The Department of History announces the Living History Scholars Initiative for 2022–23. Last spring, the department launched a new initiative that gives undergraduates who are passionate about history an opportunity, as Living History Scholars, to design, receive funding for, and carry out projects outside the classroom that engage with history in new and creative ways. The department is now accepting applications for the spring term. Applications are due Nov. 14 at 5 p.m.
Examples of Living History projects include community engagements that go physically or virtually outside the "WashU Bubble"; unconventional modes of historically informed presentations such as a podcast, web video, op-ed, or long-form journalism; the creation of a new archive or map; or placing in conversation historical events and experiences not usually considered together. These examples are only meant to be illustrative: there is considerable latitude for applicants to define their own version of living history.
Previous Living History Scholars have explored topics ranging from comparing the aftermaths and collective memories of the English War of the Roses and the American Civil War, to exploring how the built environment of St. Louis encodes historical practices of inequality on the city's landscape.
“I believe the initiative has further expanded my research interests in African American history through the investigative methods I employed that required me to shift my thinking regarding the meaning and motivation behind what I am researching,” said Olivia Kerr, one of last year’s scholars. “I found myself immersed in the lives of those from the First Missionary Baptist Church of Robertson, whose stories I wanted to uplift, through oral histories and sight visits. I have always wanted to play a role in making Black history knowable and more accessible to a larger audience so that the interior selves of Black people are amplified as well as appreciated.”
Applications are now being accepted and are due Monday, Nov. 14 at 5 p.m. Students can find details about submitting an application on the program's landing page. Proposals should be submitted via email to Iver Bernstein and Cassie Adcock.