Past Programs

Carmen-Francesca Banciu

Banciu Poster FinalAuthor

Mother’s Day: Song of a Sad Mother

Wednesday, September 14, 2016
Stern Center, Great Room, 7 p.m.

In this talk, German-Romanian author Carmen-Francesca Banciu will read from and speak about her novel, Mother’s Day: Song of a Sad Mother.  Part “bildungsroman,” part autobiographical memoir, Mother’s Day explores mother-daughter relations under the communist dictatorship in Romania and sparks dynamic questions about Eastern Europe, work, the woman artist, and women’s relationships with one another.

This program is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and co-sponsored by the Max Kade Foundation and the Department of German.

Carmen Francesca Bancui PicBiography (provided by the speaker)

Carmen-Francesca Banciu was born in Lipova, Romania and studied Byzantine art and foreign trade in Bucharest. As a result of being awarded the International Short Story Award of the City of Arnsberg for the story “Das strahlende Ghetto” (“The Radiant Ghetto,” 1985), she was banned from publishing her work in Romania. In 1991 she accepted an invitation extended by the DAAD Berlin Artists-in-Residence program and came to Germany. Writer-in-Residence at Rutgers University from 2004-2005 and University of Bath in 2009, Banciu currently lives in Berlin and works as a freelance author and co-editor/deputy director of the transnational, interdisciplinary and multilingual e-magazine Levure Littéraire. Since moving to Berlin, Banciu has written almost exclusively in the German language. Her book-length works deal with the geographic, psychic, and linguistic migrations of the woman author in Europe under and following the fall of Communism.

Video of the Lecture

Raj Patel

Patel PosterUniversity of Texas, Austin and Rhodes University, South Africa

The World That Food Made

Thursday, September 8, 2016
Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium, 7 p.m.

We hear a great deal about the food system, about how it’s broken or – indeed – that it’s working exactly as it ought. But it’s not exactly clear what that system is. Once you learn to think systemically, it becomes clear that the most important things the food system has made are things you can’t eat.

This program is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and co-sponsored by the Churchill Fund, First Year Seminars, the Center for Sustainability Education and the Departments of Environmental Studies, International Business & Management, Anthropology & Archaeology, Biology and the Program in Policy Studies. It is also part of the Clarke Forum’s semester theme, Food and the Leadership in an Age of Uncertainty Series.

Credit: Sheila Menezes

Credit: Sheila Menezes

Biography (provided by the speaker)

Raj Patel is an award-winning writer, activist and academic. He is a research professor in the Lyndon B Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas, Austin and a senior research associate at the Unit for the Humanities at the university currently known as Rhodes University (UHURU), South Africa.

He has degrees from the University of Oxford, the London School of Economics and Cornell University, has worked for the World Bank and WTO, and protested against them around the world. He has been a visiting scholar at UC Berkeley’s Center for African Studies, an honorary research fellow at the School of Development Studies at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and continues to be a fellow at The Institute for Food and Development Policy, also known as Food First. In 2016 was recognized with a James Beard Foundation Leadership Award. Patel co-taught the 2014 Edible Education class at UC Berkeley with Michael Pollan. He was also an IATP Food and Community Fellow from 2011-2013. He has testified about the causes of the global food crisis to the US House Financial Services Committee and was an advisor to Olivier De Schutter, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food.

In addition to numerous scholarly publications in economics, philosophy, politics and public health journals, he regularly writes for The Guardian, and has contributed to the Financial Times, Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Times of India, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Mail on Sunday, and The Observer. His first book was Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System and his latest, The Value of Nothing, is a New York Times best-seller.

He can be heard co-hosting the fortnightly food politics podcast The Secret Ingredient with Mother Jones’ Tom Philpott, and KUT’s Rebecca McInroy. He is currently working on a ground-breaking documentary project about the global food system with award-winning director Steve James. He’s also completing a book on world ecology with Jason W Moore for the University of California Press entitled “Seven Cheap Things.”

Video of the Lecture



Barry W. Lynn ’70 – “Constitution Day Address Lecturer”

Lynn Poster2Executive Director, Americans United for Separation of Church and State

Celebrating a Dead Letter or a Living Document?

Tuesday, September 6, 2016
Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium, 7 p.m.

Watch Live Stream

“Originalism” in Constitutional interpretation is often characterized as the only legitimate way to understand the Constitution. If that were true, the “Constitution” would be a dead letter by now, unable to protect the rights of Americans in rapidly changing times.

This event is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and Penn State’s Dickinson Law and co-sponsored by the Churchill Fund. It is also part of the Clarke Forum’s Leadership in an Age of Uncertainty Series.

Barry Lynn photo 2012Biography (provided by the speaker)

Since 1992, the Rev. Barry W. Lynn has served as executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, a Washington, D.C.-based organization dedicated to the preservation of the Constitution’s religious liberty provisions.

In addition to his work as a long-time activist and lawyer in the civil liberties field, Lynn is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ, offering him a unique perspective on church-state issues.

An accomplished speaker and lecturer, Lynn has appeared frequently on television and radio broadcasts to offer analysis of First Amendment issues. News programs on which Lynn has appeared include PBS’s “NewsHour,” NBC’s “Today Show,” Fox News Channel’s “O’Reilly Factor,” ABC’s “Nightline,” CNN’s “Crossfire,” CBS’s “60 Minutes,” ABC’s “Good Morning America,” CNN’s “Larry King Live” and the national nightly news on NBC, ABC and CBS.

Lynn served for a decade as host of the syndicated radio show “Culture Shocks,” a daily look at various issues affecting society and the culture. In the 1990s he was the regular co-host of “Pat Buchanan and Company” and after that did a weekly syndicated radio program, “Review of the News,” with Col. Oliver North. Lynn is a regular guest on nationally broadcast radio programs, including National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered,” “The Diane Rehm Show,” “Morning Edition” and “Talk of the Nation.” He also appeared on every other national radio network.

