Humanities Connection | WYPR

Humanities Connection

Thursday at 4:44 pm
  • Hosted by Hosted by: Maryland Humanities Executive Director Dr. Phoebe Stein

Humanities Connection explores the role of the humanities in our daily lives, and features lively reflections around topics like education, literature, health care, race, politics, religion, history, and more.

Joining Phoebe for each segment is a series of special guests, including Maryland Humanities partners, board members, and local humanists. The result is a mix of stories and conversation designed to shed light on the human experience and stimulate the intellectual curiosity of our listeners.

Archive Prior to 11/5/13

Theme music created by Brian Whaley at

Visit Maryland Humanities to access additional resources, videos, and other dynamic content related to each segment.

Maryland Humanities is a statewide, educational nonprofit that creates and supports educational experiences in the humanities that inspire all Marylanders to embrace lifelong learning, exchange ideas openly, and enrich their communities.

What are the humanities? The humanities explore the human experience. Through the humanities, we think about who we are – our ideas, our histories, our literature, our values – and how we relate to one another. The humanities include literature, history, philosophy, archaeology, languages, theology, jurisprudence, ethics, art history, architecture, and some disciplines of the social sciences.

Maryland's Pioneering Women in Architecture

Aug 13, 2015

 On September 4 the MHC-supported traveling exhibition showcasing the early women of architecture in Maryland arrives at the American Institute of Architects in Baltimore. Jillian Storms, curator of the exhibition and Chair of the Women’s Diversity Committee of the AIA, tells us about two of the pioneering women highlighted in the exhibition.

Literary Walking Tour of Mount Vernon

Aug 7, 2015

Ever wanted to follow in the footsteps of the many famous authors, poets, and editors who lived in Baltimore? Every third Saturday in April through October, the Maryland Humanities Council offers a Literary Walking Tour of Mount Vernon, taking you through majestic cultural institutions, past elegant mansions, and into the minds of Baltimore’s literary luminaries. Jessica Baldwin, Program Assistant for Maryland Center for the Book, tells us more.

The Shelley-Godwin Archive

Jul 31, 2015

The Shelley-Godwin Archive a project of the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities, is making the handwritten works of four renowned 19th-century British writers accessible in today’s digital age.

Hometown Teams: Galesville

Jul 24, 2015

  Hometown Teams: How Sports Shape America is a Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition, brought to our state by the Maryland Humanities Council, traveling to five sites through November.  Host sites add Maryland's sports stories with local exhibits and programs.

The Mathematics of Being Human

Jul 16, 2015

While working together on a production of Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia at The Folger Theatre in 2009, two UMBC professors began a meaningful collaboration that has manifested into a seminar for Humanities Scholar Program students called "The Mathematics of Being Human," as well as a play of the same name.

You Are a Part of History

Jul 9, 2015

  Chris Haley is the Director of the Study of the Legacy of Slavery in Maryland at the Maryland State Archives research department.  A genealogist, historian, researcher, actor and the nephew of the late Alex Haley, author of the 1976 novel and TV miniseries Roots, Chris Haley speaks often in schools across the state on African American history, self-empowerment and genealogy.

Baltimore's All American House™

Jul 2, 2015

The All American House™, a project of MADE:  In America, is a national showcase of the best in American design and products, set in the context of an iconic house property.

Small Museums in Maryland

Jun 25, 2015

From local history to living history, the arts to architecture, Maryland is host to hundreds of Museums statewide, many of which are small and led by teams of dedicated volunteers.  Every Maryland County has a historical society, complimented by dozens of local historical groups.

The Maryland Humanities Council's Maryland History Day isn’t just a day.  Students in nineteen counties and Baltimore City spend an average of seventy hours on their entries in the hopes of representing our state at the National Competition. 

The B&O Railroad Strike of 1877

Jun 11, 2015

Today’s debates on labor issues like the minimum wage, equal pay, and trade agreements are not new.  Did you know that Baltimore hosted the first national strike in U.S History? Here to tell us more about the B&O Railroad Strike of 1877 is Bill Barry, labor historian, author and former Director of the Labor Studies Department at CCBC.

We are Different People in Different Places

Jun 4, 2015

Elizabeth Evitts Dickinson is a fiction and non-fiction author who has written about the built environment and its relationship to humans and culture for nearly two decades.

The Quince Orchard Project

May 28, 2015

Has your community had a 'past life?'  Does your home address have a back-story? Jason Green is many things: attorney, entrepreneur, political strategist and documentary film maker.

