August 27, 2013 at 9:32 am

Ping Institute Offers Summer Program for Secondary Teachers on ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’

 March 12, 2008
By Michelle Davey

Published in 1852, Uncle Tom’s Cabin was written by a staunch abolitionist who focused on the terrible nature of slavery. But in the following half-century, some of the many plays adapted from Harriet Beecher Stowe’s novel took a pro-slavery slant. Most depicted slaves in degrading ways, creating stereotypes that still affect racial relations in America today.

This summer, secondary school teachers from all over Ohio will have the opportunity to make a trip to Ohio University for an institute about this controversial novel. The program, slated for July 6-11, is funded by the university’s Charles J. Ping Institute for the Teaching of the Humanities and the Ohio Humanities Council.

The Ping Institute is covering roughly $15,000 to the project, and the OHC is matching that with a grant, said William Condee, a professor of theater in the School of Interdisciplinary Arts. Condee proposed the summer program to the Ping Institute, which supports activities designed for the teaching of the humanities, and applied for the OHC grant.

The summer institute, called “Uncle Tom’s Cabin: Race in 19th Century Ohio,” will use an interdisciplinary approach to study the history, culture, literature and drama of the book and play in hopes of exploring the racial issues of today. About 20 secondary teachers, mainly in social studies and English, will participate. Teachers will be able to use the information and ideas presented to stimulate discussion in their classrooms about the historical and cultural sources of racial issues in America.

Read the rest of the story in Outlook.

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