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October 2021

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              • Disability and the American Past, Public ProgramAn Introduction to Disability History
                Disability and the American Past, Public ProgramAn Introduction to Disability History
                5:30PM - 6:30PM Online Event Beth Linker, University of Pennsylvania; Kim E. Nielsen, University of Toledo; Rabia Belt, Stanford Law School; moderated by Naomi Rogers, Yale School of Medicine More
                • Walking Tour, Public ProgramOpening Our Doors
                  Walking Tour, Public ProgramOpening Our Doors
                  11:00AM - 12:30PM In-person Only Event More
                • Walking Tour, Public ProgramOpening Our Doors
                  Walking Tour, Public ProgramOpening Our Doors
                  2:00PM - 3:30PM In-person Only Event More
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                    • Seminar, History of Women, Gender and Sexuality Seminar, Disability and the American PastDevelopmental Disorder, Racial Dissolution: Racial Typologies of De...
                      Seminar, History of Women, Gender and Sexuality Seminar, Disability and the American PastDevelopmental Disorder, Racial Dissolution: Racial Typologies of Developmental Normalcy in Early Child Medicine, 1830 – 1870
                      5:15PM - 6:30PM Online Event Kelsey Henry, Yale University Comment: Evelynn Hammonds, Harvard University More
                    • Disability and the American Past, Public ProgramDisability and the History of Medicine
                      Disability and the American Past, Public ProgramDisability and the History of Medicine
                      5:30PM - 6:30PM Online Event Deirdre Cooper Owens, University of Nebraska-Lincoln; Jaipreet Virdi, University of Delaware; Michael Rembis, University at Buffalo More
                        • Seminar, Biography Seminar, Disability and the American PastHer Socialist Smile: a Film Screening
                          Seminar, Biography Seminar, Disability and the American PastHer Socialist Smile: a Film Screening
                          1:00PM - 2:30PM Online Event John Gianvito, Emerson College; Carolyn Forché, Georgetown University Moderator: Megan Marshall, Emerson College More
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                          • Disability and the American Past, Public ProgramDisability in Early America
                            Disability and the American Past, Public ProgramDisability in Early America
                            5:30PM - 6:30PM Online Event Sari Altschuler, Northeastern University; Nicole Belolan, Rutgers University; Laurel Daen, University of Notre Dame; moderated by Kanisorn Wongsrichanalai, MHS More
                          • Seminar, African American History Seminar, Disability and the American PastHer Yet Unwritten History: Black Women and the Education of Student...
                            Seminar, African American History Seminar, Disability and the American PastHer Yet Unwritten History: Black Women and the Education of Students of Color with Disabilities in the New South
                            5:15PM - 6:30PM Online Event Jenifer Barclay, University at Buffalo Comment: David Connor, CUNY More
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                                      • Public Program, Disability and the American PastDisability Activism: A Historical Perspective from Some of the Lead...
                                        Public Program, Disability and the American PastDisability Activism: A Historical Perspective from Some of the Leading Activists in Massachusetts
                                        5:30PM - 6:30PM Online Event Heather Watkins, Charlie Carr, Keith Jones, John Chappell , Fred Pelka and moderator Malia Lazu Register registration required at no cost More
                                      • Seminar, Malgeri Modern American Society and Culture Seminar, Disability and the American Past“The Virus of Slavery and Injustice”: Analogy and Disabled Life...
                                        Seminar, Malgeri Modern American Society and Culture Seminar, Disability and the American Past“The Virus of Slavery and Injustice”: Analogy and Disabled Life in African American Writings, 1856-1892
                                        5:15PM - 6:30PM Online Event Vivian Delchamps, University of California, Los Angeles Comment: Sari Altschuler, Northeastern University More
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                                            Disability and the American Past, Public Program An Introduction to Disability History 7 October 2021.Thursday, 5:30PM - 6:30PM Online Event Beth Linker, University of Pennsylvania; Kim E. Nielsen, University of Toledo; Rabia Belt, Stanford Law School; moderated by Naomi Rogers, Yale School of Medicine Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/sgp-vol-27-p082-083_no-background_for_web.jpg

                                            Watch the recording of this event, embedded below:

                                            This conversation will aim to orient us in the field of disability history and serve to lay the groundwork for subsequent conversations in this series. How is disability used as an analytical tool in historical inquiry? Why is it important to center disability as a defining social category, like race, class, gender, and sexuality? How have definitions of disability varied through history, and what have been the social and cultural impacts of this shifting understanding? This conversation will present a brief history of the field and examine the foundational and emerging scholarship through a moderated, roundtable discussion with our panelists.

