Chasing Gophers Barefoot Exhibit

Seven MLCS students, including students from MLCS 599 Visualizing Identities 2020 class, taught by Maria Mayerchyk and Jelena Pogosjan, used the materials from the Local Culture Project to create the traveling exhibit “Chasing Gophers Barefoot: Prairie Children of the 1930s.” Visiting scholars from the Kule Folklore Centre and the Department of Modern Languages and Cultural Studies also participated in the project. Dr. Matthias Kaltenbrunner, the Kule Folklore Centre Post-Doctoral Fellow, and Dr. Iryna Skubii, Stuart Ramsay Tompkins Visiting Professor in MLCS each contributed their research to the exhibit.

The exhibit uses the recollections of adults to re-create the worlds of childhood. It tells stories about everyday life of children on a farm and on the streets of a small town, at the school, the church, and the community hall. It explores the clothing that formed the most personal aspect of ‘making do’ in the 1930s, scarcity of food and rare and unforgettable treats, but also toys, games, reading, music, and sports.

The exhibit and the accompanying website will be ready for publication by mid-June. The official opening of the exhibit has been postponed from mid-June, until we are advised it is safe to gather again.