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Teaching Vonnegut

Welcome to Teaching Vonnegut 2022!

July 14th, 19th, 21st & 26th

Thank you for your interest in KVML’s 2022 curriculum of Teaching Vonnegut workshops.

Teaching Vonnegut is an annual series of workshops exploring the life, works, and legacy of Kurt Vonnegut as well as the causes that he championed. This year Teaching Vonnegut will continue to be 100% virtual, and workshops will include special attention to our 2022 theme: Vonnegut @ 100: A Century of Stories.

Teaching Vonnegut History

In 2011 Teaching Vonnegut began as a way for teachers to teach other teachers about the work of Kurt Vonnegut and create new lesson plans to enhance student engagement in middle school, high school, and college classrooms.
In 2021 KVML expanded Teaching Vonnegut to include workshops related to a diverse range of subjects like environmentalism, social justice, remote learning, dramatic arts, becoming an author, and navigating censorship and free speech conversations. And we are excited to continue that expansion in 2022.
Kurt Vonnegut’s irresistible sense of humor and world view has inspired students to read, discuss, and create for decades. Since 2011, Teaching Vonnegut has provided educators opportunities to build new and refresh existing classroom curricula.

2021 Teaching Vonnegut Workshops

Other workshops have included:
As always, workshops will utilize Kurt’s work, but more than just teaching from his books, we’ve designed workshops we think Kurt himself would want to take. In 2021 our workshops were attended by more people than ever. Life-learners from all over the country and globe dialed in, and one-quarter of registrants were non-teachers. We had artists and human resource managers and Wall Street bankers too! So in 2022, we’re excited to continue to welcome teachers and non-teacher attendees alike. Teaching Vonnegut workshops are open and applicable to all!

I have had many, many professional developments in my career, but none as valuable and with more takeaways merit than Teaching Vonnegut. I am a librarian in a diverse Appalachian high school of 1,700 students, and this year I have been able to collaborate with teachers about Kurt Vonnegut lesson plans, thus enhancing readership. There has been a renewed excitement about his works, and I have gotten several of my colleagues interested in coming to Teaching Vonnegut next summer. This is certainly a program that should grow and grow.

– Workshop Attendee

2022 Teaching Vonnegut Schedule & Registration

In 2022 KVML will host eight (8) two-hour Zoom workshops spread across the afternoons and evenings of July 14th, 19th, 21st & 26th.
Workshops will be led by experts in their fields and Vonnegut scholars, and aim to enhance both public and educator knowledge on a variety of topics related to the works, interests and philosophy of Kurt Vonnegut. Workshops will also continue to help teachers build new, and enhance existing, educational curricula back at their home schools.
Teaching Vonnegut Workshops are inclusive, and open to anyone. There are no prerequisites, and it is our goal to provide high-quality educational experiences to as many people as possible. So, whether you’re a teacher or just someone who has an interest in the subject matter, we welcome you at Teaching Vonnegut.
For more information on Teaching Vonnegut, please visit the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) section below. When you are ready to register, please use the links in the following workshop synopses. There are also discounted workshop packages and student discounts available below. And If you have any other ideas or questions regarding future or existing Teaching Vonnegut workshops please email us at [email protected].

WorkShop 1

God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater: Love, Loss, and Social Justice

Workshop Synopsis

Vonnegut’s novel is iconoclastic and irreverent, even outright zany, but it is also deeply personal and instructive for philanthropic studies and ethics. God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater examines, with Vonnegut’s own brand of cynicism, philanthropy’s eternal questions: Why should I give, how should I give, to whom or for what should I give, what should I give, can giving be taught.

This workshop will explore the connections between Rosewater, giving, the unintended consequences of wealth, and Vonnegut’s commentary on how humans should treat one another.

WorkShop 2

Bach, Beethoven, and the Beatles – Vonnegut and his musical choices

Workshop Synopsis

Kurt Vonnegut was a musically literate writer. In a number of his works there are references to Bach, Mozart, jazz, the blues, the Rolling Stones and the Beatles. There is even a cuckoo clock in Hell! In Galápagos he wrote, “Oh well, he wasn’t going to write Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony anyway.” But why Beethoven, and why that piece? This workshop will explore Vonnegut’s references as we unravel his musical choices – including the movie music from Slaughterhouse Five. To dive deeper into these choices, Dr. Doyle will be joined by baritone vocalist Dr. Anthony Moreno and organist Dr. James Hurd.

WorkShop 3

Everybody Doesn’t Like Something: Let’s Just Ban Everything

Workshop Synopsis

We live in a nation with people all across the political spectrum increasingly willing to use the power of government to suppress expression they don’t like: not just with school curriculum and library books, but with a broad swath of other things as well. Indeed, some innovative suppression tactics have emerged this year on school and library materials.

