Looking Back: H+U+D “Inclusive City” Colloquium’s 2021 Fall Semester

Since 2018, the Humanities, Urbanism, and Design (H+U+D) Initative at Penn has embarked on the five-year project, “The Inclusive City, Past, Present, and Future.” With the renewed $1.5 million Mellon grant, we are continuing to build on the foundation of the first project (2013-18) while focusing on the theme of inclusivity and diversity both in what we study and teach and in who we are. Fifteen faculty from departments across both the Weitzman School of Design and the School of Arts and Sciences were appointed to the Faculty Colloquium in 2018 and met bi-weekly for the last two years in a supportive and multi-disciplinary setting.

H+U+D kicked off the fourth year of the “Inclusive City” Colloquium with a socially-distanced in person meeting on September 10, 2021. This fall, we officially welcomed Franca Trubiano (Architecture, Weitzman School of Design) as one of the new co-directors of the H+U+D Initiative. The initiative also welcomed five new faculty members into the colloquium from both humanities and design disciplines, who joined several returning members. New members include: Mia Bay (History, School of Arts and Sciences), Odette Casamayor-Cisneros (Romance Languages, School of Arts and Sciences), Rahul Mukherjee (Television and New Media Studies/English, School of Arts and Sciences), Sonja Dümpelmann (Landscape Architecture, Weitzman School of Design), and Andrew Saunders (Architecture, Weitzman School of Design). For more information on the H+U+D Faculty Colloquium members, click here.

The new “Inclusive City” Colloquium faculty cohort was joined by two Junior Fellows, Dr. Ewa Matyczyk and Dr. Alec Stewart, as well as two Doctoral Dissertation Fellows, Pavel Andrade and Kimberly Noronha, who were all appointed for the 2021-22 academic year.

During the Fall 2021 semester, the H+U+D Colloquium met regularly in a socially-distanced safe space. In addition to research presentations by Alec Stewart, Jorge Téllez, Odette Casamayor-Cisneros, Jennifer Ponce de León, and Pavel Andrade, the group took a field trip to Taller Puertorriqueño to see the new building and meet with Taller’s Exhibition Program Manager and Curator, Rafael Damast. Taller was H+U+D’s Anchor Institution Seminar for the 2020-21 academic year. This year, H+U+D’s Anchor Institution partnership is with the Philadelphia Lazaretto, the first quarantine hospital in the U.S., built in 1799, which served as the gateway to Philadelphia in a crucial period of the nation’s growth. H+U+D Faculty Fellow David Barnes (History and Sociology of Science) will teach the Anchor Institution seminar on the Lazaretto this year, and the H+U+D Colloquium will take a field trip there this spring.