history - Events Calendar


CineCulture Film Series

A Story of Bones Screening

Join the Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion as they partner with colleagues at CineCulture, POV, OSU Tulsa, Tulsa Community College, Circle Cinema, and the National Endowment for the Arts to bring you this quarterly film series. The first in the series is A Story of Bones.

Film synopsis:
As construction environmental officer for St. Helena’s troubled airport project, Annina van Neel learns about an unmarked mass burial ground of an estimated 9,000 formerly enslaved Africans. Haunted by this historical injustice, she and African American preservationist Peggy King Jorde fight for their proper memorialization, exposing the UK’s colonial past and present.

Free admission and a Q&A with special guest Kristi Williams after the film. Kristi is a Tulsa Race Massacre descendant and activist, chairperson of the Greater Tulsa African-American Affairs Commission, and a featured speaker for YWCA’s Stand Against Racism Campaign.

Reserve tickets online.

Why study the classics today?

Join Jennifer Frey and Kyle Harper for a robust inter-collegiate discussion on the Greco-Roman world. From sex, slavery, war, and plagues to religion, culture, and imperial power; why would we study such a foreign culture today? Nothing is off the table as these two discuss the ancient world and its relevance for our own time!

Venue information forthcoming.

Cadenhead-Settle Memorial Lecture in History – Haunted by History: Columbus, Montezuma, Elton John, and St. George

Cadenhead-Settle Memorial Lecture in History presents Haunted by History: Columbus, Montezuma, Elton John, and St. George.

Truth and evidence have been upended by postmodernism and the Internet.  Yet we still imagine that historical facts remain set in stone.  The past cannot be changed, right?  But what happens when historical figures or events have afterlives, when they continue to exist, evolve, and mutate like the undead?

In this brand-new lecture, Matthew Restall draws upon two of his recent books and two of his books-in-progress to explore what he calls hauntological history.  He argues that past and present perceptions of historical people and places haunt each other in ways that continually alter those perceptions.  Not only does the past change, but we seem unable to stop it changing.

A Genoese mariner whose fame/infamy rests on what he did 531 years ago (on the day of this lecture); an Aztec emperor misunderstood for five centuries; a Caribbean Sea battle celebrated since it occurred (or did it?) 225 years ago; a still-living veteran pop star.  Come and see how Restall meaningfully mixes these unlikely ingredients.

Pizza and Oklahoma Politics

Join TU Communications Hall of Fame inductee Jenkin Jones, Jr. for a lecture on the history of Oklahoma politics. This event is free to attend and lunch will be provided.

Jenkin Jones, Jr. spent his 32-year career at The Tulsa Tribune in a variety of jobs, from reporter to editor and publisher. His specialty was in travel and political writing, covering eight national conventions throughout his career. In addition to his time at the Tribune, Jenk worked at the Colorado Daily, The Minneapolis Tribune and The Anchorage Times. He has taught journalism and political history at universities, and was inducted into the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame in 2006.

William and Rita Bell Distinguished Lecture Series: Jesus and Judaism — Why the Connection Matters

Join TU’s Department of Philosophy and Religion for a lecture featuring Amy Jill Levine.

Numerous Christians regard Jesus as rejecting a Judaism—influenced by legalistic, elitist Pharisees—incorrectly characterized as obsessed with ritual purity, misogynistic, vengeful and xenophobic.  Understanding Jesus in his Jewish context corrects false stereotypes, brings new meaning to his parables, politics and piety, and opens new paths for Jewish-Christian relations.

Amy Jill Levine (“AJ”) is Rabbi Stanley M. Kessler Distinguished Professor of New Testament and Jewish Studies at Hartford International University for Religion and Peace and University Professor of New Testament and Jewish Studies Emerita and Mary Jane Werthan Professor of Jewish Studies Emerita at Vanderbilt University.

