Writing Cultural History Today:

A Symposium on the Publication of
A New Literary History of America

Friday, September 25, 2009 –
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Cambridge, MA

"20 Questions": Co-Editors Greil Marcus and Werner Sollors, and Questioners Lawrence Buell, Glenda Carpio, Lizabeth Cohen, Alexander Keyssar, and Judith Tick

Werner Sollors, Greil Marcus and Harvard University Press hosted Writing Cultural History Today, a two-day symposium on the occasion of the publication of A New Literary History of America. The event took place at the Barker Center for the Humanities on Friday, September 25 and Saturday, September 26, and consisted of panels and discussions exploring specific themes and issues raised by the content and nature of this groundbreaking project.


BookTV 20 Questions

After opening remarks, Greil Marcus and Werner Sollors responded to questions from the panelists and members of the audience. Homi Bhabha, the moderator, and Harvard University Press executive editor Lindsay Waters also made opening remarks. This "20 Questions" program of the Humanities Center at Harvard was held at the Barker Center on September 25, 2009 and aired November 1st on C-SPAN BookTV.

(see also video of the History and Literary History Panel)

Sullivan's Travels

In addition, the event included such cultural activities as a screening of Preston Sturges' classic Sullivan's Travels at the Harvard Film Archive on Friday night (followed by a discussion with Greil Marcus, Werner Sollors and Haden Guest); a Saturday afternoon reception, exhibition and musical performance at Harvard Square's historic Club Passim; and a festive post-symposium dinner at Legal Seafoods on Saturday night.

"Poetry and Cultural History": Helen Vendler and Stephanie Burt talk with HUP Editor Lindsay Waters

Event Schedule

Friday, September 25

Saturday, September 26

"20 Questions": Moderator Homi Bhabha; "New Media and Popular Culture": Glenda Carpio, Hua Hsu, Jack Hamilton, and Wayne Marshall; the symposium audience

Support for this event was generously provided by the Provostial Fund in the Arts and Humanities at Harvard University, along with the departments of English, History of American Civilization, African and African American Studies, History and Literature, History, and the Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History.