Humanities Moments

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About the Project

From an academic standpoint, the humanities include the study of history, philosophy and religion, modern and ancient languages and literatures, fine and performing arts, media and cultural studies, and other fields. Humanities research adds to our knowledge of the world, as scholars investigate differences between cultures and communities around the world and across time, consider the ways art is made and received, or unveil the undercurrents that have shaped history. Humanities education encourages students to think creatively and critically, to reason, and ask questions. And, as the humanities offer insight into nearly every aspect of life, they have been considered a core element of a well-rounded education since ancient times.

Put simply, the humanities help us understand and interpret the human experience, as individuals and societies.

The Humanities Moments project was created by the National Humanities Center in partnership with the Federation of State Humanities Councils in an effort to gather, store, and share personal accounts of how the humanities illuminate our lives.

By illustrating the importance of the humanities for people from all walks of life, the project seeks to reimagine the way we think and talk about the humanities.

By highlighting their transformative power, the Humanities Moments project illuminates how our encounters with the humanities fuel the process of discovery, encourage us to think and feel more deeply, and provide the means to solve problems as individuals and as a society.

Special Thanks to Our Institutional Sponsors


Cornell University
Duke Health
Harvard University
Research Triangle Park
University of Arizona
University of Chicago
University of Kansas, Hall Center for the Humanities
University of Pennsylvania
Washington University in St. Louis

Amherst College
Arizona State University, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Bowdoin College
Case Western Reserve University
The College of Liberal Arts at the University of Texas at Arlington
Columbia University Division of Arts and Sciences
Davidson College
Emory College of Arts and Sciences
Furman University
George Mason University, College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Hamilton College
Illinois Wesleyan University
Johns Hopkins University Krieger School of Arts and Sciences
Johnson C. Smith University
Penn State Humanities Institute, Pennsylvania State University
Rice University School of Humanities
Soka University of America
Swarthmore College
Texas A&M University College of Liberal Arts
Texas Tech University College of Arts and Sciences
The University of Alabama, College of Arts and Sciences
University of California, Irvine, Humanities Center
University of California, Santa Cruz, Humanities Division
University of Florida Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere
University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, College of Arts, Languages & Letters
University of Maryland
University of Memphis, Marcus W. Orr Center for the Humanities
University of North Carolina at Charlotte College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
University of Notre Dame College of Arts and Letters
University of Oklahoma Arts and Humanities Forum
University of Utah College of Humanities
University of Virginia College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
Vanderbilt University College of Arts and Sciences
Wesleyan University
William Jewell College