“Democracy & the Informed Citizen” program announced

Posted On: January 29, 2020

How do Tennesseans determine which outlets to turn to for news?

How do communities respond when access is throttled or when coverage is monopolized?

What are our responsibilities to each other and to our communities to be better informed and to engage accordingly with those who make policies that govern us?

These are just a few of the questions we plan to address in a series of five programs over eighteen months titled “Democracy & the Informed Citizen.”

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, via the Federation of State Humanities Councils, has awarded more than $34,000 to Humanities Tennessee to implement our Democracy & the Informed Citizen project.

Across the state and in a variety of diverse communities, Humanities Tennessee will work with existing and new partner institutions and scholars to present compelling, challenging, and accessible public programs that increase Tennesseans’ understanding of these vital connections. By exploring these questions together, we hope we may all become more responsible consumers of media, asking better questions and seeking reliable resources for answers.

We will continue our partnership with Think Tennessee to collaborate on their “Mayors Growing Civic Engagement” initiative. Other programs will focus on media literacy, rural journalism, independent journalism and new media communities, and our “Neighborhood Story Project” program will expand to include five more projects in 2020. 

“We hope to encourage the public in communities across Tennessee to consider the important relationship between access to information and strong, functional democratic institutions. If Tennesseans can have these conversations with each other – in urban and rural communities, with our neighbors of different backgrounds and perspectives – we can regain trust in our institutions and in each other,” said Tim Henderson, Executive Director of Humanities Tennessee.

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