1100 North University Building sign, 2018

Sites & Symbols

Sites & Symbols organizes projects that foreground and explore the significance to institutional life of symbolic and material sites of memorialization and commemoration.

Whether they take the form of named spaces, legendary figures, public art, iconic structures, or shared rituals, these tokens of collective identity serve not only to express but also to shape and sustain systems of value that can help to forge community even as they demarcate zones of exclusion from it.

Additional project sites are in development for this frame, including one focused on the history of diversity, equity, and inclusion in U-M Athletics that will launch in fall 2024.

Project Sites

Hill Auditorium

Beginning Fall 2024

Operating in partnership with the University Musical Society and the School of Music, Theatre and Dance, this project considers the 100+ year history of U-M’s Hill Auditorium with a focus on issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion. More specifically, it considers the shifting ways in which Hill’s world-renowned stage has been used by different groups of historical actors (university faculty and administrators, arts organizations, student activists, community groups, etc.) to redefine the boundaries of culture, performance, and politics on our campus and across our region.