Levine is the first Jew to teach New Testament at Rome’s Pontifical Biblical Institute, an elected member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the first winner of the Seelisberg Prize for Jewish-Christian Relations. Levine describes herself as an unorthodox member of an Orthodox synagogue and a Yankee Jewish feminist who works to counter biblical interpretations that exclude and oppress.

Her publications include: The Misunderstood Jew: The Church and the Scandal of the Jewish Jesus; Short Stories by JesusThe Enigmatic Parables of a Controversial Rabbi; six children’s books (with Sandy Sasso); The Gospel of Luke (with Ben Witherington III, the first biblical commentary by a Jew and an Evangelical); The Jewish Annotated New Testament (co-edited with Marc Brettler); The Bible With and Without Jesus: How Jews and Christians Read the Same Stories Differently (with Marc Brettler); The Pharisees (co-edited with Joseph Sievers); and thirteen edited volumes of the Feminist Companions to the New Testament and Early Christian Literature. Her Beginner’s Guide series includes Sermon on the MountLight of the World, Entering the Passion of Jesus, The Difficult Words of Jesus, Witness at the Cross and Signs and Wonders.

Documentary Screening: Harriet Tubman, Visions of Freedom

Kick off Black History Month with a new documentary about the legendary life of Harriet Tubman, who repeatedly risked her life to help other African Americans out of slavery. TU professor Kristen Oertel will host a discussion afterward over peach cobbler from Wanda J’s.

Cultures of the Americas Seminar

The Helmerich Center for American Research at Gilcrease Museum and the Oklahoma Center for the Humanities invite you to attend a public seminar and discussion featuring Alaina E. Roberts and her new book I’ve Been Here All the While: Black Freedom on Native Land (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2021). Roberts will be joined by two guest commentators, Gregory Downs (University of California, Davis) and Kristen Oertel (University of Tulsa), who will offer commentary on the book and its broader significance. Roberts will respond to those comments with her own presentation. The remainder of the public seminar will be open to public discussion with the author and guest commentators. We strongly encourage attendees to read Roberts’ book before the seminar.

Alaina E. Roberts, Ph.D., assistant professor of history at the University of Pittsburgh, has authored one book and has been featured in TIME magazine, CNN, The Atlantic and more. Her research illuminates the many intersections of Native American and Black life from the 1400s to the modern day.

Coffee and light breakfast provided at 8:30 a.m. This presentation is free and open to the public. Seating is limited and registration is required.

Prior to the event, on Friday, Feb. 3, from 5 to 6 p.m., seminar attendees are invited to join us at the Zarrow Center for a casual welcome reception to meet the speakers and explore the Oklahoma Center for the Humanities NEH-funded Pathways to Freedom exhibition, focused on the history and futures of Oklahoma’s all-Black Towns.

Please contact Alex Patterson at 918-631-6412 or arp442@utulsa.edu if you have questions.

From the Publisher:

Perhaps no other symbol has more resonance in African American history than that of “40 acres and a mule”—the lost promise of Black reparations for slavery after the Civil War. In I’ve Been Here All the While, we meet the Black people who actually received this mythic 40 acres, the American settlers who coveted this land, and the Native Americans whose holdings it originated from.

In nineteenth-century Indian Territory (modern-day Oklahoma), a story unfolds that ties African American and Native American history tightly together, revealing a western theatre of Civil War and Reconstruction, in which Cherokee, Choctaw, Chickasaw, Creek, and Seminole Indians, their Black slaves, and African Americans and whites from the eastern United States fought military and rhetorical battles to lay claim to land that had been taken from others.

Through chapters that chart cycles of dispossession, land seizure, and settlement in Indian Territory, Alaina E. Roberts draws on archival research and family history to upend the traditional story of Reconstruction. She connects debates about Black freedom and Native American citizenship to westward expansion onto Native land. As Black, white, and Native people constructed ideas of race, belonging, and national identity, this part of the West became, for a short time, the last place where Black people could escape Jim Crow, finding land and exercising political rights, until Oklahoma statehood in 1907.