Engaging New Audiences

Throughout June and July, we’ve shared the impact stories of organizations that are making programs and exhibits more accessible, as well as the unexpected ways that we are “doing the humanities” together. We hope you have enjoyed learning new stories and perspectives about the history of our state and communities.

In August, we chose to pivot to how organizations throughout Tennessee are making their programs more inclusive and reaching new audiences, along with their loyal followers. From Memphis to Nashville and Chattanooga, August’s featured projects demonstrate how the humanities practiced in community can change the direction of real people’s lives.

  • Memphis’ Refugee Empowerment Program delves into a humanities speaker series where young people explore the impact of living bi-culturally as refugees in the American South
  • Nashville’s Porch Writer’s Collective facilitates reading discussions and reflective writing workshops that provide healthcare workers with opportunities to engage with literature written by other healthcare professionals
  • Chattanooga’s R.I.S.E addresses the lack of cultural representation in young adult and children’s literature by developing a free community bookstore

All of these initiatives bring the humanities to life in practical ways and help us connect with each other in meaningful ways. We hope you’ll share your thoughts on this continuing series on our social channels. We look forward to hearing your thoughts and questions. We also invite you to subscribe to our monthly newsletter to stay up to date on humanities programs and events in your area.

The organizations and programs highlighted in this series received grant funding through SHARP – Sustaining the Humanities through the American Rescue Plan – which provided nearly $1 million to 91 Tennessee organizations to support their recovery from the pandemic.