Speakers in the Humanities

Launched in 1983, the Speakers in the Humanities program brings the best in humanities scholarship to thousands of people at hundreds of cultural organizations in virtually every corner of New York. Any not-for-profit organization in New York State is eligible to use the program. Speakers events must be open to the public and free of charge. If your application is successful, the Council covers the cost of the Speaker's honorarium and travel expenses.

How to apply to host a lecture

Confirm Your Eligibility
Speakers in the Humanities is available to not-for-profit organizations.
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Select a lecture
Search or browse presentation listings to find the right topic for your audience.
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Contact the Speaker to arrange a date and time
Get in touch with the Speaker you have selected, using his or her listed contact information.
Browse Speaker directory >

Apply to the Council for Funds
Once you have completed steps 1 through 3, apply to the Council for funding.
Apply now >

Plan and Promote Your Event
Start publicizing your lecture as soon as you receive notice of Council funding approval.
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6. Submit Follow-up Evaluation
Within three (3) weeks of your event, it is required to submit the Host Organization Evaluation to report on aspects of your Speakers event.
Host Organization Evaluation >


Speakers in the Humanities lectures are made possible with the support of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

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Explore lectures in Religion, Ethics, and Philosophy this holiday season

The New York Volunteer: Songs and Stories of the Civil War

Linda Russell
This program looks at New York in the Civil War as revealed in songs augmented with excerpts from letters and diaries.

Dynamics of Development: Strategic Positioning of Alternative Agriculture

Joshua Frye
From first-hand accounts of working with peasants in Western Honduras to the US organic movement's proactive lobbying and strategic positioning, this lecture examines the intersections between sustainable agriculture, communication, and democracy.

Browse new We the People lecture topics

Matilda Joslyn Gage: Bringing Her Into History

Sally Roesch Wagner
The "forgotten feminist," Matilda Joslyn Gage (1826 - 1898) harbored fugitive slaves, was an adopted Native American, influenced Oz, and worked for the separation of church and state.

The Garment Workers' New York: Ethnicity, Class, and Gender in Progressive Era New York

Richard A. Greenwald
Garment workers were central to to Progressive Era New York. This lecture discusses New York's garment workers, their unions, and their politics; New York communities; the role of women workers; the relationship between workers and the state; and the emerging twentieth-century liberalism that would find fulfillment in the New Deal.