Loyola University Maryland

Center for the Humanities


These are events sponsored wholly or in part by the Center for the Humanities for 2022-2023



Odds Bodkin Performance
The Iliad, Book 1
Storyteller and musician Odds Bodkin returns to Loyola on Zoom to present THE ILIAD: BOOK I. Using a variety of intensely real characters with ongoing music, he brings to life the most famous argument in ancient history: Achilles, the greatest Greek warrior at Troy, against Agamemnon, the Lord Marshall, commander of all the armies.Achilles already despises Agamemnon for his greed and brutish ways, but when, during a confrontation over a captured Trojan girl, the Marshall threatens to send her home, only to replace her in his tent with a girl Achilles loves, the hate between them boils over. The rift threatens to sunder the Greek army and waste ten years of siege at Troy’s gates. With Apollo’s plague arrows wiping out their army, somebody has to give in. Meanwhile the Gods of Olympus, who started all this, are watching their favorite mortals fight.

Odds Bodkin has been called “one of the great voices in American storytelling” by Wired and “a consummate storyteller” by The New York Times. Loyola audiences have given Odds standing ovations for this performance in the past. Come see why. Experience Homer’s great story in a clear, accessible way. 

McGuire West
7:00 PM

If you require additional accommodations, please contact Disability Support Services at dss@loyola.edu.


Writers at Work Series
Tania James

Tania James is the author of the novel Atlas of Unknowns, the short story collection Aerogrammes, and the novel The Tusk That Did the Damage, all published by Knopf. Atlas was a New York Times Editor’s Choice, an Indie Next Notable, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection, and a Best Book of 2009 for The San Francisco Chronicle and NPR. Aerogrammes was a Best Book of 2012 for Kirkus Reviews, Library Journal, and The San Francisco Chronicle. Her stories have appeared in Boston Review, Granta, Kenyon Review, One Story, and A Public Space. Two stories from Aerogrammes were finalists for Best American Short Stories 2008 and 2013. The Tusk That Did the Damage was named a Best Book of 2015 by The San Francisco Chronicle and NPR, and was a New York Times Editor’s Choice. In 2016, Tusk was shortlisted for the International Dylan Thomas Prize and longlisted for the Financial Times/Oppenheimer Award. 

Fourth Floor Program Room
6:00 PM


CFH Annual Celebration of Teaching, Learning, and Research in the Humanities

Teaching Faculty Excellence Award presented to Ms. Ursula Sayers-Ward, Modern Languages and Literatures
Student Presentations from the CFH Summer Student Research Fellows, Summer Study Fellows, and Internships
Nachbahr Address by Martha Taylor, PhD, Classics: “What makes an Aristogeiton?” 

Fourth Floor Program Room
3:00 PM



“Aching Female Bodies: Prisons, Illness, and Inquisitorial Violence”
Talk by Ana María Díaz Burgos

Professor Díaz Burgos notes, “The Inquisition’s selective use torture aimed to elicit the confession of the defendant’s crimes against the Catholic Church whenever other tactics had failed. As such, inquisitorial authorities legitimized the physical violence they inflicted upon a defendant’s body. However, inquisitorial violence was not limited to physical torture, but extended to psychological distress and economic hardships. Moreover, inquisitorial authorities often failed to support the defendants’ basic needs in terms of food, shelter, and health. This was especially so in the case of women who sought solutions for their physical, mental, and emotional pains during their trials."

Knott Hall B01
4:00 PM


head and shoulders portrait of a woman outside with face shadowed

Modern Masters Reading Series:
Annette Porter

Through her film company, Nylon Films, Annette Porter produces content for corporate, broadcast and cinematic audiences on topics ranging from contemporary arts and culture to social and historical issues. Her work has been featured by broadcasters including the BBC and NBC, and her publications include the Washington Post and Vogue. Her work has been featured by broadcasters including the BBC and NBC, and in publications including the Washington Post and Vogue. Recently, she produced films for the World Economic Forum and a documentary about Marin Alsop, The Conductor, currently airing on PBS's “Great Performances.”  