So, sometimes “censorship” occurs over topics most Americans find silly like Shakespearian plays or a few “damns” in a library book. However, other things that people want to suppress are not easily labelled “silly” at all: advertising for controversial products like tobacco, alcohol and condoms; rock and rap music that shows disdain for women or the police; comedy that offends based on racial, gender or medical (think the Oscars) stereotypes, and hardcore pornography.

This workshop will start with some of the “new” suppression tactics and new legal decisions and then (with some role playing by the attendees) move on to the arguments about protecting children and emotional appeals that are more often used against advertisng, music, comedy and of course pornography.

WorkShop 4

Authoring Selves: When Plot Becomes Character—The Mock Autobiography in Mother Night and Bluebeard

Workshop Synopsis

Using the frame of Vonnegut’s mock-autobiographies, Mother Night and Bluebeard, this workshop will look closely at construction of “selves” in these narratives and how students, writers all, use some of these same strategies to construct public facing versions of themselves. Participants will discuss what these frames accomplish, and how they can be used to spur writing and discussion in the classroom. Through Howard W. Campbell, Jr. and Rabo Karabekian, we will see how plot and character become intertwined in this construction of the self, and how students can use similar tactics writing application letters, social media posts and their own creative work.

WorkShop 5

From Granfalloon to Karass: Leveraging Storytelling To Build Real Relationships!

Workshop Synopsis

Storytelling is a global art form that has bridged the gap between communities, broken the curses between generations and built the wealth between change agents. This workshop will discuss ways to empower students with the education and skills needed to communicate your story effectively. Like Vonnegut’s effort to share his story through Slaughterhouse-Five, this workshop will help you develop curriculum for students using the power of their own stories.

WorkShop 6

Nothing was Beautiful and Everything Hurt: Teen Drama, Real Trauma & Teaching Slaughterhouse-Five

Workshop Synopsis

Teaching Slaughterhouse-Five through the prism of trauma opens the novel to a younger readership, which has a vested, generational understanding of pain quite different from that of Kurt Vonnegut. This workshop seeks to help teachers bridge the difference by translating Vonnegut’s metafictional approach to Billy Pilgrim’s disassociated state caused by war for today’s youth who have been raised in a culture of trauma – with COVID-19, continued social injustices, school shootings and daily consumption of social media only making traumas more prevalent. Is it fair to say Billy Pilgrim has PTSD? What about Vonnegut? What do these questions say about the book? And about us? Depending on participant input, this workshop could include other Vonnegut writings that touch on themes of trauma, such as Deadeye Dick. The workshop will feature breakout room sessions to engage new ways to teach Vonnegut to Generation Z.

WorkShop 7

Vox Humana & Mary Hepburn: Making Vonnegut’s Planetary Citizenship Live!

Workshop Synopsis

Exploring the origins, legacies, and potential teaching applications of Vonnegut’s planetary citizenship, this workshop will focus on central “big ideas” within Kurt’s environmental and social justice writings. In addition to sharing specific ideas for teaching key environmental works, such as Galápagos, Cat’s Cradle, Slapstick, and Breakfast of Champions, Jarvis will connect some of Vonnegut’s lessons in planetary thinking to our present moment. The workshop will include interactive breakout room sessions to share and refine your own Vonnegut-inspired pedagogical approaches.

WorkShop 8

“In Nonsense is Strength” – Using Vonnegut to Understand Comic Books

Workshop Synopsis

Are comic books art? Are graphic novels literature? Or is it all just nonsense for kids and popcorn munchers? In this workshop, take a deep dive into the medium of comic books and graphic novels to gather deeper answers about the unique marriage between art and storytelling of a medium that continues to inspire big budget movies and create long lasting cultural icons. By focusing specifically on the recent adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse-Five into a graphic novel by writer Ryan North and artist Albert Monteys, the workshop will explore how comic books are made, why comic books matter, what’s the difference between a graphic novel and a comic book anyway, and how to skillfully bring all of it into classrooms and lesson planning. This workshop hopes to help hone the lifelong skills of visual literacy, as well as the love for art, literature, and even nonsense.

Packages

Each 2022 Teaching Vonnegut workshop costs $27 per attendee. There are also discounted four (4)- and eight (8)-workshop packages available for $80 and $160, respectively.

Anyone registering for Teaching Vonnegut 2022 will receive the 2022 So it Goes e-book when it is published later this year. All participants who complete a workshop will also receive a Certificate of Completion. Please see below for Additional KVML Benefits when you sign up for the 4- or 8-workshop packages!

