Tucson Humanities Festival Returns to Explore Secrets
UA College of Humanities faculty and special guests to discuss secrets from historic to modern times at annual festival.

By Eric Swedlund, UA College of Humanities
Sept. 19, 2018

If knowledge is power, how powerful are secrets? 

The 2018 Tucson Humanities Festival will look into hidden identities, clandestine rituals, mysterious escapes and encoded meanings, examining how information that's withheld and obscured has impacted human cultures.

The festival's 10 events include thought-provoking lectures, readings and film screening by UA faculty members and featured guests including: Colson Whitehead, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of "The Underground Railroad;" pioneering hip-hop DJs Tony Tone and Rockin' Rob; feminist author Martine Delvaux; and Andre Goodfriend, director of the U.S. Office of eDiplomacy.

"Secrets immediately put questions in people's minds, and we've created some thought-provoking events to consider those questions," said Alain-Philippe Durand, dean of the UA College of Humanities.

The festival explores a different theme every year, with recent years highlighting "Resistance & Revolution," "Refuge" and "Found in Translation."

"We settled on secrets as a way to tell some enticing stories and showcase some fascinating components of cultures around the world," Durand said. "We'll see marginalized people throughout history who have used secrets to preserve culture and beliefs. And we'll see modern ways in which secrets have profound impacts on identity and relationships."

The events are organized as a local celebration of National Arts & Humanities Month to encourage public participation in the arts and humanities. The festival is intended to open a dialogue between the UA and the Tucson community, and to share faculty research and expertise about freedom, artistic expression, religion, and diplomacy.

Visit humanitiesfestival.arizona.edu for more information.

Oct. 4, 6:30 p.m.
Indie Games in China: Film screening and discussion

Tiexin Liang, director

Tucson Chinese Cultural Center, 1288 W. River Rd.

Oct. 5, 3 p.m.
Surprising Vermeer: An Artist in Delft, Delft in the World

Timothy Brook, University of British Columbia

UA Museum of Art, 1031 N. Olive Rd.

Oct. 9, 7 p.m.
To Speak or Not to Speak: Women, Secrets and Sexual Violence

Martine Delvaux, Université du Québec à Montréal

UA Poetry Center, 1508 E. Helen St.

Oct. 11, 6 p.m.
Letters to the Future: Black Women/Radical Writing

Editors Erica Hunt & Dawn Lundy Martin, and featured poets giovanni singleton and Ruth Ellen Kocher

Tucson Museum of Art, 140 N. Main Ave.

Oct. 12, 6 p.m.
Crushin' It: Untold Stories from Hip-Hop's Founding Days

DJ Rockin' Rob & DJ Tony Tone

Cans Deli, 340 N. Fourth Ave.

Tickets are required. Register for free at Eventbrite

Oct. 16, 7 p.m.
Secret Lives: Hidden Identities in Global Popular Culture

Melissa Fitch, UA Spanish and Portuguese

UA Poetry Center, 1508 E. Helen St.

Oct. 18, 7 p.m.
Revisiting the Underground Railroad

Colson Whitehead, Pulitzer Prize-winning author

UA Student Union Memorial Center, North Ballroom

Tickets are required for this event. Register for free at Eventbrite.  

Oct. 23, 7 p.m.
Subverting Colonialism: Keep it Secret, Keep it Safe

Andrea McComb Sanchez and Caleb Simmons, UA Religious Studies

UA Poetry Center, 1508 E. Helen St.

Oct. 26, 10 a.m.
Transparency & Trust: How Open Diplomacy Advances Democracy

Andre Goodfriend, director, U.S. Office of eDiplomacy

UA Student Union Memorial Center, Sonora Room

Oct. 30, 7 p.m.
Spellbound: Film screening and discussion

David Soren, Humanities Seminars Program

The Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway Blvd.

Free tickets available Oct. 30 at noon at The Loft Cinema. Limit two per person.


Resources for the media

Media contact:
Eric Swedlund
UA College of Humanities