Dr. William M. Scholl Center for American History and Culture Programs

Gertrude Stein visiting Chicago, 1935
Bobsy Goodspeed, Gertrude Stein, Fanny Butcher, Alice Roullier, Alice B. Toklas, Thornton Wilder. Mdwst MS Butcher Bx44 Fl#1846.

Scholl Center programs encourage research in American history, literature, and culture in areas where the Newberry’s collections are strong. The center’s programs include a variety of institutes, conferences, and professional development workshops.

The Dr. William M. Scholl Center for American History and Culture’s longest running program is its seminar series. For decades, the center has sponsored seminars on major themes in American history, literature, and culture. In cooperation with Chicago-area university departments and institutes, scholars gather at the Newberry to discuss ongoing research in a workshop format.

The center’s current seminars are:

Scholl Center seminars are supported by a number of generous sponsors.

In previous years, the Scholl Center also sponsored seminars on Religious History; Rural History; Sport and Culture; and Technology, Politics, and Culture. These seminars are currently on hiatus.

Upcoming Programs

Friday, February 27, 2015
Borderlands and Latino/a Studies Seminar
Jennifer Garcia Peacock, University of Michigan; David Reid, Rutgers University

“Growing La Causa: The Representation of Grapes and Grape Workers in The March from Delano to Sacramento (1966)”
Jennifer Garcia Peacock, University of Michigan
“Defining the Delta: Salt, the State, and the Cold War in the Colorado River Borderlands”
David Reid, Rutgers University
Respondents: Benjamin Johnson, Loyola University Chicago; Diane Miliotes, The Art...

Friday, March 6, 2015
American Art and Visual Culture Seminar
Erina Duganne, Texas State University and Karen Huang, University of Southern California

“The Nicaragua Media Project and the Politics of Representation in the 1980s”
Erina Duganne, Texas State University
“Whose Memories? Imagining the Vietnam War in An-My Lê’s Small Wars”
Karen Huang, University of Southern California

Friday, March 6, 2015
Labor History Seminar
Jon Shelton, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay

“Dropping Dead: Teachers, the New York City Fiscal Crisis, and Austerity”
Jon Shelton, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay
Respondents: Jerald Podair, Lawrence University; Elizabeth Todd-Breland, University of Illinois at Chicago

Saturday, March 7, 2015
Urban History Dissertation Group
Courtney Wiersema, University of Notre Dame

“Fueling Class: Comfort and Consumption in Gilded Age Chicago”
Courtney Wiersema, University of Notre Dame

Thursday, March 12, 2015
Hearts Beating for Liberty: Women Abolitionists in the Old Northwest : A Meet the Author Program

Challenging traditional histories of abolition, historian Stacey Robertson shifts the focus away from the East to show how the women of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin helped build a vibrant antislavery movement in the Old Northwest.

Friday, March 13, 2015
Seminar in British History
Farid Azfar, Swarthmore College

“Terra Firma: The Disappearance of the Royal George and the Solid Grounds of the South Sea Company”
Farid Azfar, Swarthmore College

Thursday, March 19, 2015
American Literature Seminar
Eric Slauter, University of Chicago

“Walden’s Carbon Footprint: People, Plants, Animals, and Machines in the Making of an Environmental Classic”
Eric Slauter, University of Chicago

Friday, March 20, 2015
Women and Gender Seminar
New Directions in Reproductive Rights Research

Lauren MacIvor Thompson, Georgia State University, “Science and Sex Relations: Mary Ware Dennett and Evolving Arguments for Birth Control Reform.”
Sarah Rodriguez, Northwestern University, “Challenging the Necessity of the Episiotomy: Feminist Concerns and Nursing Discourse in the 1970s”
Commentator: Judith Houck, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Friday, March 27, 2015
History of Capitalism Seminar
Seth Rockman, Brown University

“Innovation, Alienation, and the Russet Brogan: Plantation Provisioning and New England’s Industrial Revolution”
Seth Rockman, Brown University

Friday, April 3, 2015
American Art and Visual Culture Seminar
Gillian O'Brien, Liverpool John Moores University

