Ugandan ethnomusicologist and Middlebury assistant professor Damascus Kafumbe examines music-making and storytelling, especially as they are used both to maintain political power and to help people survive political repression in his native Uganda.
In today’s political and cultural atmosphere, it is vital the public stays informed and the press does its job. Journalists Cindy Skrzycki and Pulitzer Prize winner David Shribman examine the current media landscape, distinguishing between fake and real news, amateur and professional, slanted and objective.
Zora Neale Hurston’s landmark novel tells the story of Janie Mae Crawford’s journey from adolescence to maturity, from dependence to autonomy, and most importantly, from silence to speech. Middlebury professor Will Nash examines Janie’s timeless and profoundly relevant journey.
Van Gogh’s letters reveal that his paintings and drawings were inspired by his reading as well as by people, nature, and other painters’ work. Art historian Carol Berry shows the profound influence of the works of Harriet Beecher Stowe, Charles Dickens, George Eliot, and others on Van Gogh’s life and art.
Yosemite was more than the first federally protected American landscape; it was an emblem of freedom in the years surrounding the Civil War. Eleanor Jones Harvey, senior curator at Smithsonian American Art Museum, discusses the story behind Bierstadt’s monumental painting, weaving together several historical threads to deepen our appreciation of Yosemite as part of our national identity.
Do you like food? Do you like talking about food? Then this group is for you. Alex McGregor, a local chef, will lead us in a discussion of all things food: ingredients and cooking techniques; stories of food from distant lands; and even gardening and raising animals. We plan on having monthly meetings.
A Victorian Holiday Celebration of the season with harpist Bill Tobin, the Hilltones, Cantate, the North Country Youth Chorus, and a reading by Bob Joly from Truman Capote's A Christmas Memory. Refreshments following the program. Hosted by the Friends of the Athenaeum.
Dickens scholar Barry Deitz considers Dickens’s career up to the publication of A Christmas Carol in 1843, what the novella’s success meant to Dickens’s life and work, and how the story has resonated since, including in films.
As part of the Arts & Culture Series, the Athenaeum's new Tech Support expert, Andrew Hatfield, explains today's online/internet security threats and how to combat them. Learn how to make your devices and your information safe!
Andrew was raised by a pack of wild PCs, and worked 20 years in the tech field. Now he is here to help tame your tech problems.
Free and handicapped accessible.
Author Melanie Finn discusses the development of her latest literary thriller, The underneath, which is set primarily in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom. Finn is the author of two earlier novels including The Gloaming, a 2016 New York Times Notable Book. Born and raised in Kenya until age 11, she then moved with her family to Connecticut. After working as a freelance journalist and screenwriter for 20 years in six countries, she wrote her first novel, Away From You in 2014. Free and handicapped accessible.
Liberal democracy—the system of representative democracy, individual liberty, and the rule of law on which America was founded—is being challenged by both foreign powers and domestic politicians who favor more autocratic governance. Visiting scholar at Middlebury College Stan Sloan discusses these threats.
Vermont Supreme Court Chief Justice Paul Reiber and Vermont Bar Association President Gary Franklin, joined by Caledonia Unit Presiding Judge Robert Bent and Caledonia County Bar Association President Laura Wilson, Esq., invite you to the Caledonia County Stop on the Vermont Bench and Bar Listening Tour On Monday, October 22 from 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. at the St. Johnsbury Athenaeum 1171 Main Street, St. Johnsbury Light Refreshments will be Served Come share your impressions of, and suggestions for, the Vermont state courts and the legal system. The Bench & Bar Listening Tour is part of the Vermont Judiciary’s and Vermont Bar Association’s continual goal to serve the public well.
For Years Andrew Hepburn has traveled through Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont and parts of Canada--to coastal sites, ponds and streams--photographing images of rocks and water which, though realistic and representational, border on the abstract...and render them strange--something else. Hepburn will make brief remarks about his work, discussing abstracting images from landscapes. "I enjoy the free back-and-forth and welcome comments and reactions to my images."
