The Public Humanist

Tag Archives | Public Humanist

Cemeteries as Classroom: An Untapped Resource

fairview cemetery

Cemeteries are more than final resting places: they can serve as opportunities for students, historians, and community members to learn about history in new and interesting ways—especially in Massachusetts.

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King Philip’s War and the Cultural Landscape of Boston

King Philip’s War was a bloody conflict that involved every New England colony and all the peoples of the Algonquian nation, yet this history remains almost invisible in Boston. It may be time to recognize it.

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Replacing Aristocracy with Democracy

Since the 1980s the wealthy in the US have steadily pulled away from the rest of the country while the other classes have stagnated. The works of Adam Smith and John Adams have some suggestions to help us democratize.

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Adam Smith & Fake News

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Misconceptions about the ideas of Adam Smith continue to this day. He never advocated an amoral free market economy, and knew that government would have to play a large role in protecting the weak against the strong.

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Why We Read Frederick Douglass Aloud

We reached out to five people actively engaged in organizing their community’s Reading Frederick Douglass event to get their thoughts on why we read his words aloud. Enjoy!

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The Death of an Industry, But Not a Town

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Gardner was once the chair-making capital of the world but has now been virtually abandoned by industry. One Mass Humanities grantee is using the power of history to help people make sense of their situation, heal, and rebuild the community.

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John Adams & Why Fake News is Nothing New

“Fake news” is all the rage at the moment, but failing to expose it for what it is can have serious consequences for democracy. Take, for example, a campaign scare tactic used in the 1800 Presidential election.

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A Great and Difficult Progressive: W.E.B. Du Bois of Massachusetts

Pulitzer Prize-winning author David Levering Lewis’s speech at the State House commemorating the 150th birthday of sociologist, philosopher, and civil rights activist W.E.B. Du Bois.

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What Does Women’s History Month Mean to You?

We reached out to three women actively engaged in telling women’s stories, each of whose work is supported by a Mass Humanities grant, to get their thoughts on what Women’s History Month means to them. Enjoy!

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Death in the Afternoon

The bravado shown by white supremacists in Charlottesville this week is supported by the symbols and images of manly Confederate heroes, the same ones that are memorialized in city landscapes and, soon, on popular television.

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