Speaker Series

Launched during the fall semester of 2014, the Mildred F. Sawyer Speaker Series features speakers from the Suffolk University Boston community and its friends.

Topics, which may be based on recent publications and research, are diverse, including politics, social issues, history, the arts and journalism.

Most talks are held in the Sawyer Library’s Poetry Center, a friendly and informal setting, allowing for discussion and networking opportunities. Light refreshments are served.

Speaker Series Past Events

Rebel Girls and Nasty Women: American Women Writers and Literary Activism
A Talk by Elif Armbruster, Associate Professor of English

Thursday, Mary 7, 2019

Until the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920, women in the United States were denied the right to vote. The struggle for equal rights for women began, we might say, in 1868 when Susan B. Anthony launched the first woman's suffrage newspaper in the U.S.--The Revolution--with the slogan "Women, Their Rights, and Nothing Less." Even before that, however, in the face of their disenfranchisement, nineteenth-century women writers were using literature and print culture as a forum for public and private expression, democratic participation, and political debate.

This talk examines how American women writers--many of them doubly marginalized due to their status as racial minorities--functioned as literary activists during the crucial period between the Civil War and World War I. Using excerpts from their short stories, novels, poems, essays, and conversion narratives, Professor Armbruster will illustrate how the act of writing in and of itself worked to support women's suffrage and engage questions of justice and human rights. Our discussion will awaken the audience to the literary power of authors such as Louisa May Alcott, Fanny Fern, Harriet Jacobs, and Charlotte Perkins Gilman.

 

The Stuff Dreams Are Made Of: The Psychology Behind Dreams and Nightmares 
A Talk by Gary Fireman, Psychology Professor and Associate Provost for Institutional Research and Assessment

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Dreaming is a universal human experience occurring during sleep in which images, thoughts, and sensations are organized in a story-like manner, typically with a distorted or confabulated plot. Dreams happen every night and evidence of dreaming has been recorded since antiquity. However, questions remain as to the roles--adaptive or not--of dreams, bad dreams, and nightmares. The presentation will focus on the emerging evidence on dreams and nightmares in relation to health and disruptions in daily life.  

Download the Presentation Slides [PDF]


Book Talk: People before Highways

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Author Karilyn Crockett will discuss her book People before Highways, focusing on the grassroots movement that derailed a governmental plan to build multiple highways circling and cutting through the heart of Boston during the 1950s. Light refreshments will be served.

Crockett is an independent scholar and director of economic policy and research for the City of Boston. She holds a PhD in American studies from Yale University.

The Love Fool

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

The Sawyer Library Speaker Series presents a book talk by alumnus Lorenzo Petruzziello (Suffolk 2006).

Lorenzo recently published his first novel, The Love Fool (Quill / Inkshares - March 2018).

Aspiring writers or anyone interested in Italy, come hear Lorenzo talk about his background and how he came to write The Love Fool while living in Rome.

"Beyond the Boston Marathon Bombing"

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

A panel discussion marking the fifth anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing, featuring presenters:

David Abel, an award-winning reporter with The Boston Globe, a documentary filmmaker, and a professor of journalism. Abel and his colleagues at the Globe won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News for their coverage of the Boston Marathon bombings.

Dave Wedge, an author and writer based in Boston. He writes for VICE and was an investigative journalist for the Boston Herald for 14 years. His book, "Boston Strong: A City's Triumph Over Tragedy," written with New York Times bestselling author Casey Sherman, was adapted into the film "Patriots Day," starring Mark Wahlberg.

Susan Zalkind, an independent journalist and writer based in Boston. She covers courts and crime, breaks news and writes investigative features. Zalkind has written about the triple homicide in Waltham and FBI shooting in Florida involving people tied to the Tsarnaev brothers. She also covered the trial of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and has written for Boston Magazine and The Daily Beast.
Ken Martin, a Boston-based photojournalist and a long-time photojournalism teacher at Suffolk University. Martin and his students took photos at the explosion site as well as during the aftermath of the tragedy.

