Celebrating Interdisciplinary Humanities

President Claire E. Sterk addresses the audience

The conference's final session was moderated by Emory President Claire E. Sterk (center) and featured Earl Lewis (left), former president of the Mellon Foundation, and Emory Provost Dwight A. McBride (right).

The vitality and creative breadth of humanistic inquiry were showcased at Emory's Interdisciplinary Humanities Conference held March 26, 2018. It was an occasion for faculty, students, and university leaders to discuss the growth of interdisciplinary scholarship at Emory and ways to help it flourish.

Organized by the Office of the President and the Office of the Provost, it was the culminating event of the Humanistic Inquiry Program made possible by a generous grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The Humanistic Inquiry Program was designed to advance the interdisciplinary humanities across Emory, including the professional schools. It helped the university recruit promising young scholars—known as Mellon Faculty Fellows—who are pursuing humanistic research and teaching beyond the traditional purview of the humanities.

It was a day of energetic, thoughtful conversation. Provost McBride summarized, saying, "The Emory community wants to be—and will be—more than the sum of its parts. We agree on the 'what' but not necessarily on the 'how.' Our work is critical not only to the health of the academy but to a mature democracy. . . . Emory is not training future academics or professionals; instead, the way I think of it, we are training future thought leaders."

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