                                            Please note, this is a virtual event held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive a confirmation message with attendance information.

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                                            Walking Tour, Public Program Opening Our Doors 9 October 2021.Saturday, 11:00AM - 12:30PM In-person Only Event Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/00OpeningOurDoors.jpg

                                            The MHS will join its neighboring cultural institutions for a day of free history, art, music, and cultural happenings in the Fenway neighborhood. With over 20 different museums, venues, colleges, and organizations participating, there will be something for everyone. Join us for a walking tour of the Fenway neighborhood starting at 11:00 AM. Tour participants will meet at the MHS building at 1154 Boylston Street, Boston 02215. 

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                                            Walking Tour, Public Program Opening Our Doors 9 October 2021.Saturday, 2:00PM - 3:30PM In-person Only Event

                                            The MHS will join its neighboring cultural institutions for a day of free history, art, music, and cultural happenings in the Fenway neighborhood. With over 20 different museums, venues, colleges, and organizations participating, there will be something for everyone. Join us for a walking tour of the Fenway neighborhood starting at 11:00 AM and again at 2:00 PM. Tour participants will meet at the MHS building at 1154 Boylston Street, Boston 02215. 

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                                            Seminar, History of Women, Gender and Sexuality Seminar, Disability and the American Past Developmental Disorder, Racial Dissolution: Racial Typologies of Developmental Normalcy in Early Child Medicine, 1830 – 1870 12 October 2021.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM Online Event Kelsey Henry, Yale University Comment: Evelynn Hammonds, Harvard University Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/wgs_banner.jpg

                                            This paper investigates “developmental asynchrony,” the mismatch between a sexually overdeveloped body and an underdeveloped mind, as a sign of racial degeneration fueled by sexual disorder in early child medicine. While developmental asynchrony was considered a hallmark characteristic of the Black race, similar developmental timing and patterning in white children inspired professional panic about developmental disorder and the dissolution of racial types. This paper proposes that medical theories of developmental normalcy and aberrancy are integral to telling stories about the co-constitution of race, gender, and sexuality and their conceptual and material entanglements in the antebellum U.S.

                                            The History of Women, Gender, & Sexuality Seminar invites you to join this special session in the Disability and the American Past series. Seminars bring together a diverse group of scholars and interested members of the public to workshop a pre-circulated paper. Learn more

                                            Please note, this is an online event hosted on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive a confirmation message with attendance information.

                                            **Previously titled: “This milestone in their development as property”: Black Developmental Normalcy and White Developmental Disorder in Early Child Medicine, 1820 – 1865 U.S.

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                                            Disability and the American Past, Public Program Disability and the History of Medicine 13 October 2021.Wednesday, 5:30PM - 6:30PM Online Event Deirdre Cooper Owens, University of Nebraska-Lincoln; Jaipreet Virdi, University of Delaware; Michael Rembis, University at Buffalo

                                            Watch the recording of this event, embedded below:

                                            Medicine and technology impact the lived experiences of disabled people in many ways. Advances improve people’s lives, however many of these have come at the cost of invasive diagnostic technologies, the medicalization of human conditions, and endless quests for cures. Doctors have performed experiments on the poor and disempowered, especially enslaved Black and institutionalized people who had a limited public voice. Writing medical history must include disabled people and use their experiences as analytical lenses for understanding historical events. Taking inspiration from the disability rights movement and the interdisciplinary field of disability studies, our discussion will delve into what has been written as traditional medical history and how we can tell a more complete story.

                                            Please note, this is a virtual event held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive a confirmation message with attendance information.

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                                            Seminar, Biography Seminar, Disability and the American Past Her Socialist Smile: a Film Screening 16 October 2021.Saturday, 1:00PM - 2:30PM Online Event John Gianvito, Emerson College; Carolyn Forché, Georgetown University Moderator: Megan Marshall, Emerson College Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminars_2020-21/Her_Socialist_Smile.jpg

                                            In his new film, John Gianvito, known for passion projects of expansive shape and political ambition, meditates on a particular moment in early 20th-century history: when Helen Keller began speaking out on behalf of progressive causes.  Beginning in 1913 when, at age 32, Keller gave her first public talk before a general audience, Her Socialist Smile is constructed of onscreen text taken from Keller’s speeches, impressionistic images of nature, and newly recorded voiceover by poet Carolyn Forché.  The film is a rousing reminder that Keller’s undaunted activism for labor rights, pacifism, and women’s suffrage was inseparable from her battles for the rights of the disabled. The film screening will be followed by a panel discussion and a reception.