David Paleologos: On the Poll

Thursday, March 29, 2018

David Paleologos, Director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center, will give a talk on their most recent poll conducted in collaboration with USA Today, released March 1, 2018. He’ll discuss the results which indicate where we stand on the hot button issues of our society such as the Russia investigation, gun control, and the 2018 congressional midterms.

David Paleologos has worked at the SUPRC since 2002 conducting polling at the local, state, and national level. SUPRC primary polls and bellwethers have predicted outcomes in many key battleground states, and its cutting-edge survey research has gained both national and international attention for its high degree of accuracy. SUPRC results have been reported on by hundreds of major news organizations on television, radio, in print, and online. Over the past four election cycles, Paleologos has been one of the most quoted pollsters in the country.

Gazmend Kapllani: "A Short Border Handbook"

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Author Gazmend Kapllani, an Albanian-born novelist, will give a book talk on his memoir, A Short Border Handbook. 

Kapllani's novels explore totalitarianism, immigration, borders and Balkan history. A Short Border Handbook is an exhilarating and blackly comical exploration of immigration from an Albanian who grew up in a totalitarian madhouse, longing for Greece, where he found more absurdities on his arrival. He eventually settled in the United States and teaches at Emerson College.

Raise the Volume with Karson Tager

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Karson Tager from the "Karson and Kennedy Morning Show" on Mix 104.1 comes to Suffolk's campus to talk about the professional radio business! Karson will also talk about Content Creation, his work experiences before coming to Boston, and what his current job entails. Don't miss out to hear from one of Boston's best on air personalities!

Presented by Suffolk Free Radio, The Communications & Journalism Department, and The Mildred F. Sawyer Library Speaker Series.

Israeli Media and the Framing of Internal Conflict

Thursday, April 6, 2017

The Women & Gender Studies Program and The Sawyer Library Speaker Series present a book talk by Professor Shoshana Madmoni-Gerber.

Israeli Media and the Framing of Internal Conflict examines bias within the state of Israel and the media at large, through the lens of the news coverage of the Yemenite Babies Affair. The Yemenite Babies Affair is the emotionally laden, yet still unresolved, story of the alleged kidnapping of hundreds of Yemenite babies upon their arrival to Israel during the 1950s. In analyzing fifty years of public narratives, Shoshana Madmoni-Gerber argues that the media played a major role in the concurrent framing and silencing of this story. This eye-opening study exposes the clash between the European Zionist ideology of unity and the reality of Israel’s diverse society, where at least half of the Jewish population is of Arab descent.

“Few books today raise more profoundly disturbing questions about identity, internal orientalism, modes of unofficial censorship, and the government of Israel than this brave and important book.”—Steven C. Caton, Professor of Contemporary Arab Society and Director, Center for Middle East Studies, Harvard University

“This brilliantly written and meticulously researched book explores one of the darkest chapters of those oppressive relations…This book belongs on your bookshelf in the small but ever-growing library of Mizrahi (Middle Eastern Jewish) independent and alternative writing on the history of the Jews in modern times”—Sami Shalom Chetrit, Israeli poet and scholar, Queens College, CUNY

Shoshana Madmoni-Gerber is an Associate Professor of Journalism and Media at Suffolk University in Boston. She was born and raised in Israel to parents of Yemeni descent. She has worked as a freelance journalist in Israel for several newspapers; her book Israeli Media and the Framing of Internal Conflict: the Yemenite Babies Affair was published by Palgrave Macmillan (2009/2014).

Condition Critical: A Report Back on Gaza

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Speaker Alice Rothchild, MD, an obstetrician-gynecologist, has visited Gaza as part of an Israel/Palestine medical aid delegation. She will share images and impressions of the destruction and resilience that she has encountered and how ongoing siege conditions affect the lives of women and families.

Her latest publication, Condition Critical: Life and Death in Israel/Palestine presents key blog posts and analytical essays that explore everyday life in Israel, East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza up close and with searing honesty. These eyewitness reports and intimate stories depict the critical condition of a region suffering from decades-old wounds of colonization and occupation. Condition Critical dares (and inspires) its readers to examine the painful consequences of Zionism and Israeli expansion and to bend the arc of the moral universe towards justice.

