The MHS offers an engaging roster of programming to foster historical knowledge and we welcome everyone to attend, question, and contribute. We provide a forum for debate; host a variety of programs that delve into the complexities of history; and encourage people to share their observations, interpretations, and ideas. MHS programs include author talks, conversations, panel discussions, gallery tours, brown-bag lunches, seminars, conferences, and exclusive events for Members and donors. If you missed a program or would like to revisit the material presented, our videos page has many past programs.

April 2021
Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminars_2020-21/EHS_banner.jpg Seminar, Environmental History Seminar, Online Event Kaleidoscope Metropolis: Autonomy and Integration in the Fractured City 13 April 2021.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM This is an online event. Author: Garrett Nelson, Norman B. Leventhal Map & Education Center Comment: Lizbeth Cohen, Harvard University By the 1950s, just as technocratic consensus settled on the opinion that Boston’s metropolitan ...

By the 1950s, just as technocratic consensus settled on the opinion that Boston’s metropolitan problems demanded municipal consolidation, meaningful regional integration became a political dead letter. This paper examines how conflicting pressures towards both spatial integration and disintegration shaped the postwar city, with ecological concepts about environmental management jostling against demands for community autonomy coming from both right and left. Struggle over geographic units thereby became a key axis of conflict between different ideological strands of the politics of place.

The Environmental History Seminar invites you to join the conversation. 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 held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive an email with links to join the program.

More
Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminars_2020-21/WGS_Banner.jpg Seminar, History of Women, Gender and Sexuality Seminar, Online Event Contesting Domesticity – a Panel Discussion 20 April 2021.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM This is an online event. Authors: Kwelina Thompson, Cornell University; Shoniqua Roach, Brandeis University; Laura Puaca, Christopher Newport University Comment: Allison Horrocks, Lowell National Historical Park The domestic realm has long captivated feminist scholars who have sought to understand the lives of ...

The domestic realm has long captivated feminist scholars who have sought to understand the lives of women and the workings of gender. How have women experienced, challenged, leveraged, and shaped the domestic? This panel will consider these questions and discuss the domestic as a contested site of constraint and possibility. Shoniqua Roach theorizes the meanings of black domesticity as a deeply fraught space marked by anti-black sentiment and yet full of insurgent potential. Kwelina Thompson explores the history of the La Leche League – a Catholic mothers group that organized to support breastfeeding mothers in the mid-twentieth century. Finally, Laura Puaca tells the story of the expansion of post-WWII vocational rehabilitation programs to include disabled homemakers in the US.

The History of Women, Gender, & Sexuality Seminar invites you to join the conversation. 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 held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive an email with links to join the program.

More
Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminars_2020-21/MASC_Banner.jpg Seminar, Malgeri Modern American Society and Culture Seminar, Online Event The “Other” Illegals: Unauthorized European Immigration to New York City and Boston in the 20th Century 27 April 2021.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM This is an online event. Authors: Danielle Battisti, University of Nebraska – Omaha; Carly Goodman, La Salle University Comment: Christopher Capozzola Since 1965, U.S. political and social discourse about immigration has been dominated by concerns ...

Since 1965, U.S. political and social discourse about immigration has been dominated by concerns over undocumented immigration, a legal and social category understood to apply almost exclusively to non-white immigrants. This panel will examine a now obscure part of twentieth century immigration history: the migration of unauthorized white Europeans. The session will complicate current understandings of the period to demonstrate that early in the twentieth century southern and eastern European immigrants were in fact stigmatized as “criminals” and “illegals.” However by mid-century, southern and eastern Europeans were able to draw upon their social and political capital to change public perceptions and state policies. Legal status provided relief from the threat of deportation or exclusion – and reinforced the racialized category of undocumented immigrant. These papers will bring the stories to light of these “other” illegal immigrants and reinsert them into the conversations and policy debates surrounding unauthorized immigration.

The Dina G. Malgeri Modern American Society & Culture Seminar invites you to join the conversation. 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 online event held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive an email with links to join the program.

More
Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminars_2020-21/biography_banner.jpg Seminar, Biography Seminar, Online Event Fashioning a Life: How Style Matters in Biography 29 April 2021.Thursday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM This is an online event. Caroline Weber, Barnard College; Channing Joseph, University of Southern California Moderator: Natalie Dykstra, Hope College Is fashion art or commerce? Frivolous or full of meaning? Is fashion evidence? This panel brings ...