We Need Our Stories

May 21, 2015

What role can the humanities play in helping us understand recent unrest in Baltimore? N. D. B. Connolly is Assistant Professor of History at Johns Hopkins University.

Hometown Teams, Allegany Museum

May 14, 2015
Allegany Historical Society

Hometown Teams, the family-friendly Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibition that explores our nation's love of sports, brought to Maryland by the Maryland Humanities Council.  Five host sites add their own unique companion exhibitions and public programs that tell Maryland's sports stories.

JHU Archaeological Museum/Clayworks #3

May 8, 2015

  Over the course of the last year we've heard two perspectives—the museum curator's and the ceramic artist's-- on the project that partnered Baltimore Clayworks with the Johns Hopkins University Archaeological Museum.

History of Wine Making in Maryland

May 1, 2015

The Humanities are not only found in the classroom, they can a part of everyday life.  Do you know that Maryland has a rich history of wine making?

Preservation Maryland

Apr 23, 2015
Preservation Maryland

Does what we choose to preserve reflect our society, our culture, our values?  Preservation Maryland is the second oldest statewide historic preservation organization in the country and works to preserve historic buildings, neighborhoods, landscapes, and archaeological sites through outreach, funding, and advocacy.

  Dana Hendrickson is both a military spouse and Director of Outreach and Advocacy at the Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs.

Lincoln’s Funeral Train

Apr 9, 2015
B&O Railroad Museum

Next weekend the B & O Railroad Museum will commemorate the 150th Anniversary of President Lincoln's funeral train's stop in Baltimore with a weekend full of events.

Designing Memorials, Drafting Legacy

Apr 2, 2015

Memorials are not monuments solely links to our past honoring the sacrifices or achievements of our fellow citizens. They can offer us a powerful experience that captures public ethos and confront the sometimes unhappy truths of collective memory in a form that will last for generations.

Hometown Teams – Federalsburg

Mar 26, 2015
Federalsburg Historical Society

Hometown Teams: How Sports Shape America is a Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition for the whole family, brought to our state by the Maryland Humanities Council, traveling to five sites through November.

100 Years of Peabody Dance

Mar 20, 2015
Peabody Archives

This month Peabody Dance celebrates its centennial. Through a Maryland Humanities Council supported traveling exhibition, community programs, and living history performances, Marylanders can discover the Institute’s history within the context of dance in Baltimore and statewide, major historical figures in dance, and national dance movements.

Maryland Women in Architecture

Mar 12, 2015
AIA Baltimore

On March 19 at Morgan State University the American Institute of Architects Baltimore celebrates Women's History month with a talk and a sneak peek of an MHC supported traveling exhibition launching in June that highlights early women architects in Maryland.

Coming Home In 2007: A Veteran’s Perspective

Mar 5, 2015

  Standing Together: The Humanities and the Experience of War is an NEH Initiative facilitated in Maryland by the Maryland Humanities Council that seeks to promote discussion, deepen understanding of service members' experiences, and provide opportunities to reflect and give voice to issues of concern to veterans.

St. John's College in Annapolis is a liberal arts college where students focus on collaborative inquiry and the study of original texts to examine the fundamental questions of what it means to be human.  Christopher B. Nelson, St. John's College President, is a national spokesperson for liberal arts education.

The Meaning of Monuments

Feb 19, 2015

Baltimore was the first municipality in the U.S. to design a comprehensive program for the preservation of its outdoor monuments.  For more than three decades, the Baltimore City Commission for Historical and Architectural Preservation has acted as steward for the hundreds of monuments around Charm city, conducting inventories and coordinating preservation efforts.

Few diaries kept by African Americans during the late 19th century have survived, but those that have endured provide a unique glimpse into the everyday life of free African Americans of the time.

Hometown Teams at Banneker-Douglass Museum

Jan 29, 2015

Hometown Teams is a family-friendly and interactive Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibition, brought to Maryland by the Maryland Humanities Council, which explores our nation’s love of sports and its connection to our culture and identity.

24/7 Library: MarylandAskUsNow!

Jan 22, 2015

Maryland AskUsNow! is the statewide online library chat service available to Marylanders 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Librarians answer questions and provide research guidance, and since its launch in 2003, they have answered over 418 thousand questions by chat.

Wide Angle Youth Media: Natasha and Kristina

Jan 15, 2015

  In August, listeners learned about Wide Angle Youth Media, a non-profit that teaches Baltimore youth media skills, provides opportunities to tell their own stories, and become engaged with their communities.