Workshop with Gillian O’Brien on Thomas Nast’s illustrations in the periodical, America

Friday, April 3, 2015
Labor History Seminar
James Barrett, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

“Blue-Collar Cosmopolitans: Toward a History of Working-Class Sophistication in the Industrial United States”
James Barrett, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Respondents: Jack Metzgar, Roosevelt University; Steven Rosswurm, Lake Forest University

Friday, April 10, 2015
Borderlands and Latino/a Studies Seminar
Sergio González, University of Wisconsin; Felipe Hinojosa, Texas A&M University

“’Juntos En El Nombre De Dios’: Milwaukee’s Mexican Mission Chapel of Our Lady of Guadalupe, 1924-1929”
Sergio González, University of Wisconsin
“House of Lords: Latino Radicals, Church Take-Overs, and the Fight for Urban Space, 1968-1972”
Felipe Hinojosa, Texas A&M University
Respondent: Kevin Schultz, University of Illinois at Chicago

Saturday, April 11, 2015
Urban History Dissertation Group
Christopher Ramsey, Loyola University Chicago and Mark Beirn, Washington University in St. Louis

“A Good Place to Work and Play, A Good Place to Work and Stay: South Lynne Community Council, 1957-1965”
Christopher Ramsey, Loyola University Chicago
“National Narrative and Contested Urban Space: Berlin’s Three Airports”
Mark Beirn, Washington University in St. Louis

Friday, April 17, 2015
Seminar in British History
John Krenzke, Loyola University Chicago

“Teaching London how to Drink: How the Excise Created London’s Favorite Beer”
John Krenzke, Loyola University Chicago

Thursday, April 23, 2015
American Literature Seminar
Liesl Olson, Newberry Library

“White City, Black Metropolis”
Liesl Olson, Newberry Library

Friday, April 24, 2015
Women and Gender Seminar
Danielle McGuire, Wayne State University

Danielle McGuire, Wayne State University
“The Maid and Mr. Charlie: Black Women and Sexual Violence in the Jim Crow South”

Friday, May 1, 2015
American Art and Visual Culture Seminar
Kristina Wilson, Clark University and Bess Williamson, School of the Art Institute, Chicago

“ ‘Like a girl in a bikini suit’ and other stories: Herman Miller, Gender, and Race at Mid-Century”
Kristina Wilson, Clark University
“From Cockpits to Cubicles: Ergonomic Design and Difficult Positions in the late Twentieth-century American Office”
Bess Williamson, School of the Art Institute, Chicago

Friday, May 1, 2015
History of Capitalism Seminar
History of Capitalism Seminar Book Group : The Empire of Cotton: A Global History

The History of Capitalism Seminar Book Group will meet twice this academic year to discuss recent publications in the history of capitalism. The second session will discuss Sven Beckert’s The Empire of Cotton: A Global History (Knopf, December 2014).

Friday, May 1, 2015
Seminar in British History
Peter Stansky, Stanford University

Peter Stansky, Stanford University
“The Case of Edward Upward: Communism and Literature in Britain”

Saturday, May 2, 2015
Urban History Dissertation Group
Andrew Dribin, University of Illinois at Chicago and Aram Sarkisian, Northwestern University

“The Wilderness Years of Chicago: Saving Nature in Postwar Chicago,1945-Present”
Andrew Dribin, University of Illinois at Chicago

“Icons of Lenin or Prayers for the Tsar? Russian Orthodoxy and
Radicalism in Red Scare Detroit, 1917-1924”
Aram Sarkisian, Northwestern University

Saturday, May 9, 2015
Borderlands and Latino/a Studies Seminar
Borderlands and Latino/a Studies Saturday Conference

Juliana Barr, University of Florida
Jennifer Flores Stearnad, New York University
Maria Windell, University of Colorado, Boulder
Karl Jacoby, Columbia University

Friday, May 15, 2015
Seminar in British History
Joyce E. Chaplin, Harvard University

“T. R. Malthus in New Worlds: Circulation of the “Essay on the Principle of Population” in the Americas and the Pacific, 1803-1834”
Joyce E. Chaplin, Harvard University