Tag Archive for lecture

Inequality, Concept of Race Topics of American Studies Lecture

Barbara Fields. (Photo courtesy of Columbia University)

Barbara Fields. (Photo courtesy of Columbia University)

Barbara Fields, professor of history at Columbia University, will deliver the third annual Richard Slotkin American Studies Lecture Series from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Feb. 17 in Russell House.

Fields’ lecture will draw on the intellectually transformative book she published with her sister, Karen Elise Fields, titled Racecraft: The Soul of Inequality in American Life (Verso, 2012).

“Her lecture—her thinking about how the forms of racecraft and how racecraft is pulled off—could not be more timely and urgent,” said Joel Pfister, the Olin Professor of American Studies and English, chair of the American Studies Department. “Her work on the category of ‘race’ offers conceptually rigorous historical, cultural and social analyses, as well as illuminating experiences from her own life.”

Fields is a former MacArthur Fellow, the president of the Southern Historical Association and a winner of the Columbia University Teaching Award. At Columbia, she specializes in southern history and 19th-century social history. She received her BA from Harvard (1968) and her PhD from Yale (1978).

The event is sponsored by the American Studies Department and co-sponsored by the Center for the Humanities, Theory Certificate and the African American Studies Program.

Refreshments will be served following the lecture.

Student, Experts Speak on the Social Justice Movement

Three experts and a Wesleyan student led a panel discussion on “After Charleston: Next Steps for the Movement for Social Justice” Sept. 17 in Memorial Chapel. The event was sponsored by the Allbritton Center for Public Life’s Right Now! series. The talk featured Clemmie Harris, visiting assistant professor of African American studies; Tedra James ’18; activist and filmmaker Bree Newsome and Connecticut Bishop John Selders.

Bree Newsome is a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts where she received a BFA in film and television. While still in high school, Newsome created an animated short, THE THREE PRINCES OF IDEA which earned her a $40,000 scholarship from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. In August 2012, Newsome wrote and recorded a rap song, “SHAKE IT LIKE AN ETCH-A-SKETCH!”, skewering presidential candidate Mitt Romney and criticizing the Republican Party for policies that promote classism and bigotry. A staunch advocate for human rights and social justice, Newsome was arrested last year during a sit-in at the North Carolina State Capitol where she spoke out against the state’s recent attack on voting rights. She continues to work as an activist and youth organizer in North Carolina, serving in the capacity of Western Field Organizer for the youth-led organization Ignite NC.

Bree Newsome is a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts where she received a BFA in film and television. While still in high school, Newsome created an animated short, THE THREE PRINCES OF IDEA, which earned her a $40,000 scholarship from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. In August 2012, Newsome wrote and recorded a rap song, “SHAKE IT LIKE AN ETCH-A-SKETCH!”, skewering presidential candidate Mitt Romney and criticizing the Republican Party for policies that promote classism and bigotry. A staunch advocate for human rights and social justice, Newsome was arrested last year during a sit-in at the North Carolina State Capitol where she spoke out against the state’s recent attack on voting rights. She continues to work as an activist and youth organizer in North Carolina, serving in the capacity of Western Field Organizer for the youth-led organization Ignite NC.

Post Delivers 24th Annual Hugo L. Black Lecture on Freedom of Expression

Robert Post, dean and Sol & Lillian Goldman Professor of Law at Yale Law School, delivered the 24th Annual Hugo L. Black Lecture on Freedom of Expression Feb. 19 in Memorial Chapel.

Robert Post, dean and Sol & Lillian Goldman Professor of Law at Yale Law School, delivered the 24th Annual Hugo L. Black Lecture on Freedom of Expression Feb. 19 in Memorial Chapel. His talk was titled “The First Amendment, Knowledge, and Academic Freedom.”

The lecture is named in honor of the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice and endowed by Leonard S. Halpert, Esq., ’44.

The lecture is named in honor of the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice and endowed by Leonard S. Halpert, Esq., ’44.

Writing at Wesleyan Announces Spring Russell House Series on Prose and Poetry

Writing at Wesleyan announces the Spring 2015 Russell House Series on Prose and Poetry.

