Humanities Fest

Pulitzer Prize winner Colson Whitehead speaks Oct. 18.

The University of Arizona's Tucson Humanities Festival will be spilling a whole lot of secrets this month. 

That's the theme — Secrets — of the annual month of lectures put on by the UA's College of Humanities.

"That's kind of what we are hoping, to showcase culture," says Helen Gomez Bernard, the director of external alumni relations for the College of Humanities. "You can see how secrets have these huge profound effects on society and culture." 

Visiting speakers join UA faculty throughout the month, most notably Colson Whitehead, whose novel "The Underground Railroad" just won a Pulitzer Prize. 

Lecture topics cover a lot — art, video games, conversations about sexual violence, hip-hop, poetry, colonialism and identity. 

"This is just such a good reminder that even with all of these technological advances, we still have to remember the human aspect in everything," Gomez Bernard says. 

All of the lectures are free, and most don't require registration. The ones that do are indicated in the schedule (check that out below). 

Colson Whitehead's talk on Oct. 18 is already at capacity. You can join the waitlist here OR...

BONUS: #ThisIsTucson, with the College of Humanities, is giving away tickets + swag bags to two readers. If you win, you'll get two tickets to a VIP reception with Colson Whitehead prior to his talk and then two tickets for his talk, plus a swag bag. 

To enter, join our book club on Facebook, #ThisIsTucson Book Club. You'll see a post about the talk at the top of the page — share your favorite book and why you love it in the comments, and we'll pick the winners from those comments. 

For more information about the festival, visit


Indie Games in China: Film Screening and Discussion

Speaker: Tiexin Lian, Indie Games in China director

When: Thursday, Oct. 4, 6:30 p.m. 

Where: Tucson Chinese Cultural Center, 1288 W. River Road

Surprising Vermeer: An Artist in Delft, Delft in the World

Speaker: Timothy Brook, University of British Columbia Chinese history professor

When: Friday, Oct. 5, 3 p.m. 

Where: UA Museum of Art, 1031 Olive Road

To Speak or Not to Speak? Women, Secrets and Sexual Violence

Speaker: Martine Delvaux, Université du Québec à Montréal writer and professor of women's literature

When: Tuesday, Oct. 9, 7 p.m. 

Where: UA Poetry Center, 1508 E. Helen St. 

Letters to the Future: Black Women / Radical Writing 

Speakers: Editors Erica Hunt and Dawn Lundy Martin and featured poets Giovanni Singleton and Ruth Ellen Kocher.

When: Thursday, Oct. 11, 6 p.m. 

Where: Tucson Museum of Art, 140 N. Main Ave. 

Crushin' It: Untold Stories from Hip-Hop's Founding Days

Speakers: DJ Rockin' Rob and DJ Tony Tone

When: Friday, Oct. 12, 6 p.m. 

Were: Cans Deli, 340 N. Fourth Ave. 

Get tickets: Go here

Secret Lives: Hidden Identities in Global Popular Culture

Speaker: Melissa Fitch, UA Spanish and Portuguese professor

When: Tuesday, Oct. 16, 7 p.m. 

Where: UA Poetry Center

Revisiting The Underground Railroad

Speaker: Colson Whitehead, Pulitzer Prize winning author

When: Thursday, Oct. 18, 7 p.m.; Book signing to follow at 8 p.m. 

Where: North Ballroom, UA Memorial Student Union, 1303 E. University Blvd. 

Get on the waitlist: Go here

Subverting Colonialism: Keep it Secret, Keep it Safe

Speakers: Andrea McComb Sanchez and Caleb Simmons, UA religious studies professors

When: Tuesday, Oct. 23, 7 p.m. 

Where: UA Poetry Center

Transparency and Trust: How Open Diplomacy Advances Democracy

Speaker: Andre Goodfriend, U.S. Department of State Office of eDiplomacy director and UA College of Humanities Alumnus of the Year

When: Friday, Oct. 26, 10 a.m. 

Where: Sonora Room, UA Memorial Student Union

Spellbound: Film Screening and Discussion

When: Tuesday, Oct. 30, 7 p.m. 

Where: The Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway

Get tickets: Tickets are available through The Loft at noon on Oct. 30.