NEH Summer Seminar: Envisioning America in Maps and Art

Center for the History of Cartography Programs
NEH Summer Programs - Smith
Monday, July 18, 2011 to Friday, August 12, 2011
Led by Jim Akerman and Diane Dillon

The Newberry Library’s Hermon Dunlap Smith Center for the History of Cartography held a four-week NEH summer seminar for primary and secondary school teachers, “Envisioning America in Maps and Art” in 2011. Participating teachers explored how maps and art collectively shaped ideas about space, landscape, natural history, ethnography, commerce, and politics in the Americas. They challenged received ideas about mapping and art in ways that enhanced their development as teachers and scholars. In addition to reading and discussing recent scholarship, participating summer scholars studied a wide range of original maps and art in group settings. They enhanced their research skills by pursuing individual projects making use of the Newberry’s rich holdings of cartography, geography, art, history, literature, and the history of printing from the 15th to the 21st centuries.  While emphasizing objects relevant to teaching the history and culture of the Americas, the broad arc of seminar topics promoted the development of skills and insights relevant to a wide range of K-12 curricula, embracing social studies, science, mathematics, literature, and, of course, geography and art.

Please see attached “Dear Colleage Letter” and “Syllabus 2011” for more information.