Naomi Lacey Memorial Lecture

The Lacey family, through the Naomi and John Lacey Foundation for the Arts, established a new resident fellowship in honour of Naomi Lacey at the Calgary Institute for the Humanities in 2018.

Naomi Lacey sitting in a chair, holding her dog

Naomi Lacey was the recipient of the first graduate degree granted by the Classics (GLR) Department at the University of Calgary for her work on Ovid. She taught Latin at the University for ten years, was appointed to Faculty Council, and was elected to the Senate of the University. She was also a member of the Advisory Council of the CIH from 2002-2005. In her memory, her family, through the Naomi and John Lacey Foundation for the Arts, have created a resident fellowship. Dr. John Lacey, together with his late wife Naomi, has been a standard-bearer for the Calgary arts community over the decades, perhaps most notably at the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra and more recently supporting the establishment of a new art museum in Calgary — Contemporary Calgary.

For John Lacey, the gift from the Naomi and John Lacey Foundation for the Arts is a way of keeping Naomi’s values alive. “These are the principles she tried to teach us, about philanthropy and the importance of the humanities,” says Lacey. “I know her wish would be to see the CIH gain in strength and influence at the university and in the community. Its work has depth and importance.”


Etching of The Sorrows of Werther as man kneels in aguish with his book cast to the ground

The 6th Annual Naomi Lacey Memorial Lecture

Literature and Freedom

Drawing on texts by Rousseau, Goethe, Schiller, and others, Dr. Martin Wager assesses how various types of freedom—from patronage, the literary market, or the rules of genre—coalesced into a concept of literature whose legacy is still felt today.

February 13, 2024