Arts & Culture

Travel Writer, Radio Host Frommer ’88 Speaks about Wesleyan Education

In this video, travel writer, editor, and radio host Pauline Frommer ’88 talks about growing up in the travel industry, and reveals how her Wesleyan education changed her mind about her career. Frommer majored in intellectual history at Wesleyan. “I thought I was going to be a theater major, and then I started taking a lot of history and philosophy classes and they blew my mind.” Watch this video and many more on the Video @ Wesleyan website.

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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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