In Condition Critical Alice Rothchild grabs for the truth behind the lies, writing with extraordinary moral clarity and a sharp eye for the injustices, absurdities, and cruel historical ironies that define Palestinian life on both sides of the Green Line. (Ben Ehrenreich, Author of The Way to the Spring: Life and Death in Palestine)

Rothchild is a physician, author, and filmmaker who has focused her interest in human rights and social justice on Israel/Palestine since 1997. She practiced ob-gyn for almost 40 years. Until her retirement she served as assistant professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Harvard Medical School. She writes and lectures widely and also is the author of Broken Promises, Broken Dreams: Stories of Jewish and Palestinian Trauma and Resilience and On the Brink: Israel and Palestine on the Eve of the 2014 Gaza Invasion. She directed a documentary film, Voices Across the Divide, which premiered at the Boston Palestine Film Festival in 2013. Her latest trip to Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza was in January 2017.

Sponsored by the Women's and Gender Studies Program and the Mildred F. Sawyer Library.

All You Need to Know to Land That First Sports Media Internship: Tips and Tricks!

Speaker: A. Sherrod Blakely

We will discuss what employers are looking for in interns, stories from interns who were successful and most important, what interns should take away from that first internship experience.

A. Sherrod Blakely is a veteran sports journalist who has covered a range of sports, from field hockey to the Final Four. Since 2009, he has been a digital media reporter covering the Boston Celtics for Comcast SportsNet, CSNNE.com, and SportsNet Central. Prior to that, the Syracuse, New York native was an NBA beat writer in Detroit where he covered the Pistons for Booth News Service and MLive.com. His professional career hasn't always been in the pros. Prior to working in Michigan, Blakely spent five years covering Duke, North Carolina State, and the ACC for the Raleigh, North Carolina News & Observer. He credits those opportunities having come about because of the encouragement he received from his tenth grade English teacher - Mr. Paratore - and the education he received at Syracuse University's S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.

Edward Bernays and the Advent of Modern Public Relations presented by Prof. Brian Conley

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Speaker: Have you ever wondered why many Americans eat bacon and eggs in the morning? Come hear about the founder of modern public relations theory and practice, Edward L. Bernays. Over the course a career that spanned nearly the entire 20th century, Bernays redefined how governments and corporations understand and attempt to shape public opinion.

Brian Conley is Associate Professor in the Government Department and serves as the Director of the Graduate Program in Political Science at Suffolk University. His research focuses on American Politics, Political Parties and Party Systems, Political Marketing and Branding, Public Policy, Social Movement Theory and Practice.

Co-sponsored by the Moakley Archive and Institute. Light refreshments will be served.

Political Happy Hour with Joshua Miller of the Boston Globe

Thursday, December 1, 2016

This time it’s YOUR turn to ask the questions--find out what it’s like to be a political reporter for the Boston Globe!

Miller covers politics for the Globe. A Massachusetts native, Miller worked in Washington, D.C. at ABC News and the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call before joining the Globe in 2013.

Miller conducted Boston Globe Live Happy Hour interviews at Suffolk University in 2015-2016 with Senator Elizabeth Warren, Governor Charlie Baker, Mayor Marty Walsh, Congressmen Stephen Lynch and Seth Moulton and Mass State House President, Stan Rosenberg.

This event is co-sponsored by the Communication & Journalism Department
Snacks will be served!

"Come Together" for a Fab Beatles Book Talk!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

In the countless studies of the Beatles, the fandom that drove the 20th Century's most enduring popular culture phenomenon often received little scholarly attention. Dr. Candy Leonard rectified that critical blind spot with the 2014 publication of her research study, Beatleness.