Is fashion art or commerce? Frivolous or full of meaning? Is fashion evidence? This panel brings together Caroline Weber, author of Queen of Fashion: What Marie-Antoinette Wore to the Revolution and Proust’s Duchess, and Channing Joseph, whose forthcoming book recovers the untold story of formerly enslaved William Dorsey Swann, who became, in the 1880s, a progenitor of ballroom and drag culture. They will join moderator Natalie Dykstra, author of Clover Adams: A Gilded and Heartbreaking Life, and now at work on a biography of Isabella Stewart Gardner, in a conversation about the ways biographers use fashion to decode lives and historical contexts. 

Please note, this is an online event held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive an email with links to join the program.

More
Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/exhibitions/WhoCounts_calendar-listing-graphic.jpg Exhibitionends Who Counts: A Look at Voter Rights through Political Cartoons 30 April 2021.Friday, all day This is a virtual exhibition. Political cartoons have long served to provoke public debate, illustrating opinions of the day for ...

Political cartoons have long served to provoke public debate, illustrating opinions of the day for the masses. From early in the 19th century, arguments over voting rights—who votes and who counts the votes—have been depicted in cartoons, especially with the rise of illustrated newspapers and magazines with a national circulation before the Civil War. 

Featuring examples of published cartoons from the MHS collections as well as other libraries and foundations, this exhibition illustrates how cartoonists helped to tell the story of voting rights in the United States. In addition to many drawings by Thomas Nast, the most influential American political cartoonist in the decades following the Civil War, this exhibition features modern reinterpretations of these topics by editorial cartoonists, including Herblock (Herbert Block), Tom Toles, Bill Mauldin, and the work of current Boston-area artists.

Explore the online exhibition at www.masshist.org/whocounts.

More
Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/exhibitions/ThomasNast_calendar-listing-graphic.jpg Exhibitionends Thomas Nast: A Life in Cartoons 30 April 2021.Friday, all day This is a virtual exhibition. Thomas Nast defined American political cartoons in the decades following the Civil War. His ...

Thomas Nast defined American political cartoons in the decades following the Civil War. His illustrations popularized icons such as the Republican elephant, the Democratic donkey, and even the modern image of Santa Claus. This exhibition highlights Thomas Nast’s remarkable impact through a cartoon biography created by local artists.

Explore the online exhibition at www.masshist.org/thomasnast.

More
Seminar, Environmental History Seminar, Online Event Kaleidoscope Metropolis: Autonomy and Integration in the Fractured City Register registration required at no cost 13 April 2021.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM This is an online event. Author: Garrett Nelson, Norman B. Leventhal Map & Education Center Comment: Lizbeth Cohen, Harvard University Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminars_2020-21/EHS_banner.jpg

By the 1950s, just as technocratic consensus settled on the opinion that Boston’s metropolitan problems demanded municipal consolidation, meaningful regional integration became a political dead letter. This paper examines how conflicting pressures towards both spatial integration and disintegration shaped the postwar city, with ecological concepts about environmental management jostling against demands for community autonomy coming from both right and left. Struggle over geographic units thereby became a key axis of conflict between different ideological strands of the politics of place.

The Environmental History Seminar invites you to join the conversation. 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 held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive an email with links to join the program.

close

Seminar, History of Women, Gender and Sexuality Seminar, Online Event Contesting Domesticity – a Panel Discussion Register registration required at no cost 20 April 2021.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM This is an online event. Authors: Kwelina Thompson, Cornell University; Shoniqua Roach, Brandeis University; Laura Puaca, Christopher Newport University Comment: Allison Horrocks, Lowell National Historical Park Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminars_2020-21/WGS_Banner.jpg

The domestic realm has long captivated feminist scholars who have sought to understand the lives of women and the workings of gender. How have women experienced, challenged, leveraged, and shaped the domestic? This panel will consider these questions and discuss the domestic as a contested site of constraint and possibility. Shoniqua Roach theorizes the meanings of black domesticity as a deeply fraught space marked by anti-black sentiment and yet full of insurgent potential. Kwelina Thompson explores the history of the La Leche League – a Catholic mothers group that organized to support breastfeeding mothers in the mid-twentieth century. Finally, Laura Puaca tells the story of the expansion of post-WWII vocational rehabilitation programs to include disabled homemakers in the US.

