75th Anniversary Distinguished Speaker Series at the Athenaeum
The 75th Anniversary Distinguished Speaker Series at the Athenaeum will showcase an extraordinary lineup of public figures who are addressing challenges and leveraging opportunities in important areas of responsible leadership. These special opportunities will allow the CMC community, especially students, to interact with and hear from prominent experts in varied fields.
Guests of the Distinguished Speaker Series are selected based on their intellectual or professional distinction/recognition; originality of perspective and voice; dedication to open and free expression; respect for diverse viewpoints; and commitment to constructive dialogue on matters of conflict and controversy. Speakers will engage in discussion on one of three academic collaboration themes for the 75th Anniversary: Civilization and Commerce, Unity and Division, and Science and Policy.
We are delighted to welcome the following outstanding thought leaders to campus this spring.
Wed, March 2, 2022 — Dinner Program
Ayn Rand, Milton Friedman, and the Ethics of Capitalism
Historian and biographer Jennifer Burns, associate professor of history at Stanford University and research fellow at the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution, and Peace, will draw on original research to explore the ideas and lives of two American icons of capitalism, the novelist Ayn Rand and the economist Milton Friedman. Both supporters of free market capitalism, Rand and Friedman came to different answers on the same perennial questions: What is the morality of capitalism? How can markets be ethically justified?
As one of CMC’s 75th Anniversary Distinguished Speakers, Professor Burns will highlight issues in “Civilization and Commerce,” one of the three academic collaboration themes of our special 75th Anniversary celebration.
Wed, March 9, 2022 — Dinner Program
A Conversation with Fiona Hill
Fiona Hill, senior fellow in the Center on the United States and Europe in the Foreign Policy program at the Brookings Institute, served as deputy assistant to the president and senior director for European and Russian affairs on the U.S. National Security Council from 2017 to 2019. An expert on European and Russian affairs, intelligence, and security issues, Dr. Hill will discuss these and other pressing topics, including global nationalism and populism, in a conversation moderated by Professor Hilary Appel, the Podlich Family Professor of Government and George R. Roberts Fellow at Claremont McKenna College.
As one of CMC’s 75th Anniversary Distinguished Speakers, Dr. Hill will highlight issues in “Unity and Division” one of the three academic collaboration themes of our special 75th Anniversary celebration.
Wed, March 23, 2022 — Dinner Program
Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty
Why are some nations extremely rich while others remain cripplingly poor? And why is the gap between the two widening? What separates the haves from the have-nots, Daron Acemoglu, professor of applied economics at MIT, argues has nothing to do with geography or natural resources, as is commonly believed. Instead, nations live or die on the soundness of their institutions, the fairness of their laws, and the transparency of their governments. Drawing on powerful examples from America to Mexico to Sierra Leone to Singapore, Acemoglu shows us that, with strong institutions in place, individuals (and nations) are given the incentive and the opportunities to achieve and innovate. And increasingly pressing today, how can we protect democratic institutions, the foundations of political systems, as financial crises, polarizing politics, and reduced wages erode trust in democracy itself?
As one of CMC’s 75th Anniversary Distinguished Speakers, Professor Acemoglu will highlight issues in “Civilization and Commerce,” one of the three academic collaboration themes of our special 75th Anniversary celebration.
Photo credit: L. Barry Hetherington
Tue, March 29, 2022 — Dinner Program
Race and Commerce: The American Experience
Glenn Loury, the Merton P. Stoltz Professor of the Social Sciences and Professor of Economics at Brown University, in conversation with Michael Fortner, an associate professor of government at CMC, will discuss the unique and critical historical, social, and economic perspectives of the legacy of race on the American experience and offer reflections for responsible leadership of such challenging and enduring issues.
As one of CMC’s 75th Anniversary Distinguished Speakers, Professor Loury will highlight issues in Civilization and Commerce, one of the three academic collaboration themes of our special 75th Anniversary celebration.
Photo credit: Watson Institute, Brown University
Mon, April 18, 2022 — Dinner Program
75th Anniversary Theme of Unity and Division — Title Forthcoming
Martha S. Jones
A legal and cultural historian whose work examines how black Americans have shaped the story of American democracy, Martha Jones is the Society of Black Alumni Presidential Professor, Professor of History, and a Professor at the SNF Agora Institute at The Johns Hopkins University. She is the author of Vanguard: How Black Women Broke Barriers, Won the Vote, and Insisted on Equality for All (2020) and Birthright Citizens: A History of Race and Rights in Antebellum America (2018). Against the context of contemporary debates, she will examine how Black Americans have constructed their legal rights in a world predominated by the view that they were non-citizens without rights.
As one of CMC’s 75th Anniversary Distinguished Speakers, Professor Jones will highlight issues in “Unity and Division,” one of the three academic collaboration themes of our special 75th Anniversary celebration.
This event has been postponed to the Fall semester
Wed, April 20, 2022 — Dinner Program
Upheaval: Turning Points for Nations in Crisis
Based on his 2019 book Upheaval, Jared Diamond reveals how successful nations recover from crisis through selective change. In an exhaustive comparative study, he shows how seven countries have survived upheavals in the recent past—from US Commodore Perry’s arrival in Japan to the Soviet invasion of Finland to Pinochet’s regime in Chile—through a process of painful self-appraisal and adaptation, identifying patterns in the way that these distinct nations recovered from calamity. Looking ahead to the future, he investigates whether the United States, and the world, are squandering their natural advantages, on a path towards political conflict and decline. Or can we still learn from the lessons of the past?
As one of CMC’s 75th Anniversary Distinguished Speakers, Professor Diamond will highlight issues in “Civilization and Commerce” one of the three academic collaboration themes of our special 75th Anniversary celebration.
Photo credit: Reed Hutchinson
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