Lynn began his professional career working at the national office of the United Church of Christ, including a two-year stint as legislative counsel for the Church’s Office of Church in Society in Washington, D.C. From 1984 to 1991 he was legislative counsel for the Washington office of the American Civil Liberties Union.

In 2006, Lynn authored Piety & Politics: The Right-Wing Assault On Religious Freedom (Harmony Books). In 2008 he coauthored (with C. Welton Gaddy) First Freedom First: A Citizen’s Guide to Protecting Religious Liberty and the Separation of Church and State (Beacon Press). His latest book is God & Government: Twenty-Five Years of Fighting for Equality, Secularism, and Freedom Of Conscience (Prometheus Books).

Lynn writes frequently on religious liberty issues and has had essays published in outlets such as USA Today, Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Nation. Lynn also has op-eds published frequently by the McClatchy and Scripps-Howard newspaper chains.

A member of the Washington, D.C. and U.S. Supreme Court bar, Lynn earned his law degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 1978. In addition, he received his theology degree from Boston University School of Theology in 1973.

Lynn is the winner of many national awards, including the Freedom of Worship Award from the Roosevelt Institute, the Puffin/Nation Foundation’s Creative Citizenship Award, the American Humanist Association’s Religious Liberty Award and an award from the Hugh H. Hefner Foundation for his work to protect freedom of speech. In addition, he has received two awards from Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pa., where Lynn earned a Bachelor’s degree in English in 1970. In 2007, he was chosen as one of the 25 Most Influential Dickinsonians. In 2010, Lynn was given the college’s Professional Achievement Award.

Lynn, who was born in Harrisburg, Pa., and raised in Bethlehem, Pa., lives in Chevy Chase, Md., with his wife Joanne. They have two children.

Winfield C. Cook Constitution Day Address
The annual address is endowed through the generosity of Winfield C. Cook, former Dickinson Trustee. Each year the Clarke Forum invites a prominent public figure to campus to speak on a contemporary issue related to the Constitution. The event celebrates the signing of the United States Constitution and commemorates Dickinson’s connection to that document, through John Dickinson’s participation as an original signer. Previous speakers have included Kenneth Starr, Ira Glasser, Lowell Weicker, Marjorie Rendell, Tom Ridge and  Michael Chertoff.

Video of the Lecture


Frame by Frame – Film Showing

FramebyFrameFinalPosterMonday, April 25, 2016
Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium, 7 p.m.

After decades of war and oppressive Taliban regime, four Afghan photojournalists face the realities of building a free press in a country left to stand on its own.  Comments by Baktash Ahadi, associate producer and translator for Frame by Frame and Noorjahan Akbar ’14, women’s and human rights’ activist.           

This program is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues.

Frame by Frame Trailer

Biographies (provided by the speakers)

IMGP4660Noorjahan Akbar is an out-spoken women and human right’s advocate from Afghanistan. She has worked with several Afghan and global organizations focusing on women’s social and economic empowerment and ending gender-based violence. She has also led nation-wide campaigns and protests in defense of human rights and continues to write and advocate for equality. Noorjahan has been published on Al Jazeera, and New York Times among other outlets. In the summer of 2013, she published a collection of Afghan women’s writings in a book that was distributed in several provinces in Afghanistan. Currently, she runs a national blog with over 100 Afghan contributors who advocate for gender equality and social justice. Noorjahan is also a keynote speaker on issues relating to the rights of women and girls, education and sustainable global development. Noorjahan has a bachelor of arts in sociology from Dickinson College and a master’s in journalism and public affairs from American University. Noorjahan has been recognized for her efforts for gender equality at home and internationally. She was Glamour Magazine’s College Women of the Year in 2013, has been named one of Forbes’s 100 Most Powerful Women of the World and one of The Daily Beast’s Women Who Shake the World.

facede_13228c52c80f4d29aba15f9a3a372c72Baktash Ahadi was born in Kabul in 1981. His family had to flee during the Soviet Invasion in 1984. After spending over a year and half in Pakistan between refugee camps and makeshift homes, his family was given asylum in the United States and started their new life in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

Baktash started his career as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Mozambique. He then went into management consulting with Booz Allen Hamilton before serving as a military translator in Afghanistan for three years. His experience not only brought him closer to his roots and but also instilled a sense of responsibility to educate others on the realities on the ground in Afghanistan. Baktash joined FRAME BY FRAME as an ambassador for that same reason — to shed light on the country’s complexities through human stories. He is the associate producer and translator for the film.

Mitch Abrams

Abrams PosterFounder and President, Learned Excellence for Athletes

The Myth of the Violent Athlete

Wednesday, April 20, 2016
Stern Center, Great Room, 7 p.m.

Few things get more attention in the media than when an athlete transgresses.  Psychologist Abrams will discuss the realities of violence in sports, the dynamics that may contribute to angry outbursts and athlete entitlement, and what to do to prevent and treat these dangerous behaviors. 

This program is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues  and co-sponsored by Student Senate, Psychology Club, Psi Chi, and the Wellness Center. This program was also initiated by the Clarke Forum’s student project managers.

Biography (provided by the speaker)

Dr. Mitch Abrams earned his bachelor’s of science from Brooklyn College (Pre-Med & Psychology) and earned his master’s of science in applied psychology and his Head Shot Cropdoctorate of psychology (Psy.D.) in clinical psychology from C.W. Post/Long Island University. He received specialized training in family violence, the treatment of trauma and anger management. His dissertation demonstrated the effectiveness of an anger management program for male athletes and he has been working with anger and violence (including dating/sexual violence prevention) with athletes since.  His private practice has clinical, forensic and sport psychology services where treatment focuses on anger management and the treatment of trauma stemming from various forms of abuse. Further, he is the president and founder of Learned Excellence for Athletes, Abrams’ sport psychology consulting firm.

