Greetings All!

Please read the latest edition of our newsletter for details on new upcoming events.

Do not forget to check the website (history.kean.edu) frequently, "like" us on facebook, and follow us on Twitter @KeanHistory!

History Honors Program

The Department of History is pleased to announce that it is launching a new Honors Program.  
  • Are you considering graduate school?
  • Are you considering law school?
  • Do you want the opportunity to do original historical research?
  • Do you want to be challenged as a historian?
If your answer to any one of the above questions is "yes," then you should strongly consider applying. Honors degrees tell graduate admissions committees and potential employers that you are a high achieving and hard working student and that you therefore deserve their consideration.
The History Honors Program can be completed in the same number of credit hours as the B.A. in history.  It entails taking Honors Readings Seminars in US, European, or World history, completing an Honors section of Senior Seminar, and completing an Honors thesis in which you will be guided through the research and writing of a piece of original historical research.
Admission to the program is by application (click here for admission application and further information).  Eligible students should have a minimum GPA of 3.75 and have completed 12 credit hours in history.  Students whose GPA is lower than 3.75 will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
We will have an Honors informational session on Feb. 26, 3:15 PM, T111. If you have questions about the program, contact Dr. Hyde and Dr. Mercantini via honorshistory@kean.edu.

News from Holocaust and Genocide Studies program (HGS)

The MA in Holocaust and Genocide Studies and the Jewish Studies Program are teaming up on a number of public events in the next few weeks. All students are welcome. Learn about Kean's exciting academic programs that offer undergraduates opportunities for a concentration in Jewish Studies and a jump-start on a masters degree in Holocaust and Genocide Students. These public events are also valuable for possible extra credit in your courses; consult with your instructors. For more information about both academic programs, email Dr. Klein, dklein@kean.edu. All events are free and will take place at Kean unless otherwise noted.

February 27 at 7:30 pm : “Jews of 20th Century Ukraine: Challenging the Passivity Myth with Daily Acts of Heroism,” a lecture by Ruth Griffith (English, Holocaust and Genocide Studies), YM/YWHA, 501 Green Lane, Union, NJ. $5 at the door.

March 5, 5-7 pm, Human Rights Institute. Information Session about Kean University's Master of Arts in Holocaust and Genocide Studies (HGS). Learn about this graduate program, with courses for undergraduates, offering exceptional opportunities in the growing human rights sector. Also learn about the HGS study delegation to Poland and Bosnia this July; travel subsidies are available.

March 5, 7-9 pm, Human Rights Institute. "Social Entrepreneurship in the Age of Atrocities," a workshop led by Zachary Kaufman (Yale University and New York University).

March 8, 8-2 pm, Wilkins Theatre. “Enough! Affecting Change from the Frontlines to Your Newsfeed,” 6th annual Kean University international conference on human rights, featuring John Prendergast, co-founder of the Enough Project, an initiative seeking to prevent, mitigate, and resolve crises of genocide and crimes against humanity. Register athttp://www.kean.edu/humanrightsconference/home.asp
March 20 at 7:30 pm: “The Jews of China: A Secret Existence," a lecture by Sue Gronewold (History, Jewish Studies, Holocaust and Genocide Studies), YM/YWHA, 501 Green Lane, Union, NJ. $5 at the door.


Ongoing Exhibit:  "Ring for Service"
If you’re a fan of the smash hit Downton Abbey, get ready for the real thing at Liberty Hall Museum! From now until August 24, Liberty Hall examines the lives of the servants who worked in this mansion more than a century ago in the enlightening exhibit, Ring for Service: The Role of Servants in a Country House. In 1900, the needs of the Kean family who lived at Liberty Hall were met by the simple ringing of the servant’s bell. Who were the people who answered that call? For the first time ever, tours of the museum will highlight a typical day in the life of the servants, with the museum reinterpreted to focus on the places where the servants worked, slept and spent their leisure time.  Two servants’ rooms in the attic will also be part of the tour - the first time the attic will ever be seen by the public. The tour concludes in the basement, where the kitchen, laundry and servants' dining room was located.  As they walk from room to room, visitors will see a 1900s kitchen display complete with a sink, stove and various appliances, and the servants' dining room where the servants ate and spent their downtime.  The wine cellar will also be reopened for this exhibit.
Director of Museum Operations Bill Schroh greets guests at Liberty Hall's first Downton Abbey-themed brunch on January 19, 2013. Photo by Ben Gancsos.


