March 27, 00
Vol. 15 , No. 10
Rhetoric and Reality in Science
MONDAY, MARCH 27, 2000
A graduate of Princeton University, Robert Faggen earned his Ph.D. in English and American literature from Harvard in 1988. He has been an associate professor at CMC since 1994, and currently serves as the chair of the literature department. A prolific critic and editor, Faggen is a contributing editor of The Paris Review, has published articles in the Los Angeles Times Book Review and Partisan Review, and has composed critically acclaimed editions of works by Robert Frost, Czeslaw Milosz, and E. A. Robinson. He is currently working on a six-volume edition of The Complete Writings of Robert Frost for Harvard University Press.
One of Faggen's primary scholarly interests has been the relationship between literature and science, particularly the role that rhetoric and metaphor has played in scientific thought. He explored this question in one of his books, Robert Frost and the Challenge of Darwin (1997), published by the University of Michigan Press.
The fundamental question has roots in Platonic and Aristotelian philosophy: does art merely imitate reality, or is it a dynamic force that helps to define and shape our reality? The answer to this question will help to determine whether art and rhetoric have a significant influence on the way that science is perceived and the way in which it expresses itself. Faggen has explored this question further in his studies of Czeslaw Milosz, whose work addresses the question of the relation of science to the religious imagination.
Robert Faggen joins us to discuss the relationship of rhetoric and reality in modern science, a question that has provoked strong debates in recent years among the players in the "two cultures" of science and the humanities. This lecture is part of the Faculty Ideas in Progress series.
Reads From Her Work
TUESDAY, MARCH 28, 2000
Michelle Cliff's landmark novel No Telephone to Heaven (1989) is a story of Jamaica and the crossroads of myth, politics, and race. At its center is the haunting character of Clare Savage, a divided mulatto, and her quest for spiritual integrity. The book represents a major achievement in the development of narrative in its depiction of brutalizing poverty and astonishing beauty. Toni Morrison has said that it is "full of razors, blossoms, and clarity. The beauty and authority of Cliff's writing is coupled with profound insight." Her most recent work is a collection of stories, The Store of a Million Items: Stories (1998), remarkable for its precise economy of language and unsentimental intelligence in confronting the complexities of a post-colonial world.
Cliff, who grew up in Jamaica and the United States, was educated in New York and the University of London. Her previous books include Claiming the Identity They Taught Me to Despise (1980), Abeng (1990), and The Land of Look Behind: Prose and Poetry (1985). She has been recognized around the world for her essays, articles, and lectures, and has been the Allen K. Smith Professor of English Language and Literature at Trinity College. She currently resides in California. This lecture is jointly sponsored by the CMC literature department.
Dreams and Nightmares: A Documentary
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 29, 2000
A self-described "blue-collar intellectual and radical humanist," Abe Osheroff has made human rights causes his life's work. The son of immigrants in Brooklyn, Osheroff came to political activism as a teenager during the Great Depression, helping to organize trade and student unions. In 1936, at the age of 21, he left for Spain to join the Abraham Lincoln Brigade and defend the Spanish Republic against Francisco Franco's fascist rebellion. Wounded, he returned home in 1938. When the United States entered World War II, he again volunteered for service and served in the infantry until 1945.
Osheroff, a carpenter by trade, has since been involved in a number of human rights campaigns. He worked in Mississippi's "Black Belt" during the Civil Rights movement and built houses in rural Nicaragua. Dreams and Nightmares: A Documentary (1975), which Osheroff produced and directed, is an award-winning documentary-partly historical, partly autobiographical, and partly an antiwar, anti-Franco polemic. The 1975 film recounts Osheroff's childhood during the Depression, his time fighting in the Spanish Civil War, and Spain under Franco's dictatorship.
Abe Osheroff joins us at the Athenaeum to share his film and ideas on social justice. His visit to Claremont is jointly sponsored by the Kravis Leadership Institute and the CMC history department.
Science and Public Policy: The Global Warming Debate
THURSDAY, MARCH 30, 2000
How will we face the threat of global warming in the coming century? This is the question for debate by Donald McFarlane, professor of biology and ecology at Claremont McKenna College; James Higdon, professor of physics at Claremont McKenna College; John Passacontando, founder and executive director of Ozone Action; and Glenn Kelly, executive director of The Global Climate Coalition.