With the Association of Applied Sport Psychology (AASP), he is the Chair (and founder) of the “Anger & Violence in Sport” Special Interest Group (SIG). Dr. Abrams is also on the program review committee for AASP’s Annual Convention.

He has lectured at national conferences and conventions, is often solicited by the media to discuss sport psychology issues, and writes an ongoing sport psychology blog entitled Sports Transgressions for Psychology Today. Dr. Abrams contributed to The Encyclopedia of Sports Medicine edited by Lyle Micheli (2011) by writing the sport psychology entries on anger management and imagery in visualization. In addition, in 2010, he released his book: Anger Management in Sport: Understanding and Controlling Violence in Athletes. He also co-wrote the chapter on “Anger: How to moderate hot buttons” with Dr. Bruce Hale in Dr. Shane Murphy’s Sport Psych Handbook.

A licensed psychologist in NY and NJ, Dr. Abrams is also a member of APA’s Divisions 47 (Sport & Exercise Psychology), Division 46 (Media Psychology) and Division 41 (American Psychology-Law Society), as well as the Association of Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies. He oversees mental health services for five of the state prisons in NJ as he is clinician administrator for University Correctional Health Care, which is part of Rutgers. He co-coordinates the forensic track of the pre-doctoral psychology internship program where he is actively involved in training young psychologists. Finally, he has been adjunct faculty at C.W. Post/Long Island University, Brooklyn College and Fairleigh Dickinson University; and currently is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.

Video of the Lecture


Interview with Mitch Abrams

Karen Nakamura

NakamuraposterfinalHaas Distinguished Chair of Disability Studies and professor of anthropology, University of California Berkeley

Disability Rights in Global Perspective

Wednesday, April 13, 2016
Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium, 7 p.m.

Grassroots disability movements such as mad pride and crip pride have pushed themselves to the forefront of conversations across the world about diversity and inclusion, but there has also been considerable setbacks in recent years. Nakamura discusses disability rights social movements and how they have fundamentally changed the social contract and fabric in various countries.

This event is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and co-sponsored by the Office of Global Study and Engagement and the departments of East Asian studies and women’s,  gender and sexuality studies.  It is also part of the Clarke Forum’s semester theme, Disability.

Biography (provided by the speaker)

Karen Nakamura is the Haas Distinguished Chair of Disability Studies and professor of anthropology at the University of California Berkeley. Her first monograph was tiNakamura Picturetled Deaf in Japan: Signing and the Politics of Identity (2006). Her next project resulted in two ethnographic films and a monograph titled, A Disability of the Soul: An Ethnography of Schizophrenia and Mental Illness in Contemporary Japan (2014). She is currently working on the intersections of transsexuality and disability politics in postwar Japan and exploring a future project on disability, robotics, and augmentation/prosthetics.

Video of the Lecture

Interview with Student Project Manager Kayleigh Rhatigan ’19


David Paternotte

Paternotte_Poster PDFLecturer in Sociology at the Université libre de Bruxelles

From the Vatican to Madrid, Paris and Warsaw: “Gender Ideology” in Motion

Tuesday, April 12, 2016
Stern Center, Great Room, 7 p.m.

After decades of steady progress in terms of gender and sexual rights, several parts of Europe are facing new waves of resistance. These oppose the so-called ‘gender ideology,’ and unveil a crucial role of the Roman Catholic Church. This talk will give an overview of anti-gender movements in Europe.

The program is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and co-sponsored by the Women’s and Gender Resource Center and the Departments of Sociology and Italian Studies.

David PaternotteBiography (provided by the speaker)

David Paternotte is a lecturer in sociology at the Université libre de Bruxelles. After many years of research on same-sex marriage, his work concentrates the processes of Europeanisation, globalisation and NGOisation of LGBTQI activism. He has recently started a project on new forms of opposition to gender, feminist claims and LGBTQI rights, with a focus on the Catholic Church. In addition to articles in journals like the Canadian Journal of political science, social politics, sexualities, or social movement studies, he is the author of Revendiquer le “mariage gay” . Belgique, France, Espagne (Editions de l’Université de Bruxelles, 2011) and the coeditor of several volumes, including The Lesbian and Gay Movement and the State: Comparative Insights into A Transformed Relationship (Ashgate, 2011 with M. Tremblay and C. Johnson), LGBT Activism and the Making of Europe: A Rainbow Europe? (Palgrave, 2014, with P. Ayoub), and the Ashgate Research Companion to Lesbian and Gay Activism (Ashgate, 2015, with M. Tremblay).

Video of the Lecture

Interview with David Paternotte and Zita Petrahai ’18


More than a Game: Soccer and Social Justice in the Twenty-First Century

Soccer Panel PosterWednesday, April 6, 2016
Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium, 7 p.m.


Amy Bass, professor of history, The College of New Rochelle
Joshua Nadel, associate professor of history, North Carolina Central University and author of Fútbol!: Why Soccer Matters in Latin America
Stephanie Yang, co-manager of Stars and Stripes FC on SB Nation
Shawn Stein (moderator), associate professor, Spanish and Portuguese, Dickinson College

This panel brings together experts in the culture and politics of soccer to discuss the state of the sport in the US and around the world.  In what ways is the game plagued by racism, sexism, homophobia, economic injustice, or other inequalities?  How might soccer be a tool for social, political, and cultural change?  Join the conversation with these panelists as they share their work and take questions from the audience.

This event is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and the Critical Perspectives on Soccer and Social Justice Symposium.

