Education Programs: Dialogues on the Experience of War

Period of Performance

5/1/2017 - 6/30/2018

Funding Totals

$100,000.00 (approved)
$92,063.04 (awarded)

War, Trauma, and the Humanities

FAIN: AV-255491-17

Governors State University (University Park, IL 60484-3165)
Rosemary Erickson Johnsen (Project Director: October 2016 to December 2019)
Andrae Marak (Co Project Director: March 2017 to December 2019)

An undergraduate course on war and trauma in four conflicts from World War I to the present, to be conducted with the assistance of trained student veterans.

The College of Arts and Sciences in conjunction with the Veterans Resource Center at Governors State University proposes to conduct a multi-part program with the assistance of the NEH Dialogues on the Experiences of War grant. The program will recruit and train veteran students to serve as supplemental instructors and small group discussion leaders for a special-offering course featuring multiple literary genres, film, and digital humanities sources. The course will focus on the ways in which members of the military and their families experience trauma, culminating in a professional-quality video-recorded public townhall event and followed up the next semester by roundtable discussions. Exploring the expression of war experience in a range of humanities sources, military veterans and others involved in our program will make new connections among the humanities, war and trauma, and personal worldviews.

Media Coverage

Veterans join students at GSU for class focused on trauma of war (Media Coverage)
Author(s): Dennis Sullivan
Publication: The Daily Southtown (Chicago Tribune affiliate)
Date: 11/10/2017
Abstract: Article on DEW class w/focus on our student-veteran discussion facilitators. Reporter visited a class session that included one of our outside presenters; photos included.

GSU Student Veterans Take the Lead in NEH Class on War and Trauma (Media Coverage)
Author(s): Angela Denk
Publication: GSU Newsroom
Date: 10/30/2017
Abstract: University's outward-facing news & marketing. In-depth profile of the 5 student-veteran discussion facilitators, with extensive quotes from them & photos of the training sessions.

Alumna Creates Course to Offer Better Understanding of War Experience (Media Coverage)
Publication: MSU College of Arts & Letters News
Date: 10/12/2017
Abstract: Alumna profile of project director, focusing on grant project.

Rosemary Erickson Johnsen (Media Coverage)
Publication: GSU Newsroom
Date: 8/21/2017
Abstract: Faculty profile of project director focusing on grant & the importance of the humanities. Linked to photo on university's landing page throughout the fall semester of 2017.

Associated Products

Veterans Speak: War, Trauma, and the Humanities (Film/TV/Video Broadcast or Recording)
Title: Veterans Speak: War, Trauma, and the Humanities
Writer: Rosemary Johnsen
Writer: Andrae Marak
Director: Joshua E. Young
Producer: Joshua E. Young
Producer: Charles Nolley
Abstract: 60 minute program of a December 4, 2017, televised event recorded in front of a studio audience that included members of the grant-project class, interested members of the campus community, and the public. The town-hall style event was the culmination of the student-veterans' training and work as embedded discussion facilitators in the class; they chose literary selections from the class, discussed them, and took part in dialogue reflecting on their service in the military, to the DEW project, and on the humanities' role in understanding and articulating veterans' experience. Program includes roll-over edited segments featuring photos and mementos of each student-veteran. The program was hosted by the director of GSU's Veterans Resource Center, Kevin Smith, and includes appearances by project co-directors Rosemary Johnsen (segment 1 of 3) and Andrae Marak segment 2 of 3).
Year: 2017
Primary URL:
Primary URL Description: Link to YouTube upload of the edited program. This is an authorized upload by Governors State University's Digital Learning and Media Design (DLMD) department.
Access Model: open access
Format: Digital File
Format: Web