________________________Please do not hesitate to direct all comments, questions, and inquiries to grahamarader@gmail.com_____________________________

Friday, September 2, 2011

A Giant from Northeastern University gives me a valued chance to be involved with his teaching program.

Northeastern University
College of Social Sciences and Humanities

September 1, 2011
Graham Arader
29 East 72nd Street
New York, NY, 10021

Dear Graham,

It is with extraordinary delight and gratitude that I've received word of the delivery and safe arrival here at Northeastern University of over 50 historic maps and botanical prints from Arader Galleries. This is an amazing collection that visibly charts the historical development of cartography and the natural sciences.

I cannot express how indebted we are to you for this collection, which renders materially possible the innovative course I am mounting this term, along with Professor Beryl Schlossman of the English Department, to help young people appreciate how we have learned to “picture the world” and come to understand “what nature is.” This course in interdisciplinary social sciences and humanities (INSH 1101, “Picturing the World,” Reg # 16180) will cover the ways in which human beings from the sixteenth through early nineteenth centuries arrived at a scientific understanding of the world through the artistic representation of different places, peoples, plants and creatures. The course is thus a rare combination of art history, natural history, cartography, anthropology and cultural analysis, i.e. a true introduction to the liberal arts and sciences!

Classes have yet to begin (our start date is September 7), but already we have some 37 students enrolled out of 40 available seats, not bad for a course we just put on the books over the summer! Clearly, there is a wealth of student interest here, and we aim to challenge these young minds to even greater appreciation and critical awareness. 

But it is the Arader collection that is the centerpiece of the course and makes our educational objectives possible, and for that we are deeply appreciative. At this point, we are eagerly awaiting full installation of the collection, which is scheduled to take place in the next few days and before we meet with the class for the inaugural meeting next Wednesday. We are teaching the course in classroom 294 of the Snell Library. This is a great location with a secure classroom and adjacent lounge where art can be used for your class and also be displayed openly for serendipitous encounters by students during study breaks and explorations of the library and environs. I also feel this is a fitting shrine for the works and for the classroom experience students will glean from their presence.

Once we're up and running, I'll send you periodic updates of what your generous gift is making possible. In the meantime, please accept this opening letter of appreciation and our best wishes to you and your terrific staff that is making our dreams – and those of our students – come true!

Again, many thanks for this extraordinary collection!

Georges Van Den Abbeele
Founding Dean,
College of Social Sciences and Humanities
100 Meserve Hall
360 Huntington Avenue
Northeastern University
Boston, MA 02115
617-373-2942 fax
Member, European Academy of Sciences

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