This event is also the kick-off for the Central Pennsylvania Consortium Symposium “Critical Perspectives on Soccer and Social Justice Symposium” which will be held on Friday, April 8.  For more on the symposium contact Professors  Schweighofer ( or Stein (

Biographies (provided by the panelists)

Amy Bass PhotoAmy Bass is professor of history and director of the Honors Program at The College of New Rochelle.  She writes and teaches on modern American culture, with a particular focus on sports; identity politics; and African American history. Her first book, Not the Triumph but the Struggle: The 1968 Olympic Games and the Making of the Black Athlete, is considered a standard-bearer for those interested in writing about sports from a cultural perspective. Her edited collection, In the Game: Race, Identity and Sports in the 20th Century, solidified that reputation. Her most recent work,Those About Him Remained Silent: The Battle Over W.E.B. Du Bois, on the culture of civil rights struggles and memory, received an Honorable Mention from the National Council on Public History.  She recently published The State of the Field: Sport and the “Cultural Turn” in the Journal of American History, and maintains a healthy presence in more mainstream media organs such as Slate, Salon, and CNN Opinion.  She also edits her own series, “Sporting,” for Temple University Press, and has served as senior research supervisor for NBC Olympic Sports since 1996, winning at Emmy Award for her work at the London Olympics in 2012.

Josh Nadel PictureJoshua Nadel is an associate professor of history at North Carolina Central University, in Durham NC and author of Futbol!: Why Soccer Matters in Latin America. Nadel’s work on the intersection of soccer and society has appeared in the Washington Post’s Monkey Cage, Remezcla, and Foreign Policy. During the 2015 Women’s World Cup he was part of Sport’s Illustrated’s Upfront and Onside team, writing on sexism, gender, and soccer. He is currently researching a book on women’s soccer in Latin America, co-written with Brenda Elsey and tentatively titled Futbolera: Women, Gender, and Soccer in Latin America, 1900-2015.

syang headshotStephanie Yang is a Boston transplant from the American south with a degree in business from MIT and a degree in law from Boston College. She played soccer from youth through freshman year of college and has written extensively on women’s soccer in the United States at the club and national level, with a mind towards gender-based influences on the development of the women’s game. She is co-manager of Stars and Stripes FC, and she writes at The Bent Musket and contributes to World Soccer Talk and Bitch Magazine.

steinsShawn Stein is an associate professor of Spanish and Portuguese at Dickinson College. His scholarship focuses on contemporary Latin American literary and cultural production. His current research is devoted to analyzing representations of the myth of fair play in football (soccer) fiction in Latin America. Stein’s recent work has been published in Chasqui, Hispania, Revista de literatura mexicana and Studies in Latin American Popular Culture. His co-edited anthology of football fiction and author interviews, Por amor a la pelota: Once cracks de la ficción futbolera, was released by Editorial Cuarto Propio in 2014. Stein’s teaching experience and interests include community engagement, culture, film, literature, Portuguese and Spanish, among other topics. Stein is currently teaching a course titled Cultures of Soccer which examines cultural production (literature, film and art) of soccer in Latin America and scholarship on sport and society, with a focus on the impact that both the beautiful and ugly elements of the game have on individual and collective identities (nation/region, sex/gender, ethnicity, class and religion).

Video of the Discussion

Interview with Stephanie Yang

Breaking Issue – iPhone vs. the FBI: Government Surveillance in the Post-Snowden Era

iPhone FBI PosterTuesday, April 5, 2016
Allison Great Hall, 7 p.m.


Amy Gaudion, Penn State Dickinson School of Law
John MacCormick, (panelist and moderator) Dickinson College
Tony Williams, Dickinson College

Should Apple help the FBI unlock the iPhone used by the shooter in the recent San Bernardino attack?  These panelists will address this question and the significant security, legal, and technological issues it raises, particularly those connected to privacy and security.

This event is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues.

Biographies (provided by the panelists)

gaudionAmy C. Gaudion is the director of Graduate & International Education and a visiting assistant professor of law at Penn State’s Dickinson Law. Her scholarly and teaching interests focus on national security law, homeland security law and civilian-military relations. Her recent works have appeared in the Penn State Journal for Law & International Affairs, The New York Times, The Daily Beast, and the Western State Law Review. Recent presentations have included The Constitutionality and Consequences of America’s Use of Drones and the NSA Spying Program (2014, Western State College of Law), Beyond Print: New Models for Scholarly Publishing in Law (2014, Annual Conference of the American Association of Law Libraries), and Snowden Reflections (2014, Dickinson College). Professor Gaudion also served as a legal advisor to World on Trial, a public television and multimedia project that aims to elevate public awareness of important human rights issues and the international treaties that govern state conduct. Prior to joining Penn State’s Dickinson Law, she was an associate with Hangley Aronchick Segal & Pudlin, where her practice focused on antitrust and complex litigation matters, and a clerk for the Honorable William H. Yohn of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. She earned a J.D. from the Villanova University School of Law, receiving summa cum laude and Order of the Coif honors, and a B.A. from the University of Virginia, graduating with distinction.

John MacCormick has a doctorate in computer vision from the University of Oxford, has worked as a computer scientist in the research labs of Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft, and is currently a professor of computer science at Dickinson College.  He is the author of two books (Stochastic Algorithms for Visual Tracking, and Nine Algorithms That Changed the Future: The Ingenious Ideas That Drive Today’s Computers) and has filed over a dozen US patents on novel computer technologies.  His work spans several sub-fields of computer science, including computer vision, large-scale distributed systems, computer science education, and the public understanding of computer science.


Anthony R. Williams received his M.A. in Russian and Modern European History from the University of Virginia in 1969, his PhD Certificate (ABD) in Soviet History from UVA in 1971 and a National Security Program Certificate in 1995 from the JFK School of Government at Harvard University. He received a certificate in electronic engineering at CREI and his BA in History at Old Dominion University. He has served as an adjunct faculty member and guest lecturer at the University of Virginia, George Mason University, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Postgraduate School, the National Defense University and Northern Virginia Community College. Currently he is a visiting professor of Security Studies at Dickinson College where he teaches courses on international terrorism and national intelligence.

