Humanistic Inquiry Articles & Blogs

Soldiers take a break from fighting during the Vietnam War (National Archives photo)
December 2, 2016
“I didn’t set out to make this film at all,” Soren Sorensen told the audience at the Nov. 9 screening of his documentary, “My Father’s Vietnam.” Sorensen, a visiting lecturer in the Clark University Visual and Performing Arts Department, would go on to describe the experience of bringing to life the story of his father,...
Raechel Segal on stage in "Night Watch."
December 1, 2016
As a Theatre Arts major, I can’t make many promises. I can’t promise that, come graduation, I won’t be wandering the streets begging for a slice of bread, “Les Miserables”-style. But here’s what I can guarantee: As an involved member of Clark’s theatrical community, I’m meeting the people I should and getting connections I...
Clinton Trump pins
November 7, 2016
What a time to be a political scientist. And what a time to be a Clark University student interested in perhaps the most contentious, most publicly scrutinized presidential race in the nation’s history. The ten members of Clark’s Political Science department faculty gathered in the Higgins Lounge on Nov. 3 for a forum...
Gurinder Chadha speaks at a Clark University forum
November 2, 2016
Internationally acclaimed director Gurinder Chadha talked about the need to make films that are historically relevant and fiercely personal during an Oct. 24 “public conversation” with sociology Professor Parminder Bhachu. The event, “Film Making, Creativity, Migrant Biographies, Diasporic Disruption,” was hosted by the...
Alexander Vesenka wants to create a makerspace on Clark University's Worcester campus.
October 25, 2016
When Alexander Vesenka ’18 isn’t busy making people laugh, he’s busy “making” in a whole different sense.
Thomas Kühne,David Pijawka, Judy Dworkin and Jody Emel, seated in chairs, talk about issues in "Indian country."
October 19, 2016
Alumni Judy Dworkin, PhD ’78, and David Pijawka, PhD ’83, recently returned to Clark University to talk about their experiences in Arizona working with American Indians. Their talk, titled “The Challenges in Indian Country in the 21st Century: Planning, Law and Community,” was sponsored by the Graduate School of Geography...
Prof. Janette Greenwood, Stanley Gutridge '45 and Prof. Esther Jones
October 19, 2016
Stanley Gutridge ’45 returned to Clark University Oct. 6 to share his thoughts about the evolution of Worcester, the value of public service, and the institutional racism he faced when he entered the work world. His recollections were plentiful and detailed, and the conversation always engaging. The Community Fireside Chat...
Andrew Gvirtz standing in front of Alumni and Student Center at Clark University
October 10, 2016
At the end of a summer-long internship with The Boston Consulting Group, Andrés Gvirtz ’18 found himself with a dilemma: He didn’t have anything to wear. The economics and psychology major started and ended his week in Munich, Germany, traveling to Dusseldorf and Hamburg in between, and was headed to a two-week behavioral...
19th-century map of the colony of Liberia
October 4, 2016
In a recent lecture at Clark University, Ousmane Power-Greene, professor of history, put words to the African-American struggle against “King Cotton” and the desire to find a homeland — and a place to build community. Ousmane Power-Greene
Professor Benjamin Korstvedt, seated at right at table, presented his research into the music of composer Anton Bruckner in August at the St. Florian Brucknertage festival in Austria.
September 20, 2016
An ancient Austrian monastery brought 19th-century music to life in a new way for Benjamin Korstvedt this August. The professor of music in Clark University’s Visual and Performing Arts Department traveled to the St. Florianer Brucknertage festival, or Bruckner Days, to present his latest research into the music of...
Thana Faroq '13 is a photographer in Yemen
September 15, 2016
Thana Faroq '13 took her first photograph — a picture of her family — using her father’s camera when she was just 10 years old. Back then, she and her family lived in a peaceful Yemen, one without war or bloodshed.
Student Michael Spanos talks to his professor, Mark Miller, on the green at Clark University
September 15, 2016
It was a transcontinental kind of summer for Mark Miller.
Clark University’s Higgins School of Humanities’ dialogue symposium, “Home (De)Constructed”
September 14, 2016
Clark University’s Higgins School of Humanities’ dialogue symposium, “Home (De)Constructed,” will consider the fluid meanings of home. Lectures, community conversations and exhibits will focus on how we define home’s boundaries, and what makes a particular structure, community, city or nation feel like home. “Together we...
