Confederate Monuments Then and Now with Dr. Maria Seger - Context Travel

Confederate Monuments Then and Now with Dr. Maria Seger


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Why were Confederate monuments built, and why are they now starting to fall? This seminar will look at what’s at stake in how we read Confederate monuments in their own time and in ours, in the company of an expert on nineteenth-century US literature and culture, Dr. Maria Seger.

Since the 2015 Charleston church massacre, more than eighty Confederate monuments have been removed from public lands in the United States—some toppled by protestors, many relocated to museums, and others put into storage. Meanwhile, more than seven hundred monuments remain, and at least twenty, mostly installed on private lands and funded by the Sons of Confederate Veterans, have been newly unveiled.

Waves of removal, following the 2017 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, and the 2020 George Floyd protests, have revealed that Confederate monuments activate agonistic discussion of Civil War memory, white Southern heritage, the legacies of slavery, and the persistence of anti-Blackness. From courts and legislatures to town squares and city parks, the public is now actively engaged with how to read Confederate monuments—interpreting the meanings of their existence and their persistence or removal.

Given local contexts like these around the US, this seminar addresses what’s at stake in how we read Confederate monuments and offers frameworks for interpreting Confederate monuments in context, then and now. Tracing the rise and fall of Confederate monuments in US culture, we’ll engage questions about Confederate memory and memorialization alongside notions of social justice and national belonging.

Led by an expert on nineteenth-century US literature and culture, Dr. Maria Seger, this interactive seminar will immerse participants in the making, remaking, and unmaking of Confederate memory. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with an increased ability to recognize and interpret literal and figurative Confederate monuments in their everyday lives.

Maria Seger is an assistant professor of English at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, where she researches and teaches US, Black, and ethnic literatures and cultures and critical race and ethnic studies. Her work appears in Callaloo, Nineteenth-Century Literature, and Studies in American Naturalism, and her edited collection, Reading Confederate Monuments, is under contract with the University Press of Mississippi. She earned her PhD from the University of Connecticut in 2016.

This conversation is suitable for all ages

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

Customer Reviews

Based on 6 reviews
100%
(6)
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J
J.M.
Important discussion

Oh how great this talk was!!! Maria did such a great job explaining how we went from the civil war to today. It was really informative and important - and didn't get bogged down with details or emotion. Really well done.

R
R.
Very Informative

Dr. Seger gave an excellent lecture on the history of the Confederate Monuments and provided insight into the significance of the time period in which these statues were erected. Very informative and thought provoking.

M
M.
Thought-provoking Presentation

This was an incredibly interesting and poignant topic to discuss and Dr. Seger did an excellent job laying out the history and why this is such a complicated topic. There was great discussion as well after the presentation. Would highly recommend!

K
K.F.
Informative context for current events

Dr. Seger provides a much-needed context for understanding the present effort to remove these statues. Her presentation is clear and unbiased. The background she provides allows students to form their own opinions based on facts.

L
L.C.
Content rich and enlightening seminar

Dr. Seger was very knowledgeable on the topic and her content was well organized, relevant and well presented. Enjoyable and thought provoking discussion during the Q&A time. Thank you!

Customer Reviews

Based on 6 reviews
100%
(6)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
J
J.M.
Important discussion

Oh how great this talk was!!! Maria did such a great job explaining how we went from the civil war to today. It was really informative and important - and didn't get bogged down with details or emotion. Really well done.

R
R.
Very Informative

Dr. Seger gave an excellent lecture on the history of the Confederate Monuments and provided insight into the significance of the time period in which these statues were erected. Very informative and thought provoking.

M
M.
Thought-provoking Presentation

This was an incredibly interesting and poignant topic to discuss and Dr. Seger did an excellent job laying out the history and why this is such a complicated topic. There was great discussion as well after the presentation. Would highly recommend!

K
K.F.
Informative context for current events

Dr. Seger provides a much-needed context for understanding the present effort to remove these statues. Her presentation is clear and unbiased. The background she provides allows students to form their own opinions based on facts.

L
L.C.
Content rich and enlightening seminar

Dr. Seger was very knowledgeable on the topic and her content was well organized, relevant and well presented. Enjoyable and thought provoking discussion during the Q&A time. Thank you!