Fall 2007

Global Poverty: What Are Our Obligations?

Thursday, September 13, 2007

When one considers the subject of global poverty, questions arise as to whether the help that rich countries can give poor countries is a matter of humanitarianism and generosity or whether it is rather a matter of global justice. This is related to a question about the extent to which the poverty of many nations is a result of policies of the rich nations and their corporations, a result, that is, of sins of commission as opposed merely to sins of omission. These and other such questions will be the theme of one of the leading moral philosophers in the world, Peter Singer.

Territory, Authority, Rights

Monday, September 17, 2007

Saskia Sassen, one of the most prominent sociologists of globalization, will discuss with two other experts, a range of the most pressing issues of our time—from the global city (a term which she coined) to the privatization of politics in a globalized world.

A Reading by Adrienne Rich

Monday, October 1, 2007

Adrienne Rich, one of the greatest poets in the English language of the last few decades and a remarkable feminist voice in our times, will return to Columbia's Heyman Center for the Humanities for a reading.

A Conversation with Adrienne Rich

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

In a meeting open only to Columbia students, Adrienne Rich will give an informal class session with Q and A.

What Use is Aid?

Monday, October 8, 2007

William Easterly has for some years now been a prominent critic of various aid programs to poor countries. He will present his arguments on this subject and will get critical responses from the philosopher Peter Singer, selected as one of Newsweek's 100 most influential people in the world today, and Columbia's own Joseph Stiglitz, a nobel prize winner in Economics.

Is there a Left left?

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Alexander Cockburn is one of the most brilliant and consistent left wing voices in public intellectual life today. His columns in the Nation and his contributions to his own website Counterpunch.com, a great source and site for resistance to the orthodoxies of our times, are major and indispensable contributions to politics outside of the mainstream. He will speak on the Left and whether it still exists in America today.

Alexander Cockburn, one of the most brilliant and consistent left wing voices in public intellectual life today, will be interviewed by Columbia's distinguished historian, Eric Foner, himself a consistent and learned figure of the American intellectual left.

W.H. Auden’s “The Shield of Achilles”

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

An evening of Auden at the Heyman Center: two major poets and a remarkable scholar of poetry spend an evening with a volume of poems (The Shield of Achilles) by one of the greatest of poets of the twentieth century.

Freedom and the University

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Academic freedom is widely perceived to be under increasing threat in America, more so than at any time since the McCarthy period in the Fifties. This is the first of two symposia funded by the Ford Foundation this year which gathers eminent scholars to talk about their experiences, to analyze the problem, and to offer possible solutions.

Fear, Reverence, Terror

Thursday, November 15, 2007

A greatly imaginative and distinguished senior historian to speak on "Fear, Reverence, Terror" with two brilliant younger historians raising discussion.

Featuring Walter Benn Michaels, Charles Altieri, and Amanda Anderson

ohn Dunn, along with Quentin Skinner and John Pocock, founded what is known as the 'Cambridge School,' a method of historical study in political theory that has had an influence the world over. He will be speaking on the importance of globalizing the history of political thought, and three theorists of political theory, all from South Asia, will be raising a discussion for him. Featuring John Dunn with Sudipta Kaviraj, Sunil Khilnani & Uday Mehta

Praising William Empson

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

William Empson, the author of perhaps the best known work in literary criticism of the last century Seven Types of Ambiguity and a legendary figure in British literary criticism, will be the subject of two talks: one by John Haffenden, the author of a recent widely applauded biography of Empson, and the other by Christopher Ricks, the professor of poetry at Oxford university and one of the most engaging and penetrating critics of our time. Featuring Christopher Ricks and John Haffenden

The Fortunes of Atlantic History

Monday, December 10, 2007

Bernard Bailyn, one of the most venerable and respected of American historians (and intellectual historians), will speak on 'The Fortunes of Atlantic History'.


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