Keri  Watson


My primary area of research is the visual and material culture of 1930s America, including constructions and representations of gender, race, and disability. My secondary area of research is the use of games in art history education. As an integral part of a liberal arts education, art history teaches students the skills they need to navigate an increasingly visual world. Helping students sort through the matrix of visual and material culture is a requisite part of my job as an art historian, and as a professor, I am continually looking for ways to develop my approach to teaching and learning in order to introduce students to the significant issues of my discipline and to enable them to put these issues into a global context through a variety of exercises. By stimulating active learning through games and play, I strive to create an atmosphere that not only facilitates comprehension of course content, but also fosters a desire for life-long learning.

  • The Big Read@UCF




    Created in 2004, the National Endowment for the Arts Big Read offers grants to support innovative community reading programs designed around a single book. Over the last decade, the National Endowment for the Arts has funded more than 1,300 Big Read programs, providing more than $18 million in grants and reaching more than 4.8 million Americans. For the past two years, Keri Watson, an assistant professor of art history at the University of Central Florida, who specializes in Depression-era art and literature, has received funding from the National Endowment for the Arts to support the Big Read@UCF.

    The Big Read@UCF brings together students, faculty, staff, and community members to celebrate reading. In 2016 UCF partnered with the Seminole County Public Libraries, New Journey Youth Center, Aspire, Valencia Community College, Seminole State College, the city of Eatonville, and Midway Safe Harbor Community Center to host programming centered on Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God. This year, UCF is focusing on John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath and partnering with Seminole County Public Libraries, the Farmworker Association of Florida, the Orlando Coalition for the Homeless, Hope CommUnity Center, LIFE at UCF, Orlando City Hall, Crealdé School of Art, the Maitland Art Center, and Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts.

    Interested in participating in the Big Read@UCF or hosting a Big Read in your community? Come to discuss and learn more about the NEA Big Read.

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