Devyn Forcina ’22
How does a virtual, diverse, interdisciplinary group of students come together on Zoom and share knowledge they’ve gained, as scholars? Alexander Hamilton. His name is Alexander Hamilton.
All jokes aside, the smashing hit musical Hamilton can be approached from various academic angles, and on Dec. 3, a “town tavern” panel did just that. This Tuesday night event kicked off at 7:30 PM and was well-attended by invited students from numerous courses.
Members of the panel included Gwenn Miller from the history department; Daniel Klinghard from the political science department; Daniel Dicenso from the music department; and Sarah Luria from the English department.
Students of these professors have been studying the musical Hamilton in their courses (such as Professor Luria’s “Early American Colonialism” and Professor Miller’s “Early American Lives”) alongside primary sources from the eighteenth century.
At the panel, the professors introduced themselves and provided their backgrounds in their respective fields of study. Then, after viewing Christopher Jackson’s performance of “One Last Time” as George Washington, the students were sent into breakout rooms to discuss their analyses.
Songs from Hamilton initiated nuanced conversations between the professors in the panel because they are charged with information and provide opportunities for study. In regards to “One Last Time,” Professor Dicenso explained the “fusion of broadway idioms and rap idioms before our eyes” (Dicenso) while Professor Klinghard explained the ‘precedent’ that was established by George Washington’s two-term presidency.
Thank you to these professors for bringing their students together through a shared interest in Hamilton and its historical, musical, and literary influences. May next semester bring similar events!