Eiko Otake stands on the top of a breakwater in a dark gray kimono. To her right, the ocean crashes into piles of concrete cubes–their shapes, stacked together, seem almost too clean, like abstractions of stone. She clutches a large but frayed scarlet cloth that catches the wind and encircles her, hovering just inches from her skin. Following the breakwater into the distance, a large cubic structure is visible along the water’s edge. It is the Fukushima Daini Nuclear Plant, 12 miles from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant. She is standing at the midpoint between the infamous two, in the area where the tsunami wave reached 68 feet and the level of radiation remains very high.
Tableaux like this constitute A Body in Fukushima (2016), a series of photographs by Otake, visiting artist in dance and the College of East Asian Studies, and her collaborator William Johnston, professor of history, East Asian studies, science in society and environmental studies. The series shows her, a lone body in the landscape of Fukushima, Japan, in the aftermath of the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. This collaborative photo exhibition had been on Wesleyan’s campus from February through May 2015.
Currently in New York City as part of The Christa Project: Manifesting Diving Bodies, at the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine, the exhibit will culminate in Remembering Fukushima: Art and Conversations at the Cathedral on March 11, the sixth anniversary of the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear meltdowns that followed.
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On March 31, the Connecticut Alliance for Campus Sustainability will run its fourth annual Connecticut Campus Sustainability Conference on campus from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The theme for this year’s conference is “Engagement and Empowerment around Climate Change: Fostering Inspiration and Action at the Local Level.”
Discussions will center on sustainable citizenship in Connecticut and how to take action at multiple levels, including the role of universities, state policy makers, students, municipalities and individuals.
The conference encourages the involvement of attendees and invites them to share their work on campus sustainability as break-out session speakers.
Women at Wesleyan are hosting an International Women’s Day cocktail hour and panel discussion from 4:30 to 6 p.m. March 8 in the Smith Reading Room. Wesleyan’s faculty and staff will discuss “Being Bold for Change.” All faculty and staff are invited.
The Wesleyan Republicans and Wesleyan Democrats student groups are hosting Bipartisan Political Series discussions to encourage open political dialogue on campus.
“Following the recent election, we recognized the necessity for dialogue and communication as being more important than ever,” said Catherine Cervone ’19, a member of the Wesleyan Republicans. “We are really looking forward to this discussion series as we see it benefiting not only the members of our own club, but the campus community as a whole.”
On Feb. 23, Professor Marc Eisner, will speak on the impact of polarization on contemporary politics. After his talk, he will facilitate a discussion where voices from both sides will be able to talk about their views on the issue. Eiser is the dean of the Social Sciences, the Henry Merritt Wriston Chair in Public Policy, professor of government and professor of environmental studies. His talk takes place in Public Affairs Center Room 422 at noon.
On March 2, Doug Foyle, associate professor of government, will speak about Trump’s foreign policy. His talk will take place in Public Affairs Center Room 104 at noon.
This semester, the Certificate in Social, Cultural and Critical Theory is hosting a lecture series titled “Contours of the Present Crisis.”
This series will respond the heightened social and political conflicts of the current moment. Talks will be held on March 7, March 30 and May 4.
“Our aim is to emphasize at every turn the relationship between what we call ‘theory’ and the rest of our lives,” says Matthew Garrett, associate professor of English, associate professor of American studies and the director of the Certificate in Social, Cultural, and Critical Theory. “Intellectual work certainly deserves a privileged place; at the same time, as somebody once said, the world won’t get better on its own, and our work in the Certificate needs to keep alive the relationship between rigorous critical thought and open, radical activity in the world.”
Suleiman Mourad, professor of religion at Smith College,
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This February, in honor of Black History Month, Wesleyan is hosting a series of events including a celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; discussions on current black issues and diaspora blackness around the world; a Black History Month formal celebration; a unconventional poetry performance; a black radical protest with a former Black Panther activist; a student of color art show and live performances; and much more.
Ujamma, Wesleyan’s black student union, is coordinating all events. (Click graphic below to enlarge).
From 4 to 6 p.m. Feb. 11 in the World Music Hall, engage in a panel discussion on the diaspora of the Kurdish people, the largest ethnic group in the world without a country that they can call their own. The program focuses on the integration of the Kurdish people into Western societies as refugees, their trials and tribulations during their assimilation, as well as the current and the future position of the Kurds in the geopolitical landscape and the stability of the Middle East and the fight against terror.
This program will be followed by a musical and dance performance by the J-Hoon Ensemble, a NYC-based ensemble focused on the folkloric music and dances of Kurdistan.
Tickets are available at the Wesleyan Box Office.
Note: This event has been rescheduled for April 20.
