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Mount Wachusett Community College Humanities Project to Explore Graphic Novels; Pulitzer-Prize-Winning Author Art Spiegelman to Speak

Art Spiegelmann, Cartoonist, standing at a table with a hat
Photo: Art Spiegelman, Pulitzer-Prize-Winning Author of Maus: A Survivor’s Tale will speak at MWCC, Thurs., April 16 at 6:00 p.m. in the MWCC Theatre. For a full list of Humanities Project events exploring graphic storytelling, visit:

GARDNER– How graphic novels are used to talk about such topics as Alzheimer’s and the Holocaust will be the subject of a year-long Humanities Project at Mount Wachusett Community College, culminating with a lecture from the Pulitzer Prize winning author, Art Spiegelman, Maus: A Survivor’s Tale.

Upcoming events will focus on films, art exhibits, and lectures, including graphic novelist Dr. Dana Walrath, author of the memoir Aliceheimer’s: Alzheimer’s Through the Looking Glass, who will discuss “Comics, Medicine, and Memory” on Oct. 24 (at Heywood Hospital) and Spiegelman on April 16 (at the MWCC Gardner campus).

The kick-off event for this year’s Humanities Project, titled “Words & Pictures: Exploring Graphic Storytelling,” is a lecture and discussion of the history of the graphic novel, led by Dr. Laura Jimenez, from Boston University’s Wheelock College School of Education and Human Development, on Wed., Sept. 25, from 6:30-8 p.m. at the Leominster Public Library.

According to Professor Michele Valois, a member of the Humanities Project Committee, the theme this year will explore the “rich history, technical ingenuity, and cultural significance” in graphic storytelling. “From prehistoric cave painting to newspaper comic strips, humans have used pictures to tell stories; this year’s theme will focus on some of those stories,” said Valois. Additional discussions, led by MWCC faculty, will include “Race, Culture, and the Black Panther Phenomenon” (Professor Candace Shivers on Feb. 26); and “Feminism, Philosophy, and the Walking Dead” (Professors Dan Soucy and Shelley Nicholson on March 24).

The Humanities Project, now in its sixth year, is funded by a Challenge Grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the Massachusetts Humanities, and MWCC. For more information and updates on events, visit the MWCC Humanities Project website.