by Erin Holaday Ziegler

The University of Kentucky College of Arts & Sciences has chosen the following professors as new department chairs: associate professor Deborah Crooks, Department of Anthropology; associate professor Jeff Clymer, Department


When Kyle Longley applied to doctoral programs in history, he narrowed the choice down to two schools: the University of Kentucky and one other. But a visit to Lexington and Billy’s Bar-B-Q, where he had lunch with George Herring, the professor who would become his mentor, made UK the place to go.

“Once I met George, there was



 Tonya and Jackie Jones giggle like best friends over the remnants of a casual lunch. You almost feel like you're intruding in attempts to capture their attention. Mother and daughter never seem to tire of each other's company, especially considering they live together in the Jones family home in Lexington and both work part time at the Inn on Broadway downtown.

"We do everything together," Jackie Jones laughed. "And this is no different."

In this instance, Jackie is alluding to her impending May Commencement Ceremony, where she will graduate with a degree in history. Tonya Jones will have a front row seat for her daughter's graduation, as she is receiving a degree in history from UK as well.

"I refused to let her graduate before me,"


Former University of Kentucky history professor Daniel Smith will help Grammy Award-winning country music artist Tim McGraw to better understand his heritage and history on the Feb. 11 edition of "Who Do You Think You Are?," an NBC series that explores the ancestry and family past of key celebrities.
"As historians on the show, we kind of take Tim him through his journey, sort of like spirit guides," explained Smith. "We help him to unlock the mysteries and puzzles of history."
Specifically, Smith discussed McGraw's key ancestors during the Revolutionary War period. "We met at the Virginia Historical Society to look over a few papers," said Smith. "The ancestor we discussed was critical for Tim and for the Revolutionary era."


by Erin Holaday Ziegler

University of Kentucky students will have the opportunity to ask a nationally-renowned human rights activist, educator and former Black Panther Party (BPP) member questions of their own on campus this week.
UK history professor Jakobi Williams will conduct an intimate interview with Ericka Huggins in “Up Close and Personal: A Conversation with Professors Ericka Huggins and Jakobi Williams" at 4 p.m. Thursday, March 24, in the Student Center Ballroom. Students are also encouraged to come with questions of their own.
Huggins is a former Black Panther Party leader and former political prisoner. She has spent the last 25 years lecturing throughout the United States about human rights restoration, whole child education and the role of


by Whitney Hale

The University of Kentucky Gaines Center for the Humanities has selected 11 outstanding undergraduates as new scholars for the university's Gaines Fellowship Program for the 2011-12 and 2012-13 academic years.

Gaines Fellowships are given in recognition of students’ outstanding academic performance, demonstrated ability to conduct independent research, interest in public issues, and desire to enhance understanding of the human condition through the humanities. Fellowships are awarded for the tenure of a student's junior and senior years, or for the last two years of a five-year program; students in all disciplines and with any intended profession are given equal consideration.

The 11 students selected as Gaines Scholars are as follows:

Catherine Brereton,

by Whitney Hale

University of Kentucky Opera Theatre presents "Brundibár," a children's opera staged in a concentration camp during the Holocaust. The opera performed for children by children will also feature an appearance by one of the production's original performers, Holocaust survivor Ela Weissberger. "Brundibár" will take the stage March 11 and 13, at the Singletary Center for the Arts Concert Hall.

Performed during the Holocaust at Theresienstadt Camp in Terezín, "Brundibár" was used by the Nazi regime as a propaganda tool to show the world how "happy and productive" the Jewish detainees were at the camps. The piece, was staged more than 50 times at the camp between 1943 and 1944, including


by Erin Holaday

University of Kentucky history professor Jeremy Popkin is passionate when it comes to educating his students about Haiti. This same fervor can be found throughout the pages of his latest work, according to author Brendan Simms' recent Wall Street Journal review of Popkin's book.

