Center for Ethics

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Spring 2018 Schedule

The Center for Ethics will continue its 2017-18 Troubling Truth programming throughout the spring semester. In the age of media manipulations, alternative facts, conspiracy theories and security leaks, the series explores difficult and controversial issues and encourages ethical reflection and responsible action.

 

Sa’ed Atshan, “Palestinian Christians: Past, Present and Future”

Thursday, February 1
7 p.m. in Moyer Hall’s Miller Forum.

Palestinian Christians, descendants of the world's oldest Christian communities, have historically made up 10-20 percent of the population in Palestine, with an increasing percentage in the Diaspora over time. They have played a disproportionate role in shaping Palestinian politics and society, and yet Palestinian Christians remain largely invisible in discourse on Israel/Palestine. What are their past and present experiences, especially in relationship with other Palestinians as well as Israelis? What are their hopes, fears and dreams?

Sa’ed Atshan holds a Ph.D. degree in anthropology and Middle East studies from Harvard University and currently teaches peace and conflict studies at Swarthmore College. He was previously a lecturer in the peace and justice studies department at Tufts University and served as the advisor for the Students for Justice in Palestine program at Tufts. 

 

Elaine McMillion Sheldon, “Perception of Truth”

Monday, February 12
7 p.m. in Moyer Hall’s Miller Forum.

Elaine McMillion Sheldon is a Peabody Award-winning and Academy Award-nonimated documentary filmmaker based in West Virginia. Her work explores universal stories of identity, roots, survival and resilience. Sheldon is the director of "Heroin(e)" a Netflix Original Documentary short that follows three women fighting the opioid crisis in Huntington, West Virginia. It was recently nominated for an Academy Award.

The event will include a showing of “Heroin(e)” and other clips of Sheldon’s work, followed by a Q&A with the filmmaker.

Sheldon’s other work includes “Hollow” (2013), an interactive documentary that examines the future of rural America through the eyes and voices of West Virginians and received a Peabody, Emmy nomination and 3rd Prize in the World Press Photo Multimedia Awards. She was named one of the "25 New Faces of Independent Film" by Filmmaker Magazine and is a founding member of All Y'all Southern Documentary Collective.

This talk is co-sponsored by the LVAIC documentary storymaking program.

 

Chris Gilliard, “Against Complicity: Surveillance, Education and Digital Redlining”

Thursday, March 1
7 p.m. in Moyer Hall’s Miller Forum.

Chris Gilliard’s presentation will examine the issues of privacy, digital redlining and the re-inventions of discriminatory practices through data mining and algorithmic decision-making, especially as these topics apply to college students. He is a professor of English at Macomb Community College.

This talk is co-sponsored by the Muhlenberg digital learning team and the media & communication department.

 

 

 

Fall 2017 Schedule

 

SEPTEMBER

 

William Mazzarella lecture, “Why is Trump So Enjoyable?”

September 7, 7 p.m. in Seegers Union 111-112

Mazzarella, the Neukom Family Professor and Chair of the Department of Anthropology at the University of Chicago, will explore the apparent imperviousness of President Donald Trump’s popularity to gaffes and scandals. To do this, he will suggest that we need to come grips with the dimension of enjoyment that drives attachment—as well as opposition—to the Trump phenomenon.

 

OCTOBER

 

Janaya Khan lecture, “Black Lives Matter: Demanding Social Transformation, Justice and Equality” 

October 2, 7 p.m. in Moyer Hall’s Miller Forum

Khan, co-founder of Black Lives Matter Canada and a leading voice in the global crusade demanding social transformation, justice and equality, will help educate audiences on how to make their own communities, create networks, build coalitions, work in solidarity together, develop strategies and create change. With compelling narratives, Khan will illustrate how individual lives are affected by inequality and rouse the audience to actively seek justice for all.

 

Susan Stryker lecture, “What Transpires Now: Transgender History and the Future We Need”

October 18, 7 p.m. in Seegers Union Event Space

In this talk, drawn from her forthcoming book, gender theorist and historian Susan Stryker examines the trans-temporal dimensions of what gets labelled “transgender” today. At stake, Stryker contends, in contemporary conflicts over pronouns and public toilets, is a deeper ontological struggle over which fantasies of past and futurity have the ability to ground themselves in materiality and come to count as real. This event is co-sponsored by women’s and gender studies.

 

Stephen Prothero lecture, “A Cloud of Unknowing in American Religion and Politics”

October 25, 7 p.m., Moyer Hall’s Miller Forum

Prothero will examine the political effects of religious ignorance in an era of “fake news” and “agnotology” and suggests ways to improve our civic life by fostering greater religious literacy. Prothero’s talk is co-sponsored by the chaplain’s office, religion studies department, department of Languages, Literatures & Cultures, Institute for Jewish-Christian Understanding and the Muhlenberg Interfaith Community.

 

NOVEMBER

 

Woodrow Wilson Fellow Achy Obejas lecture and reading, "I, Citizen"

November 1, 7 p.m. in Moyer Hall’s Miller Forum

Obejas will introduce her newest book of short stories, the “Tower of the Antilles,” with a book signing to follow. These stories of contemporary Cuba explore how history and fate intrude on even the most ordinary of lives. Author of the critically acclaimed novels “Ruins,” “Days of Awe” and three other books of fiction, this year’s Woodrow Wilson Fellow is director of the MFA in translation program at Mills College in Oakland, Calif. Obejas’ visit is being held in conjunction with the Multicultural Center.

 

Common Hour Performance of “Dreamscape” and Talk Back

November 17, 2:30 p.m., Baker Theatre

Created by Rickerby Hinds, “Dreamscape” is a riveting hip hop theatre play that is loosely based on the true story of a young woman who was shot to death by officers while sitting in her car unconscious. The play is central to conversations surrounding situations like Ferguson, as it explores policing and surveillance and the devastating effects this phenomenon has had on communities of color. This event was co-organized by theatre & dance and Sharrell Luckett, assistant professor of theatre.

A related event, "A Conversation with Hip Hop Theatre Pedagogy Pioneers" will be held November 16 at 6 p.m. in Moyer Hall's Miller Forum.