Linda Greenhouse, the Knight Distinguished Journalist in Residence and Joseph Goldstein Lecturer in Law at the Yale Law School, will present a talk titled “Writing the Truth in the Age of Trump” during the 26th annual Hugo L. Black Lecture on Freedom of Expression.
The talk begins at 8 p.m., April 20 in Memorial Chapel.
Linda Greenhouse covered the Supreme Court for The New York Times between 1978 and 2008 and writes a biweekly op-ed column on law as a contributing columnist. She received several major journalism awards during her 40-year career at the Times, including the Pulitzer Prize (1998) and the Goldsmith Career Award for Excellence in Journalism from Harvard University’s Kennedy School (2004). In 2002, the American Political Science Association gave her its Carey McWilliams Award for “a major journalistic contribution to our understanding of politics.” Her books include a biography of Justice Harry A. Blackmun, Becoming Justice Blackmun; Before Roe v. Wade: Voices That Shaped the Abortion Debate Before the Supreme Court’s Ruling; The Burger Court and the Rise of the Judicial Right; and The U.S. Supreme Court, A Very Short Introduction.
Greenhouse is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, where she serves on the council, and is one of two non-lawyer honorary members elected to the American Law Institute, which in 2002 awarded her its Henry J. Friendly Medal. She is a vice president of the Council of the American Philosophical Society, which in 2005 awarded her its Henry Allen Moe Prize for writing in the humanities and jurisprudence. She has been awarded 11 honorary degrees. Greenhouse is a 1968 graduate of Radcliffe College (Harvard), where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and she currently serves on the Phi Beta Kappa national senate. She earned a Master of Studies in Law degree from Yale Law School (1978), which she attended on a Ford Foundation fellowship.
The lecture is named in honor of U. S. Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black. The series is designed to bring to the Wesleyan campus distinguished public figures and scholars with experience and expertise in matters related to the First Amendment and freedom of expression. This lecture, which is endowed by Leonard S. Halpert ’44, is offered annually.
For more information on the lecture, visit this website.
Theodore Shaw ’76, Hon. ’14
The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration planning committee invites all members of the Wesleyan community to take part in a MLK Commemoration from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m. Feb. 3 in Memorial Chapel. A reception will follow in Zelnick Pavilion.
Theodore Shaw ‘76, Hon. ’14 will deliver the keynote address titled “Freedom is a Constant Struggle.” Shaw is the Julius L. Chambers Distinguished Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Civil Rights at the University of North Carolina School of Law at Chapel Hill. Professor Shaw was the fifth Director-Counsel and President of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc., for which he worked in various capacities over the span of 26 years.
He received a BA with Honors from Wesleyan in 1976 and was awarded an honorary degree from Wesleyan in 2014. He earned a J.D. from Columbia Law School in 1979, where he was a Charles Evans Hughes Fellow.
Listen to an interview with Shaw in this Careers by Design podcast.
On Dec. 8, Wesleyan will hold Wesleyan Thinks Big, a biannual TED-talk style event featuring Wesleyan faculty and administrators giving 10-minute speeches on an experience, a personal passion, an existential question or another topic of their choosing. The event will take place at 5 p.m. in Memorial Chapel.
This year’s event is being coordinated by Catherine Wulff ’18, with help from Rachel Godfrey ’19 and Kaiyana Cervera ’19.
“Wesleyan Thinks Big is a way to bring the community together outside of the classroom, by shedding light on the strength of personal testimony and human connection,” said Wulff. “Our main goal is for the audience to leave energized and hopeful.”
Wesleyan Thinks Big will feature:
- Iris Bork-Goldfield, adjunct professor of German studies and chair of the German Studies Department: “Thank you for Smoking. The Unintended Consequences of Lucky Strikes;”
- Danielle Vogel, visiting assistant professor of creative writing in English: “Narrative & Nest;”
- Renee Johnson-Thornton, dean for the Class of 2018: “How to Excel in College by Cultivating Membership in a Community of Practice;” and
- Khalil Johnson, assistant professor of African American studies: “Settler Colonial Blues: Musings from the Margins of Black and Indigenous History.”
The Department of Astronomy welcomes local children to “Kids Night” on Nov. 18 at the Van Vleck Observatory.
From 7:30 to 8:30 p.m., graduate and undergraduate students will lead kid-friendly, space-related activities including an observation of the night sky.
The event is free and open to the public.
“The Historic Decision on Net Neutrality, and What it Means for the Future” will be held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Nov. 10 in the Hansel Lecture Hall (Room 001 Public Affairs Center).
Panelists include Jessica Rosenworcel ’93, FCC Commissioner; Brad Burnham ‘77, managing partner at Union Square Ventures; and Christiaan Hogendorn, associate professor of economics.
Norm Danner, associate professor of computer science, will moderate the event.