Dr. Candy Leonard (PhD University of New Hampshire) is a sociologist, Beatles expert, historian of the nineteen-sixties, and author of the highly acclaimed Beatleness: How the Beatles and Their Fans Remade the World, the only sociocultural analysis of the Beatles phenomenon. Leonard is a frequent presenter at the Fest for Beatles Fans and on college campuses, and also serves as MC at several Beatles events in the New England area. A contributor to Beatlefan magazine and the Huffington Post, Leonard, has spent years researching the effects of popular culture on health, gender, and family life, and is a qualitative research consultant to the healthcare and entertainment industries, with a focus on the baby boomer demographic.

Co-Sponsored by The Seminar for Freshmen Program. College of Arts and Sciences Dean's Office

Book Talk: The First House--A Memoir of Mom, Berkeley, and Beyond

Thursday, April 21, 2016 

Speaker: Amy Agigian

The memoir explores the author’s experiences growing up with love and secrets. What does a ten-year old do when her mom—the funnest, best mom in the world—goes from being an antiwar radical to being a closeted lesbian? How does a thirteen-year old girl cope when her mom is stricken with a terrifying illness that nobody, inside the family or out, can acknowledge? How does a fourteen-year old handle leaving her suburban home in Palo Alto to join her father in a hippie collective in 1970’s Berkeley?

The First House is a story of motherlove and motherloss that winds through decades of discovery. A young girl, then a teen, then an adult, seeks solace, sanity, and love in this collection of moving and surprisingly funny tales. The journey takes her through the unlikely worlds of astrology, academia, feminism, and queer family. Along the way she embraces a procession of surrogate mothers, teachers, lovers, friends, animals, and invisible beings. But how long can she keep the promises she made to the most important person in the world?

Amy Agigian, Ph.D., is Associate Professor of Sociology at Suffolk University, where she is also the Founding Director of the Center for Women's Health and Human Rights. Trained in the sociology of women, gender, sexuality and health, she is the author of Baby Steps: How Lesbian Alternative Insemination is Changing the World. Dr. Agigian’s current research applies a feminist health and human rights perspective to the vexing, global issues of human fertility and infertility. A long time activist, Dr. Agigian lives in Somerville, Massachusetts and is the mother of a teen-aged son.

Voting Rights and the 2016 Presidential Election

Speaker: Rachael Cobb

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

In 2006 only one U.S. state required identification to vote on Election Day. Today, 11 states require identification and 34 states have some version of voter identification rules. Other election reforms including early voting have expanded since the early 2000s. What impact will these reforms have on voter turnout in the 2016 presidential election?

Rachael Cobb is Associate Professor and Chair of the Government Department at Suffolk University. Her research focuses on U.S. elections, election administration, electoral politics, civic engagement, and political participation. At Suffolk University, Cobb runs the University Pollworkers Project, a nonpartisan program designed to recruit college students to serve as poll workers in partnership with the City of Boston’s Election Department

Drowning in Debt and Don't Know What That Means?

Speaker: Victoria Ireton

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Come hear Victoria Ireton's inspirational story which was recently featured in Suffolk University's "Public Problems. Suffolk Solutions" initiative. Once homeless, Ireton has developed a financial literacy curriculum for teaching first-year students at Suffolk about the perils of student loans.

Ireton is a senior at Suffolk University who is double majoring in Government and Philosophy. Her research focuses on the effects of a financial education regarding students loans and how it better protects the consumer. Ireton focuses on educating students on how to become smarter borrowers--teaching concepts that are all too close to home for the once homeless student.

Book Talk: Change Leadership

Speakers: Colette Dumas and Richard H. Beinecke

Thursday, Feb 11, 2016

You know WHAT needs to change in your workplace. But have you ever wondered HOW to make change happen? Join Drs. Colette Dumas and Richard Beinecke as they share the inspiring stories and effective change practices of successful change leaders profiled in their new book series "Change Leadership" published by SAGE Publications.

Colette Dumas, Ph.D., is Professor of Organizational Behavior and Entrepreneurship at the Sawyer Business School, Suffolk University. Dr. Dumas founded the Center for Innovation and Change Leadership at Suffolk University to help organizations develop innovative and collaborative change leadership learning programs. Her research interests include organizational change, creativity and innovation, adult learning, and collaborative action inquiry.