Professor Williams’ career as an intelligence officer with the CIA began in 1974 and he retired in 2005. During this time he served as a congressional fellow in Senator Sam Nunn’s office; was an Officer and Manager in the CIA’s Soviet & East European Office; was Executive Assistant to the Director of the Central Intelligence; was Chief of the Strategic Planning Center, COMIREX; Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Russian and East European Policy; Senior Manager at the CIA Counterproliferation Center, and Deputy Assistant DCI for Collection & Analysis. From 2000-2005 he was DCI Representative to the U.S. Army War College and Walter Bedell Smith Chair of National Intelligence Studies.  After retiring from the CIA in 2005 as a Senior Intelligence Officer, he held the Francis W. De Serio Chair for Strategic Intelligence at the US Army War College until June 2010 when he retired from that position. He continues to teach occasionally as an Adjunct Faculty at the USAWC. During his career at CIA Professor Williams worked against the Soviet target, international terrorist groups, international criminal organizations and organizations engaged in international weapons smuggling.

In addition, he is the recipient of many awards including the Outstanding Educators of America, Congressional Foreign Affairs Fellow, CIA Exceptional Performance Award, CIA Meritorious Unit Citation, the US Army Outstanding Civilian Service Medal, and CIA Career service and Career Intelligence Medals respectively, and was designated a Distinguished Fellow of the US Army War College in 2010.

Mr. Williams has published numerous articles during his career, most recently “The Role of Intelligence in the Making of National Security Policy, “ in U.S. Army War College Guide to National Security Policy and Strategy, J. Boone Barthelomees, Jr. (ed.), Carlisle Barracks: U.S. Army War College, 2007.

Video of the Panel Discussion

Yair Teller

TellerPosterFinalChief Scientist and Founder, HomeBiogas

The Business of Peace through Green Energy: The HomeBiogas Story

Thursday, March 31, 2016
Stern Center, Great Room, 7 p.m.

Teller will discuss how he is using his company, HomeBiogas, as a mechanism for peace building, sustainable development, women’s empowerment, and improvement of the quality of health and life for citizens of developing countries.

Yair Teller is chief scientist and co-founder of the HomeBiogas Company based in Netanya, Israel.  HomeBiogas produces a household renewable energy appliance that recycles kitchen waste into cooking gas and organic fertilizer.  Profits from sales to suburban customers and a successful crowd-funding campaign are used to support donation of HomeBiogas units to economically disadvantaged Bedouin, Palestinian, and Ugandan families for alleviation of poverty.  The work of HomeBiogas has been recognized by the UN and the Peres Center for Peace.

This event is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and Student Senate, and co-sponsored by the departments of Judaic studies, Middle East studies and earth sciences, the Center for Sustainable Education, the Treehouse, J Street U, and the Geology Club.

Biography (provided by the speaker)

7925288_origYair Teller is a visionary and entrepreneur committed to the cause of sustainability, and driven to empower underserved communities throughout the world. He is an internationally recognized authority on domestic biogas systems, and frequently lectures at institutions throughout the world.  Teller has led forefront research developing integrative systems of waste management, anaerobic digestion, and algae production at Ben Gurion University. Teller discovered domestic biogas in India, and went on to conduct field projects constructing systems in Mexico, Kenya, the Palestinian Territories, and Israel.

In 2010, Yair Teller, together with Oshik Efrati and Erez Lanzer, founded HomeBiogas, and began developing the most advanced and affordable small-scale biogas systems.

Currently, Yair is the chief scientist for HomeBiogas and directs international peace-building projects with the EU, USAID, Peres Center for Peace, and Arava Institute for environmental studies. In November 2015, the company launched an IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign that reached 200% of its goal over two months, and sold systems to over twenty countries. Yair’s leadership has pushed the company to dream big; the HomeBiogas vision is to make advanced biogas technology mainstream and accessible to families throughout the world.

Video of the Lecture


George Lipsitz

Lipsitz PosterProfessor of Black Studies and Sociology, University of California, Santa Barbara

The Ferguson Conjuncture: Why the Humanities Matter Now

Tuesday, March 29, 2016
Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium, 7 p.m.

Live Stream Link

The killing of Michael Brown and the callous and cruel responses to it by legally constituted authorities have rightly been perceived as evidence of failures of the criminal justice system and the political system. In addition, the events, actions and ideas emerging from the crucible of conflict in Ferguson also reveal a betrayal of the promise of the humanities to teach discernment, judgment and empathy as tools for envisioning a common and creative human existence.

This program is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues  and co-sponsored by the Division of Student Life, the Churchill Fund and the departments of American studies, sociology and history. It is part of the Clarke Forum’s Leadership in an Age of Uncertainty Series.

Photo By Rod Rolle

Biography (provided by the speaker)

George Lipsitz is professor of black studies and sociology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. His publications include How Racism Takes Place, The Possessive Investment in Whiteness, A Life in the Struggle, Time Passages and The Fierce Urgency of Now (with Daniel Fischlin and Ajay Heble). Lipsitz serves as senior editor of Kalfou, a comparative and relational  journal of ethnic studies. He serves as president of the board of directors of the African American Policy Forum and as advisory board chair of the UC, Santa Barbara Center for Black Studies Research.

Video of the Lecture

Interview with George Lipsitz by Aleksandra Syniec ’18, Clarke Forum Student Project Manager


Lance Wahlert

Wahlert PosterAssistant Professor of Medical Ethics & Health Policy, University of Pennsylvania

Disability Studies and Contemporary Bioethics for HIV-Positive Persons

Wednesday, March 23, 2016
Stern Center, Great Room, 7 p.m.

In this talk, Wahlert will discuss the prominence of HIV-positive persons in the history of medicine, paying special attention to their impact by the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

This event is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and co-sponsored by the departments of women’s and gender studies, American studies, biology and the health studies certificate program. It is also part of the Clarke Forum’s semester theme, Disability.

