One characteristic of human life in 2014 is our awareness of
ourselves as living in a “globalized” world, where changes in technology
(radio, jet travel, television, and the Internet) have led to changes in the
conception of global time and space. Migration, economic policies, political
institutions, mass media, and popular culture all have led to a world that
seems increasingly small – and yet at the same time increasingly distancing for
many individuals, localities, and cultures.
While not the first time in human history that the world has
seemed to grow smaller, early twenty-first century globalization demands
further exploration, not only through the social sciences, but also through the
The 2014 Summer Humanities Research Institute will focus
upon issues of globalization and conceptions of our “small world.” Some
possible focuses for study and research include histories of past
globalizations; narratives of migration, tourism, and other forms of travel;
philosophical investigations of conceptions of space and locality; theological
explorations of humanity and its relationship to “the world”; artistic
productions that seek to expose or make sense of globalization, hybridity, or
crosscultural identities; and other relevant questions as explored through the
humanities, defined as the fields of art, history, literature, philosophy,
poetry, religious studies, and theology.
During the eight-week symposium, Institute Scholars will
examine these questions while working with a faculty mentor to pursue research
on a topic in the humanities field of their choice.
Each session will generally begin with a common
reading, followed by free-ranging conversations with Scholars and faculty
participants sharing their questions, insights, and further research
possibilities raised by the texts.