Doing Public Humanities explores the cultural landscape from disruptive events to websites, from tours to exhibits, from after school arts programs to archives, giving readers a wide-ranging look at the interdisciplinary practice of public humanities.

Combining a practitioner’s focus on case studies with the scholar’s more abstract and theoretical approach, this collection of essays is useful for both teaching and appreciating public humanities. The contributors are committed to presenting a public humanities practice that encourages social justice and explores the intersectionalities of race, class, gender, and sexualities. Centering on the experiences of students with many of the case studies focused on course projects, the content will enable them to relate to and better understand this new field of study.

The text is essential reading for undergraduate and graduate classes in public history, historic preservation, history of art, engaged sociology, and public archaeology and anthropology, as well as public humanities.

chapter |4 pages


BySusan Smulyan

chapter 1|23 pages

The Rise of the Public Humanists

ByRobyn Schroeder

chapter 2|11 pages

What Can Public Art Teach Public Humanities?

BySusan Smulyan

chapter 3|16 pages

Teaching Digital Public Humanities with the Public Library

The Lou Costa Collection, the Updike Collection, and the AS220 Collection at the Providence Public Library
ByJim McGrath

chapter 4|18 pages

Preservation’s Expanded Field

The Hacking Heritage Unconference and the Fogarty Funeral
ByMarisa Angell Brown

chapter 5|24 pages

Hyperlocal History

Linking People to the Past through Class, Race, and Memory
ByRon M. Potvin, Marjory Gomez O’Toole

chapter 6|17 pages

Racial Forgetting and Present History

Remembering Violence in Monuments, Museums, and Markers
ByMonica Muñoz Martinez

chapter 7|16 pages

What Readers Matter?

Challenging the Disappearance of the Branch Library in Boston’s Chinese Neighborhood
ByDiane O’Donoghue

chapter 8|21 pages

The Rosa Parks House

Doing Public Art and Public History in the Age of Neoliberalism
ByMaiyah Gamble-Rivers, Shana Weinberg, Anthony Bogues

chapter 9|14 pages

Against Invisibility

Asian American Family Photography and the Public Humanities
ByRobert G. Lee

chapter |9 pages

Afterword: The “Doing” of Doing Public Humanities

ByMatthew Frye Jacobson