The History of Women, Gender, & Sexuality Seminar invites you to join the conversation. 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 held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive an email with links to join the program.

close

Seminar, Malgeri Modern American Society and Culture Seminar, Online Event The “Other” Illegals: Unauthorized European Immigration to New York City and Boston in the 20th Century Register registration required at no cost 27 April 2021.Tuesday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM This is an online event. Authors: Danielle Battisti, University of Nebraska – Omaha; Carly Goodman, La Salle University Comment: Christopher Capozzola Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminars_2020-21/MASC_Banner.jpg

Since 1965, U.S. political and social discourse about immigration has been dominated by concerns over undocumented immigration, a legal and social category understood to apply almost exclusively to non-white immigrants. This panel will examine a now obscure part of twentieth century immigration history: the migration of unauthorized white Europeans. The session will complicate current understandings of the period to demonstrate that early in the twentieth century southern and eastern European immigrants were in fact stigmatized as “criminals” and “illegals.” However by mid-century, southern and eastern Europeans were able to draw upon their social and political capital to change public perceptions and state policies. Legal status provided relief from the threat of deportation or exclusion – and reinforced the racialized category of undocumented immigrant. These papers will bring the stories to light of these “other” illegal immigrants and reinsert them into the conversations and policy debates surrounding unauthorized immigration.

The Dina G. Malgeri Modern American Society & Culture Seminar invites you to join the conversation. 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 online event held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive an email with links to join the program.

close

Seminar, Biography Seminar, Online Event Fashioning a Life: How Style Matters in Biography Register registration required at no cost 29 April 2021.Thursday, 5:15PM - 6:30PM This is an online event. Caroline Weber, Barnard College; Channing Joseph, University of Southern California Moderator: Natalie Dykstra, Hope College Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/Seminars_2020-21/biography_banner.jpg

Is fashion art or commerce? Frivolous or full of meaning? Is fashion evidence? This panel brings together Caroline Weber, author of Queen of Fashion: What Marie-Antoinette Wore to the Revolution and Proust’s Duchess, and Channing Joseph, whose forthcoming book recovers the untold story of formerly enslaved William Dorsey Swann, who became, in the 1880s, a progenitor of ballroom and drag culture. They will join moderator Natalie Dykstra, author of Clover Adams: A Gilded and Heartbreaking Life, and now at work on a biography of Isabella Stewart Gardner, in a conversation about the ways biographers use fashion to decode lives and historical contexts. 

Please note, this is an online event held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive an email with links to join the program.

close

Exhibition Who Counts: A Look at Voter Rights through Political Cartoons this event is free This is a virtual exhibition. Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/exhibitions/WhoCounts_calendar-listing-graphic.jpg

Political cartoons have long served to provoke public debate, illustrating opinions of the day for the masses. From early in the 19th century, arguments over voting rights—who votes and who counts the votes—have been depicted in cartoons, especially with the rise of illustrated newspapers and magazines with a national circulation before the Civil War. 

Featuring examples of published cartoons from the MHS collections as well as other libraries and foundations, this exhibition illustrates how cartoonists helped to tell the story of voting rights in the United States. In addition to many drawings by Thomas Nast, the most influential American political cartoonist in the decades following the Civil War, this exhibition features modern reinterpretations of these topics by editorial cartoonists, including Herblock (Herbert Block), Tom Toles, Bill Mauldin, and the work of current Boston-area artists.

Explore the online exhibition at www.masshist.org/whocounts.

close

Exhibition Thomas Nast: A Life in Cartoons this event is free This is a virtual exhibition. Image entitled /2012/juniper/assets/section37/exhibitions/ThomasNast_calendar-listing-graphic.jpg

Thomas Nast defined American political cartoons in the decades following the Civil War. His illustrations popularized icons such as the Republican elephant, the Democratic donkey, and even the modern image of Santa Claus. This exhibition highlights Thomas Nast’s remarkable impact through a cartoon biography created by local artists.

Explore the online exhibition at www.masshist.org/thomasnast.

close