Writer/authors in the Spring 2015 series include Ron Padgett on Feb. 25, Millett Fellow Caryl Phillips on March 4, Sadia Shepard on March 25, Rowan Ricardo Phillips on April 1 and Ruth Ozeki on April 8.

All events are free and open to the public. For more information on these talks visit the Writing at Wesleyan website.

Support for this series is provided by Writing at Wesleyan, the English Department, the Annie Sonnenblick Fund, the Joan Jakobson Fund, the Jacob Julien Fund, the Millett Writing Fellow Fund, the Center for the Arts, and the Shapiro Creative Writing Center.

The 2014/2015 Series organizers include Lisa Cohen, associate professor of English; Elizabeth Willis, the Shapiro-Silverberg Professor of Creative Writing; Amy Bloom, the Kim-Frank Family University Writer-in-Residence; and Anne Greene, director of Writing Programs.

Rabban ’71 to Deliver Constitution Day Lecture Sept. 17

David Rabban '71

David Rabban ’71

David Rabban ’71 will speak on “Free Speech, Academic Freedom, and the American University” during Wesleyan’s annual Constitution Day Lecture.

The event will take place at 7 p.m. Sept. 17 in the Smith Reading Room inside Olin Memorial Library. The lecture, hosted by the Friends of the Wesleyan Library is free of charge and open to the public.

This talk will cover the judicial treatment of free speech and academic freedom at American universities from the 1950s to the present. It will explore the First Amendment rights of professors, students and universities as institutions, and the tensions that arise when these rights conflict.

Center for the Humanities Explores “Mobilities” in Fall Lecture Series

Meritocracy and Mobility, Intertwined Histories of the South Indian Dance Revival, and What Do Mobile Phones Mobilize are just three of the topics to be discussed during the Center for the Humanities' fall lecture series.

Meritocracy and Mobility, Intertwined Histories of the South Indian Dance Revival, and What Do Mobile Phones Mobilize? are three of the topics to be discussed during the Center for the Humanities’ fall lecture series.

Over the past decade, a new approach to the study of mobilities has emerged involving research on the combined movement of peoples, animals, objects, ideas and information. This can be viewed through the lens of complex networks, relational dynamics, and the redistribution or reification of power generated by movement.

This fall, Wesleyan’s Center for the Humanities will offer 10 lectures on the theme of “Mobilities” as part of its lecture series. Five of the speakers are from Wesleyan.

All talks begin at 6 p.m., are open to the public, and are held at Daniel Family Commons. The dates, topics and speakers are:

Sept. 8
Ecological Poetics, or, Wallace Stevens’ Birds
Cary Wolfe, professor of English, Rice University

Sept. 15
Beyond Synthesis: The Return of Micro History in Global Contexts and the “Relationing” of History
Angelika Eppel, professor of history, Bielefeld University, Germany

Sept. 22
The Roma Question in France and the Return of Race
Éric Fassin, professor of sociology, École Normale Supérieure, Paris

Slotkin Delivers Inaugural American Studies Lecture

Richard Slotkin, the Olin Professor of American Studies and English, emeritus, delivered a lecture on "Thinking Mythologically: Black Hawk Down, Platoon and the War of Choice in Iraq" April 24 in Powell Family Cinema. This was the inaugural lecture in the Richard Slotkin American Studies Lecture Series.

Richard Slotkin, the Olin Professor of American Studies and English, emeritus, delivered a lecture on “Thinking Mythologically: Black Hawk Down, Platoon and the War of Choice in Iraq” April 24 in Powell Family Cinema. This was the inaugural lecture in the Richard Slotkin American Studies Lecture Series.

Justice Aharon Barak to Lead Annual Hugo Black Lecture on Oct. 8

Aharon Barak

Aharon Barak

Aharon Barak, former president of the Israeli Supreme Court Interdisciplinary Center, in Herzliya, Israel will deliver the 23rd annual Hugo L. Black Lecture on Freedom of Expression at 8 p.m. Oct. 8 in Memorial Chapel. His talk is titled, “Human Dignity and Free Speech.”

