Humanities Futures

A project of the Franklin Humanities Institute (FHI) at Duke University, Humanities Futures is a multi-faceted exploration of the states and directions of the humanities, in light of the interdisciplinary developments of recent decades. Supported by a generous grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Humanities Futures is a 3.5-year initiative running from Fall 2014 through Fall 2017.

The centerpiece of Humanities Futures is a series of events and projects organized by Duke’s 18 humanities and interpretive social sciences departments in partnership with the FHI. In tandem with these partnerships, the “Academic Futurology” series invites Duke faculty to re-imagine the practice of departmental life through conversations on the “art of the faculty meeting,” “art of the pedagogy workshop,” etc.

The Romance Studies department has been an active contributor to this exploration, hosting and co-sponsoring a series of events on topics ranging from the future of digital projects to the economic history of the university and its impact on humanities funding. 

Beyond the departmental framework, the grant also supports interdisciplinary working groups on global and/or emerging areas of studies in the humanities; historically-focused faculty seminars organized around major concepts, figures, and art forms (co-sponsored by Duke’s the Center for Philosophy, Art, and Literature, or PAL); and a digital humanities collaboration between Duke and North Carolina Central University.