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SYMPOSIUM: Heavy Materials, Enlightening Collections: Cultivating Knowledge from Challenging Historical Artifacts

March 14 @ 3:00 pm - 5:30 pm

University of Delaware

Recording of panel discussion is available (as of March 22, 2024) – LINK

Within cultural heritage institutions, you will find unique materials that shed light on all aspects of history. This includes heavy materials and collections that speak to challenging topics and provide insight on difficult or forgotten histories.

During this virtual symposium, panelists from libraries, museums and archives will share how heavy materials from their institutional collections have been successfully and impactfully used in teaching and learning. Following the presentations and moderated conversations, the audience will have the opportunity to ask questions as well.

As this event deals with heavy topics, please note the following trigger warnings related to the panelists’ presentations: gender-based violence, racism, transphobia, HIV/AIDS, psychiatric trauma, human remains, human sacrifice and colonialism.

Panelists include:

  • Ashley Coren, consultant and former head of education for the American Women’s History Initiative at the Smithsonian American Women’s History Museum
  • Shelby Daniels-Young, collections enhancement and engagement archivist at the University of Delaware Library, Museums and Press
  • Isaac Fellman, managing reference archivist at the GLBT Historical Society
  • Emily Pierce Rose, head of teaching and learning at the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology at Harvard University.

This virtual event is free and open to the public.

Registration is requested. Once registered, you will receive an email with details on how to join the workshop via Zoom. The symposium will be recorded.


This event is co-sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship for Diversity, Inclusion and Cultural Heritage (CHF) at Rare Book School, on behalf of Yuqiao Cao, CHF Fellow and visual literacy librarian and museum educator at the UD Library, Museums and Press.


March 14
3:00 pm - 5:30 pm
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University of Delaware
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