Global warming may be the most serious environmental and economic threat facing the earth in the coming century. Our planet's temperature rising as little as three degrees could result in significant coastal flooding, wetland and coral reef destruction, declining agricultural production in the Midwest, and an increase in the severity of storms and weather patterns such as El Nino. Scientific associations like the National Academy of Sciences and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change have released statements confirming that man's polluting activities have caused the atmospheric carbon levels to rise significantly, and that our use of fossil fuels has had "a discernable influence on global climate." However, neither of these organizations has yet to determine how profound the effects of our greenhouse gas emissions will be on the future of our planet.
Tonight's debate will focus on whether the scientific evidence supporting the theory of global warming is strong enough to warrant policy action to reduce our emission of greenhouse gasses. McFarlane and Higdon will offer scientific evidence of global warming and discuss the scientific community's differing opinions on the need for regulatory action. As a professor of ecology, tropical ecology, and the environment of Southern California, McFarlane believes that there is enough scientific evidence collected to warrant serious concern about the threat of global warming. Higdon, a member of the American Physical Society, contends that the scientific evidence of the potential consequences of global warming are not significant enough to warrant major policy changes to regulate carbon emissions.
Passacontando and Kelly are advocates from opposing sides of the global climate policy debate. As spokesperson for Ozone Action, an organization founded in 1993 to work exclusively on the atmospheric issues of global warming and ozone depletion, Passacontando is dedicated to educating both policy makers and the public about this issue. He is an advocate for developing sound policy to address these serious environmental threats. In contrast, Kelly's GCC, one of the largest collective lobbying groups for companies such as Exxon Mobil, Southern Company, and CSX Transportation, lobbies against "drastic" and/or "hasty" changes in our government's policy towards global climate regulation. The GCC maintains "even if all scientific uncertainties were resolved, sound policy decisions should consider the economic and social alternative policy choices."
Ethics and the Economic Approach to Human Behavior
MONDAY, APRIL 3, 2000
Colin Wright was born in England where he received his early education. He attended Brigham Young University and earned his M.A. and Ph.D from the University of Chicago, where he was awarded several fellowships, including the Brookings Fellowship for Studies in Federal Taxation. Wright began teaching economics at Northwestern University before moving to Claremont in 1972 to become director of the Lincoln Institute at the Claremont Graduate School. A few years later, he was appointed dean of the faculty at Claremont McKenna College, a position he held until 1983 when he returned to full-time teaching and research within CMC's department of economics. Wright has also served several tours of duty as chairman of that department.
Early in his career Wright worked in environmental and urban economics, publishing several article's and one monograph in this area. During this period he also served as a consultant to the Environmental Protection Agency and the Labor Department on matters related to the Clean Water and Clean Air Acts of the 60s and 70s. More recently, his teaching and research interests have turned toward the interrelationships between moral philosophy and political economy. Alternatively, it could be said that he has returned to the foundations of economics as found in the works of David Hume and Adam Smith. This interest is reflected in his team teaching of two courses with two CMC professors: Ethics, Economics, and Public Policy with Clark Kucheman and Foundations of Political Economy with Jim Nichols. In the same vein, he joined forces with Professor Nichols to coedit From Economics to Political Economy ... and Back? (1990). He is presently working on an article titled "Economics and the Moral Dimension."
It is a pleasure to welcome dedicated teacher and moralist Colin Wright to the Athenaeum as the final speaker of this semester's series on Faculty Ideas in Progress.
Market Journalism, or The Best News That Money Can Buy
TUESDAY, APRIL 4, 2000
Whereas journalists have traditionally viewed themselves as members of a fourth estate that checks entrenched power and gives voice to dissent, Serge Halimi contends that the new global media has lost its independence and now in fact enhances corporate power and stifles democratic opposition. The business mentality of the new media has created a cozy alliance between the economic elite and leading journalists, such that the latter have become loud advocates for the former, especially on issues such as taxes, trade, regulation, etc. Abandoning their autonomy for the sake of pure profits, Halimi argues that our newsmakers can no longer be entrusted to serve as watchdogs for democracies.
