Newsletter

Graduate Humanities, our Program newsletter, has been published bi-annually without interruption since 1977. Click on the links below for an Adobe PDF version of the more recent publications:

Spring 2020
“I’m Afraid of That Water: A Collaborative Ethnography of a West Virginia Water Crisis,” lead article comprised of excerpts from the newly published book of the same name. Co-authored by academics and community members for three audiences: academics, local West Virginians, and a larger public interested in issues of disaster and its aftermath.     /     "Shifts in Perspective: The Workings of the Duck/Metaphor," excerpts from work produced for the seminar, "Philosophy’s Practices and Engagements––American Pragmatism.”     /     "Legal Derivation for West ‘By God’ Virginia," by Dr. Eric Waggoner, Executive Director, West Virginia Humanities Council."    /    And more . . .

Fall 2019
"Yours Affectionately: The Intimate Letters of Lucy Woodbridge and Lewis Summers," lead article comprised of excerpts from graduate Angela Holley’s final project regarding letters written by former residents of the Glenwood Estate in Charleston, West Virginia, during the Civil War.     /     "Processes of Preserving and Transcribing," a description of Holley’s methodology and learnings.     /     "Building from the Ground Up: West Virginia’s Cultural & Creative Economy," interview with Dr. Eric Waggoner, Executive Director, West Virginia Humanities Council.     /     New Book: Fearless: Women’s Journeys to Self-Empowerment, edited by Cat Pleska (’98), author, editor, publisher, storyteller, and faculty member, Graduate Humanities Program.     /     And more . . .

Spring 2019
"Finding Billy Dunn," lead article comprised of excerpts from graduate Carolyn Quinlan’s final project regarding Little League Baseball in St. Albans, West Virginia.     /     "Work in Non-Profits: Appreciating the Charitable Sector Seminar (Part One)," with excerpts from student papers.     /     "Appreciating The Charitable Sector Seminar (Part Two)," a brief explanation of an organizational process, Appreciative Inquiry, and how it was used in the non-profit seminar.     /     And more . . .

Fall 2018
"Visual Metaphor: The Graduate Humanities Program as Kaleidoscope," lead article explores the similarities between a liberal arts program and an optical instrument.     /     "Elevating ‘Evaluation’ to ‘Valuation,’" sets up the survey, "Asking ‘What Do You Value About the Program?’"     /     "Word Wide Web."     /     And more . . .

Spring 2018
"Environmental Humanities," lead article including interviews with a Major Scholar Seminar instructor, Dr. Susan Crate, Professor, Environmental Science and Policy, George Mason University and student Mikhaela Young.     /     "Climate Science Needs Anthropology," excerpts from a paper by student Kaitlyn Rhodes.     /     "Building Energy-Efficient Houses: Life After Grad School," interview with graduate James Straight (’15) about his vision for his construction company.     /     New Book: Voices on Unity: Coming Together, Falling Apart, an anthology compiled and edited by Cat Pleska (’98), author, editor, publisher, storyteller, and faculty member, Graduate Humanities Program.     /     And more . . .

Fall 2017
"Learning Together: Academic & Community Partnerships," lead article interview with Dr. Luke Eric Lassiter, Director of the Graduate Humanities Program.     /     "Recent Graduates & Their Community Partners," excerpts from student projects with community groups.     /     And more . . .

Spring 2017
"Digital Humanities: What is it and Why Care?" excerpts from a discussion by students and instructor in our Digital Humanities seminar.     /     "Setting Sail for New Opportunities: Life After Grad School, article by Josh Mills (’16).     /    "We Dump Humanities Education at Our Own Peril" by Dan Foster, retired Charleston surgeon, former state senator, and a Gazette contributing columnist.     /     New Book: One Foot in the GravyHooked on the Sauce: Recipes You’ll Relish, compiled and edited by Cat Pleska (’98), author, editor, publisher, storyteller, and faculty member, Graduate Humanities Program.     /     And more . . .

Fall 2016
"Choice, Along with Confidence," reflection by student, Rhonda Marrone."     /     "Passages from Final Projects and Thesis," excerpts from student projects.     /     Visual: "MU Graduate Humanities Program: What Attracts Our Students and Where They Work."     /     And more . . .

Spring 2016
"Humanities Puts a Human Face on Public Policy," interview with Dr. Renate Pore, Director, Health Care Policy for West Virginians for Affordable Health Care.     /     "Looking at Activism in West Virginia, Past and Present," reprint from Charleston Gazette-Mail regarding the West Virginia Activist Archive.     /     Visual: "Public Humanities"—partnerships between our program and community groups.     /     And more . . .

Fall 2015
"Communicating A Different Way, A Better Way," interview with student Ashley Dennison, Staff member of Heritage Farm Museum and Village, Huntington, West Virginia.     /     "A Deeper, Wider View of the World," interview with Larry Groce, Musician and Arts Producer, Host of live radio show, Mountain Stage, and Director of FestivALL, an annual celebration of arts and entertainment in Charleston, West Virginia.     /     "How I Think About the Humanities," exposition by student Josh Mills.     /     And more . . .

