Historian to Give Keynote Address at Ashland University

Historian to Give Keynote Address at Ashland University

3/8/17 ASHLAND, Ohio – Historian and pedagogical innovator Mark C. Carnes will provide the keynote address as part of the “Reacting to the Past” workshop being held on the AU campus in early April.

The address, which is free and open to the public as an event separate from the workshop, will be held Friday, April 7, at 8 p.m. in the Ronk Lecture Hall in Schar College of Education. The title of the talk will be “Subversive Play: The Bane of Higher Education--and Its Salvation?”

Carnes received his B.A. in history from Harvard and Ph.D. from Columbia. Since 1982, he has taught at Barnard College, where he has intermittently chaired the history department. He has written nearly a dozen books, beginning with Secret Ritual and Manhood in Victorian America (Yale, 1982) and has served as general editor of the 20-million-word American National Biography (Oxford University Press, 1999) since its inception.

During the past two decades, however, Carnes has focused on Reacting to the Past, a classroom method in which college students play complex games, set in the past, in which they take on roles informed by classic texts. A pioneer of the concept and co-author of the first six Reacting games, Carnes now serves as executive director of the Reacting Consortium. 

His most recent book, Minds on Fire: How Role-Immersion Games Transform College (Harvard University Press, 2014), shows how Reacting addresses many of the challenges confronting higher education today. Carnes was born in Pocatello, Idaho. He is married to Mary Elin Korchinsky, who has long been his partner and colleague. They have a daughter, Stephanie, a son-in-law, Leander, and a grandson, Lukas.

Ashland University, ranked in the top tier of colleges and universities in U.S. News and World Report’s National Universities category for 2017, is a mid-sized, private university conveniently located a short distance from Akron, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Ashland University (www.ashland.edu) deeply values the individual student and offers a unique educational experience that combines the challenge of strong, applied academic programs with a faculty and staff who build nurturing relationships with their students.                                                                                ###