Popkin's "You Are All Free," released by Cambridge University Press in September, provides a gripping historical account of the Haitian Revolution and the abolition of slavery in the now disaster-torn country.
Popkin, a renowned French Revolution scholar, tells a dramatic story, employing a wide range of sources, affording him the opportunity to capture Haiti's complex history with unexpected details and


by Erin Holaday

A pioneer of women's history and feminist scholar will discuss the state's involvement in the constructs of love this week at the University of Kentucky.
Nancy Cott, Jonathan Trumbull Professor of American History and Director of the Schlesinger Library and Charles Warren Center at Harvard University, will present, "Marriage on Trial," a talk based on her renowned book, "Public Vows: A History of Marriage and the Nation" at 4 p.m. on Dec. 2 in the President's Room of the Singletary Center for the Arts.
Cott's talk, part of the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies 2010-2011 Speaker Series on "States of Love," will explore some of the legal questions surrounding same sex marriage that


by Colleen Glenn
photos by Brian Connors Manke

Thanks to the University of Kentucky Women and Philanthropy Network, three students will be traveling to South Africa this summer. Krista Osmundson, Joseph Mann, and Zach Rose will travel to Capetown May 18 for a two-month study and work abroad trip. The journey marks the culmination of UK Arts & Sciences year-long initiative with South Africa.

While in Capetown, the students will intern at various non-governmental organizations and bring their skills and assets to the South African organizations. They will also take a course on South African politics and history in order to better understand the challenges the NGOs face. One of their most memorable experiences will surely be their tour of Robben Island, where Nelson

Sallie Powell

Ph.D. Student

Crossing Lines: Girls’ High School Basketball, Gender, and Race in Kentucky

by Andrew Battista
photos by Mark Cornelison

Sallie Powell knows how painful it is to have a passion and a dream denied. Powell is one of many women who grew up in Kentucky during the early 1970s and never enjoyed the experience of playing basketball.

“The equivalent of two generations of women in Kentucky did not get the chance to participate in high school basketball,” said Powell. “I see that as an injustice.”

It is not hyperbole to say that Powell’s identity as a woman and a Kentuckian is molded by her love for basketball and the athleticism that runs deep in her family. Although gender discrimination kept Powell from pursuing her high school basketball dreams, she did eventually compete at the collegiate

Jeff Keith

Ph.D. Student

by Saraya Brewer

“Whenever history surprises me, I follow it.”

For University of Kentucky history Ph.D. student Jeffrey A. Keith, this statement has meant following history in a number of different directions, including Appalachian Studies, race relations in the American South, and –– his current dissertation work –– the cultural transformation of Saigon as a result of the Vietnam War.

Where Keith’s academic interests have traveled across the world, his academic career has boomeranged across the country: he has studied at Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash.; Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C.; University of Wisconsin in Madison; and finally, at the University of Kentucky, where he has spent the last six years studying Southern history, as well as various facets of United States foreign


Alumna Caroline Light says she feels like ending up at the University of Kentucky for her graduate studies “was the luckiest break.”

Light is now the Director of Studies in the Women, Gender and Sexuality program at Harvard University. The research and teaching skills she gained while at UK have helped her get to where she is now, she said.



There is nothing pretentious or “prude” about UK Alumni Julie Sweet and Tom Riley. This husband and wife team – now history professors at Baylor University in Waco, Texas – say their formative years as Ph.D. candidates in the University of Kentucky’s Department of History, were crucial to their future success.


Jami Bartek

Ph.D. Student

by Robin Roenker

Jami Bartek’s historical curiosity isn’t limited to one country or even one continent, and he’s loved that his time as a PhD student in UK’s History Department has allowed him to pursue interests in an array of settings and eras.

When Bartek enters the job market next fall, he’ll go armed with a focus in the 19th-century U.S. South, but also with experience in his two teaching fields: 20th-century European history and East Asian studies.

His varied coursework provided him “a much broader background” and a richer, more comprehensive historical sensibility, said Bartek, a native of Elsworth, Ohio, and graduate of Youngstown State University. “I enjoyed it. Instead of having just this narrow focus on the U.S. South, it allows you a broader focus, and you see more trends. You begin to see that


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