Eight Workshop Packages

$160.00

Four Workshop Packages

$80.00

Student Registration

KVML also offer a special $10 per workshop rate for high school, college and graduate school students. If you would like to take advantage of this rate, please fill out the Student Registration Form and you will be sent a discount code to be used when registering for workshops through the links above.

Frequently Asked Questions

Each Teaching Vonnegut workshop is two hours long and covers a unique topic related to the life, work and philosophy of Kurt Vonnegut. In 2022, all workshops will be conducted via Zoom. Workshops often include breakout room sessions, individual or group activities, and example lesson plans for those that wish to build new or augment existing curricula. Teaching Vonnegut is open and attended by all life-long learners, and there are no prerequisites for any workshop.
Participants who complete Teaching Vonnegut workshops will receive a Teaching Vonnegut Certificate of Completion.
Teaching Vonnegut Workshops are inclusive, and open to anyone. Whether you are a teacher or just someone who has an interest in the subject matter, you are welcome at Teaching Vonnegut. It is our goal to provide high-quality, unique workshops to as many people as possible. There are no prerequisites for Teaching Vonnegut workshops.

When you are ready to register for one or more of the 2022 workshops please do so here.

Each 2022 Teaching Vonnegut workshop costs $27 per attendee. There are also discounted four (4)- and eight (8)-workshop packages available for $80 and $160, respectively, and a discounted student registration rate of $10 per workshop.

Anyone registering for Teaching Vonnegut 2022 will receive the 2022 So it Goes e-book when it is published later this year. All participants who complete a workshop will also receive a Certificate of Completion. Please see below for Additional KVML Benefits when you sign up for the 4- or 8-workshop packages!

We understand that the above costs may be prohibitive for some. If that is the case, please fill out the Scholarship Form, and KVML will carefully consider subsidizing your registration fees. It is our goal to make sure that these unique workshops are available to as many people as possible.

Anyone registering for Teaching Vonnegut 2022 will receive the 2022 So it Goes e-book when it is published later this year. All participants who complete a workshop will also receive a Certificate of Completion. Anyone signing up for at least 4 Teaching Vonnegut workshops will also receive 50% off KVML Membership in 2022. Anyone registering for all 8 workshops will receive free KVML Membership in 2022 and 50% off KVML Membership in 2023. Teaching Vonnegut membership discounts may only be applied to the “Friends of the Kurt Vonnegut Museum & Library” and “Kurt’s Karass” membership tiers. Please visit kvml.org to see all member benefits.

The Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library is a 501(c)(3) private nonprofit organization and proud partner and affiliate of the American Writers Museum. The KVML is also a member of the North American Reciprocal Museum (NARM) Association, and in 2022 we received the American Library Association’s first Literary Landmark designation in the state of Indiana. Renowned author, Kurt Vonnegut took an unflinching look at the world, tempered with a satirical eye and sardonic sense of humor. In honor of his wit and wisdom, the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library champions the literary, artistic, and cultural contributions of the late writer, artist, teacher, and Indianapolis native, while advocating for free speech and common decency. The library and museum serve as a cultural and educational resource unique to the nation.

Kathi Badertscher, PhD

Director of Graduate Programs at the IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy
Kathi Badertscher, PhD, is Director of Graduate Programs at the IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Dr. Badertscher teaches a variety of BA, MA, and doctoral courses, including Applying Ethics in Philanthropy and History of Philanthropy. She has participated in several Teaching Vonnegut workshops and is a member of the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library. Dr. Badertscher has been a guest speaker on ethics in philanthropy, including at the National Association of Charitable Gift Planners – Indianapolis Council; Association of Fundraising Professionals – Indiana Chapter; and Zhou Enlai School of Government, Nankai University, Tianjin, China. In 2019 she received IUPUI Office for Women, Women’s Leadership Award for Newcomer Faculty. In 2019 and 2020 she received the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, Graduate Teaching Award.
Dr. Badertscher’s publications include “Fundraising for Advocacy and Social Change,” co-authored with Shariq Siddiqui in Achieving Excellence in Fundraising, 5th ed., 2022; “Insulin at 100: Indianapolis, Toronto, Woods Hole, and the ‘Insulin Road,’ co-authored with Christopher Rutty, Pharmacy in History (2020); and three articles in the Indiana Magazine of History: “A New Wishard Is on the Way,” “Evaline Holliday and the Work of Community Service,” and “Social Networks in Indianapolis during the Progressive Era.” Her chapters on social welfare history will appear in three upcoming edited volumes on the history of philanthropy, including “The Legacy of Edna Henry and Her Contributions to the IU School of Social Work,” Women at Indiana University: Views of the Past and the Future, edited by Andrea Walton, Indiana University Press, 2022 (forthcoming). Dr. Badertscher is also the Philanthropy and Nonprofits Consulting Editor for the forthcoming Digital Encyclopedia of Indianapolis, edited by David J. Bodenhamer and Elizabeth Van Allen, Indiana University Press, 2021. Dr. Badertscher is an active volunteer in the Indianapolis community. At present, she is a Coburn Place Safe Haven Board Member and a Children’s Bureau/Families First Brand and Marketing Advisor. Dr. Badertscher holds the MA in History from Indiana University and the MA and PhD in philanthropic studies from the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.

