Professor Kirstein to Participate at DePaul University Academic Freedom Conference:

I am honoured to be involved in this venue since it is organised and conceptualised by DePaul University students who were galvanised by the egregious decisions to deny tenure to Dr Norman G. Finkelstein and Dr Mehrene Larudee. This is the second event that these students have organised that have had a great impact on the national conversation on academic freedom and the right of critical thinking. The extraordinary event at the Rockefeller Chapel at the University of Chicago would not have been possible without the energy and dedication and SKILL of DePaul’s students.

Denied Tenure and Academic Freedom for Political and Ideological Beliefs: Doctor Finkelstein and  Doctor Larudee

1-2 February 2008
Lincoln Park Student Center – 2250 N. Sheffield Ave. Chicago, IL

CHICAGO, IL – In light of the controversial tenure denials of eminent Middle East scholar Norman G. Finkelstein and International Studies professor Mehrene Larudee earlier last year at DePaul University, prominent scholars from across the country are coming together for a two-day conference at DePaul, on February 1-2, to lecture about the threats facing academic freedom and Middle Eastern studies at universities. In addition to DePaul’s cases, the efforts to silence scholars such as John Mearsheimer (University of Chicago) and Stephen Walt (Harvard University), and the tenure controversies of Nadia Abu El-Haj (Barnard College) and Joseph Massad (Columbia University) have all inspired the conference, which seeks to protect as well as preserve academic freedom through honest and informed debate.

The event is hosted by the DePaul Academic Freedom Committee, and co-sponsored by the DePaul University International Studies Program, the Peace Studies Program, the History Department, and the Department of Philosophy*
*DePaul University is not sponsoring this event, only the listed departments and programs

The Academic Freedom Committee is still accepting a call for papers to be submitted by professors or students for the two-day conference.

The event is to be held at the Lincoln Park Student Center 2250 N. Sheffield Ave., at DePaul University

Academic Freedom Syposum
Feb 1-2, 2008
DePaul University, Chicago, IL

Event schedule: 

Day 1 – FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 1, 6:00pm -9:00pm

Introduction with Keynote Speaker – 6:00 pm
Sara Roy, Harvard University political economist

The Role of the Activist Professor – 7:00 pm
Featuring Panelists:
Bill Ayers, Professor, College of Education, University of Illinois – Chicago
Ken Butigan, Ph.D., author, professor and peace activist
Robert Jensen, Professor, School of Journalism, University of Texas
Marcy Newman, Visiting Professor at the Center for American Studies and Research at the American University of Beirut and a Fellow at the Initiative for Middle East Policy Dialogue

Day 2 – SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 2, 11:00 am – 7:00 pm

Academic Freedom and the Way Forward – 11:00 am
Featuring Panelists:
Marc Ellis, University Professor of Jewish Studies and Director of the Center for Jewish Studies at Baylor University
Peter N. Kirstein, Professor, Department of History, Saint Xavier University
Joel Kovel, Distinguished Professor, Department of Social Studies, Bard College

Paper Presentations – 2:00 pm
Documentary Film presented by Director:
Landrum Bolling, Director, Mercy Corps

Academic Freedom and Middle East Studies – 5:00 pm
Featuring Panelists:
As’ad AbuKhalil, Professor, Department of Politics and Public Administration, California State University
Juan Cole, Professor, Department of History, University of Michigan;
Peter Novick, Professor (Emeritus), Department of History, University of Chicago

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