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About the Institute

The Alice Kaplan Institute for the Humanities promotes expansive, interdisciplinary discussion and debate. Serving as a crossroads, clearing house, and testing ground, the Institute nurtures ideas that transform into cutting-edge research and dynamic courses. We cultivate this work through our annual fellowship program for faculty working in the humanities; our co-sponsorship of numerous workshops, reading groups, performances, film presentations, readings, and lectures; and our first-year honors program (the Kaplan Humanities Scholars Program). The Institute also reaches through and beyond disciplines at Northwestern by hosting public humanities programs and training opportunities through our Public Humanities Graduate Practicum.

Kaplan Institute History

In 1992, Morris Kaplan (Class of 1935 and a lifetime member of Northwestern’s Board of Trustees) sponsored the creation of the Alice Kaplan Humanities Center as a means of fostering the development of a broad, innovative humanities culture at Northwestern. It was named in honor of his deceased wife Alice Berline Kaplan, a Northwestern alumna and lifelong student of the humanities. In 2006, the Center was re-endowed as an Institute, which meant that it was expanded to include the Kaplan Humanities Scholars Program (now one of the top first-year programs in the country), an Artist-in-Residence program, and jointly appointed faculty members. We continue to work with Dolores Kohl Kaplan to broaden and expand our reach at Northwestern and beyond.