Who Gets to Vote?
Library Reading and Discussion Program
“Who Gets to Vote?” is a new reading and discussion series available to Louisiana public libraries and community partners through the “Why it Matters: Civic and Electoral Participation” initiative, administered by the Federation of State Humanities Councils and funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
The series, developed by the LEH, is intended to engage members of the general public in conversations on the history of voting—and efforts to suppress the vote—in the United States. Sessions are intended to spark dialogue around issues and themes supported by the texts, including but not limited to:
- the expansion of voting rights since the country’s founding
- the electoral process
- the women’s suffrage movement
- historic and contemporary voter suppression practices
- the Voting Rights Act of 1965
- the 2013 Supreme Court decision that invalidated key portions of the Voting Rights Act
- the disenfranchisement of incarcerated and formerly incarcerated Americans
Participants will engage in discussions led by scholar facilitators who encourage critical thinking about the subjects discussed.
Watch an information session about applying for “Who Gets to Vote?” grants here.
Site Selection and Program Details
The LEH’s Division of Public Programs staff will choose 10 geographically diverse sites to participate in the program. Each site will choose four of the six books in the series and host four discussion programs. A $2,700 subaward from the LEH will cover site coordination, facilitator honoraria, book purchases, and program publicity.
Using reading and discussion guides developed by humanities scholars and targeting up to 20 participants per session, communities will engage in thoughtful dialogue around book themes and consider the intersections between history and the present. All sessions will be facilitated by humanities scholars and can take place virtually or, should the public health environment allow, in person.
“Who Gets to Vote?” will culminate in a closing keynote public program presented by the LEH via Zoom webinar featuring one of the authors from the series in conversation with a Louisiana-based scholar.
Interested host sites have until midnight on December 31, 2020, to submit their letter of intent through the LEH’s online grants management system. Programs will take place in early spring and must be completed by April 15. To preview the LOI, click here.
Contact LEH Grants Manager Christopher Robert at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
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