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Creativity and Meaning

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An American soldier on helicopter patrol over South Vietnam from the film “Hearts and Minds” (1974).

Vietnam, the ongoing memory

Though the war ended almost 40 years ago, it feels curiously current, and still draws scholars and interested students alike



The gender-segregated signatures on this anti-slavery petition (image 1), sent to the 25th Congress from upstate New York, illustrate the “separate spheres” of household life in antebellum America. The work done by study co-author Daniel Carpenter (image 2), points to a trove of petitions now languishing in state and national archives. Another example (image 3) is a “Petition from Ladies of Marshfield, Massachusetts, 1835.”

Foreshadowing feminism

Petitioning against a congressional gag rule on slavery before the Civil War spurred generations of activists



“The Blokadnitsy Project,” an exhibit by Jill Bough, presents photographs of women who survived the Siege of Leningrad. Each photo collage (of which only a detail appears here) is framed with artifacts from the women's apartments and a statement, like this one by Emma: "The stress we felt was not just about the war. It was the fact that we were prisoners."

Haunted by the siege

70 years later, Leningrad survivors tell their stories through words and images as part of 'Blokadnitsy Project'