School of Professional and Continuing Studies

A Free Arts & Cultural Series Presented by the UMSL Center for the Humanities.

When: Mondays, February 3–April 28, 2014 | 12:15–1:15 PM

Where: J.C. Penney Conference Center | Room 402 (unless noted otherwise)

Free and Open to the Public – No Registration Required

Park on the top floor of West Drive Garage (52 on map), take steps/elevator down to 3rd floor/ground level, and walk southeast to J.C. Penney Center, and up to the 4th floor.


February 3 | Still Adjusting: A Gallery 210 Artist’s Talk
Zlatko Ćosić, a visual artist born in Yugoslavia who now lives in St. Louis, discusses his exhibition, Still Adjusting, which explores war experiences and life after loss of a country and identity. Throughout Gallery 210, Ćosić creates a visual narrative touching on themes of displacement—effects of belonging neither here nor there, reinvention of one’s identity, constant adjustments and performance in a new environment, and attempts to fit into this time and space. With this exhibition, Ćosić revisits war times and moves forward through the use of video and performance, as he creates a platform for dialogue that gives viewers an opportunity for their own self-expression. Opening reception: January 25, 4–7 PM, at Gallery 210.

Location: Gallery 210 (west of North Campus Metrolink stop – park in MSC Garage North, 54 on map).

February 10 | The 442s: A Genre-Defying Musical Partnership
The 442s are what we get when two outstanding members of the world-renowned St. Louis Symphony orchestra combine with two of the city's finest jazz musicians from the Erin Bode Group. Join us to hear this exciting new acoustic instrumental quartet named for the modern standard tuning of 442 Hz. Brought together by the innovative and inspired compositions of Adam Maness, who plays guitar, accordion, melodica, and glockenspiel in the group, The 442s also features Shawn Weil on violin, Bjorn Ranheim on cello, and Sydney Rodway on bass. In addition to performing, The 442s discuss their unique partnership, compositional style, recording project, and genre-defying sound that is gaining them local and national attention.

February 17 | The Civil War in Missouri
Louis S. Gertels, professor of history at UMSL, surveys the military history of The Civil War in Missouri. He begins with the federal capture of Camp Jackson in St. Louis in the spring of 1861 and concludes with the Confederate invasion of Missouri led by General Sterling Price in the fall of 1864.

February 24 | In Their Own Words – Readings From Proud to Be: Writing by American Warriors
Local U.S. Veterans read from their poems and short stories about their war experiences and lives. For generations, St. Louis has been home to many who have answered the call to serve. Local veterans whose work has been published in the national military-service anthology, Proud to Be: Writing by American Warriors share their stories with us. This anthology series is published annually by Southeast Missouri State University Press in partnership with the Missouri Humanities Council and Warriors Arts Alliance. Volumes 1 and 2 of Proud to Be: Writing by American Warriors will be available for purchase.

March 3 | Animals and Nature in Poetry Around the World
Members of the Faculty of Languages and Cultures, UMSL Department of Anthropology, Sociology & Languages, share international perspectives as they read poetry about animals and nature in Chinese, French, German, Greek, Japanese, Latin, Portuguese, and Spanish. The language faculty members hold this annual Monday Noon Series event in recognition of National Foreign Language Week.

March 10 | The Hammered Dulcimer Demystified
Bryson Gerard, percussionist, multi-instrumentalist and composer, performs on the hammered dulcimer, a stringed wooden instrument played with two small wooden mallets. Gerard, who originally moved to St. Louis to study music at Webster University, has been playing the hammered dulcimer for more than 20 years. He is not only a master of this instrument, but also performs on other traditional instruments from Africa, Asia and Europe, including the bouzouki, dumbek and djembe. CDs will be available.   

March 17 | In a Land Called Honalee: The Sixties in the Lives of American Children
Joel Rhodes, assistant professor of history at Southeast Missouri State University, discusses the research for his forthcoming book, In a Land Called Honalee. He examines how the multiple social, cultural and political changes between John F. Kennedy’s inauguration in January 1961 and Richard Nixon’s resignation in August 1974 manifested themselves in the lives of preadolescent American children. Rhodes analyzes social change in the Vietnam Era by looking at how Americans born between 1956 and 1970 understood as children the historical forces of “The Sixties” and how these children made meaning out of those historical forces based on their particular developmental age. Ultimately, he is concerned with not only the immediate imprint of the historical Sixties on their young lives but also with how their unique perspective on “The Sixties” has influenced them as adults.