Spring 2015
"Always Taking Risks," interview with Dr. Bob Maslowski, Faculty, Archaeologist (retired) from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.     /     "Go to the Music to Figure Things Out," interview with Dr. Lauren Onkey, Vice President of Education & Public Programs at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Cleveland Ohio, visiting Major Scholar faculty.     /    New Book: Riding on Comets: A Memoir, by Cat Pleska, Faculty and Editor-in-Chief, Mountain State Press.     /     New Book: Doing Ethnography Today: Theories, Methods, Exercises by Dr. Beth Campbell, Faculty, Assistant Professor of Education and Dr. Luke Eric Lassiter, Director, Professor of Humanities and Anthropology.     /     And more . . .

Fall 2014
"Connecting Past and Present," interview with Dr. Billy Joe Peyton, Faculty, Co-Director of the Glenwood Center for Scholarship.     /     "Answering the ‘So What?’ Question," interview with Dr. Arijit Sen, architect and vernacular architecture historian at the University of Wisconsin, and a visiting Major Scholar faculty, about reading American architectural landscapes.     /     Images from "Glenwood / History of Charleston Seminar & Public Presentation."     /    New Book: Dark Wine Waters: My Husband of a Thousand Joys and Sorrows, by former faculty member, Dr. Fran Simone.     /     And more . . .

Spring 2014
"Something’s Going to Happen," interview with student Jay Thomas regarding the juxtaposition between being a businessman (Blues BBQ) and a graduate student in the Humanities program.     /     "We Had to Make Up our Own Mind," interview with student Brenna Craig about her learning experience in the program and in particular, in a seminar about the life, work, and culture of coal mining in West Virginia.     /     And more . . .

Fall 2013
"Its All There on the Page: A Life in Writing and Teaching," by Cat Pleska (’98), Faculty.     /     "Living and Teaching," by Anne McConnell, Faculty, and Associate Professor in the English Department, West Virginia State  University.     /    Glenwood Estate Memories & Histories.     /     And more . . .

Spring 2013
"Living in Music (Part II): Singing & Songwriting," interview with Michael Tierney, Director, Step By Step, Inc.     /     "Singing & Songwriting," interview with Dr. Luke Eric Lassiter, Director, Graduate Humanities.     /     New Book: Missing: Mrs. Cornblossom, by Colleen Anderson (’03).     /     New Book: Fed From The Blade: Tales and Poems From the Mountains, selected and edited by Cat Pleska (’98), faculty, Senior Editor at Mountain State Press.     /     And more . . .

Fall 2012
"Living In Music: Singing & Songwriting," interview with educator Pete Kosky (’04).    /    "Singing & Songwriting," interview with owner of Mother Wit Writing and Design, Colleen Anderson (’03).   /   And more . . .

Spring 2012
"Science and Art," interview with artist, Angelica Tovar (’08).     /     "The Problem with Humanities," essay by Renae Bonnett (’11).     /     And more . . .

Fall 2011
"So What Can You Do With A Humanities Degree?" by Trish Hatfield (’08), Program Assistant. "What’s Happened Elsewhere?"    /      "What’s Been Happening?"    /    New Documentary: "Secrets of the Valley: Prehistory of the Kanawha," produced by Dr. Robert Maslowski, Faculty of Cultural Studies.    /    New Book: Explorations in Cultural Anthropology," co-edited by Dr. Luke Eric Lassiter, Director, Marshall University Graduate Humanities Program.    /    And more . . .

  • “The program was an incredible asset to my personal and professional growth, it allowed me to understand core concepts of humanities and a solid foundation to apply them and utilize public humanities. When people asked me in what area I was getting my M.A., their next question was invariably what will I do with a Humanities degree. My answer to that was/is anything my heart and mind desires to create: this is the gift of the Graduate Humanities Program, that if you can create it, it can be a reality. The field is wide open for those with backgrounds in liberal arts, and with diverse life experiences such as mine.” (Gabriella Williamson ’12)

  • “One thing in particular I found valuable while in the program was the intellectual challenge it offered through instruction, but also through those involved and fellow students. The program offered the means by which I could learn to look beyond analysis and the process of breaking things down and to consider meaning and experience as relevant to understanding anything. The term ‘lifelong learning’ gets thrown around quite a bit by various disciplines — to get a job, to get a degree, etc.; however, it seems that it is only within humanities that the term is committed as part of the essence of being human.” (Renae Bonnett ’11)

  • “It is most difficult to put into words…the program helped me not only academically but culturally. It was truly enriching and helped me fit in by getting to know the region and the people. I also valued getting to know the teachers and my classmates.” (Antonio Jiménez-Góngora ’10)

  • “The Marshall Humanities Program revitalized my faith in education. Yes, I realize that sounds cliché. Overly romanticized. But it’s completely true. In the Humanities Program, people weren’t concerned with the competitiveness of academia- they were concerned with me and my goals. I have never felt more encouraged in my academic pursuits. I also met a diverse group of people. Vastly intelligent. A well-traveled bartender with a love for Dostoyevsky. A computer-savvy servicewoman. A PR rep. Teachers, students, parents, retail workers. I grew so much in my understanding of the diverse human experience through listening to others tell their life stories.  All coming together for the same goal. Much like the humanities themselves. I learned about the importance of connections across the disciplines. How it’s less important for your writing to sound smart than it is for it to be written clearly. I am currently employed at a local historic house because of connections I made through the program. I also am in the last stages of getting my teaching certification. If I hadn’t gotten my MA in Humanities, I definitely would not be where I am now. I would not have regained my faith in the educational process and would not have continued. It is a learning experience that has forever changed my life.” (Ashley Clark ’10)