Liberty Hall Museum at Kean University chronicles more than 240 years of American history. The museum also houses extensive collections of furniture, ceramics, textiles, toys and tools owned by seven generations of the Livingston and Kean families. The Firehouse Museum, built in 2004, houses three antique fire engines, including a rare 1911 American LaFrance Metropolitan Steam Engine. The Museum is currently open for group reservations (10 or more guests), private events, and scheduled seasonal activities like the ones outlined above. Public tours of the museum resume on April 1, and run Monday - Saturday from 10:00 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. on the half hour. General admission is $10 for adults, $8 for Kean alumni, and $6 for children & seniors. Kean students and faculty are free. Please call 908-527-0400 or visit Liberty Hall online at www.kean.edu/libertyhall for more information.

Saturday, February 23: Downton Abbey Farewell Brunch
Join Liberty Hall Museum for a sumptuous Downton Abbey Farewell Brunch! As Season 3 winds down, dine like the Crawleys themselves, and help us say adieu to our favorite family from across "The Pond" in style. Includes a buffet brunch, party favors and a champagne toast. Noon to 3 p.m. $60.00 per couple; reservations required. Please call 908-527-0400.

Saturday, March 16: Dames, Dainties & Doilies: A Downton Abbey Brunch

March is National Women’s History Month; it’s also the first dreary month of the year without a new episode of Downton Abbey! If you’re experiencing withdrawal (or just need an excuse to don that fantastic black dress), come mourn hiatus in style at our Downton Abbey-themed Dames, Dainties & Doilies, an elegant brunch celebrating the dolls and dowagers of our favorite show. Isn’t it time we gave “the fairer sex” their due? Noon to 3 p.m. $60.00 per couple; reservations required. Please call 908-527-0400.

Saturday, March 30: Annual Easter Egg Hunt

Children will explore the grounds of Liberty Hall, searching for plastic eggs hidden throughout the landscape and filled with holiday treats.  A surprise visit from the Easter Bunny caps off the events. Two sessions: 10 - 11:30am or Noon to 1:30pm. $8.00 for one child and one adult; all additional children are $5.00 and additional adults are $4.00. Reservations required; please call 908-527-0400.

Saturday, April 13: The Girls of Liberty Hall: A Children's Afternoon Tea & Fashion Show
Guests will be treated to a luncheon of scones, breads, finger sandwiches, sweet treats, lemonade, iced tea and sherbet punch on real china while watching a fashion show of reproduction historic children's clothing from colonial times through the early 20th century.  There will also be a dress up/play tent, games and prizes. 1 to 3 p.m. $25.00 per person; reservations required. Please call 908-527-0400.

Wednesday, April 10: Afternoon Tea

Our springtime Afternoon Tea is the perfect place to sip tea, lunch on finger sandwiches, and nibble on delectable desserts while gazing at the formal English garden from the comfort of our glass-enclosed porch. A tour of Liberty Hall Museum will follow afternoon tea. 2 to 4 p.m. $40.00 per person; reservations required. Please call 908-527-0400.

Wednesday, April 24: Afternoon Tea

Our springtime Afternoon Tea is the perfect place to sip tea, lunch on finger sandwiches, and nibble on delectable desserts while gazing at the formal English garden from the comfort of our glass-enclosed porch. A tour of Liberty Hall Museum will follow afternoon tea. 2 to 4 p.m. $40.00 per person; reservations required. Please call 908-527-0400.
 Downton Abbey fans enjoy a champagne toast at Liberty Hall's Downton Abbey New Year's Brunch on January 19, 2013. Photo by Ben Gancsos.



Leveling the Playing Field: Race, Gender, and Sport in 20th-Century America

In observance of Black History Month and Women's History Month, KUHS is sponsoring an panel discussion entitled "Leveling the Playing Field:  Race, Gender, and Sport in 20th-Century America" to be held on February 25 at 3:15PM (Carriage House, Liberty Hall).   Panelists include M. Bridget White of the School of General Studies, Terry Golway of the Kean Center for History, Politics, and Policy, Jonathan Mercantini of the Department of History.

