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“The arts and humanities are an essential component of every human society. They enable us to express ourselves creatively; to develop a better appreciation of the aesthetic, as well as cultural aspects of our world; to understand how our past has influenced our present; and to see the world as others see it, so that we may address society’s greatest challenges more effectively.”
Judith Brown, Ph.D.
Dean of Arts and Humanities
Judth Brown hero flipped
Judith C. Brown, Ph.D., 
Dean of Arts and Humanities
  • One of the world’s first pioneers in the fields of gender history and the history of sexuality
  • Professor Emeritus of History at Wesleyan University
  • Fellow at the the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, the Stanford Humanities Center, and the Guggenheim Foundation
  • Published numerous books and articles on the social and economic foundations of the Renaissance in Italy, including the recent Medici Women: The Making of a Dynasty in Grand Ducal Tuscany
  • Former President of the Society for Italian Historical Studies and Fellow at The Harvard Center for Italian Renaissance Studies (I Tatti)
  • Author of the highly regarded Immodest Acts: The Life of a Lesbian Nun in Renaissance Italy, which explores one of the earliest documented lesbian relationships in Western history
  • Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in History

Judith C. Brown, Dean of the College of Arts and Humanities, is an accomplished scholar, educator, and administrator. A pioneer in the fields of gender history and the history of sexuality, she has also helped to bring widespread attention to the arts and humanities — a field of study she believes to be critical in today’s world. Brown earned her Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University, and her B.A. and M.A. from the University of California, Berkeley.

Having previously served as Dean of the School of Humanities at Rice University, and both Vice-President for Academic Affairs and Provost at Wesleyan University, she brings a wealth of experience to Minerva. Brown pushes her students to think clearly and ethically. She believes helping them gain the confidence to take risks is a crucial and necessary part of learning, leadership, and having a positive impact on the world.