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Using a wide variety of primary source documents, participants will explore the rich tradition of protest literature in the United States from the American Revolution to the present.


John Stauffer, Professor of English and of African and African American Studies, Harvard University


The United States has a rich tradition of protest literature from the American Revolution to the present. “Protest literature,” broadly construed, critiques society, suggests a solution to its ills, and functions as a catalyst, guide, or mirror of social change. Using a wide variety of primary sources, we will explore the historical links between forms of protest, uses of literature, and social change, paying particular attention to the ways in which protest literature functions as rhetorical, political, and aesthetic texts within specific cultural contexts.

Travel & Accommodations

This seminar will be located at Boston University. The closest airport to Boston University is Logan Airport. A taxi from Logan Airport to Boston University will be approximately $35 (includes a 15% tip). The MBTA Green Line “B” train, passes right through Boston University, where you will use the “Boston University East” stop. The Boston University directions and parking page, will have specific details regarding driving directions. Please note that parking on campus in extremely limited, and it is advised to utilize public transportation to the university.

Participants will stay in an on-campus dormitory in single bedrooms, but may share bathrooms and common space.

The college provides pillows, blankets, sheets, and towels only. Please note that participants should plan to bring alarm clocks, hangers, irons, and hair dryers. Participants should also plan to bring laptops as computer access on campus will be limited.


Meals will be served in a cafeteria in space shared by other programs. All on-campus meals will be paid for by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History.

Travel Reimbursement

Participants are responsible for making their own travel arrangements to and from the seminar. Each seminar participant will receive reimbursement of travel expenses up to $400. Please read our complete travel reimbursement policy before applying.

Graduate Credit

The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History is proud to announce its agreement with Adams State University to offer three hours of graduate credit to participating seminar teachers. For more information click here.

Course Reviews from Past Participants

“This seminar was amazing. Professor Stauffer was phenomenal. He shared so much valuable knowledge and put it in context, was very generous with his time and attention, and was a fantastic teacher”

“Wow; what an incredible experience this way! I engaged in the protest literature seminar at Harvard University. Professor Stauffer was extremely knowledge and passionate. In addition, he was extremely committed to ensuring we learned. His lectures were well prepared and engaging."


Email the Teacher Seminars department or call 646-366-9666.

July 9th, 2017 5:00 PM   through   July 15th, 2017 9:00 AM
Boston University
One Silber Way
Boston, MA 02215
United States

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2017 Teacher Seminar Registration Fee $75.00

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