From the controversial decision to admit women in 1870 to the Black Action Movement of a century later, a diversity of chapters from the University of Michigan’s history will be explored in a new campus lecture series.

The talks are a natural outgrowth of the university’s bicentennial programming, said Gary D. Krenz of the Bentley Historical Library, which is sponsoring the talks.

“We’re excited to continue the momentum of 2017 and the commitment to examine the many facets of the university’s past,” said Krenz, director of post-bicentennial planning. “Michigan has made an impact on society both locally and nationally, and our speakers bring unique insights to this rich and complex history.”

The series will run throughout the 2019-20 academic year. All talks begin at 7 p.m. at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library. Admission and parking are free.

Photo of early female students at U-M.
The admission of women to U-M in 1870 will be one of the topics covered in a new lecture series sponsored by the Bentley Historical Library. (Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library)

The series includes the following lectures:

Nov. 14 — “Lilly Stalks, Pounded Murphies, and Caramel Ice Cream: Investigating the Food System that Fed U-M Students a Century Ago” — Lisa C. Young, lecturer in the Department of Anthropology and research affiliate at the Museum of Anthropological Archaeology.

Dec. 12 — “‘We must work off our surplus animal spirits’: 19th-century Origins of Athletic Competition at the University of Michigan” — Gregory T. Kinney, athletics archivist, and Brian Williams, assistant director and archivist for university history, Bentley Historical Library.

Jan. 23 — “Telling the Truth About the Liberal Arts: Histories and Futures” — Terrence J. McDonald, director of the Bentley Historical Library, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor and professor of history.

Feb. 13 — “‘Almost without Money and without Price to Every Young Man and Every Young Woman’: The Admission of Women to the University of Michigan” — Andrea L. Turpin, Baylor University associate professor of history and author of “A New Moral Vision: Gender, Religion, and the Changing Purposes of American Higher Education, 1837-1917.” Her talk coincides with the 150th anniversary of women’s admission to U-M.

March 19 — “‘Hail!’ Harmony and Dissonance in the University of Michigan’s Campus Songs” — Mark A. Clague, associate professor of music and associate dean for undergraduate academic affairs, School of Music, Theatre & Dance.

April 9 — “‘Schools and the Means of Education’ (Remixed): The Black Action Movement and the Origins of the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies” — Stephen M. Ward, associate professor of Afroamerican and African studies, and associate professor in the Residential College. His talk will recognize the 50th anniversary of the Black Action Movement.

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