Biography (provided by the speaker)

An historian of medicine and literary/cinema/queer studies scholar by training, Dr. Lance Wahlert is assistant professor of medical ethics & health policy and director of thelance-wahlert-image Master of Bioethics (MBE) program in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.   He also holds affiliated standing-faculty appointments in Penn’s departments of: Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies; English; Cinema Studies; and, the History and Sociology of Science.

Dr. Wahlert’s scholarly interests include narrative medicine, clinical ethics, the history of LGBTQ medicine, disability theory, cinema studies, and Irish and Norwegian literature.  Accordingly, he has held residential fellowships at the Welcome Centre for the History of Medicine (London), Trinity College Dublin, Queen’s University Belfast, the University of Oslo, King’s College London, the British Film Institute, and the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science.  In the fall of 2013, he served as visiting assistant professor of Clinical Ethics at the Cleveland Clinic, serving as a specialist in medical humanities and LGBT health.

Having been funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Pew Foundation, Dr. Wahlert’s scholarship has been featured in publications including Bioethics, the American Journal of Bioethics, the Cambridge Quarterly of Health Care Ethics, the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, and The Hastings Center Report.  He has also served as guest editor of three special issues of peer-reviewed, academic journals dedicated to the intersections of bioethics, queer theory, disability studies, and the history of medicine: “Bioethics, Sexuality, and Gender Identity” for the Journal of Bioethical Inquiry (2012); “Queer in the Clinic” for the Journal of Medical Humanities (2013); and “Mapping Queer Bioethics: Space, Place, and Locality” for the Journal of Homosexuality (2015).

Related Links

Video of the Lecture

Interview with Lance Wahlert and Julia Mercer ’18

Dancing in Jaffa – Film Showing Followed by Comments and Dance Class by Pierre Dulaine

JaffaPosterThis film showing is part of the Movement Matters Film Series. It includes three documentaries that explore dance as a vehicle for social change and personal transformation.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016
Mathers Theatre, 7 p.m.

Pierre Dulaine, an internationally renowned ballroom dancer, takes his program, Dancing Classrooms, back to his city of birth, Jaffa.  Pierre teaches Palestinian-Israeli and Jewish-Israeli children to dance and compete together.  The film explores how the future might unfold if the art of movement and dance could triumph over the politics of history and geography. Comments by Dulaine. A dance class with Dulaine will follow.

This film showing is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issue and co-sponsored by the Department of Theatre & Dance and the Milton B. Asbell Center for Jewish Life.

Dancing in Jaffa Trailer

Version 2Biography (provided by the speaker)

Pierre Dulaine was born in Jaffa, Palestine. His Irish Protestant father married his Palestinian Catholic mother while serving with the British army. Being Palestinian meant being uprooted and fleeing with his family in 1948 at the creation of the State of Israel when he was four – with nowhere else to go his family landed in Amman, Jordan and as a teenager went to the UK.

It was in Birmingham at the age of 14 that Pierre began to dance, and in 1972 ended up in New York City for what was to have been a 2-week vacation. He started his dance partnership with Yvonne Marceau in 1976 winning four World Championship titles in show-dancing and performing in Tommy Tune’s “Grand Hotel” on Broadway for 2½ years, followed by a 5-month run at the Dominion Theatre in London’s West End. The New York Times dubbed Pierre a “Dancer and Teacher Extraordinaire.”

Pierre & Yvonne with Otto Cappel founded the American Ballroom Theater in 1984 to bring ballroom dancing to a wider audience by putting on full length performances on the legitimate stage. The company’s debut was at the Dance Theatre Workshop, followed by performances at The Brooklyn Academy of Music, The Joyce Theater, The Kennedy Center, The Herbst Theater in San Francisco, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Akademie der Kunst in Germany, Maison de la Dance and at the Aix en Provence Dance Festival in France, Saddler’s Wells Theatre in London…to name just a few here in the US and overseas.

In 1994 Pierre founded Dancing Classrooms, the Social and Emotional Development Arts in Education Program designed to cultivate essential life skills that include social awareness, confidence, and self-esteem in children through the practice of social dance.

In 2005 Mad Hot Ballroom, the hit documentary and in 2006 Take the Lead, with Antonio Banderas portraying Pierre Dulaine and his Dancing Classrooms work with children were released.

Ballroom dancing changed Pierre Dulaine’s life, transforming him from a shy young man who rarely smiled to a charismatic, confident world champion. He’s returned the favor, sharing the gift of ballroom, first, with 30 reluctant students in a New York City’s public school and then, over 20 years, with over 410,000 children in 31 cities around the world.

He has also had the privilege of working with Autistic and Down syndrome children here in the USA and with adults in psychiatric clinics in Geneva, where the doctors and caregivers danced with their patients as well as in an Adult Homeless Shelter in Arizona. Patients began to feel normal once again and a high percentage regained their self-esteem and dignity…all because they were treated like ladies and gentlemen through the social graces that go hand in hand with ballroom dancing.

One might think his greatest triumphs would be the world show-dance championships he’s won, the American for the Arts Awards for Arts and Education, the prestigious Ellis Medal of Honor, the Carl Alan Award or the United Nations nomination as a Goodwill Ambassador for promoting peace, but his hardest and most important challenge hit closer to home – when he decided to return to Jaffa, where he was born, to give the gift of dance and teach Jewish and Palestinian Israeli children how to “dance with the enemy.” This journey was chronicled in the new documentary film, Dancing in Jaffa. Now on Video on Demand.

Related Links

Dancing Classrooms

Voice of America’s Al Hurra Television Interview

“May I have This Dance Please” … TEDx Hollywood Talk 

Interview with Pierre Dulaine by Rowan Humphries ’19


Bassem Eid

Eid Poster_ March 8Palestinian Human Rights Advocate and Political Commentator

Palestinians’ Internal Politics and Conflicts

Tuesday, March 8, 2016
Stern Center, Great Room, 7 p.m.

