Help Support Michigan Humanities

Who We Are

What makes community life worthwhile? Is it the relationships you build over time with family, friends and co-workers? What about the good times and memories from attending annual festivals and events? Or is it the experience of working through difficult times that bonds us together?  Maybe it’s the familiarity of people and places…all part of the human experience.

The study of the humanities offers a deeper understanding of ourselves and others by confronting us with the questions, values and meanings of the human experience. From an academic perspective, that includes the study of ethics, history, literature, philosophy, art history and criticism, film studies, linguistics, jurisprudence, languages, comparative religion and the history of science.

As one of 56 state (and territories) humanities councils in the country,  Michigan Humanities was founded in 1974 as a result of federal legislation. Funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities,  Michigan Humanities also actively seeks grants, sponsorships and individual donations to further support cultural programming for Michigan communities.


Bringing people together through stories, histories, cultures and conversations.


A more thoughtful, connected, engaged, and informed Michigan.


  • Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity
  • Discovery and Understanding
  • Authentic Conversation
  • Respectful Collaboration
  • Meaningful Experiences


  • Build awareness and excitement for humanities in everyday life.
  • Achieve best practices and sustainability for all humanities programs and services in Michigan.


Our programs currently include:


Our grants to nonprofit cultural organizations, community groups, libraries and schools include:

Past Programs/Grants:

  • Talking Service: was a reading program for men and women of all ages who have served in the armed forces and for their families, friends, and care providers.
  • Heritage Grants: With funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, this grant program supported projects that explored local histories of race, ethnicity, and cultural identity in Michigan.
  • Third Coast Conversations (Final round of funding was awarded in 2018, awards up to $5,000)