American Experience Week 2024


July 8 – 12, 2024 — 10 a.m. in Voorhies Hall

July 9 & 11 — 4 – 5 p.m. in the Large Tent

Free Non-Ticketed Event, open to the public

This year the American Experience goes to the Caribbean, as Professor Ada Ferrer presents a series of lectures exploring five hundred years of complex relations between Cuba and the United States. As a Cuban American herself, Professor Ferrer presents a vivid and deeply personal account of Cuban history that focuses on the experiences of the island’s inhabitants, not just on the geopolitical competition between major powers that have for centuries shaped its fate. In the eighteenth and nineteenth century these relations were rooted in sugar and slavery. In the twentieth century they were defined by Cuban efforts to shake off U.S. political domination and to claim independence from big powers — struggles that began long before Fidel Castro’s rise to power.

Professor Ferrer, born in Cuba between the Bay of Pigs invasion of 1961 and the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, has been traveling to and conducting research in Cuba since 1990, occasionally accompanied by her husband and daughters. Her essay “My Brother’s Keeper,” published by The New Yorker, tells the story of her and her family’s relationship with the Cuban Revolution.

Her Bay View lectures will be based on her book Cuba: An American History, which won the Pulitzer Prize for history in 2022. She will also devote time to discussing Haiti. Professor Ferrer is Julius Silver Professor of History and Latin American and Caribbean Studies at New York University.

We invite you to join us for a week of lectures and related education and music events that will spotlight Cuban history and culture and help us to better understand a neighbor which at its closest point is only 100 miles from Florida. American Experience lectures take place Monday, July 8 – Friday, July 12, 10-11 a.m. in Voorhies Hall plus tent talk Q&A sessions on Tuesday and Thursday from 4-5 p.m. AE events are free and open to all.

Bridges: Crossing Cultural Divides 2024


Thursday, August 1, 2024
7pm in Voorhies Hall

This talk discusses why young men often engage in risky behaviors, especially in their teens and early twenties. This behavior, known as “young male syndrome,” results from a mix of socio-cultural factors and biological influences. Drawing from his personal background as a former foster kid raised in Los Angeles, his experiences in the US Air Force, as well as his academic expertise, the speaker stresses the importance of guidance in helping young men make good choices.

About the Speaker: Rob Henderson is the author of Troubled: A Memoir of Foster Care, Family, and Social Class. Described as “self-made” by the New York Times, Rob grew up in foster homes in California, served in the US Air Force, and received a BS from Yale and a PhD in psychology from the University of Cambridge. His Substack newsletter is sent each week to more than forty-five thousand subscribers.

Practicing Grace, or How to Change Someone’s Mind


Saturday, June 22, 2024 — 7 p.m. in Voorhies Hall

Advance Tickets: $10 members/$15 non-members

Tickets at the Door: $20 for everyone

You can win an argument, or you can change someone’s mind—but make no mistake: they are not the same thing.

You might win an argument by shouting people down and having the last word, but you won’t bring them around to your way of thinking. Worse, it might also cost you your closest friendships and family ties.

Changing minds, on the other hand, requires a different style of communication—one that relies on practicing mindfulness and grace. The result? Healthier, more harmonious relationships and maybe a few altered opinions.

Podcaster, TV personality, and radio host Mike Slater will show how changing the way you relate to people you disagree with may encourage them to change the way they think. No matter where you stand on today’s hot-button issues, you’ll learn how to persuade others and heal the fraught relationships in your life.

About the Speaker: Mike Slater is a podcaster and host of the Breitbart News Daily show on Sirius XM/Patriot. He is the author of the book How to Change Someone’s Mind and the children’s book, Imagine Jack and the History Kids

With a degree in history from Yale University, Mike is a frequent guest on MSNBC, Fox News, CNN, Fox Business, and The Dr. Drew Show on HLN. He was recently named one of the Top 5 “Young Guns” of Talk Radio.

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Satisfaction Guaranteed: How Zingerman’s Built a Corner Deli into a Global Food Community


Wednesday, June 26, 2024 — 7 p.m. in Voorhies Hall

Advance Tickets: $10 members/$20 non-members

Tickets at the Door: $25 for everyone

Michigan Notable Author Micheline Maynard will discuss the amazing secrets to Zingerman’s success: great food and an upbeat business attitude. It’s not as easy as it sounds! Companies from all over the U.S. send their managers to Zingerman’s to learn how to adopt the deli’s principles and practices to achieve their own success.

About the Speaker: Micheline Maynard is a business journalist and author of five books, including Satisfaction Guaranteed, a 2023 Michigan Notable book.  Ms. Maynard has been a correspondent for The New York Times, a senior editor at NPR, and a contributing columnist at the Washington Post. Her work has also appeared in Time Magazine and the Boston Globe. Micki has taught at the University of Michigan, Central Michigan and Arizona State. She was born in Ann Arbor, where she currently lives. She’s an avid fan of baseball and classic movies.

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Eventually Everything Connects: Making Mid-Century Modern


Thursday, June 27, 2024 — 7 p.m. in Voorhies Hall

Advance Tickets: $10 members/$20 non-members

Tickets at the Door: $25 for everyone

The iconic movement known as “Mid-Century Modern” design burst onto the scene after World War II, evolved through the 1960s and 70s, and continues to inspire the most sought-after home and office designs in the U.S. and abroad.

Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills played a crucial role in incubating both the talent and the aesthetic of the MCM movement. Leading architects, designers and artists such as Ray and Charles Eames, Florence Knoll, and Eero Saarinen all got their start at Cranbrook. Many of their designs were manufactured by the Herman Miller Company in Grand Rapids.

About the Speaker: MillerKnoll Curatorial Fellow Bridget Bartal will give Bay View audiences an exclusive, sneak peek at her groundbreaking research, which details the rich, intertwined history of Cranbrook and the MCM movement. The first-ever exhibition and publication, titled Eventually Everything Connects: Making Mid-Century Modern, will be unveiled at Cranbrook in the summer of 2025.

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Don Duquette, American Experience Facilitator

Education Director, Julia Healy
231-439-9243 (Summer Office Line)