March 24 | No program, spring break

March 31 | What Does a House Want?: A Poetry Reading
Gary Geddes, internationally acclaimed and prize-winning Canadian author and editor of more than 40 books of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, drama, criticism and translation, reads from his new book of poems, What Does a House Want? A tongue in the ear and a blowtorch to the conscience, these poems possess a “brilliantly polished, cinematographic, white-knuckled style.” Geddes takes on U.S. multinationals, Israeli-Palestinian violence, POWs, assassins, China’s bloody Emperor Qin Shihuang, and the Kent State killings. One poem has been described as “breathtaking in its imaginative reach, its verbal dexterity.” Billy Collins, U.S. Poet Laureate emeritus, remarks of Geddes, “It comes as a relief to read work by a poet … at least as interested in the world as he is in himself. Here, we are happy to be conducted … out of the glass dome of the ego and into a wider, more capacious world of culture, history and even erudition.” Books will be available for signing. Geddes also will present the UMSL event at the Greater St. Louis Humanities Festival “Immigration and Migration” on Tuesday, April 1.

April 7 | Catch of the Day: A Literary Reading
Dr. Mark Morgan, associate professor, University of Missouri School of Natural Resources, Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism, reads from Hook, Line & Sinker: A Collection of Fish Tales by Missouri Anglers, that he and his students collected and edited. These tales capture in literature the essence of fishing – nostalgia, nature, camaraderie and exaggeration. Morgan uses the stories to show why fishing folklore is an important part of the state’s cultural heritage and worthy of preservation. Books will be available for signing and all proceeds of the book sales will benefit the University of Missouri System.

April 14 | The Art of Cross-Cultural Engagement: A Musical and Dance Performance
Gitana Productions and the St. Louis Cultural Flamenco Society team up to show how the arts contribute to cross-cultural engagement in our community. These two, quite different, organizations collaborate in providing St. Louis City youth with training in diverse dances, including hip hop and Flamenco dances from Spain. Through engaging in music and dance we can reach a deeper understanding of other cultures. Such practices help local youth develop crucial skills in teamwork and an appreciation for diversity. Join us to hear the music and watch dancing by some of the youth these groups work with.

Location: J.C. Penney Center Auditorium; park in West Drive Garage, top floor, 52 on map.

April 21 | The Library of Dreams: Poetry & Song
Howard Schwartz and Gloria Attoun entertain and enlighten us in this program of poetry and song. Schwartz is the author of five books of poems, Vessels, Gathering the Sparks, Sleepwalking Beneath the Stars, Breathing in the Dark, and his newly published The Library of Dreams: Selected Poems 1965-2013. His other books include Tree of Souls: The Mythology of Judaism, winner of the 2005 National Jewish Book Award, and Leaves from the Garden of Eden: One Hundred Classic Jewish Tales. Attoun has been writing songs and singing them since she was 15 years old. She accompanies herself on guitar, banjo, mandolin and harmonica, and performs in the bands Augusta Bottoms Consort and the Texas Giants. Many of her original songs are featured on four albums, including her latest solo CD Seeds, which has been played all over the United States, Germany, Ireland, Australia and Israel. Books and CDs will be available for signing.

April 28 | Stories ‘n Stones: Show Me Mound City – Storytelling from St. Louis pre-history
Marilyn Kinsella, storyteller, and Larry Kinsella, flintknapper, share stories that were part of the Mississippian culture that inhabited the land now called St. Louis. Watch a demonstration of stone tools and weapons that were made and used during the Mississippian era. Marilyn started telling stories while teaching school in the St. Louis metropolitan area. Her stories include personal experiences, folktales, literary stories and historical tales. Larry has worked with professionals as an amateur archaeologist and learned many skills that Mississippi Indians used, including flintknapping and axe-making. In 2011, he received the Don Crabtree Award for his work as an amateur in field and experimental archaeology. This program is a preview for the 35th Annual St. Louis Storytelling Festival, May 1-4. 

Location: SGA Chamber, 3rd Floor, Millennium Student Center. Please park in Lot E (see map), in the blocked/event parking location.

Financial assistance for this season was provided to the Center for the Humanities by the Missouri Arts Council, a state agency; the Regional Arts Commission of Saint Louis; the Missouri Humanities Council; and Gallery 210.