Richard H. Beinecke DPA ACSW is a professor in the Suffolk University Institute for Public Service and the Healthcare Department in the Sawyer Business School in Boston where he teaches courses on leadership, and U.S. and global health policy and conducts research on management of mental health programs (most recently on the mental health and public health responses to the Boston bombings) and leadership.

The Art of Illustrated Maps: A Complete Guide to Creative Mapmaking’s History, Process and Inspiration

Speaker: John Roman

Thursday, Dec 10, 2015

While literally hundreds of books exist on the subject of maps and cartography, The Art of Illustrated Maps (release date: October 23, 2015) is the first book ever to fully explore conceptual, “illustrated” mapping. Author, educator and map illustrator JOHN ROMAN correlates not-to-scale maps as “the creative nonfiction of cartography,” and in this book he reveals how and why the human mind instinctively accepts the artistic license invoked in imaginative maps. Drawing from a wide range of references, The Art of Illustrated Maps traces the roots of this specialized art form’s two-thousand-year history, and through the works of numerous contemporary illustrators from around the world, documents the creative process of professional map artists as well as the inspirations behind 21st-century illustrated maps.

John Roman, a Boston-based map illustrator and graduate of Suffolk University’s New England School of Art & Design, has been teaching illustration for over twenty years at the Massachusetts College of Art. He is also the author of the F+W Media eBook, 50 Markets of Illustration.

Latest Polling on the 2016 Presidential Race

Speaker: David Paleologos

Monday, Nov 16, 2015 

David Paleologos will be discussing his most recent polling on the presidential election with USA TODAY and the Boston Globe. David is the director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center (SUPRC), where he has worked since 2002. In addition to his duties with the Research Center, David is also a lecturer in the College of Arts and Sciences' Government Department, where he teaches one of the department's most popular courses: Political Survey Research. This intensive 14-week course exposes students to every aspect of political polling, including pretest, questionnaire design, sampling, interviewing, coding data, and analyzing results. Every spring semester, David's students produce a unique poll on a subject of their choice.

David also serves as frequent guest lecturer on the political survey process at many Boston-area schools and institutions, including Emerson College, Boston University, Boston College, Harvard University, and Roxbury Latin.

Before beginning his career in academia, David was one of the Bay State's most sought-after pollsters and field operatives. A graduate of Tufts University, David is a member of the American Association of Public Opinion Researchers and the Northeast Political Consultants Association.

Nir Eisikovits is Associate Professor of Legal and Political Philosophy at Suffolk, where he also directs the Program in Ethics and Public Policy. His writing and teaching focus on questions of transitional justice and the ethics of war. Nir’s first book, Sympathizing with the Enemy: Reconciliation, Transitional Justice, Negotiation was published by Brill. His second book, A Theory of Truces is due out later this year with Palgrave Macmillan. Nir is also co-editor of a recent collection of essays, Theorizing Transitional Justice, out this year with Ashgate and guest editor of a special issue of Theoria, forthcoming later this year, on "The Idea of Peace in the Age of Asymmetrical Conflict". In addition to his academic writing Nir comments frequently for newspapers and magazines about Middle East politics.

Understanding ISIS: Inside the Terrorist State

Speaker: Nir Eisikovits

Thursday, Oct 15, 2015

A year ago few of us heard of ISIS and president Obama dismissed it as Al Qaeda's "Jayvee Team". Now it controls an area the size of Great Britain and has upended the balance of powers in the Middle East. How did this happen? And what does ISIS want? We will discuss the background for the rise of ISIS - from broken promises after World War I to the flaming of sectarian tensions after the US withdrawal from Iraq. We will explore ISIS' apocalyptic religious ideology, the manner in which it governs the areas it controls, how it lures recruits (including many from Europe and the United States), how it compares to other organizations such as Al Qaeda and what the west can do to protect itself.

