Brainstorming: The Human Connection

Schedule (Sessions are on Thursdays via Zoom at 10:30 a.m.)


  • Aug. 5 | Identity What is it? Is it important, if so why? Are there downsides?
  • Aug. 12 | Changing Gender Roles Do you believe widening gender roles serves humanity? Are there changes that you would rather not happen? Are there roles you would like to see that you don’t see now?
  • Aug. 19 | Cost vs Value What is more important to you cost or value? Why? How do you determine what something actually cost? How do you determine the value of something?
  • Aug. 26 | Interpersonal skills How important are interpersonal skills relative to other skills? How should people learn interpersonal skills? Who should be responsible for teaching interpersonal skills?


  • Sept. 2 | Native American Boarding Schools Featuring special guest Denise K. Lajimodiere, author, 2021 Festival of Books presenter and co-founder of the National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition. Lajimodiere and host Lawrence Diggs discuss the history of trauma endured by students at Native American boarding schools. 
  • Sept. 9 | South Dakota Special to New York Times Notable Featuring acclaimed Spearfish author Kent Meyers, a 2021 Festival presenter whose novels have been featured on the New York Times Notable Books list. Meyers and host Lawrence Diggs discuss Meyers' career trajectory: how did an unknown writer from a small state make his way onto the national literary scene?
  • Sept. 16 | Pioneer Girl: Laura Ingalls Wilder Special guest and 2021 Festival presenter Nancy Koupal, director and editor in chief of the Pioneer Girl Project, discusses her research and compilation of Pioneer Girl: The Revised Texts and Pioneer Girl Perspectives: Exploring Laura Ingalls Wilder with host Lawrence Diggs.
  • Sept. 23 | The Artist's Journey 2021 Festival of Books presenter Kent Nerburn offers a behind the scenes look at creativity as he discusses his book The Artist's Journey: On Making Art and Being an Artist with host Lawrence Diggs.
  • Sept. 30 | Operating in your Environment Is the ability to understand how the things in your home work important? Why/why not? What devices can you maintain or repair in your home? How did you learn to maintain or repair things?

Brainstorming Video Highlights

Diggs Hosting Weekly Sessions

The South Dakota Humanities Council, in cooperation with longtime SDHC scholar Lawrence Diggs, has developed a program to bring people peace and unity during these trying and divisive times. 

Brainstorming: The Human Connection is a weekly discussion series led by Diggs. When it becomes safe once again to meet in person, sessions will be held in person. Until then, participants will gather via Zoom. Diggs will use his humanities expertise to introduce and connect people with one another to help avoid tragic misunderstandings like the one that occurred in Minneapolis on May 25, 2020, when George Floyd, an African-American man, died after police kneeled on his back and neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Read our official statement on that situation here). 

Since this event, unrest has spread across the US, stemming from deeply rooted racial injustices that plague both America's past and present. As a State Humanities Council, it is our duty to provide humanities solutions to heal communities across their states and facilitate meaningful conversations in light of these circumstances.

Brainstorming Sessions: Schedule and Signup

About Brainstorming: The Human Connection

Download free Brainstorming Toolkit

About: Diggs is the host of Brainstorming: The Human Connection, a weekly South Dakota Humanities Council discussion series on forging human relationships. Audience participation is encouraged. Please note the meetings will be recorded. If you'd prefer not to be on the recording, you can attend and listen with your video and/or microphone turned off.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 829 9213 2991

Watch Previous Sessions


Brainstorming: The Human Connection Oct. 22 — Life as a Muslim in America

Brainstorming: The Human Connection Sept. 17 — Interview with 2020 Festival Presenter Alphonse Keasley

Brainstorming: The Human Connection Sept. 10 — Interview with Amy Scott-Stoltz, President of the League of Women Voters of South Dakota

Brainstorming: The Human Connection Aug. 20 — Tactics of Negotiation

Brainstorming: The Human Connection Aug. 13 — The Illusion of Race

Brainstorming: The Human Connection Aug. 6 — Interview with One Book SD Author Megan Phelps-Roper

Brainstorming: The Human Connection July 30 — Interview with Aberdeen Police Chief Dave McNeil