will illuminate the arc of Hitchcock’s brilliant career. Hosted by the Friends of the Fletcher Memorial Library. Ludlow, Fletcher Memorial Library, 88 Main St, 7:00 pm. Kay O'Hare, (802) 228-2983.
September 25 — Classic Films of the 1950s. The 1950s were a fascinating time for Hollywood films. Several directors who began their careers in the silent era (Wilder, Hitchcock, Wyler) were in their prime; the studio system was in decline and independent films were gaining a foothold. New stars such as Marlon Brando, Montgomery Clift, James Dean, and Audrey Hepburn were making their mark; vital issues of the time such as juvenile delinquency, comformity, and racial attitudes were addressed, however timidly, while the shadow of the Hollywood blacklist loomed. Rick Winston will show clips from several acclaimed films of various genres from that era and discuss their significance. Hosted by the Hartland Public Library. Hartland Public Library, 153 US Route 5, 6:30 pm. Amy Wisehart, (802) 436 -2473.
October 3 — The Neolithic World of Stone. Who built Stonehenge and why? When and how was it built? This slide lecture by Bob Manning addresses these and other questions related to the Neolithic monuments of Ireland, Brittany, and the United Kingdom. Stone circles, dolmens, and chambered tombs from Stonehenge, Avebury, Cornwall, Newgrange, Callanish, Carnac, and the Orkney Islands will be featured. Hosted by the Springfield Town Library. Springfield Town Library, 43 Main St, 6:30 pm. Kathy, (802) 885-3108.
October 26 — One Regiment’s Story in the Civil War: The Ninth Vermont, 1862–1865. From guarding Confederate prisoners incarcerated at Camp Douglas, Illinois, to the woods of coastal North Carolina and finally to the gates of Richmond, the Ninth Vermont Regiment earned a reputation of being well-disciplined and steadfast under fire. Although lacking the renown of other Vermont units, it represented the state well throughout its history. Civil War historian Donald Wickman offers listeners tales of the ninth Vermont, highlighted by the stories of some of the 1,878 Vermonters who comprised it, as it became one of the most traveled regiments in the Federal army. Hosted by the Weston Women's Club. Weston Playhouse, 703 Main St, 4:00 pm. Maureen Brandt, (802) 824-5486.