Preservation Across the Disciplines

The Clemson Humanities Hub at Clemson University is embracing the theme of “Preservation” for the 2019 – 2020 academic year. A wide variety of public programs and events related to preservation will be offered from November – April. SC Humanities supported this program with a Major Grant.

The mission of the Clemson Humanities Hub is to facilitate humanities conversations across campus and beyond. The chosen theme of “preservation” uniquely bridges the classical divide between the humanities and the sciences. The sponsored programs will focus on preservation from a variety of angles, including cultural preservation, textual preservation, biological preservation, preservation of history and the arts, and more. Proposed speakers include authors John Lane, Drew Lanham, Matthew Desmond (Pulitzer Prize Winner), Nikky Finney, and Christina Sharpe; Joy Bevins, Curator of the International African American Museum in Charleston; David Houston, former Curatorial Director of the Chrystal Bridges Museum in Arkansas; Richard Sneed, 28th Principal Chief of the Eastern Band of Cherokees; and Gordon Hunter, editor of American Literary History.

The first program in the series will take place on Thursday, November 14, 2019 at 6:00 p.m. at the Watt Family Innovation Center Auditorium. The Native American Heritage Month keynote speaker will be Principal Chief of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee, Richard G. Sneed. Richard G. Sneed life’s work has been one of public service advocating for youth, community building, and cultural preservation. In this vein, he has worked throughout his career to ensure that Cherokee people have equitable access to quality education and can put these skills to work in a community of which they can be proud.

On Thursday, November 21, 2019, Drew Lanham and John Lane will discuss preservation and the environment at 5 p.m. in Riggs Hall, Room 227. Lanham is the Alumni Distinguished Professor of Wildlife Ecology and a professor of English at Clemson, while Lane is a professor of English and director of environmental studies at Wofford College. Lane is the author of Neighborhood Hawks: A Year Following Wild Birds (University of Georgia Press, 2019).

On Thursday, December 5, 2019 at 4:00 p.m., Gordon Hutner of the University of Illinois will talk about “Navigating Academic Publishing in the Humanities” at Daniel Hall 101. Hutner has edited American Literary History for over a quarter of a century and will address the theme of textual preservation in his talk.

On Thursday – Friday, January 23 – 24, 2020, David Houston will talk about preserving art in his role as a curator and art historian and Director of the Bo Bartlett Center, College for the Arts, Columbus State University, Georgia.

On Wednesday, March 25 at 5:00 p.m., Joy Bivins and Brenda Tindal, the curatorial team developing the International African American Museum in Charleston will talk about preservation of African American History. Learn more about the event.

On Thursday, March 26 at 5:00 p.m., Matthew Desmond will speak about his Pulitzer Prize-winning book “Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City” at the Watt Family Innovation Center Auditorium. Learn more about the event.

The 13th annual Clemson Literary Festival (April 1 -3, 2020) will feature National Book Award winner Nikky Finney, author of the poetry collection Head Off & Split. She’ll read at 8 pm on April 2. Learn more about the Clemson Literary Festival.

On Monday, April 6 at 4:00 p.m., Christina Sharpe, author of In the Wake: On Blackness and Being, will present with Rhondda Thomas of Clemson University and A.D. Carson (University of Virginia) on preserving public memory amidst ongoing racial violence.

Additional program dates will be added as they are available. More information can be found at or

The mission of SC Humanities is to enrich the cultural and intellectual lives of all South Carolinians. Established in 1973, this 501(c) 3 organization is governed by a volunteer 21-member Board of Directors comprised of community leaders from throughout the state. It presents and/or supports literary initiatives, lectures, exhibits, festivals, publications, oral history projects, videos and other humanities-based experiences that directly or indirectly reach more than 250,000 citizens annually.