June 8, 2021Turning an Archaeological Practice on its Head
Penn’s Megan Kassabaum, takes a wider view that spans both time and geography by focusing on understanding widespread practices. Since arriving at Penn, Kassabaum has focused on tracking the long history of Native American platform mounds in the eastern United States. In her new book, “A History of Platform Mound Ceremonialism: Finding Meaning in Elevated Ground,” Kassabaum conceives of a new analytical approach, one that’s forward-facing rather than backward-looking. That leads her to reach a different conclusion about platform mounds.
June 8, 2021‘Traveling Black:’ The Fight for Freedom on Roads, Rail, and in the Air
University of Pennsylvania historian MIA BAY explores the fight for freedom on the roads, rail, and in the sky in her new book, Traveling Black: A Story of Race and Resistance. After emancipation and as mass transportation systems developed, Black Americans had hopes of free mobility but they were quickly quashed by white supremacy and Jim Crow laws on trains, buses, planes and along highways.
June 8, 2021Mystics and Visionaries: A Fine Arts Seminar
Jackie Tileston, an associate professor in the Department of Fine Arts in the Stuart Weitzman School of Design, designed a seminar using af Klint’s work as a jumping off point to examine the ways in which mystical and alternative forms of knowledge have fed artistic practices, both in the past and for contemporary artists in cultures around the globe. The seminar involved a wide range of readings, lectures, discussions, projects, and experiential exercises with visiting lecturers from neuroscience, religious studies, and positive psychology. They studied contemporary artists influenced by Eastern philosophies to Tantra paintings and Tibetan sand mandalas to Carl Jung’s “Red Book,” in which the psychoanalyst explored the unconscious mind in a massive tome of his own art, calligraphy, and writings, which wasn’t published until 2009.
May 18, 2021Celebrating The ‘incomparable’ Class of 2021
Penn’s 265th Commencement honored students who are defined by their inspiring growth, unrivaled resilience, gracious appreciation, and undoubted ability to create a better future for us all. “Every Commencement at Penn is historic, but none quite like this,” Penn President Amy Gutmann said to the crowd. “To each graduate on the field, and to every graduate joining us online: You have done it. Here, at the turning of the tides, you make history.”
May 17, 2021Season Two, Episode Four, of The OMNIA Podcast: National Myths and Monuments
Season two, episode four, of the OMNIA podcast ‘In These Times’ features three faculty members, Associate professor of anthropology and coordinator of Native American and Indigenous studies, Margaret Bruchac; Class of 1940 Bicentennial Term Associate Professor of History of Art, Lasry Professor of Race Relations in the Departments of Sociology and Africana Studies, Tukufu Zuberi will all discuss the movement to reexamine monuments and the history and myths they symbolize