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Programs and Events

FRAMING THE DIALOGUE

The Commons presents this series, in collaboration with campus partners and visiting scholars, to invite dialogue across disciplines, that references the broader conversations we face at a societal level. These events broach topics of identity, community, and intersectionality. While they address themes that are at times difficult to discuss, they encourage conversations worth having. Through this series we endeavor to frame these topics so that conversation is productive despite the difficulty and potential for disagreement.

We recognize that the only way to understand different perspectives is to hear them, and to keep asking questions. Please feel encouraged to contribute to the discussion, and recognize that many of these topics are particularly sensitive.

Partners in programming include: the KU Libraries, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Center for Civic & Social Responsibility, the KU Honors Program, the Office of First-Year Experience, the KU Law School, Peace & Conflict Studies, and the Department of English.

EVENTS

COFFEE @ THE COMMONS

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's "We Should All Be Feminists" in Context

Charlesia McKinney, English + Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
Chris Martin, Theatre
Jameelah Jones, African and African-American Studies
10:00am Friday, September 16 | The Commons

Inspired by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s essay “We Should All Be Feminists,” this event will begin with an introduction by three graduate students whose research connects to Adichie’s work from different disciplinary perspectives. Charlesia McKinney, Chris Martin, and Jameelah Jones will share contributions from their research on related themes. After these contextual prompts, the audience is charged with carrying the conversation. Topics will include: intersectionality and construction of identity; how this work relates to contemporary literature; and more.

The first 20 audience members will receive a copy of the essay in advance of the event. Please note that this event requires prior familiarity with the essay, the presentation of which can also be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hg3umXU_qWc.

RSVP required to thecommons@ku.edu.

PRESENTATIONS

Gender Equity & Policy 2016
Presented as part of Make Your Mark: a nonpartisan effort to promote civic engagement among students

5:30pm Tuesday, September 20 | The Commons
Sponsored by the Center for Civic & Social Responsibility

Gender Equity and Policy 2016 is a series of TED-style talks that address issues of gender equity and related policies relevant to the current election cycle including: reproductive health, bathroom access for trans-identified people, and sexual violence in higher education. For more information, visit the Make Your Mark website: http://ccsr.ku.edu/make-your-mark

FILM SCREENING & DISCUSSION

3 1/2 Minutes, 10 Bullets

7:00pm Wednesday, October 12 | The Commons
Sponsored by the KU Honors Program, the Office of First-Year Experience, and the Office of Multicultural Affairs

In 3 ½ Minutes, Ten Bullets, two lives intersected and were forever altered. On Black Friday 2012, two cars parked next to each other at a Florida gas station. A white middle-aged male and a black teenager exchanged angry words over the volume of the music in the boy’s car. A gun entered the exchange, and one of them was left dead. Michael Dunn fired 10 bullets at a car full of unarmed teenagers and then fled. Three of those bullets hit 17-year-old Jordan Davis, who died at the scene. Arrested the next day, Dunn claimed he shot in self-defense. Thus began the long journey of unraveling the truth. 3 ½ Minutes, Ten Bullets follows that journey, reconstructing the night of the murder and revealing how hidden racial prejudice can result in tragedy. View the trailer here.

Join us for a screening of this 2015 documentary.

LECTURE & DISCUSSION

The Journey Out of the Racial Divide: Reflections on the Reclamation of the Human Spirit
Michael Penn, Department Chair & Professor of Psychology at Franklin & Marshall College

3:00pm October 31 | The Commons
Sponsored by the KU Libraries, KU Law School, and Peace & Conflict Studies

Dr. Michael Penn is Department Chair and Professor of Psychology at Franklin & Marshall College. Professor Penn has lectured widely around the world and has been invited to serve as a consultant and speaker at United Nations-related conferences in several countries. He serves as faculty for the United Nations Staff College in Turin, Italy, and as a trainer for the UN Leader’s Programme, which trains Director-level United Nations officers. For the past 25 years Professor Penn has focused his research and teaching on the world’s most challenging problems. These problems include the problem of violence against women and girls, racism and intergroup conflict, hopelessness, and the challenge of relational authenticity.

POETRY READING

Melissa Buzzeo

7:00pm Wednesday, November 2 | The Commons
Sponsored by the Department of English

Melissa Buzzeo's recent book The Devastation (Nightboat 2015) was a Lambda Literary Award finalist in Poetry. She is also the author of For Want and Sound (Les figues 2013), Face (Bookthug 2009) and What Began Us (Leon Works 2007). She is working on a new book--a simple kind of memoir, a history of sexuality and something else opening or shutting it. It is called Writing.

She lives in Brooklyn and teaches creative writing, feminism and poetics of healing at Pratt Institute.

PUBLIC SESSION

The Power of Migration Stories

3:30pm Tuesday, December 6
Hosted by the Kansas African Studies Center

Presented as part of the ongoing Framing the Dialogue conversation at The Commons, this gathering will feature a conversation about migration issues across disciplines. The Kansas African Studies Center and its Migration Stories project partners will highlight accomplishments in facilitating and sharing stories of migration this year during an initiative funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Join us to view the fruits of the project to date and to discuss possible broader collaborations in the future.