Volunteer With KVML

Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library Volunteer Application

Please contact [email protected] if you have any questions about this application’s content.

Kathi Badertscher, PhD

Director of Graduate Programs at the IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy
Kathi Badertscher, PhD, is Director of Graduate Programs at the IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Dr. Badertscher teaches a variety of BA, MA, and doctoral courses, including Applying Ethics in Philanthropy and History of Philanthropy. She has participated in several Teaching Vonnegut workshops and is a member of the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library. Dr. Badertscher has been a guest speaker on ethics in philanthropy, including at the National Association of Charitable Gift Planners – Indianapolis Council; Association of Fundraising Professionals – Indiana Chapter; and Zhou Enlai School of Government, Nankai University, Tianjin, China. In 2019 she received IUPUI Office for Women, Women’s Leadership Award for Newcomer Faculty. In 2019 and 2020 she received the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, Graduate Teaching Award.
Dr. Badertscher’s publications include “Fundraising for Advocacy and Social Change,” co-authored with Shariq Siddiqui in Achieving Excellence in Fundraising, 5th ed., 2022; “Insulin at 100: Indianapolis, Toronto, Woods Hole, and the ‘Insulin Road,’ co-authored with Christopher Rutty, Pharmacy in History (2020); and three articles in the Indiana Magazine of History: “A New Wishard Is on the Way,” “Evaline Holliday and the Work of Community Service,” and “Social Networks in Indianapolis during the Progressive Era.” Her chapters on social welfare history will appear in three upcoming edited volumes on the history of philanthropy, including “The Legacy of Edna Henry and Her Contributions to the IU School of Social Work,” Women at Indiana University: Views of the Past and the Future, edited by Andrea Walton, Indiana University Press, 2022 (forthcoming). Dr. Badertscher is also the Philanthropy and Nonprofits Consulting Editor for the forthcoming Digital Encyclopedia of Indianapolis, edited by David J. Bodenhamer and Elizabeth Van Allen, Indiana University Press, 2021. Dr. Badertscher is an active volunteer in the Indianapolis community. At present, she is a Coburn Place Safe Haven Board Member and a Children’s Bureau/Families First Brand and Marketing Advisor. Dr. Badertscher holds the MA in History from Indiana University and the MA and PhD in philanthropic studies from the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.

William Doyle

Professor of Music
William Doyle is a Professor of Music in Los Angeles where he teaches Music History, Music of the Beatles, Rock Music, and World Music. His comic-opera, The Janitor, was infused with Vonnegut’s wit and wisdom and the subject of a Teaching Vonnegut workshop in 2021. He was also in the KVML live broadcast of Poe’s The Cask of Amontillado. Currently, he is looking for a literary agent for Love, Murder, Music, his novel about Edgar Allan Poe who, while investigating several gruesome murders in Paris, befriends composer Hector Berlioz who plans to win the love of an actress with music depicting his dreams and fantasies – including her murder and his death on the guillotine!

Barry W. Lynn

Barry W. Lynn was legislative counsel for the Washington Office of the ACLU for 5 years in the 1970s where he, among other things, spent years ruining the work and reputation of the Attorney General’s Commission on Pornography. He then worked for over 25 years as Executive Director of Americans United For Separation of Church and State where he battled the Religious Right’s efforts to destroy public education, get special priveleges for religious groups, curtail the right of women to obtain abortions and LGBTQ Americans to live their lives and try to censor materials in schools and libraries. This may seem surprising to some because he is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. Indeed, he started his professional career working at that denomination’s legislative office on issues involving both war resisters and veterans of the Vietnam War.

