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Registration Open for the History, Memory and Disability Rights Conference

Millersville University is a major sponsor of the one-day public humanities conference.

Dr. Dennis Downey
Dr. Dennis Downey

Millersville University (MU) is a major sponsor of the one-day public humanities conference that will be held at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Center for Humanities (MARCH) at Rutgers University-Camden. The event will take place on Saturday, November 19 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 326 Penn Street, Camden, NJ in the Campus Center, Multipurpose Room. Registration for the event is $20 and is open to everyone. Registration includes lunch.

The conference is an expansion of several conferences that originated from the MU Honors College sponsored conferences that brought in hundreds of people each time. The people at MARCH are historians and expressed an interest in some type of humanities program. So, the next logical step was to expand what MU had been doing on campus to a much larger regional audience.

“This public humanities program brings MU into a strategic partnership with other organizations devoted to disability rights,” says History professor and Director of MU’s Honor College Dr. Dennis Downey.

Attendees will explore social attitudes and public policy efforts through the lens of the past. The conference will feature a morning session that focuses on the powerful history of the disability rights movement. Afternoon workshops will show hot to use history to promote dialogue and social change and interpret disability history within museums. The program will conclude with a roundtable discussion.

The mid-Atlantic region, comprised of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland, and Delaware, played a pivotal role in the development and transformation of disability rights and public policy.  At the dawn of the twentieth century, new scientific and social theories (such as eugenics) were indispensable in a shift in social attitudes and state government policy. The result was a well-organized campaign to isolate and eliminate citizens stigmatized as “feebleminded” or in some way “defective.” The terminology was abrasive and dehumanizing, and it served to deny individuals their freedom, dignity, and rights.

This conference will appeal to museums professionals, librarians, educators, organizations that prioritize Americans with Disabilities Act planning, and individuals interested in disability advocacy.

To register, visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/history-memory-and-disability-rights-creating-inclusive-public-humanities-programs-tickets-27827974220

For more information, please contact MARCH at 856-225-6878.

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