Rachael Segal Play Theater masks
August 24, 2016
Raechel Segal ’17 has a pretty good response to the age-old question, “What did you do on your summer vacation?” Rachael Segal '17 Her short play, “Moon Juice,” is a finalist in Manhattan Repertory Theatre’s 10-Minute Play Contest, which gives accepted works a technical rehearsal, full dress rehearsal, and a minimum of two...
People at an LGBTQ pride parade carrying rainbow flags
August 22, 2016
Abbie Goldberg, associate professor of psychology at Clark University, is the editor of a new three-volume The SAGE Encyclopedia of LGBTQ Studies — the first reference work of its kind. The Society for the Psychological Study of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Issues, a division of the American Psychological...
Dea Dodi '17
August 16, 2016
There are few places Dea Dodi ’17 likes to be more than in the United Nations building in New York. You could say she’s been working her way there since the tender age of 12 when she first asked her parents what the term “political science” meant.
Professor Robert Tobin in front of the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany
August 11, 2016
Robert Tobin, Henry J. Leir Chair in Language, Literature and Culture at Clark University, recently returned from several weeks in Berlin, where he started a new book project, researching the connection between human rights and sexuality. He also met two Clark students traveling to Europe as part of their undergraduate...
Millennial Train Project rail car
August 8, 2016
Vintage trains aren’t usually the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about social innovation and entrepreneurship. However, Clark University alumnus Harris Rollinger ’13, M.P.A. ’14, and the organizers of the Millennial Trains Project (MTP) would like to change that.
Elisabeth Spak '16
August 1, 2016
For many, the Worcester Art Museum exists solely in the abstract as the impressive-looking building touted in chamber of commerce literature for its world-class treasures. Indeed, it is that. But for Clark University the museum, affectionately known as WAM, is something even more tangible — an active partner that gives...
Rachel Polinsky, right, listens to Richard Freund talk abou the Holocaust escape tunnel
July 28, 2016
A recent Clark University graduate is part of a research story that has made international headlines: archaeologists’ discovery of a tunnel dug by Jews in Lithuania trying to escape extermination during the Holocaust.
Olivia Schwartz, who performs as Olivia Frances, plays an acoustic guitar
July 21, 2016
It was just like any other open-mic night at an Italian restaurant in Loveland, Ohio, until then-12-year-old Olivia Schwartz performed her first original song “The Spark” a cappella. When she left the stage after completing the song, she was met by three guys in cowboy boots and country hats who introduced her to the...
Themal Ellawala, psychology student and Steinbrecher Fellow at Clark University, posed in front of a GLBTQ rainbow flag on a beach in Sri Lanka
July 21, 2016
Themal Ellawala ’17, a psychology major at Clark University, returned to Sri Lanka this summer to research how culture, gender norms and stigma affect non-heterosexuals in the island nation where he grew up. Ellawala (pictured above) is interviewing lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and others (LGBTQ+) who fall...
Psychology professor Denise Hines with students who helped organize the annual Family Impact Seminar at the Massachusetts State House
July 12, 2016
Millennials veer from older generations in their acceptance of marijuana legalization. According to a Pew Research Center poll, 68 percent of those born between 1981 and 1997 approve of legalizing pot versus around 50 percent of Baby Boomers and GenXers. And while Denise Hines, research associate professor of psychology at...
Etta Scott-Smith
July 6, 2016
Clark University junior Etta Scott-Smith is thankful to be on the “greatest journey of my life.” She always knew she wanted to study abroad in China, so much so that she made it a prerequisite when choosing a college. It wasn’t just because she wanted to see a different part of the world, or because she wanted exciting...
Stephen Steinbrecher and President David P. Angel with alumni Steinbrecher and Anton fellows
June 27, 2016
When Ali Canino ’12 saw the campground for the first time, her heart sank. Due to severe drought, Sioux YMCA’s Camp Marrowbone in north-central South Dakota had not been used in seven years, and it was a disaster. The buildings were falling down, there were no bathrooms, barbed wire was everywhere and the electrical...

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