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.
Read more >

Select a lecture
Search or browse presentation listings to find the right topic for your audience.
Find a lecture >

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.
View Planning Tips >

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.

Need more information about Speakers in the Humanities?

View answers to Frequently Asked Questions >

Map out a series in June on New York State History

In the Good Old Colony Days: Songs of Early America

Linda Russell
Balladeer Linda Russell presents a look at the 18th century America through ballads, broadsides, love songs, marches, drinking songs and dance tunes.

The Battle of Plattsburgh & Lake Champlain: 11 September 1814

David Fitz-Enz
Winston Churchill wrote, "Plattsburgh was the most decisive battle of the War of 1812." Both a land and naval battle, it was the main British thrust while America's attention was diverted.

Celebrate the Fourth of July with an American History Topic

Major Mordecai Myers: An American-Jewish Hero of the War of 1812

Neil Yetwin
Major Mordecai Myers was a Jewish merchant, soldier and politician who led parallel lives in New York's Jewish and non-Jewish communities.

Leaning into the Storm: Perfectionism in Antebellum New York

Robert W. Arnold III
The uncertainties of antebellum life in New York State led to perfectionist reform movements and motivated New Yorkers who would fight the Civil War.