In addition to producing films, Porter serves as the Director for the Saul Zaentz Innovation Fund and as an Instructor for Baltimore Youth Film Arts - two programs at Johns Hopkins university that are dedicated to nurturing new voices in communities long underserved by the traditional film world. Porter also teaches film production classes at Johns Hopkins and is Co-Director of the JHU-MICA Film Centre.

McManus Theater
6:00 PM


Music at Loyola Concert Series
Amadi Azikiwe

Violinist and violist Amadi Azikiwe is the Music Director of the Harlem Symphony Orchestra. He teaches at the Steinhardt School of music at NYU and has performed in recitals in major US cities and has played, as a soloist or orchestral musician, with The Delaware Symphony, Virginia Symphony, New York Philharmonic, and Canada’s National Arts Centre. Amadi Azikiwe He will be performing a program of Bach, Ravel, and living composer Jessie Montgomery.

Alumni Chapel
6:30 PM


Writers at Work Series Faculty Reading
Richard Boothby and Bahar Jalali

Dr. Richard Boothby is Professor of Philosophy at Loyola University Maryland. His educational background includes a B.A. in Philosophy from Yale University, Ed.M. in Counseling and Consulting Psychology from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and Ph.D. in Philosophy, Boston University. Boothby’s primary research focuses on contemporary continental philosophy, with special attention to psychoanalysis, phenomenology, and existentialism. His books include Death and Desire: Psychoanalytic Theory in Lacan’s Return to Freud (Routledge, 1991), Freud as Philosopher: Metapsychology After Lacan (Routledge, 2001), Sex On The Couch: What Freud Still Has To Teach Us About Sex and Gender (Routledge, 2005), Blown Away: Refinding Life After My Son’s Suicide (Other Press, 2022), and Embracing the Void: Rethinking the Origin of the Sacred (Northwestern University Press, 2022). 
Dr. Bahar Jalali is an Afghan-American academic. Born in Afghanistan, she fled the country as a child after the Soviet invasion. In 2009, she returned to Afghanistan to work at the newly established American University of Afghanistan where she taught History of Afghanistan and founded the first Gender Studies program in the history of the country. She spent 8.5 years teaching and working towards women's empowerment in Afghanistan. Her research interests include the history of Afghan reform movements in the twentieth century, women and gender in the Middle East, and protecting Afghanistan’s cultural heritage. In 2021, she launched an online protest campaign that garnered widespread international media coverage in an effort to raise global awareness about Afghan women’s rights and protecting the cultural heritage of Afghanistan. She has previously taught History at Wagner College and worked for the University of Texas, Austin.  Currently, she is a Teaching Assistant Professor at Loyola University Maryland.

Fourth Floor Program Room
6:30 PM


Humanities in Action Inaugural Lecture

“The Constitution and the Right to Privacy”
by Elie Mystalman with gray hair and folded arms

Humanities in Action is a new lecture series sponsored by Loyola University Maryland's Center for the Humanities which invites scholars, artists and public figures to campus to talk about timely issues of broad significance that affect what it means to be human in our society and the world. 

Mystal will discuss Supreme Court jurisprudence over the years and especially the right-ward lurch that the current Roberts Court has taken most recently with the Dobbs decision overturning Roe v. Wade and its impact on First Amendment rights. Known for writing about the law and politics, breaking down Supreme Court decisions and presenting up-to-the-minute coverage of Supreme Court confirmation battles, Mystal is the justice correspondent for The Nation, where he writes about politics and social and racial justice. He also is a legal contributor to the More Perfect podcast on WNYC and a former executive editor of Above the Law – a website with about 2 million unique visitors. His first book, Allow Me To Retort – A Black Guy’s Guide to the Constitution was on the New York Times’ Best Seller list in April 2022.  

