Skip to main content


The Humanities Center hosts, co-sponsors, and promotes humanities events across campus and in the local area. Our events are listed on the WVU calendar and fuller descriptions are found on this page. If you would like the Center to co-sponsor an event, please email us .

Humanities Center events for 2019-2020

August 28

5:30 - 7:30 pm

Apothecary Ale House

Welcome Back: Humanities Center Social

7:00 pm

Milano Reading Room, Downtown Library

“Performing Our Futures"Ben Fink with Appalshop, Denise Johnson with Arch Social Community Network, and Gwen Johnson with Lechter County Social Hub

Co-Sponsored with the Center for Community Resilience

September 4

9:00-11:30 am

Room 2036Downtown Library

“Performing Our Futures: a Workshop"Ben Fink with Appalshop, Denise Johnson with Arch Social Community Network, and Gwen Johnson with Lechter County Social Hub

Co-Sponsored with the Center for Community Resilience

6:00 p.m.

Mountainlair Green (Gold ballroom if it's raining)

A Campus Read Event: Disorientation: Life Beyond the Comfort Zone

Sponsored by the Office of Global Affairs

Where do you fit in the culture around you? We live in a world of labels, and it’s easy to fall into the default settings of your environment. But when you’re confronted with culture shock, you’re offered a moment to evaluate and choose who to become. Using Tara Westover’s experience in Educated as a guide, we’ll explore the forces that impact your individuality and seek out ways to take control of your identity

September 2 4

6:00 p.m.

Digital Storytelling Hub, Media Innovation Center

“Educated” A Book Club Discussion EDUCATED”
Join the Reed College of Media for a book club style discussion of “Educated.”

October 24

Mountainlair Gold Ballroom

Campus Read Panel: American Mythologies

Four members of the faculty and staff unpack some of the myths and assumptions baked into Tara Westover’s book. Topics covered will include the patriot movement, American individualism, settler colonialism, and higher education.

Charlotte Hoelke, assistant director, Women’s Resource Center & clinical assistant professor LGBTQ+ Center

Lynne Stahl, humanities librarian, WVU Libraries

Niara Campbell, program coordinator, Rise WVU

John Temple, professor, Reed College of Media

October 21

7:00 p.m.

Milano Reading Room, Downtown Library

A Reading from Silas House , author of Southernmost

This event is a part of the Dan and Betsy Brown Lecture Series

November 7

5:30-7:00 p.m.

E. Moore Hall

A Campus Read Event: Graduate Student Social

The Office of Graduate Education and Life is hosting a Campus Read social event. Graduate students are invited to talk about the themes of the book and share their personal experiences. Food and drinks will be provided.

November 11

7:30 p.m.

Mountainlair Ballrooms

Davis C. Hardesty Festival of Ideas Presents an Evening with the Author: Tara Westover

In Educated, Westover doesn’t shy away from depicting the pressures set forth by her family and upbringing over her creation of self. Despite her experiences of domestic violence, despair, and an utter lack of a formal education as a child, she evokes the beauty of her mountain home, the kindness of friends and administrators, and a sense of wholeness achieved by being part of an academic environment. Westover‘s journey was far from easy, but it ultimately allowed her to find her own voice and design her own path.

Co-sponsored by the Campus Read and WVU Humanities Center

NOTE: To accommodate the demand, University Events is offering free tickets to WVU students until Oct. 31 at 11 p.m.. On Nov. 1, the remaining seats will be offered to faculty, staff and the general public. Students can request their ticket at The password to access the site is “Tara Westover.” Students will need to enter their MIX email address and the ticket will be emailed to them.

November 18

6:00 p.m.

Mountainlair Gold Ballroom

Campus Read Panel: What it Means to be Educated

WVU staff reflect on their journey as first-generation college students

Jessica Dai, staff librarian, WVU Libraries

Sara Georgi, managing editor, WVU Press

Rickie Huffman, social media specialist, University Relations Enrollment

January 27

7:00 p.m.

Bloch Hall, Creative Arts Center

George Lewis,Edwin H. Case Professor of American Music (Columbia University)

"Black Liveness Matters: Karel Čapek meets Blind Tom"

February 10

7:00 p.m.

Milano Reading Room, Downtown Library

Jason Phillips ,Eberly Professor of Civil War Studies, (History,West Virginia University)

"Looming Civil War: A History of the Future"

February 24

6:00-7:30 p.m.

Rhododendron Room, WVU Mountainlair

Recipients of 2019 Humanities Center Research Grants

“Humanities: Engaging with the Past, Present and Future"

March 10

7:00 p.m.

Milano Reading Room, Downtown Library

Johanna Winant (English, West Virginia University)

"Predictive Texts: Logic, Form, and Poetry"

March 25

7:00 p.m.

Room 125, Brooks Hall

Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing (Anthropology, University of California, Santa Cruz)

“Feral Atlas: The More-Than-Human Anthropocene"

April 2 - 3

Appalachian Speculative Futures Conference: The Speculative Appalachian Futures mini-conference asks how we can visualize, imagine, create, and enact Appalachian futures that speak to the diverse and innovative cultures of the region and bring them to the forefront of discussions of what it means to be Appalachian.

Co-Sponsored with the WVU Libraries

April 20

6-7:30 p.m.

Gluck Theatre, WVU Mountainlair 

Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris: The Future of the Past: Panelists will discuss the long history of building, destruction, and restoration of Notre Dame; the history of fires and recovery at Notre Dame and other medieval churches; and the 2017 fire and the current status of the consolidation efforts, as well as what is known—and not known—about the future restoration.  This will include a moderated discussion about the role of technology in the past and future of Notre Dame Cathedral. A book signing with Lindsay Cook will follow.  


  • Michael T. Davis, Professor of Art History; Chair of Architectural Studies at Mount Holyoke University
  • Vibeke Olson, Associate Professor of Art History, University of North Carolina, Wilmington
  • Lindsay Shepherd Cook, Visiting Assistant Professor of Art History, Vassar College


  • Janet Snyder, Professor Emerita  of Art History, West Virginia University


Art Exhibit, Balcony Stewart Hall. Ongoing.

The works of art in this exhibition have been selected from the permanent collection of the Art Museum of West Virginia University to relate in some way to the larger themes of Tara Westover’s memoir. These objects, created by seven different artists, present ideas about identity, mentorship, belonging, taking an unconventional path, and persistence. Viewers of the exhibit may very well see these and other connections, as well as find resonance within their own lived experiences.

If you're interested in using the book in the classroom or developing an event, contact Rhonda Reymond, interim director of the Campus Read and the Humanities Center.


Geoff Hilsabeck, Community Engagement Fellow with the WVU Humanities Center, hosts a weekly conversation centered around themes of the book. Learn more at