Halimi is a senior editor and writer at Le Monde Diplomatique, a print and digital format with a worldwide circulation in which his articles appear simultaneously in numerous languages. He also teaches as an associate professor at the University of Paris. An author of numerous articles and monographs, Halimi has published several books on the influence of the media in both the United States and France, including: A l'americaine: Faire un president (1986); Sisyphe est fatigue (1993); Les eschecs de la gauche au pouvois (1993); and Les Nouveaux Chiens de garde (1997). As soon as it appeared, Les Nouveaux Chiens de garde created an immediate controversy in France, since it criticized certain leading journalists by name. It was the number one bestseller in France for many weeks and has since been translated into several languages.
Serge Halimi's lecture is made possible by a grant from the E. L. Weigand Foundation Visitor-in-Residence program.
Ask The Children: What America's Children Really Think About Working Parents
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 5, 2000
Most sociological studies of work-family tensions focus upon the attitudes and behaviors of working adults. Ellen Galinksy's landmark book Ask the Children: What America's Children Really Think About Working Parents (1999) contains the findings of a unique, longterm study of how children view the stresses and strains of modern family life. Her book-and the reactions to it-are the subject of her Athenaeum talk.
Galinsky is the president and cofounder of the Families and Work Institute, a Manhattan-based nonprofit organization conducting research on the changing family, workplace, and community. Since its inception in 1989, the Institute has made headlines with pioneering research such as the National Study of the Changing Workforce, an ongoing representative study of the U.S. workforce that is updated every five years. The 1998 Business Work-Life Study revealed the trends and prevalence of business initiatives that support the family and personal lives of employees.
Galinsky was a presenter at the 1997 White House Conference on Child Care and is the program director of the annual work-life conference, sponsored by the Conference Board and the Families and Work Institute. Having helped pioneer the field of work and family life during twenty-five years of teaching at Bank Street College of Education, she is coauthor of more than twenty books and hundreds of articles in magazines and academic journals. The past president of the National Association for the Education of Young Children, Galinsky serves on many boards, commissions, and task forces.
Ask the Children was excerpted in Newsweek. Both Galinsky and her work have been profiled in most national print and television forums including NBC's Today Show and ABC's Nightline.
Ellen Galinsky is one of three speakers featured this year in conjunction with CMC's new H. N. and Frances C. Berger Institute on Work, Family, and Children.
McKenna Lecture on International Trade and Economics
The International Monetary System After the Advent of the Euro
THURSDAY, APRIL 6, 2000
Robert Mundell has established the foundation for the theory which dominates practical policy considerations of monetary and fiscal policy in open economies. . . Above all, Mundell chose his problems with uncommon-almost prophetic-accuracy in terms of predicting the future development of international monetary arrangements and capital markets.
-The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences
Professor Robert A. Mundell, the recipient of the 1999 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences, is one of the most important figures in international macroeconomics. Born in Canada in 1932, Mundell received his B.A. from the University of British Columbia. He studied at the London School of Economics and received his Ph.D. from M.I.T. in 1956 with a thesis on international capital movements. Currently the C. Lowell Harriss Professor of Economics at Columbia University, Mundell has taught at the University of Chicago, Stanford, and Johns Hopkins.
The author of hundreds of articles in scientific journals, popular news articles, and reports for governments and international institutions, his books include Man and Economics (1968), and Monetary Theory: Inflation, Interest and Growth in the World Economy (1971). He is the father of optimum currency areas, was an important contributor to supply-side theories, and has advised the IMF, UN, World Bank, European Commission, Federal Reserve Board, U.S. Treasury, and numerous governments on monetary policy. As a consultant for the EEC in the early 70s, Mundell developed one of the earliest plans for European currency unification.
Robert Mundell's talk will focus on the post-Euro monetary system. His visit to Claremont McKenna College, endowed by founding trustee Donald McKenna, is the fifth annual McKenna Lecture on International Trade and Economics. The dinner is open to the CMC community only. All are welcome to attend the lecture.
Monday, April 10, 2000
Stephanie Satie, writer and performer, "Refugees" (1998), a play for one actor.
Tuesday, April 11, 2000
Brandi Page '00, violin, Wendy Kao '01, piano, "A Senior Recital."
