banner USF College of Arts & Sciences A-Z Index CAS USF Search OASIS myUSF

USF Home > College of Arts and Sciences > Humanities Institute

Fall 2014 Schedule

All Humanities Institute events are free and open to the public!

Parking on USF Tampa Campus

Parking can be difficult on campus. Here are a few tips to make coming to events easier! Please refer to the following links for more information.

Parking and Transportation Permits

All venues are convenient to visitor parking areas with automated Pay-by-Space machines. Download the Visitor Parking Map to identify the buildings and associated parking lots listed below.

  • Patel Center for Global Solutions (CGS) - Pay-by-Space in Lot 23B
  • Grace Allen Room (Library) - Pay-by-Space in Lot 29B and the Collins Blvd. Parking Garage
  • C.W. Bill Young Hall (CWY) - Pay-by-Space in Lot 21 or Lot 6
  • Alumni Center (ALC) - Pay-by-Space in Lot 23B and Visitor Parking in Lot 23T
  • Marshall Student Center (MSC) - Pay-by-Space in Lots 3B, 3C, and the Crescent Hill Parking Garage
  • TECO Room (College of Education/EDU) - Pay-by-Space in Lot 29B and the Collins Blvd. Parking Garage

Wednesday, Sept. 17
CWY 206
6:00pm, reception to follow

Copernicus and the Astrologers, with Robert Westman

In 1543, Nicolaus Copernicus publicly defended his hypothesis that the earth is a planet revolving together with five other planets around a stationary sun. Historians often describe Copernicus’s proposal as the beginning of the Scientific Revolution.

But why did Copernicus make this bold proposal? Historian Robert Westman reframes this pivotal moment by centering the story on a conflict over the credibility of astrology that erupted in Italy just as Copernicus arrived in 1496 – even though not a single word about astrology exists in any of Copernicus’s extant writings.



Thursday, Sept. 25
CWY 206
6:00pm, reception to follow

Could This Be What Democracy Looks Like?: Participatory Politics, Transmedia, Mobilization, and the Civic Imagination with Henry Jenkins

Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence Henry Jenkins will discuss the work of the USC Media, Activism, and Participatory Politics research group, which has documented the ways innovative organizations are helping American youth to become more civically engaged and politically active. “Often, this new political language remixes and redeploys elements borrowed from popular culture—from the Hunger Games to Harry Potter to Superman—in order to develop shared frameworks through which they can change the world. What if we saw fantasy not as escapism but as a tool for promoting social justice?”


Tuesday, Sept. 30
Patel Center for Global Solutions Auditorium
6:00pm, reception to follow

Embedding the Global on the Local Shopping Streets: How Cities Meet the Challenge of Migration and Gentrification, with Sharon Zukin

Cities around the world are reshaped by continual flows of migrants and capital, but according to urban sociologist Sharon Zukin, “the first place where we see these abstract forces is local shopping streets.” In her talk, she will argue for the local shopping street as “both the public face of a neighborhood and a microcosm of structural change.” She examines the process through which people, acting for the most individualistic reasons, “author” such locations, managing to create coherent social spaces in a process that transforms the global into a sign and site of local identity.


Wednesday, Oct. 15
Grace Allen Room (Library, 4th Floor)
3:00pm refreshments, 3:30pm lecture

Homegrown Humanities: The Discourse of Online Reviews, with Camilla Vásquez

Camilla Vásquez’s book is the first to provide an account of the discursive, pragmatic and rhetorical features of online reviews—a rapidly growing form of technologically-mediated communication. Examining a corpus of over 1,000 consumer reviews, Vásquez explores many of the discourse features that are characteristic of this new, user-generated, computer-mediated and primarily text-based genre. She investigates the language used by reviewers as they forge connections with their audiences to draw them into their stories, as they construct their expertise and authority on various subjects and as they evaluate and assess their consumer experiences.


Wednesday, Oct. 22
Alumni Center
6:00pm, reception to follow

William H. Scheuerle Distinguished Humanities Graduate Award. Inmaculada De Melo-Martín (recipient) The Ethics of Sex Selection

Should parents be able to select the sex of their children for non-medical reasons? What are the ethics of such choices in the era of “designer babies?” Inmaculada de Melo-Martín is Professor of Medical Ethics at Weill Cornell Medical College (Cornell University). She earned her Ph.D. in Philosophy at USF in 1997, after completing an M.S. in Molecular Biology from the University of Texas, San Antonio. She notes that proponents of sex selection often use the procreative liberty framework to defend their position, but argues that “although this framework is appealing, it is problematic – I will discuss the scope of procreative liberty and some of the assumptions that underlie the defense of sex selection.”


Monday, Oct. 27
Marshall Student Center, Oval Theater

Department of English 2014 Julian and Harry Newman Lecture: Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America with Gilbert King

Winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for non-fiction, Devil in the Grove explores the true story of four young black men falsely accused of raping a white teenager in Groveland, Florida. The book details Thurgood Marshall’s defense of “the Groveland Boys” and the burgeoning civil rights movement by pulling from never-before-published material from both the FBI and the NAACP’s Legal Defense Fund files. Enjoy an evening with Devil in the Grove author, Gilbert King.


Thursday, Oct. 30
Location TBD
6:00pm, reception to follow

The Old Dark House: The Return of the Gothic from Vampira to Slenderman, with Scott Poole

In perfect time for Halloween, the Institute hosts Scott Poole, a historian who has built a career on exploring the “monstrous” in American culture. Poole, associate professor of history at the College of Charleston, is the author of seven books, the most recent being Vampira: Dark Goddess of Horror, an unconventional historical biography that examines the life of dancer, actress and artist Maila Nurmi, who reinvented herself as the horror host/bondage goddess “Vampira” against the backdrop of the calls for conformity of the American 1950s. Poole will explore how what Julia Kristeva called “the powers of horror” found expression in film, folklore and fakelore from the 1950s to today, when global terror, a 24-hour news feed and digital monsters stalk America’s old dark house.


Wednesday, Nov. 5
Grace Allen Room (Library, 4th Floor)
3:00pm refreshments, 3:30pm lecture

Homegrown Humanities: Songs for the Deaf, with John Fleming

John Henry Fleming’s newly published book of short stories puts an intimate and modern spin on the American tall tale. A little desert town gets a sexual charge from a crash-landed alien. A dysfunctional family tries to summit Everest with “discount Sherpas’’ and yakloads of emotional baggage. A teen messiah emerges from a game of 3-on-3. Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia! and Vampires in the Lemon Grove says, “Songs for the Deaf is a joyful, deranged, endlessly surprising book of stories that defy easy categorization, in addition to the laws of physics (girls “ride air,” aliens plummet from the sky, a basketball-messiah shoots hoops).”


Wednesday, Nov. 12
CWY 107
6:00pm, reception to follow

The Vexing Problem of Science Literacy, with Chris Impey

As the world faces crises like global warming and environmental degradation, scientists, educators, and policy makers agree that the need for citizens to be scientifically literate is increasingly urgent. But there the agreement ends. What do we mean by scientific literacy? How do we know it when we see it? How do we measure it? Scientific understanding is a fundamentally human issue, and the Institute is delighted to welcome Chris Impey, renowned astronomer and internationally-known expert on science education, who will address the “The Vexing Problem of Scientific Literacy.”


Guests requiring disability accommodations for any event, please call 813-974-3657.