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Reimagining Columbus Day Exhibit

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Published on Jun 25, 2012

Controversy erupted in 2009 when, in response to students' protests of the university's celebration of Columbus Day, Brown changed the name of the holiday to "Fall Weekend." This exhibition, on view at the Museum from October 2010 to March 2011, continued the discussion about the history and future of Columbus Day. It provided historical background to help understand how our national holidays, which we sometimes take for granted, are invented, and how they reflect changing ideas about what's important in the American past. The exhibit demonstrates why and how Italian Americans lobbied the nation to celebrate Columbus, the rise of American Indian activism, and why the celebration of Columbus is problematic for contemporary Native Americans. The exhibition showcased objects from Haffenreffer Museum and from the University's special collections and archives. Reimagining Columbus, Reimagining Columbus Day was part of the larger exhibition Reimagining the Americas. Narrated by Brown graduate student Elena Gonzales and filmed and edited by student Justine Ariel Blount.

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