Exhibit runs through November in Athenaeum Hall Gallery.
Four Wednesdays: October 10, 17, 24 and 31, 7-9 pm
This event is full. We are no longer accepting reservations. If you would like to sign up for the Applied Mindfulness newsletter, go HERE.
Human beings are the greatest natural resource on the planet. If it doesn’t always seem that way, it’s because we need to learn how to work with our minds to fulfill our potential. Mindfulness, the ability to direct and sustain our attention, helps us notice patterns within ourselves. When we practice this inward focus, we begin to see more clearly the patterns unfolding in the world around us. This enables us to harness the power of our inherent resourcefulness so that we can discern and skillfully deliver action to bring benefit whatever our circumstances.
Science has demonstrated that mindfulness practice can improve task performance in many domains, including those requiring focused attention and some types of memory. Meditation also improves emotional regulation, lowers stress, helps us get back on task at hand after being distracted, and enhances compassion and creativity. If you’d like to enjoy these inner advantages but don’t know how to get started, please join us.
This four-week course will include basic mindfulness meditation instruction, as well as exercises illustrating the value of that discipline and discussion about integrating the practice into our daily lives. It will be taught by Carol Hyman, Executive Director of Applied Mindfulness Training, assisted by Reeve Lindbergh, author and board member of Applied Mindfulness Training.
Because this program builds on the content of previous sessions, participants are encouraged to make an effort to attend all four classes if possible.
Free and handicapped accessible.
(For more information, visit http://www.appliedmindfulnesstraining.org/)
Acclaimed children’s book author Katherine Paterson discusses her novel of historical fiction that tells the story of the 1912 “Bread and Roses” strike in the Lawrence, Massachusetts textile mills through the eyes of an Italian-American girl and a runaway boy. This is Vermont Read's book for this year.
Bread and Roses, Too by Katherine Paterson is the Vermont Reads 2018 book. Come join in a lively discussion of the book in an informal setting. Adults and youth are invited to participate. Books are available for checkout at the front circulation desk.
Pizza dinner and beverages provided. Email email@example.com or call 802-745-1392 to indicate your interest in attending.
All pies are $12 each. All proceeds go to the Athenaeum to support youth and adult programming and materials.
Join us behind the Athenaeum for a spectacular Barbecue prepared by Big Fatty’s BBQ from White River Junction. $35 per person, and children under 12 are free! Includes pulled pork, brisket, ribs, chicken, mac & cheese, coleslaw, baked beans and cornbread. Beer and soft drinks included. For advance tickets, contact Scott Davis at firstname.lastname@example.org or 802-745-1393. Tickets will also be available at the door.
On Saturday, August 11 Lee Stetson will perform two shows, at 4 and 7 pm. Each show is limited to 50 people. Tickets are free, but you must register in advance. Register HERE (Where is asks "What kind of donation are you making?", Click on "Events"), or contact Scott Davis at email@example.com or 802-745-1393. First come, first served, so register early!
Lee Stetson's performances have brought the inspiration, humor, and conservation message of John Muir to many thousands of people.
Since 1983, Lee Stetson has presenting dramatic live enactments of John Muir in Yosemite National Park. During the winter months, Lee Stetson performs live as John Muir on tour throughout the United States and the world. He is often asked to provide Muir "voice overs" for films on Yosemite, national parks, or John Muir, most recently in Ken Burns' acclaimed PBS series "The National Parks: America's Best Idea." Lee also was featured on interviews as a Muir expert in the first two episodes of that series.
"An Evening with a Tramp," Lee's original production, has been followed by "Stickeen and Other Fellow Mortals" (beginning in 1986) and "Spirit of John Muir" (since 1990). These are all available on audiotape and CD, and "Evening with a Tramp" is on video.
Lee Stetson is also the compiler and editor of a book, The Wild Muir: Twenty-two of John Muir's greatest adventures. For this book, Lee carefully chose death-defying episodes from every stage of Muir's life, prepared short introductions to place each in context, then arranged them chronologically so that the reader can vicariously enjoy Muir's life of adventure.
