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10/29 – What Do We Mean by Research Now? Perspectives from National Foundations & the Researchers They Support
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10/27 – Application Deadline for 2022 Interdisciplinary Research Grants

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Planting Hope: The Anne Frank Tree Arrives in Iowa
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Application deadline: Obermann Interdisciplinary Research Grants (Summer 2022) promotional image

Application deadline: Obermann Interdisciplinary Research Grants (Summer 2022)

Wednesday, October 27, 2021 5:00pm
The Obermann Interdisciplinary Research Grants (IDRG) foster collaborative scholarship and creative work by offering recipients time and space to exchange new ideas leading to invention, creation, and publication. IDRG groups work at the Obermann Center for two or four weeks, usually in July and/or August. Applicants propose work on a project with colleagues from across the University, across disciplines within their own department, or with colleagues from other parts of the country or the…
What Do We Mean by Research Now?—Perspectives from National Foundations and the Researchers They Support promotional image

What Do We Mean by Research Now?—Perspectives from National Foundations and the Researchers They Support

Friday, October 29, 2021 12:00pm to 1:00pm
The UI Obermann Center for Advanced Studies is delighted to welcome both national leaders of funding bodies and impressive recipients the our second round of “What Do We Mean by Research Now?” So often, when a scholar—especially a junior faculty member—proposes a groundbreaking project outside of traditional project, the response is: “But how we would evaluate that?” However, in the last decade, organizations that have long funded traditional research have become both advocates for and…
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Cinematic Arts Lecture Series: Daniel Durant

Friday, October 29, 2021 3:30pm to 5:00pm
Cinematic Arts Lecture Series: Daniel Durant Friday, October 29th, 2021 3:30pm to 5:00pm Virtual event RSVP at https://uiowa.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJUode-tqDsrE9Mzg2pZ8bOZeQOCUFvwCcZK “Daniel Durant: Breaking Barriers via Deaf Representation in Cinema, Theatre, and the Arts” Join actor Daniel Durant for a lecture and Q & A in which he discusses his barrier-breaking career from Broadway to Hollywood, the importance of authentic Deaf representation in film, theatre, and television,…
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Three people sitting in a grassy area with trees behind them.

Planting Hope: The Anne Frank Tree Arrives in Iowa

On February 23, 1944, a 15-year-old girl gazed from an attic window at the topmost branches of a tree. The tree had become a sort of friend to her, a reminder of life beyond the small space to which she was confined and one of the few things she could see from the only window that was not blacked out. In her diary that day, she wrote, “I look up at the blue sky and the bare chestnut tree, on whose branches little raindrops shine, appearing like silver, and at the seagulls and other birds as they glide on the wind. As long as this exists…and I may live to see it, this sunshine, these cloudless skies, while this lasts, I cannot be unhappy.” Those words represent the hope that has made their author, Anne Frank, one of the major figures of World War II and a ubiquitous symbol of optimism in the face of unthinkable darkness.

On April 29, 2022, the thirteenth Anne Frank Tree will be planted on the northeast corner of the University of Iowa’s Pentacrest. Its arrival is due to the work of Frank scholar and UI German Department faculty member Dr. Kirsten Kumpf Baele. Her proposal to bring a tree to Iowa City was accepted a year and a half ago by the Anne Frank Center USA; however, the pandemic postponed the original planting ceremony, which is now slated for April 29, 2022.
Headshot of woman in maroon shirt with long hair and arms crossed.

Bethanny Sudibyo Wins 2021 Humanities 3MT

Bethanny Sudibyo (Spanish & Portuguese, CLAS) won the 2021 Obermann Humanities 3MT for her presentation “Imperial Imaginings: Representations of Religion, Race, and Gender in 19th-Century Spanish Philippine Novels.” Sudibyo's win earned her a place in the campus-wide 3MT finals, the winner of which will be announced on November 12.
Graduate Engagement Corps logo

Goodbye, Gradate Institute. Hello, Graduate Engagement Corps!

The Obermann Graduate Institute on Engagement and the Academy was started fourteen years ago at a time when public engagement was not a well-known practice on university campuses. More than 200 University of Iowa graduate students have participated in this program, many of them going on to lead or participate in community engaged projects. We count the alumni of this program as friends, many of whom have shared with us the exciting work they are doing in other locales—including in Philadelphia, the Black Hills, and Boulder—and with other organizations, such as NPR, the National Park Service, and our own Center for Teaching. The Institute has also had 11 faculty co-directors who have shared their expertise from fields as disparate as dance and engineering, and with project expertise that ranges from working with incarcerated populations to directing a camp for deaf teens.
John Rapson

John Rapson's Communal Composition: Esteban and the Children of the Sun

In mid-June, a dozen musicians gathered in the basement of one of Iowa City’s oldest homes. There was a blues guitarist, a French mandole player, and a Celtic fiddler. The drummer was sequestered in the laundry room, and an electric guitarist’s amp was routed through a shower stall to limit distortion. In the midst of it all was John Rapson.
Asha Bhandary

The Kindness of Strangers: Philosopher seeks to make caregiving disparities and their effects visible

During the pandemic, many of us have relied on the kindness of strangers. The work of people we didn’t know—store clerks, nurses, childcare providers, delivery people, and warehouse workers—allowed many of us to stay home during the past year and a half. As in the case of Blanche DuBois—she of Streetcar Named Desire fame—this reliance may have helped us in the short run, but it’s not necessarily the best societal approach to receiving care. Frontline workers are inordinately female and people of color....

Featured Programs

Anne Frank and chestnut tree

The Anne Frank Tree: Taking Root in Iowa

On April 29, 2022, a new tree will be planted on the UI Pentacrest—a sapling propagated from the tree that grew near the annex where Anne Frank and her family hid during World War II. Join in a year of events surrounding the planting.

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Behind the S(cr)een

Join us for the 2022 Obermann Humanities Symposium, Behind the S(cr)een: African Americans in the Entertainment Industries. The three-day event will take place April 21–23, 2022.

Audience at Obermann Conversation at ICPL

Obermann Conversations

An informal speaker series held in various locations around Iowa City as well as in the cozy and collegial Obermann Library. Once per month during fall and spring semesters, we feature work of faculty and research staff, often in conversation with a thought leader from our community. 

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