Lynn has written for many publications and is the author of a number of books including Piety and Politics and God and Government. He has been a guest on virtually every major radio and television show in the United States. He graduated from Dickinson College and then went on to graduate from seminary at Boston University School of Theology and law school at Georgetown University Law Center. He won significant awards including a Hugh Hefner First Amendment award, a “Freedom To Worship” medal from the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute, and a “Creative Citizenship Award” from the Nation Institute and the Puffin Foundation.
Lynn retired in 2017 but has kept busy as a political commentator on a variety of podcasts, doing occasional stand-up comedy, guest preaching and teaching. He is nearing completion of a memoir called “Paid To Piss People Off”, a title drawn from a remark by a high school student who told him “when I grow up I want to do what you do”, and when asked “what do you think I do”, responded “I think you get paid to piss people off.” Lynn’s most direct connection with Kurt Vonnegut was when the two of them joined National Organization For Women founder and author of The Feminine Mystique, Betty Friedan at a New York press conference to denounce the aforementioned Commission on Pornography.

John A. Nieves

John A. Nieves has poems forthcoming or recently published in journals such as: North American Review, Southern Review, The National Poetry Review, Harvard Review and Massachusetts Review. He won the Indiana Review Poetry Contest and his first book, Curio, won the Elixir Press Annual Poetry Award Judge’s Prize. He is an associate professor of English at Salisbury University and an editor of The Shore Poetry. He received his M.A. from University of South Florida and his Ph.D. from the University of Missouri.

Emma DePanise

Emma DePanise has poems forthcoming or recently published in journals such as Poetry Northwest, The Minnesota Review, The Los Angeles Review, New York Quarterly and The National Poetry Review. She is a winner of a 2019 Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) Intro Journals Award and the 2018 winner of the Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry from Nimrod International Journal. She is an MFA candidate and teaching assistant at Purdue University as well as an editor of Sycamore Review and The Shore Poetry. Next fall, she will join the Ph.D. program in creative writing at the University of Missouri.

Anthony Murdock II, J.D.

Anthony Murdock II, J.D. is a purpose-driven, action-oriented, servant-leader and proud product of Indianapolis, Indiana. He graduated from Butler University in 2017 and the IU McKinney School of Law in May of 2022. He currently serves as the founder and Executive Director of Circle City Storytellers, the leading digital resource hub for Black storytellers in the Circle City & beyond. Ultimately, he’s in the business of becoming the greatest “powerpreneur” Indianapolis has ever seen.

Tiera Howleit

Tiera Howleit served as the inaugural Creative Marketing Fellow for Circle City Storytellers this past spring. She graduated from Indiana University Bloomington (IU) with degrees in Political Science and African American and African Diaspora Studies. While at IU, she was a member of the African American Choral Ensemble, Dean of Students’ Cabinet of Student Leaders, IU Student Government, Chi Alpha Epsilon Honors Society, Groups Scholars Program and Black Presidents Cabinet. She also wrote for the Black Voices section of the Indiana Daily Student and started her own campus organization: Black Collegians. The goal of this organization is to get Black students more politically and civically engaged in order to succeed within this society. Next steps for Tiera include expanding this organization to other campuses and starting law school!

Tom Roston

Tom Roston is the author of 2021’s The Writer’s Crusade: Kurt Vonnegut and the Many Lives of Slaughterhouse-Five. Tim O’Brien called the book, “a spellbinding reexamination of both Slaughterhouse-Five and its author, Kurt Vonnegut.” Publisher’s Weekly called his enthusiasm for Vonnegut, “contagious.” Roston taught the seminar, “Reading Slaughterhouse-Five,” at the 92nd St. Y in New York. He has authored several other books and has written for The New York Times, Time, Salon, and The Los Angeles Times among other publications. He lives in Brooklyn.

Christina Jarvis

Professor of English at SUNY Fredonia

Christina Jarvis is Professor of English at SUNY Fredonia, where she teaches courses in sustainability and 20th-century American literature and culture, including several different major author seminars on Kurt Vonnegut. Her book Lucky Mud & Other Foma: A Field Guide to Kurt Vonnegut’s Planetary Citizenship will be published by Seven Stories Press in October. She is also the author of The Male Body at War: American Masculinity during World War II and several articles about Vonnegut’s fiction. When she is not following peculiar travel suggestions, she lives near the shores of Lake Erie in Western New York.

Eben Burgoon

Eben Burgoon is a writer, cartoonist, and artist best known for his independent comic book works including fast food & fantasy comedy, Tiny Wizards, and the chaos-fueled action/comedy, B-Squad: Soldiers of Misfortune – which was in early development for an animated series. In addition to his writing, he’s also an accomplished masking tape sculptor and frequently travels abroad to share his creations and creative spirit. His favorite Vonnegut book is either Sirens of Titan or Cat’s Cradle, likely depending on his mood that day. Eben lives in Sacramento, California with a pair of special needs dachshunds, two cats, and wife.