Press Release


Road Scholars provide a wide array of public humanities programming throughout the sate

CHICAGO – Looking for a way to help engage Illinois communities in discussions about Illinois history, literature, architecture or any humanities discipline? If you would enjoy making connections and exercising minds throughout Illinois, the Illinois Humanities Council (IHC) wants to hear from you. TheIHC is seeking scholar-applicants for its speakers bureau, entitled Road Scholars. Humanities scholars affiliated with Illinois colleges and universities and independent scholars are eligible to apply. The deadline for applications is September 15, 2006. Interested scholars should download an application from or call 312.422.5580 to receive an application. This year, the IHC is particularly interested in speakers who might address the topics of the Genetics Revolution, American Roots Music, and the life and legacy of Abraham Lincoln.

For a small processing fee, the Road Scholars program places humanities scholars in diverse communities throughout the state where they give presentations on a variety of topics related to the humanities, topics that encourage reflection on the human condition from a range of perspectives. As branches of learning, the humanities include the study of history, literature, linguistics, music history and appreciation, politics, anthropology, philosophy, jurisprudence, and comparative religion. Interdisciplinary areas such as folklore and Women’s Studies are also considered humanities disciplines.

Speakers will receive an honorarium and expense reimbursement. They typically have two different presentations listed in the catalog and on the IHC’s website, although exceptions can be made. All presentations proposed should be roughly 45-60 minutes in length, including time for audience discussion. All must employ the perspectives of the humanities. The IHC welcomes proposals for presentations beyond the traditional lecture/discussion format,including multi-media presentations,first-person characterizations of historical figures,musical performances and even walking tours. Programs may address topics related to issues of local, state, national, or international concern. The IHC will also accept proposals for team presentations. Please note that the National Endowment for the Humanities guidelines under which the IHC operates prohibit support of presentations directed at persuading an audience to a particular political, philosophical, religious, or ideological point of view.

The Illinois Humanities Council is an educational organization dedicated to fostering a culture in which the humanities are a vital part of the lives of individuals and communities. Through its programs and grants, the IHC promotes greater understanding of, appreciation for, and involvement in the humanities by all Illinoisans, regardless of their economic resources, cultural background, or geographic location. Organized as a state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities in 1973, the IHC is now a private nonprofit (501 [c] 3) organization that is funded by contributions from individuals, corporations, and foundations; by the Illinois General Assembly; and by the NEH.

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