About The Humanities Research Institute
In a major milestone for the humanities at the University of Illinois, the Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities (IPRH) officially advanced to institute status in June 2020 with a new name: the Humanities Research Institute (HRI).
This change reflects both the legacy of excellence in humanities research at Illinois and a renewed commitment to our shared work for a just, livable and sustainable future for all. Read the news release.
We incubate bold ideas.
As the lifeblood of humanities research on the Urbana campus, we provide funding — through fellowships, internships, and programmatic support — and a forum for tackling big questions and imagining bold, human-centered approaches to working for change.
“I’d like people to think about the ‘R’ in HRI as the beating heart of what we do. Humanists are many things. We are teachers, we engage with a variety of audiences, and we are also researchers and scholars in the most imaginative and transformative ways.”
–Antoinette Burton, HRI Director
HRI Director Antoinette Burton explains the importance of the "R" in HRI, and the role of a humanities institute on the Illinois campus.
Recent faculty and graduate fellows share the impact that fellowship funding and seminar participation had on their research. Featuring Anthropology Professor Jenny Davis, Faculty Fellow 2017-18; Paul Michael Leonardo Atienza, doctoral candidate in Anthropology, Graduate Fellow 2019-20; Marcelo Boccato Kuyumjian, DMA candidate in Music, Graduate Fellow 2018-19; and Christine Hedlin, PhD in English completed in 2018, Graduate Fellow 2016-17.
We build bridges between communities.
Whether by convening interdisciplinary academic audiences or doing work that impacts local communities, HRI is committed to developing programs where people can see the humanities in action. Our work encourages ongoing dialogue with Illinois’ historic land grant mission by helping to orient humanities research, resources and influence toward new possibilities for the public university.
We shape conversations nationally and internationally.
HRI serves as the administrative locus for the Mellon-funded Humanities Without Walls (HWW) consortium, which links the humanities centers at 16 research universities throughout the Midwest and beyond. Through additional affiliations and advocacy work, HRI fosters opportunities for humanists to impact the dialogue both nationally and internationally.
Issy Marquez (LAS 2021), David F. Prindable Intern at HRI, shares her story of a life-changing trip to Washington, D.C. to advocate for the National Endowment for the Humanities.