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An ongoing series of interactive webinars, Texas Talks feature a presenter/moderator format with an audience question and answer session. Presenters include authors, professors, graduate students and independent historians and topics range from the Civil War to 20th Century immigration and Women's history to Travel Tourism and much more.
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Join Jennifer Ross-Nazzal as she talks about Making Space for Women, her latest book, which looks at the women of the NASA Johnson Space Center. Her Texas Talk will highlight the female experience at JSC over the course of the Center’s history using stories from her book and other interviews conducted for the JSC Oral History Project. Beginning with the creation of the Manned Spacecraft Center and ending with the International Space Station, Making Space for Women explores how careers for women at JSC changed over time as the workforce became more diverse and fields once closed to women opened to them.
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Beasley's Vaqueros presents the life and work of South Texas artist Ricardo M. Beasley. Between roughly 1940 and 1980, Beasley produced dozens of pen-and-ink drawings (36 of which are reproduced here) of working vaqueros, the Tejano cowboys of South Texas. His vibrant, action-packed scenes capture the dangers as well as the joys of working with cattle, horses, and an often-unforgiving landscape of cactus and mesquite. In addition to a selection of Beasley's work, historian Andrés Tijerina has collected and translated an extensive interview with the artist and several of his poems. Despite having lived much of his life after World War II, Beasley's art and words capture a world in which people and events from decades before his time are just as immediate—perhaps even more so—than events of the present day. More than just a testament to the talents of a singular, self-taught artist, Beasley's Vaqueros is a record of vaquero life in South Texas that spans the centuries. The book features a foreword by Ron Tyler, the former director of the Amon Carter Museum of American Art in Fort Worth. The 2022-2023 season of Texas Talks is made possible in part by a grant from Humanities Texas, the State Affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.
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The battle of San Jacinto gave Texas its independence, but also an international crisis. Needing to act quickly, President David Burnet issued an executive order creating a judicial system. The emergency was resolved, in part, but that wasn’t the end of the story for Burnet’s court. In this Texas Talks, Justice Ken Wise will reveal some information not previously known about the secret court of the Republic of Texas. Justice Wise sits on the 14th Court of Appeals in Houston and is the creator and host of the popular Texas history podcast Wise About Texas, which is heard by over 1.3 million people in 152 countries around the world.
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Dr. Kristina Downs, Assistant Professor of English at Tarleton State University and the Executive Director of the Texas Folklore Society, examines outlaw legends through the lens of Texas history and folklore. While outlaw legends are not unique to Texas, the Lone Star State does have an unusually high concentration of them. This Talk explores common themes and motifs among outlaw legends, including social banditry and faked deaths and considers how Texas history and folklore have given the state’s legends their specific flavor.
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Historians Dan K. Utley and Cynthia J. Beeman will present stories from their books History Ahead (2010, TAMU Press) and History along the Way: Stories Beyond the Texas Roadside Markers (2013, TAMU Press), and images of recent ramblings down lonely backroads. Dan and Cynthia, veterans of the Texas Historical Commission who each wrote thousands of marker inscriptions and oversaw a complete reorganization of the Historical Marker program, know where all the good stories are. They will talk about sites and people from East Texas to the coastal plains to far West Texas, with plenty of time for questions from the audience. Join us for this unique Texas travel experience.
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Dr. Leah LaGrone, Assistant Professor of History at Weber State University, highlights the practices of women's resistance, and how their courage shaped Texas history and the history of the borderlands. With additional context from moderator Dr. Katherine Bynum of Arizona State University, this event focused on these women and their stories and why their collective legacies matter today.
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Herman Ehrenberg wrote the longest, most complete, and most vivid memoir (published in Germany in 1843) of any soldier in the Texan revolutionary army. After nearly two centuries, a definitive translation is now available. Inside the Texas Revolution: The Enigmatic Memoir of Herman Ehrenberg is a product of painstaking work by translators Louis E. Brister and James C. Kearney, as well as the volume’s editor, James E. Crisp, who has spent much of the last 27 years solving many of the mysteries that still surrounded Ehrenberg’s life, dispelling the myths, mistakes, and even outright lies (some made by Ehrenberg himself) that accrued in previous versions of the text. Dr. Crisp, Professor Emeritus at North Carolina State University, a noted expert on the Texas Revolution, and Mr. Ryan Schumacher, Managing Editor, TSHA Press, discuss Ehrenberg’s book, a testament by a young Texan “everyman” who presents a laudatory paean to the Texan cause.
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Dr. Max Krochmal (TCU) and Dr. J. Todd Moye (UNT), editors, discuss "Civil Rights in Black and Brown: Histories of Resistance and Struggle in Texas" (University of Texas Press, November 2021), which draws upon more than 500 oral history interviews with African American and Mexican American grass-roots activists from every corner of Texas. In this talk, Dr. Krochmal and Dr. Moye, with Moderator Dr. Wes Phelps, discuss the book’s revelation that not one but two civil rights movements flourished in mid-twentieth-century Texas and they did so in intimate conversation with one another.

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Blending Cold War, Southern, and urban history, Dr. Uzma Quraishi’s research looks at the history of South Asian migration to Houston, Texas. This migration of Indians and Pakistanis pre-dated the 1965 immigration reform, and it expanded after the milestone law. Dr. Quraishi examines the experiences of middle-class, urbanized Indians and Pakistanis who sought higher education in a city transitioning out of Jim Crow. In this talk, with moderator and Sam Houston State University colleague Dr. Jeffrey Littlejohn, Dr. Quraishi introduces her book Redefining the Immigrant South: Indian and Pakistani Immigration to Houston During the Cold War (UNC Press, 2020) which explores the interplay of race, place, ethnicity and class over time in a changing region and nation.

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America’s First Ladies are not elected politicians, but they are nevertheless immersed in the world of politics and often underestimated or ignored as political beings. A new biography by Dr. Julia Sweig, the award-winning author of "Lady Bird Johnson: Hiding in Plain Sight" (Random House, 2021), examines for the first time in detail this side of Claudia Alta Taylor Johnson as she advised and strategized with her powerfully political husband, President Lyndon Baines Johnson. In this Talk, Dr. Nancy Baker Jones, Moderator and historian of Texas women in politics, and Sweig discuss Lady Bird in this new light.

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Take a tour of the historic Magoffin Home in this Texas Talks webinar.

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Learn More about the UTEP track players boycott in this Texas Talks webinar with Dr. Charles Martin.

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