There There in Wisconsin (2022-2023)

During the 2022-2023 Great World Texts in Wisconsin program, high school teachers and students throughout the state will read Tommy Orange’s There There, a multi-generational, relentlessly paced novel that speaks to the complexities of the urban Native American experience. Orange’s novel explores narratives of violence and recovery, hope and loss, identity and power, dislocation and communion.

Program Events and Resources

Teachers participating in the program received a Teaching There There in Wisconsin curricular guide and a classroom set of texts for their school’s permanent collection. The curriculum guide contains contextual and lecture materials, suggested readings, close reading and discussion activities, handouts, and suggestions for student projects. This teaching guide is designed to make the text accessible for a range of learners and grade levels, and is customizable to meet the needs of a wide-range of classrooms and students.

Participating teachers from across the state of Wisconsin also attended a virtual educator colloquium on August 29, 2022, which featured lectures by campus faculty, guidelines for the conference, and community building exercises between educators.

Educators will bring their students to UW-Madison for a full-day conference on April 24, 2023 where students will present projects created in response to the novel, engage with other students from across the state, and meet author Tommy Orange in person. All participating educators received a stipend to fund their school’s participation in the program. These funds are most often used to offset the costs of substitute teachers and travel to Madison for the student conference.

All teachers, present and future, are welcome to download the curricular guide and supporting materials to use in their classrooms, available below.

Educator’s Guide

Keynote Speaker: Student Conference and Public Lecture

Tommy Orange is a Pulitzer Prize finalist and New York Times bestselling author of There There. For this lecture, Orange will talk about his craft, the writing process, and Native American history and culture.

Orange is a graduate of the MFA program at the Institute of American Indian Arts. An enrolled member of the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma; he was born and raised in Oakland, California.

Support for There There in Wisconsin

There There in Wisconsin, an initiative of the Center for the Humanities at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is additionally supported by the UW-Madison Libraries; the Evjue Foundation; the Wisconsin Book Festival; the Anonymous Fund of the University of Wisconsin-Madison; and the Departments of American Indian Studies, History, and English and Creative Writing.

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2022-2023 Participating Schools

In 2022-23, 20 schools from across Wisconsin will engage with Tommy Orange’s novel, There There.

  • Chippewa Falls High School, CHIPPEWA FALLS
  • Cristo Rey Jesuit High School Milwaukee, MILWAUKEE
  • Elkhart Lake Glenbeulah High School, ELKHART LAKE
  • Étude High School, SHEBOYGAN
  • La Follette High School, MADISON
  • Lake Mills High School, LAKE MILLS
  • Madison Country Day School, MADISON
  • Menasha High School, MENASHA
  • Milwaukee High School of the Arts, MILWAUKEE
  • Milwaukee School of Languages, MILWAUKEE
  • Necedah High School, NECEDAH
  • New Horizons for Learning Charter High School, SHOREWOOD
  • Osseo-Fairchild High School, OSSEO
  • Oshkosh North High School, OSHKOSH
  • Oshkosh West High School. OSHKOSH
  • Rock University High School, JANESVILLE
  • School of Options and Applied Research Charter High School, EAGLE RIVER
  • Whitehall Memorial High School, WHITEHALL
  • Whitnall High School, GREENFIELD
  • Xavier Catholic High School, APPLETON