Open today: 10AM - 3PM

We Are America: The Cultural Programs of the Great Depression

Date(s) - Thursday, July 15th
7:00 pm CDT - 8:00 pm CDT


dsc0801-version-2The Great Depression remains the most devastating economic disaster in American history.  It is often remembered for its suffering:  bread lines, makeshift shantytowns known as “Hoovervilles,” gaunt faces, and dust storms. Yet, the experience of collective suffering also prompted a period of policy experimentation and creative expression that manifested in the artwork of the Works Progress Administration.  

Join Dr. Betsy Pease, Assistant Professor in the Department of History at Concordia University, to learn about the broader context of the New Deal and Depression-era culture in which these artworks were produced, an era that saw a diverse cross-section of Americans use opportunity to redefine their nation and make claims to a rightful place in it.  

Register to get access to the Zoom session.
This program is free and open to the public.
Please consider donating whatever amount you can to support the Museum’s mission.


In connection with Brother, Can You Spare a Dime: Jewish Artists of the WPA, an exhibit on display at the Jewish Museum Milwaukee, June 17 – September 5, 2021. The image above can be seen in the exhibit; Hooverville Depression Scene by Max Arthur Cohn. Oil painting, 1938. UWM Art Collection and Mathis Art Gallery. Gift of Jane Cohn Waldbaum and Steven L. Morse. Photo credit: UWM Art Collection.

About the Presenter
Dr. Betsy Pease is an assistant professor of history at Concordia University Wisconsin where she teaches courses on American history, cultural and social history, and cultural geography.  Her research has focused on depictions of urban and nonurban communities during the Great Depression in the United States.  She grew up in northwest Wisconsin and now lives in Mequon with her spouse and two children.

All Events >>