Arts & Culture

Palmer ’98 Presents “Words and Music” to Benefit Financial Aid

At a special Reunion & Commencement appearance with all ticket sales going to financial aid, Amanda Palmer ’98 played the piano and the ukulele and joyfully performed a set of her inimitable songs on the stage in Crowell Concert Hall on May 24. Her husband, Neil Gaiman, winner of writing honors from the Newbery Medal to the Hugo Award to the Will Eisner Comic Award, read from his work and joined Palmer in fielding questions from a rapt audience of alumni, parents and students.

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More information about Wesleyan’s THIS IS WHY campaign and upcoming events can be found at

5 Faculty Deliver 9-Minute Lectures at Wesleyan Thinks Big (Video Series)

Watch five exciting professors at Wesleyan give talks on the ideas they can’t stop thinking about during Wesleyan Thinks Big, March 28 in Memorial Chapel. Students nominated their favorite professors earlier in the semester to give nine-minute lectures, without slides, handouts, or Moodle, on a topic of their choice. Wesleyan Thinks Big was inspired by TED Talks and encourages professors to talk about things they aren’t able to fit into class but are excited and inspired by. The videos are online here. View photos of the event here.

The faculty and their topics are:
Paula Matthusen, assistant professor of music, spoke on “Sounds in Remembered Spaces.”

Jeff Rider, professor of romance languages and literatures, spoke about “The Importance of Old Stories.”

Balu Balasubrahmaniyan, adjunct assistant professor of music, spoke on “Periyar’: E.V.Ramasamy and Social Activism in India.”

Vera Schwarcz, Mansfield Freeman professor of East Asian studies, gave a talk titled “A Jewish Wanderer Listening for the Unsayable in China.”

Jacob Bricca ’93, adjunct assistant professor of film, spoke on “Cinema Verite and the Reality of Infection.”


Sarah Croucher Discusses Community Archaeology in the Beman Triangle

In this video, Sarah Croucher, assistant professor of anthropology, assistant professor of archaeology, discusses her community archaeology project in the “Beman Triangle” in Middletown, Conn. The houses built on this land from the 1840s were home to a community of African Americans living in Middletown, tied to the nearby A.M.E. Zion Church. Artifacts discovered in the area from 19th century trash pits shed new light on the lives of the community members, and the longstanding relationship between the church, Middletown and Wesleyan. Read more about Croucher’s project in this past Wesleyan Connection article.


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President Roth Interviews Judith Butler in Video Feature

In this video, Wesleyan President Michael Roth speaks with Judith Butler, the Maxine Elliot Professor in the Departments of Rhetoric and Comparative Literature, University of California, Berkeley, at the Center for Humanities on Feb. 13.  Their conversation ranges from Butler’s earliest philosophical influences to her pioneering book, Gender Trouble, and her current work on desire and recognition. Butler taught at Wesleyan in the 1980s.


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Video Feature on the Student Music Celebration, The MASH

On Friday, Sept. 7, The MASH, inspired by Fete de la Musique, also known as World Music Day, highlighted the student music scene at Wesleyan University and kicked off the year-long campus and community-wide Music & Public Life program. The event opened with Wesleyan President Michael Roth joining the faculty and staff band Mattabassett String Collective for a short set at the Usdan University Center.

Three outfitted stages — located at the West College Courtyard, Usdan Huss Courtyard and Olin Library lawn — provided students with both the opportunity to listen to some of Wesleyan’s most popular student bands and to sign up and play for the audiences themselves. The music continued through dinner with a performance on Andrus Field with the student band Treasure Island opening for the alumni band, Bear Hands. Several concerts and music events planned by student organizations, the Music Department and the Usdan Center took place throughout the evening, further highlighting the student music scene at Wesleyan.

The video is below:

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Video Feature on Wesleyan’s Ritual, Health and Healing Course

In the Spring semester of 2012, Assistant Professor of Anthropology Gillian Goslinga and Creative Campus Fellow Jill Sigman, co-taught a course titled Ritual, Health and Healing. The course consisted of a weekly seminar and movement lab where the students explored the moral and material worlds of ritual and religious healing through assigned reading, writing and physical exercises. A video of the class is below:

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West African Drummers, Dancers Perform on CFA Green

Wesleyan’s West African Drumming and Dance performers.

Wesleyan’s annual West African Drumming and Dance concert, which took place on the Center for the Arts Green, was recently featured by the Middletown Patch.

The article, published on May 15, notes: “The exhilarating performance featured the work of Ghanian choreographer Iddi Saaka, Wesleyan world dance artist-in-residence; and master drummer Abraham Adzenyah, whose energetic and spirited students gave a sampling of what they’ve learned in West African dance courses this semester, accompanied by guest artists and drummers. ”

Read the article and see the video of the performance here.

An Evening with Julia Louis-Dreyfus P’14

On April 12, Julia Louis-Dreyfus P’14, producer and star of “VEEP,” sat down with President Michael Roth ’78 and nearly 300 Wesleyan students, alumni, and parents at The Times Center in New York City for a premiere screening and conversation about her new HBO show. A video of the event is below:

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