                                            The New England Biography Series invites you to join this special session in the Disability and the American Past series. While we had hoped to host the film screening in person, at this time we have moved the event to a fully virtual program. Registrants will receive a temporary link to view the film 24 hours before the virtual panel discussion on Saturday October 16, which will be hosted on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will also receive an email with a link to join the program for the panel discussion.

                                            **Please be sure to register by noon on Friday October 15 to receive the film link.
                                             

                                             

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                                            Disability and the American Past, Public Program Disability in Early America 18 October 2021.Monday, 5:30PM - 6:30PM Online Event Sari Altschuler, Northeastern University; Nicole Belolan, Rutgers University; Laurel Daen, University of Notre Dame; moderated by Kanisorn Wongsrichanalai, MHS

                                            Our panel will explore how disability functioned in early America from personal, political, and cultural perspectives. What did disability mean in the early United States and how does it differ from our ideas about disability today? How did disability operate as a political and legal category in the colonial period, and how did it change in the early republic? What can material culture tell us about the lived experience of persons with disabilities in the era? This conversation will situate disability as a framework through which we can better understand the early lives of Americans and their often contested national and cultural identity.

                                            Please note, this is a virtual event held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive a confirmation message with attendance information.

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                                            Seminar, African American History Seminar, Disability and the American Past Her Yet Unwritten History: Black Women and the Education of Students of Color with Disabilities in the New South 19 October 2021.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM Online Event Jenifer Barclay, University at Buffalo Comment: David Connor, CUNY Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/banner_draft_2.jpg

                                            Historians have recognized the role of Black women educators in schools throughout the south, work associated today with well-known figures like Mary McLeod Bethune, Nannie Helen Burroughs, and Mary Church Terrell. Little has been written, however, about lesser known Black women educators like Susan Lowe, Amanda Johnson, and Effie Whitaker, who made essential contributions to the early education of children of color with disabilities in the south. This essay will consider the critical work of these women who represent just a handful of the many Black women who recognized the overlapping effects of racism and ableism in the lives of disabled students of color.

                                            The African American History Seminar invites you to join this special session in the Disability and the American Past series. Seminars bring together a diverse group of scholars and interested members of the public to workshop a pre-circulated paperLearn more.

                                            Please note, this is an exclusively online event. Registrants will receive a confirmation message with attendance information.

                                            Register to attend online

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                                            Teacher Workshop, Disability and the American Past Re-examining Dorothea Dix and 19th-Century Disability Reform 23 October 2021.Saturday, 9:00AM - 3:00PM $25 Registration Fee Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/sgp-vol-27-p082-083_no-background_for_web.jpg
                                             
                                            19th-century Massachusetts reformer Dorothea Dix is renowned for her efforts to improve the horrendous treatment of people with mental disabilities in local jails, almshouses, and asylums. Her investigations and activism led to major changes in the mental health field, including shifting care from local to state control. However, Dix’s views and actions were not representative of individuals with cognitive and psychiatric disabilities, and the voices of these individuals are often marginalized when the history of these reforms is told. 
                                             
                                            In partnership with Emerging America and the Disability History Museum, the MHS offers an educator workshop that will provide a deeper context for teaching Dix’s legacy and the history of asylum reforms in the 19th century. Educators will engage with rich primary sources that center the voices of people with mental disabilities and will be equipped with strategies for bringing these important stories into the classroom. 
                                             
                                            Presented as part of the Massachusetts Historical Society series “Disability and the American Past.” 
                                             
                                            This program is open to all who work with K-12 students. Teachers can earn either 22.5 PDPs or 1 graduate credit with Worcester State University (for an additional fee). The $25 workshop fee is non-refundable. This event will take place virtually and will be presented in English with English auto-generated captioning, and ASL translation and live captioning are available upon request during registration (please place requests for ASL translation by 10/18 and live caption requests by 10/19). The scholar lecture will be recorded and made available to registrants in advance of the workshop; all other workshop sessions will feature breakout rooms, so they will not be recorded.
                                             