"Picking Popes"

The Department of History's Dr. Christopher Bellitto will offer his perspective on the resignation of Pope Benedict and the process of picking his successor on March 5 at 3:15 in the Carriage House at Liberty Hall. 

"Picking Popes"
Dr. Christopher Bellitto, Associate Professor and Chair, Dept. of History
Tuesday, March 5, 3:15-4:30 PM
Location: Carriage House, Liberty Hall

National History Day at Kean

National History Day will be hosted by Kean University and the
Department of History again this year.  The festivities will take
place on Saturday, March 23 from about 8am until 4:30pm.  This annual event is sponsored by the History Channel.  We are expecting upwards of one thousand people—including student participants and their families—to attend.  This is an excellent chance to showcase the department and all the great things we do.  There will be a panel of History faculty who will give presentations.  If you are a student interested in being a part of this we could still use a few volunteers to show people around the campus and generally help out.  If you are interested contact Dr. Regal at bregal@kean.edu.

What to do with a degree in history?

The Department of History will offer its annual workshop on what to do with a degree in history on Monday, March 25 at 3:15PM in Townsend 111.  
This year, we will consider the question through the professional example of one of our own faculty members:  Dr. Frank Argote-Freyre, Assistant Professor in the Department of History, will share his experiences as historian, journalist, and even presidential elector!  

Writing Workshops

The Department of History will continue to offer writing workshops this semester.  Scheduled workshops include:
 April 2:  Writing Workshop, 3:15 PM, T111

In the meantime, note that you can always get help with writing with the resources available on the Department of History website at http://history.kean.edu/resources/how-to-cite-sources-research.

Banned Book Club

KUHS and Phi Alpha Theta will holding our Banned Book Club meeting at the end of the Spring semester.  The banned book selected for discussion is The Great Gatsby.  Pick up a copy (here it is on Amazon), start reading, and look for announcements of events planned around the book.  We will hold a discussion exploring why the book was banned and a social event inspired by the book, all which will be held later in the Spring semester.  (And in case you hadn't heard, a new movie version of the book, titled Gatsby and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, is scheduled for release in May.  See the trailer here:  http://thegreatgatsby.warnerbros.com)

Meeting dates, times, and locations for KUHS can be found through the organization's Cougarlink page and Facebook page (search: Kean University Historical Society). For any questions or interest on joining the organization, please contact history@kean.edu.

Mark your Calendars

February 25:  KUHS Panel on Gender, Race, and Sports in America, 3:15PM, Carriage House, Liberty Hall

February 26: Honors Informational Session, 3:15 PM, T111

February 27:  Lecture, Dr. Ruth Griffith, “Jews of 20th Century Ukraine,” 7:30PM, Union YM/YWHA, 501 Green Lane, Union

March 5: Lecture, Dr. Christopher Bellitto, "Picking Popes," 3:15PM, Carriage House, Liberty Hall

March 20:  Lecture, Dr. Sue Gronewold, “The Jews of China: A Secret Existence,” 7:30PM, Union YM/YWHA, 501 Green Lane, Union

March 23:  National History Day

March 25:  "What to do with a degree in history"

April 2:  Advising Meeting, 3:15 PM, HH113

April 2:  Advising Meeting, 7 PM, T111

April 2:  Writing Workshop:  To be rescheduled

April 8:  Phi Alpha Theta at Kean Ocean, 7PM

April 10:  Lecture, Dr. Melodie Toby, “Jews in Africa and the African Diaspora,” 7:30PM, Union YM/YWHA, 501 Green Lane, Union

April 16:  Phi Alpha Theta Initiation Reception, 7PM, Carriage House, Liberty Hall

April 19:  Honors Convocation, 3:30 PM

April 23-24:  ORSP Research Days

May 2:  Banned Book Club Discussion of The Great Gatsby and end-of-year party, Time TBA, Carriage House, Liberty Hall

Asian Studies Event

The Asian Studies Program is sponsoring a trip to see David Henry Hwang's "The Dance and the Railroad."  If you are interested in attending, please contact Asian Studies by February 21.