The Popular Culture Initiative

Popular culture shapes, reflects, circulates, and challenges how society thinks about itself. Rejecting any attempt to artificially restrict what counts as a significant cultural object, the popular culture initiative invites and facilitates investigations into popular film, television, music, games, and the internet, and many other popular texts and practices. It is vital at this time of cultural fracture that the humanities engage fully with the popular, both to ground ourselves in public concerns and to make sense of the contemporary moment. The popular culture initiative is a public-facing, energetic effort to connect scholarship, curriculum, and outreach and engagement in a vibrant center of campus inquiry and programming. Learn more about the Popular Culture Initiative.

Faculty Success: Thriving at Every Career Stage

The Faculty Success Initiative seeks to support faculty members at every stage of their careers, with particular emphasis on supporting faculty at the Associate Professor rank as they move forward in their work as scholars and leaders. As of 2024, one faculty fellowship each year will be designated for a faculty member at the Associate Professor rank so that they can complete their next research project. We also offer a book manuscript workshop for Associate Professors, as well as a host of supportive programming on career self-assessment, time management, and publication strategies.

Student Success

The Student Success Initiative seeks to support undergraduate student research in the humanities and social sciences and to build a vibrant community of humanities student-scholars at UConn. It offers a fellowship program, as well as supportive programming on careers, graduate work, and more. This initiative is made possible through the work and dedication of our undergraduate advisory council.

Medical Humanities and the Arts

The Humanities Institute Medical Humanities and the Arts Initiative, brings medicine, science, and the arts into conversation and seeks to open new channels of inquiry and encourage interdisciplinary collaboration in this topical space. It does this through events, supported projects, and a working group.

Digital Humanities and Media Studies

The Humanities Institute Digital Humanities and Media Studies Initiative (DHMS), seeks to engage the UConn community in debates, explorations, and exchange on all aspects related to the Digital Humanities and Media Studies. These sister fields are uniquely in dialogue at UConn, with faculty and students already working either in one or both, displaying an interdisciplinary and international richness of scholarly inquiry, experimentation, and publication. UCHI’s goal is to foster this dialogue by offering talks, supporting and organizing events and reading groups, and bringing the DHMS community at UConn together.

Faculty of Color Working Group

Generously supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and in collaboration with New England Humanities Consortium (NEHC) and University of Connecticut Humanities Institute (UCHI), the Faculty of Color Working Group (FOCWG) provides extra-institutional space for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) faculty to navigate the particular challenges that they face in their academic positions. Academic institutions create and incubate myriad inequalities, institutional microaggressions, and bad-faith policies regarding the recruitment, retention, promotion, and provision of healthy, respectful environments for faculty of color. Such imbalances degrade BIPOC faculty’s well-being and professional advancement as well as institutional health. FOCWG has begun to address these inequities through an annual symposium, a fellowship program, and a mentorship program.

New England Humanities Consortium

The New England Humanities Consortium (NEHC) promotes and strengthens intellectual collaboration, interdisciplinary exchange, and innovative educational, intercultural, and curricular programming among New England Humanities centers and institutes, and the faculty, students, and regional, national, and global communities they serve. The programming and activities of the NEHC are made possible by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the participating institutions. UCHI was the founder of NEHC and served as its first administrative hub through June 2021.

Folger Institute Consortium

In 2014 UConn became a Consortium member of the prestigious Folger Institute, a center for advanced study and collections-focused research in the humanities. Through its multi-disciplinary cross-cultural programs and residential research fellowships, the Folger Institute gathers knowledge communities and establishes fresh research and teaching agendas for early modern humanities. This area of study spans from the 14th through the 18th centuries, focusing on a wide range of relevant texts, issues, and questions. The Institute fosters targeted investigations of the world-class Folger collection and is based out of the Folger Shakespeare Library. The Consortium acts as an advisory body to the Institute, with members meeting bi-annually in D.C. to work with Folger staff on program development and scholarly outreach, among other things. By virtue of UConn's membership, our students, staff, and faculty have access to the Institute’s tremendous range of research, educational and artistic offerings. Learn more about Folger Institute Consortium.

Photo courtesy of Folger Shakespeare Library

World Poetry Books

Based at the University of Connecticut, World Poetry Books is the only publisher in the United States dedicated solely to publishing books of international poetry in English translation. As a press, our goal is to champion poets and translators from all stages of their careers by creating new communities of readers both inside and outside of the university. We believe every language has its Walt Whitman, its C.P. Cavafy, or Anne Carson, yet most world poetry—especially poetry from underrepresented languages—remains under-published and undiscovered. Our mission is to publish and promote books of vital world poetry from languages other than English. We invite our readers to celebrate the art of translation, so essential to the vibrant circulation of words and ideas. To find out more, and to purchase books, please visit World Poetry Books.