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Houston, TX 77204-5017 Fax: 713.743.8199

November 15, 2005

Contact: Angie Joe
713.743.8153 (office)
713.617.7138 (pager)


Family historian Steven Mintz will give the University of Houston’s John P. McGovern Annual Award Lecture at 7 p.m. Nov. 16 at 7 p.m.

The John & Rebecca Moores Professor of History will deliver his speech “Rethinking Childhood in the 21st Century” at the McGovern Museum of Health and Medical Science. The event is free and open to the public, but attendees should call 713-743-2997 to RSVP for the reception.

Mintz’s book “Huck’s Raft: A History of American Childhood” received numerous honors including the Association of American Publishers Award for the Outstanding Scholarly Book of 2004, the Organization of American Historians 2005 Merle Curtil Award for the best book in social history and the Texas Institute of Letters Carr P. Collins Award for the best non-fiction book of 2004. His other books include “Domestic Revolutions: A Social History of American Family Life” and “Native American Voices: A History & Anthology.”

“Our challenge is to reverse the process of age segmentation, to provide the young with challenging alternatives to a world of malls, instant messaging, music videos, and play dates,” he writes in “Huck’s Raft.” “Huck Finn was an abused child whose father, the town drunk, beat him for going to school and learning to read. Who would envy Huck's battered childhood? Yet he enjoyed something too many children are denied and which adults can provide: opportunities to undertake odysseys of self-discovery outside the goal-driven, over-structured realities of contemporary childhood.”

Mintz is President-Elect of H-Net: Humanities and Social Sciences Online and National Co-Chair of the Council on Contemporary Families. He also helped create Digital History, one of the Top 5 web resources in U.S. history as listed by Best of History Web Sites.

Mintz’s work has generated more than $7 million in external funding, including a $2.6 million National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant in African American Studies.

The John P. McGovern Annual Award Lecture is an annual series of lectures in science, literature, arts and humanities. The College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences at UH honors recipients whose endeavors have clearly distinguished them as leaders in their spheres of activity.

WHAT: John P. McGovern Annual Award Lecture on “Rethinking Childhood in the 21st Century”

WHEN: November 16
6:30 p.m. Reception
7 p.m. Lecture

WHERE:  McGovern Museum of Health and Medical Science

WHO: John and Rebecca Moores Professor of History Steven Mintz

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