Nir Eisikovits is Associate Professor of Legal and Political Philosophy at Suffolk, where he also directs the Program in Ethics and Public Policy. His writing and teaching focus on questions of transitional justice and the ethics of war. Nir’s first book, Sympathizing with the Enemy: Reconciliation, Transitional Justice, Negotiation was published by Brill. His second book, A Theory of Truces is due out later this year with Palgrave Macmillan. Nir is also co-editor of a recent collection of essays, Theorizing Transitional Justice, out this year with Ashgate and guest editor of a special issue of Theoria, forthcoming later this year, on "The Idea of Peace in the Age of Asymmetrical Conflict". In addition to his academic writing Nir comments frequently for newspapers and magazines about Middle East politics.

Book Talk - Theatre of the Borderlands: Conflict, Violence, and Healing

Speaker: Iani Moreno

Thursday, Oct 1, 2015

Professor Moreno discusses her recently published book, which focuses on how dramatists from the Northern Mexico border territories write about theater. The northern border playwrights included in the study present the US-Mexico borderlands in a socio-historical and political context and include discussions of: the indigenous, border crossings, heroes and folk saints, the city of Tijuana, and violence in the borderlands. These themes have led to the birth of the Teatro del Norte movement, a group of determined playwrights insistent on presenting dramaturgical themes that show the bond between their particular geographies, histories, socio-political and economic situations, thereby giving birth to an original voice and new aesthetic of representation.

Professor Moreno holds a B.A. in Economics and International Studies from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Hispanic Studies from the University of Kansas. Before coming to Suffolk she taught a variety of courses in Spanish language, culture, and literature at the University of Denver and Salve Regina University. Her interests include contemporary Latin American Theatre, U.S.-Mexico Border Studies, Brazilian Studies, Spanish and Portuguese language and literature, and contemporary Latin American cinema and music. Her publications discuss contemporary Latin American theatre and U.S.-Mexico Border dramaturgy. She has attended numerous conferences both at the national and international level in the United States, Mexico, Brazil, and Argentina.

The artwork for the book's cover was created by Lenin Tejeda, a Suffolk University Spanish major

Back to the Future: Old School Tricks for New Age Sports Journalism

Speakers: A. Sherrod Blakely, Digital Media Reporter at Comcast SportsNet

Tuesday, Sept 15, 2015

We’ll discuss ways to jazz up your Twitter and Facebook posts, make your Periscope videos pop and your blog bulge at its digital seams because of all the traffic! And there’s an old school trick that helps make this happen.

A. Sherrod Blakely is a veteran sports journalist who has covered a range of sports, from field hockey to the Final Four. Since 2009, he has been a digital media reporter covering the Boston Celtics for Comcast SportsNet, CSNNE.com, and SportsNet Central. Prior to that, the Syracuse, New York native was an NBA beat writer in Detroit where he covered the Pistons for Booth News Service and MLive.com. His professional career hasn't always been in the pros. Prior to working in Michigan, Blakely spent five years covering Duke, North Carolina State, and the ACC for the Raleigh, North Carolina News & Observer. He credits those opportunities having come about because of the encouragement he received from his tenth grade English teacher - Mr. Paratore - and the education he received at Syracuse University's S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications..

Record of a Soldier in the Late War: The Confederate Memoir of John Wesley Bone

Speakers: Julianne Mehegan and David Mehegan

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

John Wesley Bone was eighteen when he enlisted as a private with the North Carolina 30th Regiment. He was a common Confederate soldier who experienced almost every aspect of the War Between the States. Bone fought in battles at Malvern Hill, Chancellorsville, Fredericksburg, the Wilderness, and Cedar Creek. At the battle of Spotsylvania Court House, Bone was struck by a bullet that pierced his chest and lodged in his backpack. After three days laying between the lines of fire, he was rescued and taken to Gordonsville Hospital. He recovered and five months later rejoined his regiment. Bone was at Appomattox Court House when Robert E. Lee surrendered the Army of Northern Virginia in April 1865. This memoir is his story, written forty years after the surrender.