PUBLIC EVENT

Conflict is Not Abuse: Overstating Harm, Community Responsibility, and the Duty of Repair

Sarah Schulman, Distinguished Professor of English, College of Staten Island, City University of New York
7:00pm Thursday, February 16 | The Commons
Presented by the KU Libraries, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Department of English, the University Honors Program, the Department of American Studies, and The Commons

Sarah Schulman is a novelist, nonfiction writer, playwright, screenwriter, journalist and AIDS historian, and the author of eighteen books. A Guggenheim and Fulbright Fellow, Sarah is a Distinguished Professor at the City University of New York, College of Staten Island, and on the advisory board of Jewish Voice for Peace. She is the Co-Founder of MIX: NY LGBT Experimental Film and Video Festival, Co-Director of ACT UP Oral History Project, and the US Coodinator of the first LGBT Delegation to Palestine. She was also the Coordinator of the HOMONATIONALISM and PINKWASHING CONFERENCE at the City University of New York Graduate Center, Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies (April, 2013). She is also a member of the advisory board of Jewish Voice for Peace, and is a fellow at the NY Institute for the Humanities at NYU.

Conflict Is Not Abuse: Overstating Harm, Community Responsibility, and the Duty of Repair was published in October, 2016. bell hooks writes, "With awesome brilliance and insight, Sarah Schulman offers readers new strategies to intervene on all relations of domination both personal and political. The core of this book provides ways to think and move beyond blaming and/or assuming victimhood -- so that each of us may come to understand the role we assume in creating and sustaining conflicts in all our relations. Sharing myriad ways, critical vigilance can help us all understand that conflict need not be viewed as abuse, that essential distinctions may be made between the hurt we experience in conflict and the violence of abuse, Schulman offers a vision of mutual recognition and accountability that liberates."

COFFEE @ THE COMMONS

on Change within a University

Sarah Schulman, Distinguished Professor of English, College of Staten Island, City University of New York
10:00am Friday, February 17 | The Commons
Presented by the KU Libraries, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Department of English, the University Honors Program, the Department of American Studies, and The Commons

Sarah Schulman is a novelist, nonfiction writer, playwright, screenwriter, journalist and AIDS historian, and the author of eighteen books. A Guggenheim and Fulbright Fellow, Sarah is a Distinguished Professor at the City University of New York, College of Staten Island, and on the advisory board of Jewish Voice for Peace. She is the Co-Founder of MIX: NY LGBT Experimental Film and Video Festival, Co-Director of ACT UP Oral History Project, and the US Coodinator of the first LGBT Delegation to Palestine. She was also the Coordinator of the HOMONATIONALISM and PINKWASHING CONFERENCE at the City University of New York Graduate Center, Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies (April, 2013). She is also a member of the advisory board of Jewish Voice for Peace, and is a fellow at the NY Institute for the Humanities at NYU.

STUDENT EVENT

Lunch & Learn with Sarah Schulman, on Student Activism

12:00pm Friday, February 17 | Office of Multicultural Affairs
Presented by the KU Libraries, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Department of English, the University Honors Program, the Department of American Studies, and The Commons

Sarah Schulman is a novelist, nonfiction writer, playwright, screenwriter, journalist and AIDS historian, and the author of eighteen books. A Guggenheim and Fulbright Fellow, Sarah is a Distinguished Professor at the City University of New York, College of Staten Island, and on the advisory board of Jewish Voice for Peace. She is the Co-Founder of MIX: NY LGBT Experimental Film and Video Festival, Co-Director of ACT UP Oral History Project, and the US Coodinator of the first LGBT Delegation to Palestine. She was also the Coordinator of the HOMONATIONALISM and PINKWASHING CONFERENCE at the City University of New York Graduate Center, Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies (April, 2013). She is also a member of the advisory board of Jewish Voice for Peace, and is a fellow at the NY Institute for the Humanities at NYU.

MIGRATION LECTURE SERIES

Stories of the Undocumented: Cultural Trauma and American DREAMers

Marta Caminero-Santangelo, Professor of English/Interim Director of the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies, University of Kansas
7:00pm Tuesday, February 21 | The Commons
Sponsored by the Center for Migration Research at the Institute for Policy and Social Research

Marta Caminero-Santangelo examines how US Latinx writers are increasingly expressing their solidarity with undocumented immigrants in representing the issues surrounding unauthorized immigration as a form of cultural trauma; and she looks at the narratives of the undocumented themselves—especially so-called “DREAMers”—to discuss their formation of a common group identity and compelling story of American identity.

COFFEE @ THE COMMONS

with Photographer Natalie Krick

Challenging Female Beauty
10:00am Friday, February 24 | The Commons
Sponsored by The Hallmark Corporate Foundation, the Department of Design, and The Commons

Natalie Krick (b. 1986) lives in Seattle, Washington. She completed a BFA in Photography at the School of Visual Arts in 2008 and an MFA in photography at Columbia College Chicago in 2012. She has recently exhibited at Aperture Gallery in New York, at David Weinberg Gallery in Chicago, and at the Colorado Photographic Arts Center in Denver. In 2015, she received an Individual Photographer's Fellowship from the Aaron Siskind Foundation.

Coffee @ The Commons provides a venue for conversation between interested members of the community and a visiting expert. In collaboration with departments across the University, The Commons invites speakers whose work has implications across disciplines. Coffee @ The Commons is then an opportunity for more intimate dialogue with these guests.

Coffee @ The Commons is open to KU faculty, staff, and students, as well as members of the larger Lawrence community. Those interested in attending should familiarize themselves with the work of the speaker beforehand, so that they are prepared to ask questions and prompt dialogue with the speaker and other attendees.

PUBLIC EVENT

Closing the Gap: Salary Negotiation for Women

5:00pm Tuesday, April 4 | The Commons
Sponsored by the KU Career Service Alliance and the Emily Taylor Center for Women and Gender Equity

PUBLIC EVENT

Free Speech on a University Campus

7:00pm Tuesday, April 25 | The Commons