Community is invited to attend UM-Dearborn lecture series on graveyards and images of death

April 30, 2010

Prof. Ron Stockton visits Woodmere Cemetery in Detroit with his 11-year-old granddaughter, Sarah Stockton, and UM-Dearborn student Shahad Atiya.

DEARBORN / April 30, 2010---Five University of Michigan-Dearborn faculty members will lecture on "graveyards, gravestones and images of death" in a five-week series of talks in May and June.

All of the lectures will be held at 7 p.m. on Wednesday evenings from May 12 to June 9 in Room 1040 in the College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters Building on the UM-Dearborn campus, located at 4901 Evergreen Rd. The lectures are free and open to members of the community.

“We offered this lecture series just once before, about five years ago,” said political science Prof. Ronald Stockton who organized the series.  “It was very popular with the public as well as with students.”

The general public may attend the lectures for “entertainment and education” free of charge. Enrolled students can receive one credit hour for attending the lectures, completing readings and writing a paper for the course. Students also will participate in a tour of some local graveyards.

Stockton will speak on June 9 on "Gravestones Around the World." Other speakers are history Prof. Elaine Clark on "Death and Dying in Pre-Modern Europe" on May 12; humanities Prof. Jacqueline Vansant on "The Vienna Way of Death" on May 19; humanities Prof. Randal Woodland on "The New Orleans Way of Death" on May 26; and history Prof. Gerald Moran on “The Puritan Way of Death” on June 2.

Stockton first became interested in the topic when he surveyed a graveyard in southern Illinois where his relatives have been buried since the mid-1800s. In the process, he discovered some historically significant trends in the population in the region, and wrote a scholarly article called "Death on the Frontier."

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Founded in 1959 with a gift of just over 200 acres of land and $6.5 million from the Ford Motor Company, UM-Dearborn has been distinguished by its commitment to providing excellent educational opportunities responsive to the needs of southeastern Michigan. The university has 8,700 students pursuing undergraduate, master’s, doctoral and professional degrees in the liberal arts and sciences, engineering, business, education, and public administration. With a faculty devoted to teaching, and students committed to achievement, UM-Dearborn has been shaped by its history of interaction with business, government and industry in southeastern Michigan, and is committed to responding to the needs of the region in the future.
 

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