A book signing with Mystal’s books available for purchase will immediately follow the talk. Admission is free, but advance registration is required. To reserve seating, visit www.loyola.edu/humanities-in-action, email centerforthehumanities@loyola.edu or call 410.617.2617.

McGuire Hall
6:00 pm



Modern Masters Series:
Ocean Vuong

head and shoulders portrait of an unsmiling man

Ocean Vuong is the author of the recently released poetry collection, Time is a Mother, (Penguin Press 2022), and the The New York Times bestselling novel, On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous (Penguin Press 2019) which has been translated into 36 languages.  A recipient of a 2019 MacArthur "Genius" Grant, he is also the author of the critically acclaimed poetry collection, Night Sky with Exit Wounds, a New York Times Top 10 Book of 2016, winner of the T.S. Eliot Prize, the Whiting Award, the Thom Gunn Award, and the Forward Prize for Best First Collection. A Ruth Lilly fellow from the Poetry Foundation, his honors include fellowships from the Lannan Foundation, the Civitella Ranieri Foundation, The Elizabeth George Foundation, The Academy of American Poets, and the Pushcart Prize.

Born in Saigon, Vietnam and raised in Hartford, Connecticut in a working-class family of nail salon and factory laborers, he was educated at nearby Manchester Community College before transferring to Pace University to study International Marketing. Without completing his first term, he dropped out of Business school and enrolled at Brooklyn College, where he graduated with a BA in Nineteenth Century American Literature. He subsequently received his MFA in Poetry from NYU. He currently lives in Northampton, Massachusetts where he serves as tenured Professor in the MFA Program at NYU.

McGuire Hall
6:00 PM



Student quiche-making competition
The Refectory
1:00 PM

Lunch at Marie Louise Bistro. For the time and other details, please contact the Modern Languages department or consult loyola.edu/frenchweek

Presentation by Dr. André Colombat, entitled “Haute Cuisine: great chef.fes”. Dr Colombat will talk about what that expression means for French people and will present great chefs, in particular those in his hometown of Lyon. He will also speak about women cheffes and Anthony Bourdain’s love of French cuisine. After the talk, there will be a cheese-tasting with various cheeses, such as Roquefort, Brie, Comté and goat cheeses some made locally.
Fourth Floor Program Room
7:00 PM

French Pastry Presentation and tasting. Patisserie Poupon will send a chef to present and talk about all the different pastries sold at their store. Of course, there will be a selection for students to enjoy and some to purchase. 
Fourth Floor Program Room
4:00 PM

French club members will offer students crêpes made on the spot and teach those interested about crêpe-making.
Quad in front of Maryland Hall
11:00 AM - 1:00 PM

Bilingual Mass in French and English
Alumni Memorial Chapel
1:00 PM


Plays Through Playbill: Snapshots of Broadway Theatre history, 1947 - 2011 

Selections of the collection of Playbills from the Loyola Notre Dame Library Archives and curated by the FA 2022 the students of Loyola's Introduction to Theatre History course (DR-250).
Loyola Notre Dame Library First Floor Gallery
4:30 PM


Center for the Humanities Aperio Project Student Presentations 

Students participating in the CFH 2022 – 2023 Aperio project, directed by Dr. David Carey and Dr. Lisa Zimmerelli, will present their original historical research and creative writing regarding Loyola's relationship to slavery and its legacies. Topics will range from analysis of black face in Loyola's theatre productions (even as the first African American student Charles Dorsey was attending the school), to Loyola’s financial ties to slavery via the Jesuit sale of 272+ enslaved Africans in 1838 and the financial ties of its private donors thereafter. Student research will also include the extent to which Loyola students, faculty, and alumni participated in the Civil War on both the Confederate and Union sides. Contemporary analysis will include a student who has interviewed black students on campus and scoured the Baltimore Sun, Afro American, and Greyhound to understand black students' experience on Loyola's 21st century campus.

