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Victor Bailey
Hall Center for the Humanities
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Popular American historian to speak on history of privacy

Tue, 10/15/2013

LAWRENCE — Jill Lepore, author of the National Book Award long-listed "Book of Ages: The Life and Opinions of Jane Franklin," will speak at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 22, in Woodruff Auditorium in the Kansas Union. Her lecture, "Unseen — The History of Privacy," is an installment of the Hall Center for the Humanities' 2013-2014 Humanities Lecture Series.

Jill LeporeThe lecture, supported by the Sosland Foundation of Kansas City, is free and open to the public.

The Hall Center will also host a more informal public question-and-answer session the following day. "A Conversation with Jill Lepore" will take place at 10 a.m. Oct. 23 in the Hall Center Conference Hall. The event is also free and open to the public.

In the lecture, Lepore traces the history of invisible people, including H.G. Wells' invisible man, considering the strange relationship between the unseen and unknown. In an illustrated lecture that ranges from the mysteries of the medieval church to the privacy settings on Facebook, Lepore argues that what was once mysterious became secret and, finally, private.

Lepore is the David Woods Kemper '41 Professor of American History and chair of the History and Literature Program at Harvard University. Her research interests include the history of war and violence, as well as the history of language and literacy. She is the author of eight books, including "The Story of America: Essays on Origins," a collection of wide-ranging essays framed by the idea of the United States as itself a set of stories, and "New York Burning: Liberty, Slavery and Conspiracy in Eighteenth-Century Manhattan," a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in History.

She has been a contributor to The New Yorker since 2005 and a staff writer since 2008. Her essays and reviews have also appeared in The New York Times, the Times Literary Supplement, American Scholar, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, The Daily Beast, Smithsonian Magazine, the Journal of American History, American Quarterly and Common-place, a magazine she co-founded.

Lepore currently serves on the boards of the National Portrait Gallery and the Society of American Historians.

Founded in 1947, the Humanities Lecture Series is the oldest continuing series at KU. More than 150 eminent scholars from around the world have participated in the program, including author Salman Rushdie, poet Gwendolyn Brooks and evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins. Recent speakers have included Stephen Greenblatt, Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Mary Oliver. Shortly after the program’s inception, a lecture by one outstanding KU faculty member was added to the schedule. For information on the series, visit the Hall Center website.



Matt Menzenski, a graduate student in Slavic languages & literatures, took this photo during President Obama’s speech at KU Thursday. Menzenski says he was struck by how relaxed the president was in his delivery. He missed a chance to hear former President Bill Clinton speak in his hometown in 2004, but finally got to see a sitting president this week at KU. “The opportunity to hear the president speak is just one of many great opportunities I've had at KU. So many interesting talks and events happen here all the time. I try to attend at least one a week-- it's never hard to find something interesting to go to.” Tags: University of Kansas College of Liberal Arts and Sciences KU School of Languages, Literatures & Cultures KU Dept of Slavic Languages - Friends & Alumni Barack Obama The White House #exploreKU #POTUSatKU

#RockChalk to Dana Adkins-Heljeson of @KSgeology , recipient of the Outstanding Support Staff Recognition Award. http://t.co/PbwFlzZD8W
Explore KU: The Bells of Mount Oread KU’s Campanile, a 120-foot-tall timepiece that tolls automatically on the hour and quarter-hour, not only sounded in the 2015 New Year at midnight with 12 mighty gongs, but also regularly rings up memories for many Jayhawks – the 277 faculty and students who gave their lives during World War II, the graduates who walk through its doors at commencement, and aspiring students who have strolled through the Lawrence campus. (See http://bit.ly/1xjjwJj). For nearly 60 years, KU’s 53-bell carillon has been tolling the sounds of peace and serenity across Mount Oread since it was installed in June 1955 inside the landmark World War II Memorial Campanile, which was dedicated in 1951. (See http://bit.ly/1BoL9jv) The carillon is also a four-octave musical instrument, which is played with a giant keyboard and foot pedals. University Carillonneur Elizabeth Egber-Berghout (http://bit.ly/14fiBPl), associate professor of carillon and organ, climbs 77 steps up a spiral staircase in the bell tower to perform recitals several times a month.


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