Julianne Mehegan is the great-granddaughter of John Wesley Bone. Growing up in rural North Carolina, among her many Bone relatives, she developed a strong connection with family history. She went north for College, graduating from Suffolk University with a degree in English. After a long career in education and marketing, she now focuses on her interests in historic preservation and the arts.

Suffolk alumnus David Mehegan is the former book editor and publishing reporter of the Boston Globe. He has a PhD in textual editing from Boston University.

Books will be available for purchase.

Spring's Awakening - Wedekind's Awakening

Speaker: Jay Rosellini, Professor and Director of the German Program

Thursday, Feb 12, 2015

Based on a controversial 19th century German play, Spring Awakening tells the story of a group of young people making their way through the tumult, frustrations, yearning and fears of adolescence. Jay Rosellini, Professor and Director of the German Program, will lead a presentation about the historical background of the show and Wedekind’s place in German and European drama history.

Author of Spring Awakening: Frank Wedekind was born in the 19th century, but his dramatic works, including Spring's Awakening (published in 1891, but not performed until 1906) left their mark on the 20th-century theater. A lifelong outsider who longed to be an insider, Wedekind put considerable effort into creating the legend of his own life−both on the stage and in the turbulent society of pre-1914 Germany.

Professor Jay Rosellini served as Chair of the Department of World Languages and Cultural Studies between 2001 and 2007. He teaches courses in German language, literature, civilization, environmentalism, and film. Professor Rosellini’s range of scholarly interest in German literature, drama, culture, and intellectual history has resulted in numerous articles, book chapters, book reviews, and several books.

Co-sponsored by the Performing Arts Department

The Perils, Promise, and Problems of Social Media and its Impact on Sports Journalism

Speaker: A. Sherrod Blakely, Digital Media Reporter at Comcast SportsNet

Thursday, Feb 5, 2015

A. Sherrod Blakely is a veteran sports journalist who has covered a range of sports, from field hockey to the Final Four. Since 2009, he has been a digital media reporter covering the Boston Celtics for Comcast SportsNet, CSNNE.com, and SportsNet Central. Prior to that, the Syracuse, New York native was an NBA beat writer in Detroit where he covered the Pistons for Booth News Service and MLive.com. His professional career hasn't always been in the pros. Prior to working in Michigan, Blakely spent five years covering Duke, North Carolina State, and the ACC for the Raleigh, North Carolina News & Observer. He credits those opportunities having come about because of the encouragement he received from his tenth grade English teacher - Mr. Paratore - and the education he received at Syracuse University's S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.

Co-sponsored by the Journalism and Communication Department

Voices Against Sexual Assault

Speaker: Robert Uttaro, Rape Crisis Counselor, Alumnus, and Author

Monday, Nov 17, 2015

Robert Uttaro is in his seventh year of working as a rape crisis counselor, public speaker, and community educator. Inspired by his undergraduate studies in Criminal Justice at Suffolk University, he has embraced a lifelong commitment to activism and advocacy for survivors of sexual violence. Serving as a counselor, Uttaro supports rape survivors and their significant others through various legal and case management issues. He also facilitates workshops aimed at education, prevention, and laying out the realities of sexual violence. Uttaro is currently touring many universities and high schools throughout Massachusetts. A recent blessing for Uttaro was the opportunity to address soldiers of the United States Army at Fort Eustis, Newport News, Virginia.

Perspectives on a Modern American Death Penalty

Speaker: Jeffrey Pokorak, Vice-Provost and Professor of Law

Monday, Oct 20, 2015

Professor Pokorak is an expert on the topic of the death penalty. He worked as a Senior Staff Attorney at the Texas Resource Center, an organization dedicated to the representation of indigents on death row in their post-conviction appeals. Pokorak moderated victim forums in the death penalty context, and he pursues research in the areas of race, prosecutorial discretion, and victims' access to equal justice in the criminal law system. He has been a longtime member of the Board of Directors of the Texas Defenders Services. The latter is a non-profit organization that provides legal services to death sentenced inmates, and training and assistance to attorneys representing those charged with capital crimes.