Since 2007, Palestinians have become so divided that reconciliation is in the interest of neither Hamas nor Abbas. Eid will discuss the internal politics and significance of this divide.

This event is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and co-sponsored by the Department of Judaic Studies, Middle East Studies and the Milton B. Asbell Center for Jewish Life.

Biography (provided by the speaker)

Bassem Eid is former director of the Jerusalem-based Palestinian Human Rights  Monitoring Group (PHRMG). Born in Jerusalem, he spent the first 33 yearsPalestinian-Human-Rights-Activist-Bassam-Eid1 of his life in the Shuafat Refugee Camp on the outskirts of the city. He became a prominent figure during the first Intifada, the Palestinian uprising, as senior field researcher for B’Tselem, the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories. He publicly condemned the widespread killing of Palestinian collaborators, often for reasons unrelated to the Intifada. In 1995, following his report about the Palestinian Preventative Security Service, he came under attack by some Palestinian leaders for revealing human rights violations committed by the Palestinian Authority. He continued his criticisms of both Israeli and Palestinian security forces. Arrested by Force 17, the Palestinian Presidential Guard, he was released after 25 hours following widespread and international condemnation. In response to the deterioration in the human rights situation under the PA, he founded the Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group (PHRMG): it monitors abuses committed by the PA, and also deals to some extent with Israel. It is a nonpartisan human rights organization, dedicated to exposing human rights violations and supporting a democratic and pluralistic Palestine. His publications include: Neither Law Nor Justice: Human Rights in the Occupied Territories Since the Oslo Accords (cowritten by PHRMG and B’Tselem); The State of Human Rights in Palestine I: The practice of torture by the Palestinian Authority, violations of freedom of the press and freedom of expression, deaths in custody, and police brutality (PHRMG); The State of Human Rights in Palestine II. Indepth report on the judicial system, illegal arrests, and long term illegal detention (PHRMG); Fatah and Hamas Human Rights Violations, in The Israel-Palestine Conflict, published by the University of California Los Angeles in 2011.

The Association for Civil Rights in Israel has awarded him its Emil Gruenzweig Memorial Award. He is also the recipient of the Robert S. Litvak Human Rights Memorial Award granted by the Faculty of Law at McGill University and the International Human Rights Advocacy Center, Inter Amicus; the International Activist Award given by the Gleitsman Foundation, USA; and the award of Italy’s Informazione Senza Frontiere (Information without Boundaries). In 2009, a book, Next Founders, profiled him as the leading Palestinian human rights activist.

Video of the Lecture

Shake the Dust – Film Showing

DustPosterThis film showing is part of the Movement Matters Film Series. It includes three documentaries that explore dance as a vehicle for social change and personal transformation.

Monday, March 7, 2016
Mathers Theatre, 7 p.m.

From executive producer and rapper Nasir “Nas” Jones and journalist-turned-filmmaker Adam Sjöberg, Shake the Dust chronicles the influence of breakdancing, exploring how it strikes a resonant chord in the slums, favelas and ghettos of the world. Patricia van Leeuwaard Moonsammy, professor of Africana studies, will offer comments following the film-showing.

This film showing is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issue and co-sponsored by the Department of Theatre & Dance and the Department of American Studies.


Manju Banerjee

BanerjeePosterFINALVice President and Director of Landmark College Institute for Research and Training (LCIRT) and Associate Professor at Landmark College

Universal Design and Diverse Learners

Thursday, March 3, 2016
Holland Union Building, Social Hall West, 7 p.m.

This presentation will address issues, experiences, challenges and alternatives in pedagogical practice for today’s diverse population of college students. Starting with an overview of neurodiversity and learner differences, the presenter will share practical hand-on techniques, eTools, and strategies as guided by the Universal Design mindset.

This program is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and co-sponsored by the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, American Studies, Kappa Delta Pi, the Wellness Center and the Office of Disability Services (ODS).  It is also part of the Clarke Forum’s semester theme, Disability.

Manju Banerjee pic, distributionBiography (provided by the speaker)

Manju Banerjee, Ph.D., is vice president and director of Landmark College Institute for Research and Training (LCIRT) and associate professor at Landmark College. Dr. Banerjee has over 29 years of experience in the field of learning disabilities and postsecondary education, and is a certified diagnostician and teacher-consultant on learning disabilities. She has published and presented extensively, both nationally and internationally, on topics including Universal Design for Instruction, disability documentation, and technological competencies for postsecondary transition and online accommodations. She was Co-PI of an $1.03 million U.S. Dept. of Education demonstration project grant (#P333A080053) on “UDI Online: Applying Universal Design for Instruction to Online and Blended Courses” awarded in 2008 through 2012. She has taught and currently teaches an online course on Universal Design: Principles and Practice to post baccalaureate educators. She is an editorial board member of the Journal of Postsecondary Education Disability, Professional Advisory Board member to the Learning Disability Association of America, and a consultant to Educational Testing Service. She received her doctoral degree from the Neag School of Education, University of Connecticut, on the application of Universal Design to assessment practices. See Dr. Banerjee’s clip on UDL at Landmark College:

Video of the Lecture

Interview with Manju Banerjee by Kayleigh Rhatigan ’19, Clarke Forum Student Project Manager

Steven Pifer

ukraine-russia posterSenior Fellow, Brookings Institution and Former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine

The Ukraine-Russia Crisis and U.S. Policy

Wednesday, March 2, 2016
Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium, 7 p.m.

Live Stream Link

Pifer will address how the crisis between Ukraine and Russia has developed, what it means for the West and the U.S. policy response.

