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Kahn Liberal Arts Institute

A Black person in a head wrap holding a pen and speaking while others listen.

Since 1998, the Louise W. and Edmund J. Kahn Liberal Arts Institute has supported collaborative research among Smith and Five College faculty, Smith students and visiting scholars—all without regard to the traditional boundaries of departments, programs and academic divisions. Each year the institute supports long- and short-term projects that are proposed, planned and organized by Smith College faculty. 


Vegetal Forms: Knowing Time and Place Through Plants

Brief public screenings of work by Smith College Museum of Art’s visiting artist Abdessamad El Montassir and Elaine Gan, Assistant Professor of Science in Society at Wesleyan University, will be followed by an extended Q&A. Learn more about this short-term Kahn project.

A Publication Celebration: Christen Mucher’s and Javier Puente’s New Books

Come engage with two new groundbreaking books from Smith professors: Christen Mucher's Before American History: Nationalist Mythmaking and Indigenous Dispossession and Javier Puente's The Rural State: Making Comunidades, Campesinos, and Conflict in Peru’s Central Sierra. The evening will include comments by the authors and refreshments.

Neilson Lecture 3. Metabolism Cages for New World Animals, Small and Large

In the final of his Neilson lectures, Anthony Ryan “Tony” Hatch will explore the design history of metabolism cages as carceral technologies that became part of a broader scheme to establish metabolic dominance over multispecies life.

Kahn Institute Porch Party


Research Without Boundaries

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“The Kahn Institute is unique. No other college has anything quite like it—an incubator for cross-disciplinary research, debate and colleagueship, and a haven for free speech.”
Marjorie Senechal, Kahn Institute founding director

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“Being a Kahn student fellow had a huge influence on me and ultimately inspired me to pursue a doctorate in history.”
Rachel Johnson ’12



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“As a first-generation college student, the Kahn gave me an inside view into the scholarly process that I may not have gotten otherwise, and it was an incredibly valuable experience.”
Maric Kramer ’04


Kahn Liberal Arts Institute

21 Henshaw Avenue
Smith College
Northampton, MA 01063

Phone: 413-585-3721
Fax: 413-585-4294

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