Fourth Floor Program Room
5:00 PM





Writers at Work
Jason Parham

Jason Parham is a senior writer at Wired where he covers a range of subjects, including black creative labor, emerging trends, and the digital culture of sex. Prior to joining Wired, he was an editor at The Fader and Gawker. He lives in New York City.  
Raised in LA, Jason’s essays and criticism have appeared in the New York Times Book Review, The Atlantic, The Awl, and the Los Angeles Times style magazine Image, where he is a regular contributor. He performs regularly in Pop-Up, the live magazine show.  
In 2012, Jason founded Spook, a literary journal by and for creatives of color. Upon its debut, it was hailed by the Los Angeles Review of Books as “an invaluable contribution to the cultural conversation.”

Fourth Floor Program Room
6:00 PM


Modern Masters Reading Series
Robin Wall Kimmerer

woman with gray hair standing next to birch tree

Robin Wall Kimmerer is a plant ecologist, writer and SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse, New York. She serves as the founding Director of the Center for Native Peoples and the Environment whose mission is to create programs which draw on the wisdom of both indigenous and scientific knowledge for our shared goals of sustainability. She is the author of “Gathering Moss” which incorporates both traditional indigenous knowledge and scientific perspectives and was awarded the prestigious John Burroughs Medal for Nature Writing in 2005. Her latest book “Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants” was released in 2013 and was awarded the Sigurd Olson Nature Writing Award.
Dr. Kimmerer has taught courses in botany, ecology, ethnobotany, indigenous environmental issues as well as a seminar in application of traditional ecological knowledge to conservation. She is the co-founder and past president of the Traditional Ecological Knowledge section of the Ecological Society of America.  Dr. Kimmerer serves as a Senior Fellow for the Center for Nature and Humans. Of European and Anishinaabe ancestry, Kimmerer is an enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation. She holds a BS in Botany from SUNY ESF, an MS and PhD in Botany from the University of Wisconsin and is the author of numerous scientific papers on plant ecology, bryophyte ecology, traditional knowledge and restoration ecology. As a writer and a scientist, her interests in restoration include not only restoration of ecological communities, but restoration of our relationships to land. 

Zoom event
7:00 - 8:00 PM



Student-Faculty Colloquia for the 2023 Humanities Symposium
Julie Otsuka's When the Emperor was Divine 
Two days during the official Symposium week are set aside for Loyola student/faculty colloquia. During each scheduled class period, faculty and their classes will meet with faculty and students from other classes. These colloquia have traditionally been led by panels composed of faculty members from different disciplines who lead informal discussion, posing questions to stimulate the participation of students, and to engage the Symposium text across narrow disciplinary boundaries. This year’s text is When the Emperor was Divine by Julie Otsuka.

The colloquia will be in-person. They are open to Loyola faculty, staff, and students. Registration will be required. Details will follow closer to the event.
McManus Theater


Julie Otsuka
Award-winning novelist, Julie Otsuka, will deliver the 2023 Humanities Symposium keynote address.
Julie Otsuka was born and raised in California and is a recipient of awoman sitting on a park bench Guggenheim Fellowship. Her first novel, When the Emperor Was Divine (Knopf) is this year's Humanities Symposium text. This novel, set during World War II, follows a Japanese-American family from their home in Berkeley, California to internment camps in the Utah desert. Otsuka draws on historical research as well as her own family's history to create a spare and imagistic novel told in an inventive style. The novel won the 2003 Asian American Literary Award and the 2003 American Library Association Alex Award. Her second novel, The Buddha in the Attic (Knopf) was a finalist for the National Book Award 2011, won the 2012 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction and the 2011 Langum Prize in American Historical Fiction. The Buddha in the Attic was an international bestseller and the winner of the prestigious Prix Femina étranger 2012, and the Albatros Literaturpreis 2013. Otsuka's third novel, The Swimmers, was published by Knopf in 2022. Photo credit: Jean-Luc Bertini.

McGuire Hall
6:30 PM



2023 Hanna Geldrich-Leffman Colloquium on Language, Literature, and Society:


Center for Humanities logo