Visit Stetson’s website HERE.
Rachel Hadas, Reeve Lindbergh, Patty Oliver-Smith and Gardner McFall will read from Writers and Their Mothers, (Palgrave Macmillan, 2108). The book is a collection of essays about the influence of mothers on their literary offspring. Ian McEwan, Anthony Thwaite, and Margaret Drabble are also among the 22 contributors to the collection. The essays evoke both fond and tortured memories of the maternal bond and its influence on the writers.
“Elegantly assembled and presented, Writers and Their Mothers will appeal to everyone interested in biography, literature, and creativity in general.” -Amazon.com
“What a great project, I just can't believe that no one has done it before.” -Times Literary Supplement podcast, March 8, 2018
Vermont author Jessica Aiken-Hall reads from her memoir The Monster That Ate My Mommy, a disturbing and honest account of her abusive upbringing in rural Vermont.
“This is one of the most moving and brave memoirs I have ever read—on par with The Liar’s Club (Mary Karr) and The Glass Castle (Jeanette Walls).”—Sarah Felix Burns, author of Jackfish, The Vanishing Village
Copies of the book will be available for purchase. Proceeds from the sale of her books this night will go to Umbrella, which supports women, families and survivors of interpersonal violence in the Northeast Kingdom.
The Friends of the Athenaeum cordially invite you to The Friends' Afternoon Tea Party. $20.00 per person. After the Tea, take a few moments to visit the gallery and celebrate the return of The Domes of the Yosemite.
Please register in advance with Shara McCaffrey at firstname.lastname@example.org or 802-748-8291.
Come celebrate the return of Albert Bierstadt's The Domes of the Yosemite, the gem of our collection following an amazing renovation by ArtCare Conservation in Miami, FL and a well-received installation at the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum in Winter Park, FL. Athenaeum Director Bob Joly will give a presentation about The Domes at 11 am and 3 pm. Free and open to the public.
Come celebrate the return of Albert Bierstadt's The Domes of the Yosemite, the gem of our collection following an amazing renovation by ArtCare Conservation in Miami, FL and a well-received installation at the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum in Winter Park, FL. Athenaeum Director Bob Joly will give a presentation about The Domes at 4:30 and 6 pm. Free and open to the public.
Laura Foley is the author of six poetry collections, most recently, WTF and Night Ringing. Her poem "Gratitude List" won the Common Good Books Poetry Contest and was read by Garrison Keillor on The Writer's Almanac. Her poem "Nine Ways of Looking at Light" won the Joe Gouveia Outermost Poetry Contest. Her book, Joy Street, won the Bisexual Writer's Award, and was praised by David Ferry; and The Glass Tree won ForeWord Magazine's Silver Medal for Book of the Year Award in poetry.
Her work has been published in journals around the world, including New Zealand (Poems in the Waiting Room), China (Shanghai Literary Review), England (Aesthetica Creative Writing Anthology and Poetry Society London), Canada (Room Magazine). In the United States her work has been published in several reviews including, the Bellevue Literary Review, Aesthetica Creative Writing, In the Arms of Words: Poems for Disaster Relief, Roads Taken: Contemporary Vermont Poets, Not My President, an Anthology of Dissent and others.
A New York Zen Center for Contemplative Care-trained chaplain, she provides volunteer palliative care in hospitals and prisons, and is a certified Shri Yoga Instructor. She holds an M.A. and a M. Phil. in English Literature from Columbia University, and lives with her wife and their two dogs among the hills of Vermont.
April Ossmann is the author of Event Boundaries (Four Way Books, 2017), and Anxious Music (Four Way Books, 2007) and has published her poetry widely in journals and anthologies, including Colorado Review, Harvard Review, and From the Fishouse (Persea Books, 2009). Her poetry awards include a Vermont Arts Council Creation Grant, and a Prairie Schooner Readers’ Choice Award. She has published essays including Thinking Like an Editor: How to Order Your Poetry Manuscript (Poets & Writers, March/April 2011), and a biography/critical study of poet Lynda Hull in American Writers Supplement XXI (Charles Scribner’s Sons, 2011).