                                            For more information, questions, or further accessibility requests, please contact us at education@masshist.org
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                                            Public Program The American Revolution from Two Perspectives: A Debate 23 October 2021.Saturday, 3:00PM - 4:00PM In-person and streamed online, Pre-program reception at 2:30 Gordon Wood, Brown University; Woody Holton, University of South Carolina Moderated by Catherine Allgor, MHS Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Books_for_Debate.jpg

                                            Gordon Wood and Woody Holton are both distinguished scholars of the American Revolution. But they approach the founding very differently, as you can see from their just-published books. Join them as they debate their conflicting interpretations. 

                                            Power and Liberty: Constitutionalism in the American Revolution by Gordon Wood
                                            Americans explored and debated all aspects of politics and constitutionalism—the nature of power, liberty, representation, rights, the division of authority between different spheres of government, sovereignty, judicial authority, and written constitutions. Gordon Wood illuminates critical events in the nation's founding and discusses slavery and constitutionalism, the emergence of the judiciary as one of the major tripartite institutions of government, the demarcation between public and private, and the formation of states' rights.

                                            Liberty Is Sweet: The Hidden History of the American Revolution by Woody Holton
                                            Using eyewitness accounts, Liberty Is Sweet explores countless connections between the Patriots of 1776 and other Americans whose passion for freedom often brought them into conflict with the Founding Fathers. Woody Holton looks at the origins and crucial battles of the Revolution, always focusing on marginalized Americans—enslaved Africans and African Americans, Native Americans, women, and dissenters—and on overlooked factors such as weather, North America’s unique geography, chance, misperception, attempts to manipulate public opinion, and (most of all) disease.

                                            Free for Members and Fellows as well as EBT or Connectorcare cardholders. $20.00 for non-members. Not a member? Become one today!

                                            Please note, the live-streamed portion will be held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive a confirmation message with attendance information.

                                            Register to attend virtually Register to attend in person

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                                            Public Program, Disability and the American Past Disability Activism: A Historical Perspective from Some of the Leading Activists in Massachusetts Register registration required at no cost 27 October 2021.Wednesday, 5:30PM - 6:30PM Online Event Heather Watkins, Charlie Carr, Keith Jones, John Chappell , Fred Pelka and moderator Malia Lazu

                                            The disabilities rights movement, like many rights movements, has been complex, coming from a variety of different perspectives, but at its heart, it has been a movement for justice, equal opportunities and reasonable accommodations. Massachusetts has played a unique role in this struggle and this conversation will aim to introduce the story of disability activism in Massachusetts. Our panel includes current activists and historians of this movement. Through a moderated, roundtable discussion, our panelists will explore their experiences, their inspirations, the history of the movement and what they hope to see in the future of disability activism.

                                            Please note, this is a virtual event held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive a confirmation message with attendance information.

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                                            Seminar, Malgeri Modern American Society and Culture Seminar, Disability and the American Past “The Virus of Slavery and Injustice”: Analogy and Disabled Life in African American Writings, 1856-1892 28 October 2021.Thursday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM Online Event Vivian Delchamps, University of California, Los Angeles Comment: Sari Altschuler, Northeastern University Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminar_2019-2020/masc_banner.jpg

                                            Engaging Todd Carmody’s invitation to consider how “race might have been ‘like’ disability in the late nineteenth century,” this essay explores texts by African American authors Charlotte L. Forten, Martin Robison Delany, and Frances E.W. Harper. Harper’s novel Iola Leroy renders slavery a “virus,” “deadly cancer,” and “wound,” necessitating cure; simultaneously, the novel depicts lived realities of disability, disrupts diagnostic reading practices, and takes a care-based, rather than curative, approach to disability itself.  The essay thus reads literature as a generative site for asserting ableism’s centrality to the legacy of racial violence, and explores the value of using diagnostic-like narrative methods to target systemic sources of mass debilitation.

                                            The Dina G. Malgeri Modern American Society & Culture Seminar invites you to join this special session in the Disability and the American Past series. Seminars bring together a diverse group of scholars and interested members of the public to workshop a pre-circulated paperLearn more.

                                            Please note, this is an exclusively online event hosted on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive a confirmation message with attendance information.

                                            Register to attend online

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