Barak served as a justice on the Supreme Court of Israel from 1978 to 1995 and as president of the Court from 1995 to 2006. Earlier, he was Attorney General of the State of Israel and Dean of the Law Faculty at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 1978, Barak traveled to the United States as the legal advisor to the Israeli delegation in negotiating the Camp David Accords.

Much of Barak’s judicial work and writing has focused on the concept of a constitutional revolution brought about through the adoption by the Israeli Knesset of Basic Laws guaranteeing human rights.

The recipient of many international prizes and of 17 honorary degrees, Justice Barak was chosen in 1987 as a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  Among his books are The Judge in a Democracy (2006) and Proportionality: Constitutional Rights and Their Limitations (2012).

The lecture, endowed by Leonard S. Halpert, Esq., ’44, is named in honor of the late 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. Former Hugo Black Lecture speakers have included U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, Geoffery Stone, Lawrence Tribe, Jack Balkin, Lawrence Lessig and others.

Experts Discuss Césaire at Americas Forum

“The Centenary of Aimé Césaire 1913-2008: Poet, Pragmatist, a Voice for the Voiceless” was the theme of the 2013 Americas Forum held April 5-6 in Russell House. The Americas Forum offered an intellectual consideration of Césaire’s contributions to our understanding of the Americas, Marxism, imperialism, independence, race and the role of art.

“The Centenary of Aimé Césaire 1913-2008: Poet, Pragmatist, a Voice for the Voiceless” was the theme of the 2013 Americas Forum held April 5-6 in Russell House. The Americas Forum offered an intellectual consideration of Césaire’s contributions to our understanding of the Americas, Marxism, imperialism, independence, race and the role of art.

Constitutional Law Expert Geoffrey Stone Delivers Annual Hugo Black Lecture April 18

Geoffrey Stone, the Edward H. Levi Distinguished Service Professor at the University of Chicago, delivered the 22nd annual Hugo L. Black Lecture on Freedom of Expression on April 18.

Geoffrey Stone, the Edward H. Levi Distinguished Service Professor at the University of Chicago, delivered the 22nd annual Hugo L. Black Lecture on Freedom of Expression on April 18. (Photo by Bill Tyner ’13)

Geoffrey Stone, the Edward H. Levi Distinguished Service Professor at the University of Chicago, delivered the 22nd annual Hugo L. Black Lecture on Freedom of Expression on April 18.

The topic of this year’s event was “Justice Alito’s First Amendment.”

Stone explored the current state of constitutional jurisprudence, with a particular eye on the approach of the most “conservative” of the current justices. How they undertake the challenge of interpreting the often vague and open-ended guarantees of the Constitution? What explains their decisions in the most controversial cases, involving such issues as the constitutionality of campaign finance regulation, affirmative action, and gun control? He then turned  to Justice Samuel Alito’s approach to interpreting the free speech guarantee of the First Amendment to illustrate more general observations about the conservative justices and to illuminate Justice Alito’s own “vision” of the First Amendment.

Stone was admitted to the New York Bar in 1972 and has been a member of the University of Chicago’s law faculty since 1973. He served as a law clerk to Judge J. Skelly Wright of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and to Justice William J. Brennan Jr. of the Supreme Court of the United States.

Professor Stone teaches and writes primarily in the area of constitutional law. His most recent books are Speaking Out! Reflections on Law, Liberty and Justice (2010); Top Secret: When Our Government Keeps Us in the Dark (2007) and War and Liberty: An American Dilemma (2007). He’s currently working on a new book, Sexing the Constitution, which will explore the historical evolution in western culture of the intersection of sex, religion and law.

Among his many public activities, Professor Stone is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Constitution Society, a member of the National Advisory Council of the American Civil Liberties Union, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a Fellow of the American Philosophical Society, a member of the American Law Institute and a member of the Straight for Equality Project.

The lecture, endowed by Leonard S. Halpert, Esq., ’44, is named in honor of the late 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. Former Hugo Black Lecture speakers have included U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, Lawrence Tribe, Jack Balkin, Lawrence Lessig, Justice Harry Blackmun and others.

A commentary on “Professor Stone’s First Amendment Views and Its Jurisprudence,” written by Halpert for this lecture, is online here. (To download Halpert’s essay, open the link and save it to your desktop.)