Former executive director of Alice James Books (2000 – 2008), she owns a consulting business, offering manuscript editing and publishing advice. She is a faculty editor for the low-residency MFA in Creative Writing Program at Sierra Nevada College, and teaches private tutorials and poetry workshops using a method she developed to teach poets to revise their work objectively. She lives in West Windsor, Vermont.
See more about April Ossmann www.aprilossmann.com
Nicole Homer’s first full-length collection of poems, Pecking Order, published by Write Bloody Press was a finalist for the 2018 Paterson Poetry Prize. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Muzzle, The Offing, Winter Tangerine, Rattle, The Collagist and elsewhere. A The Watering Hole graduate fellow and Callaloo fellow, Nicole serves as an Editor and regular contributor at BlackNerdProblems, writing critique of media and pop culture, and as faculty at the Pink Door Writing Retreat for Women and Gender Non-conforming Writers of Color.
Nicole started slamming in 2005 at LoserSlam (NJ) and Urbana (NY). She quickly earned her spot on a team and, in 2006, started competing at the national level. She’s been everything from a wide-eyed participant to a semi-finalist to a finalist in both team and individual slams in the National Poetry Slam, the Individual World Poetry Slam, and the Women of the World Poetry Slam. She is a full-time faculty member at Mercer County Community College in New Jersey, with an MFA from Rutgers-Newark.
See more about The Frost Place and Nicole Homer http://frostplace.org/ http://nicolehomer.com/
Jeff Friedman's seventh book, Floating Tales—a collection of prose poems, fables, and mini tales— was published Plume Editions/MadHat Press in fall 2017. He has published six previous poetry collections, Pretenders (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 2014); Working in Flour (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 2011); Black Threads (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 2008); Taking Down the Angel (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 2003); Scattering the Ashes (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 1998); and The Record-Breaking Heat Wave (BkMk Press at University of Missouri-Kansas City, 1986). His work has appeared in American Poetry Review, Poetry, New England Review, The Antioch Review, Sentence, Poetry International, The New Bloomsbury Anthology of Contemporary Jewish Poets,and dozens of other literary magazines. He has won numerous awards, including a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Translation Fellowship, and the Milton Dorfman Poetry Prize. Dzvinia Orlowsky's and his translation of Memorials by Polish Poet Mieczslaw Jastrun was published by Lavender Ink/Dialogos in August 2014. Friedman collaborated with Nati Zohar and Howard Schwartz on the anthology Two Gardens: Modern Hebrew Poems of the Bible, translations of poems written by Israeli poets, published by Singing Bone Press in 2016. He has taught at Keene State College for many years.
See more about Jeff Friedman
Jensen Beach is the author of two collections of short fiction. The most recent collection, Swallowed by the Cold, was the winner of the 2017 Vermont Book Award. His work has appeared in A Public Space, Ninth Letter, The Paris Review, and the New Yorker, among others.
Beach holds an MFA in fiction from the Program for Poets and Writers at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, as well as an MA and BA in English from Stockholm University. He teaches in the BFA program at Northern Vermont University- Johnson, where he is fiction editor of Green Mountains Review.
See more about Jensen Beach
Author Beth Kanell reads from her new book, The Long Shadow (Five Star Publishing, April 2018).
Beth Kanell of Waterford, Vermont, has written a story of 1850s Vermont. When Alice Sanborn and her best friend cross paths with a bounty hunter in rural northern Vermont, the teens stage a daring rescue for former slave Sarah Johnson. But winter weather, politics and challenges of mountain life bring more danger.
“Adults and teens alike will savor this well-researched tale of a teenage girl, her best friend, and their black friend Sarah, who still isn’t safe from bounty hunters even in the snow-covered villages of Vermont.”-Edith Maxwell