Wednesday, April 12, 2000
Claudia Martinez '00, writer, director, and producer of "The Immaculate Conception of Virginia Manchado." (2000)
Thursday, April 13, 2000
Friday, April 14, 2000
Saturday, April, 15, 2000
Under the Lights Dinner Theater, Lend Me A Tenor (1986) by Kenneth Ludwig
Monday, April 17, 2000
Gary Smulyan, baritone saxophone, Mark Masters, director, The American Jazz Institute, "An Evening of Jazz with Strings."
Tuesday, April 18, 2000
Kenneth Starr, attorney, "Reflections on the Independent Counsel Statute: The Ignored Wisdom of the Framers."
Wednesday, April 19, 2000
Francis Fukuyama, RAND consultant, "The Great Disruption: The 60s and American Character."
Wednesday, April 26, 2000
Mathew Rosenblum, composer, and the California EAR Unit, "New Music for the Millennium."
Spring 2000 Student Art Show
CALLING ALL ARTISTS!
THURSDAY, APRIL 20, 2000 3:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.
FRIDAY, APRIL 21, 2000 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
In April the Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum will host a student art show and reception. If you would like to submit your work for exhibit, please contact Brendan Ford or Billy Grayson for further information.
The Kravis Leadership Institute's Board of Governors Lunch
THURSDAY, MARCH 30, 2000 11:45 a.m.
Stanley P. Gold is president and chief executive officer of Shamrock Holdings. Inc., a private, diversified investment company wholly owned by the Roy Disney Family. Shamrock owns or controls numerous operating companies including Latin Communications Group, Inc. (a Spanish-language broadcaster and publisher) and Cascadian Farm and Fantastic Foods (leaders in the field of quality organic foods). Gold is also a director of the Wait Disney Company.
A native of Los Angeles, he was graduated with a B.A. in political science from UCLA, and received his J.D. from the University of Southern California Law School. before doing postgraduate work at Cambridge University in England. Gold serves on several boards including the Board of Trustees of the University of Southern California. the Board of Governors of the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. the USC Law Center Board of Councilors. and the Board of Governors of CMC's Kravis Leadership Institute. As part of the Kravis Institute's spring Board of Governors meeting, Gold's talk will focus on leadership.
Introductory remarks will be made by Henry R. Kravis '67, chair of the Kravis Institute's Board of Governors, member of CMC's Board of Trustees, and founding partner of Kohlberg, Kravis, Roberts (KKR). Kravis, a leader in investment banking, is known for pioneering the leveraged buyout. KKR is responsible for some of the largest corporate acquisitions in history.
Lunch is served at 11:45 a.m. Henry Kravis will introduce Stanley Gold at 12:15 p.m.
The luncheon is open to the CMC community ONLY. All are welcome to the program.
Teaching for Inclusion: Facing Classroom Conflicts
FRIDAY, MARCH 31, 2000 12:15 p.m.
Allan Johnson is a sociologist, writer, and public speaker who has worked on issues of gender inequality since receiving his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan in 1972. The author of the acclaimed book, The Gender Knot: Unraveling Our Patriarchal Heritage (1997), Johnson teaches at Hartford College for Women of the University of Hartford and is a senior associate with Cambridge Hill Partners in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Johnson is a sought after workshop leader on issues of gender and diversity. "His clear focus on getting to the heart of the matter, combined with a genuine openness to dialogue, provides far more than a standard speaking engagement. Students and faculty alike will find Johnson engaging and insightful. But more important, he creates a feeling of inclusion and alliance that makes real conversation possible." - Jack Harris, Professor of Sociology, Hobart & William Smith Colleges. Johnson will lead a workshop immediately following his presentation. This will be followed by two panels specific to issues at CMC. The first, slated to begin at 2:30 p.m., will feature select CMC students who have been invited to speak out about climate at the college. The final panel beginning at 4:00 p.m. will address: Teaching About Sexualities and Class among the Ancient Greeks. This panel will feature Professor of Classics Amy Richlin (USC), Greg Thalmann (USC), and David Claus (Scripps College). They will discuss views toward sexuality and class across time and different cultures, specifically GrecoRoman, and how to deal with various pedagogical challenges. Allan Johnson will then preside over a wrap-up session from 5:00 - 5:30 p.m. This symposium is the first in a series addressing challenges in teaching and learning at Claremont McKenna College sponsored by the Teaching Resource Center.
Lunch is served at 11:45 a.m. The session begins at 12:15 p.m.