Inaugurated in 1986 as the Tenneco Lecture Series, the series was made possible by grants from Tenneco, Inc. and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The El Paso Corporation assumed the title of this Lecture Series from 2011 until 2014, when it was renamed the UH Center for Public History Lecture Series.
Over the years, the UH Center for Public History Lecture Series has sponsored several symposia, drawing international participants, on issues as wide-ranging as NAFTA and North American Urban Development; American Energy Policy in the 1970s; and Dumps, Landfills and the Neighborhood.
The UH Center for Public History Lecture Series has sponsored nearly 300 events across the UH campus. Past speakers in the Series include Robert Caro, Henry Cisneros, Norman Cousins, David McCullough, Elie Wiesel, Cornel West, Daniel Yergin, Lynton Caldwell, Alfred Kahn, and Nobel Peace Laureate Rigoberta Menchu Tum, among others.
With support of the UH Center for Public History Lecture Series, the CPH has hosted national meetings, such as those for the American Society for Environmental History (1993; 2005), Urban History Association (2008), and other professional associations.
FY2020-2021 CPH Lecture Series Update
The UH Center for Public History Lecture Series provides a unique opportunity for Houston professionals, community leaders, and others to consider historical, social and cultural perspectives directly related to the decisions they make. The Series brings to the University of Houston and the larger Houston community scholars, artists, and policymakers who shape our world and broaden our intellectual horizons.
Although historians study the past, we are keenly aware of our present moment. We believe that history – and especially Houston's history – can offer us tools to help us make sense of the world we live in. In alignment with the larger efforts of the university and the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, the CPH Lecture Series will dedicate our programming this 2020-2021 academic year to examining the roots of systemic racism in our society. Our monthly events this year will explore critical topics including the history of voting rights, food access, environmental justice, health disparities, and legislative politics to name a few.
Each of the major CPH Lecture Series events this year will be recorded and placed below for viewing. In addition, we have provided list of linked supplemental resources for each video, related to the content discussed in that specific lecture or panel. View the 2020-2021 recorded lectures here.