This event is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and co-sponsored by the departments of international studies, political science, history, Russian and the security studies certificate program.

SP PhotoBiography (provided by the speaker)

Steven Pifer is a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, where he focuses on arms control, Ukraine and Russia.  A retired Foreign Service officer, his more than 25 years with the State Department included assignments as deputy assistant secretary of state with responsibilities for Russia and Ukraine, U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, and special assistant to the president and senior director for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia on the National Security Council.

Related Links

Crisis Over Ukraine: Contingency Planning Memorandum Update

Video of the Lecture

Interview with Steven Pifer and Rehoboth Gesese’ 17, Clarke Forum Student Project Manager


Trash Dance – Film Showing

Trash Dance PosterThis film showing is part of the Movement Matters Film Series. It includes three documentaries that explore dance as a vehicle for social change and personal transformation.

Monday, February 29, 2016
Stern Center, Great Room, 6 p.m.

Choreographer Allison Orr finds beauty and grace in garbage trucks, and in the unseen men and women who pick up trash.  Filmmaker Andrew Garrison follows Orr as she rides along with Austin sanitation workers to observe and later convince them to perform a most unlikely spectacle.  On an abandoned runway, two dozen trash collectors and their trucks deliver a stunningly beautiful performance. Following the film showing, Andrew Garrison and crane operator Donald Anderson will offer comments and answer questions via Skype.

This film showing is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issue and co-sponsored by the Department of Theatre & Dance and the Center for Sustainability Education.

Trash Dance Trailer


Perri Klass

Klass Poster 1Professor of Journalism and Pediatrics, New York University

Poverty as a Childhood Disease

Thursday, February 25, 2016
Stern Center, Great Room, 7 p.m.

This talk will look at what poverty does to children, through lenses ranging from fairy tales to health statistics, and discuss the ways in which we can look at childhood poverty as a disease, stunting and depriving children’s minds and bodies–and use that perspective to find ways to think about mitigating the damage and reducing the disease itself.

This program is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues  and co-sponsored by the Churchill Fund, department of economics, educational studies and the health studies program. It was initiated by the Clarke Forum’s student project managers and is part of the Clarke Forum’s Leadership in an Age of Uncertainty Series.

A children’s book drive is associated with this program and it runs from February 18 – February 25. New and gently used children’s books are being accepted. Bins are located at the Clarke Forum, Waidner-Spahr Library and the Whistlestop Bookshop (Whistlestop is offering a 10% discount on books being donated for this drive.)

klass6_headshotBiography (provided by the speaker)

Perri Klass, MD, is professor of journalism and pediatrics at New York University, where she is director of the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute. She attended Harvard Medical School and completed her residency in pediatrics at Children’s Hospital, Boston. She has received numerous awards for her work as a pediatrician and educator; including the 2007 American Academy of Pediatrics Education Award, which recognizes her educational contributions which have had a broad and positive impact on the health and well-being of children and the 2011 Alvarez Award from the American Medical Writers Association.

Klass has written extensively about medicine, children, literacy, and knitting. Her nonfiction includes Every Mother is a Daughter: the Neverending Quest for Success, Inner Peace, and a Really Clean Kitchen, which she coauthored with her mother, and Quirky Kids: Understanding and Helping Your Child Who Doesn’t Fit In, which she coauthored with Eileen Costello, M.D. She is also the author of two books about medical training, A Not Entirely Benign Procedure: Four Years as a Medical Student, and Baby Doctor: A Pediatrician’s Training, which were reissued in updated editions in 2010. Her most recent books are Treatment Kind and Fair: Letters to a Young Doctor, and The Mercy Rule, a novel, which appeared in 2008.  For five years, she wrote the monthly “18 and Under” column for the Science Section of the New York Times.

Klass is the National Medical Director of Reach Out and Read, a national program that incorporates books and literacy promotion into pediatric primary care visits, encouraging parent-child interaction through reading aloud.  The program serves over 4.5 million children and families every year through more than 5600 clinical sites. Through her work at the ROR National Center she has trained thousands of medical providers in the ROR strategies of early literacy promotion.  She serves on the Academic Pediatric Association’s Task Force on Child Poverty.

Related Links

Kimberly Dark

Dark PosterStoryteller

This event is part of “Love Your Body Week” and “Let’s Eat!” Click here for LYBW Schedule.

Becoming the Subject of Your Own Story

This event is only open to Dickinson community members.
RSVP required to by Thursday, February 18.

Monday, February 22, 2016
Stern Center, Great Room, 5 p.m.

This spoken word performance uncovers the various ways women (and men) cheat the world of their fabulous human potential by focusing too often on appearance, sweetness and popularity. The show does not preach or instruct. Rather, audience members discover their own empowerment through Dark’s funny and personal tales.

Yoga for Every Body

Tuesday, February 23, 2016
HUB Dance Studio, Noon – 1 p.m.

These events are sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and co-sponsored by the Women’s and Gender Resource Center, Student Senate and the Psychology Club.

Kimberly-Dark-2015Biography (provided by the speaker)

Kimberly Dark is a writer, storyteller and speaker who helps audiences discover that we are creating the world, even as it creates us. She’s the author of five award-winning performance scripts and a number of educational programs regarding the body in culture — how appearances and identities influence our experiences in the world related to gender, race, body type/size, beauty, ability, etc. She uses humor and intimacy to prompt audiences to discover their influences and reclaim their power as social creators.

Dark blogs regularly for Huffington Post and Ms Magazine, in addition to contributing essays, stories and articles to a wide range of books and publications. She travels the English-speaking world doing performances and keynote presentations at colleges and universities, conferences, theatres and festivals. She has been invited to present her unique blend of performance and presentation, writing and workshops at hundreds of venues in the U.S., Canada, Australia, UK, Ireland and other nations during the past twenty years. She lectures in a graduate program in Sociological Practice at California State University, San Marcos.