IUPUI Liberal Arts faculty discuss projects during Sabbatical Speaker Series
INDIANAPOLIS -- In a lecture series during this month and November, professors in the School of Liberal Arts at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis will discuss their sabbatical projects, including persona in memoir writing, the mafia and Estonian folk music.
All Sabbatical Speaker Series lectures will take place from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. in the Campus Center, 420 University Blvd. Room locations vary. The series is free and open to the public.
- Tuesday, Oct. 8: Susan Brin Hyatt, professor of anthropology, will present “Poverty Warriors: Tales From Britain’s War on Poverty” in Room 307. Inspired in part by the U.S. War on Poverty, in 1969, the British government funded 12 community development projects in impoverished communities across Britain. By 1978, this experiment came to an end amidst a great deal of political turmoil. Hyatt shares how some of the original community development workers reflect on that tumultuous time.
- Friday, Oct. 25: Ramla Bandele, professor of political science, discusses "Rescuing Henrietta: The Story of an African American Woman Activist” in Room 268. Before Ella Baker and Rosa Parks, there was Henrietta Vinton Davis. A principal activist who achieved the rank of vice president in the Universal Negro Improvement Association, Davis' work was buried in the footnotes until now.
- Tuesday, Nov. 5: Robert Rebein, professor of English, will present “Remembering Self, Remembered Self: Persona in Memoir Writing” in Room 307. Writers of memoirs must fashion a dual sense of self in order to tell their stories and connect with readers: the self who is remembering and the self who is remembered. Discover the entirely different roles of these selves, and their crucial importance, in the story that unfolds.
- Friday, Nov. 8: Anne C. Williams, professor of English, will discuss her project, “Mother’s Day and the Mafia,” in Room 409. Florists serve their customers on the most important days of their lives. When customers are also neighbors, no matter who they are, important connections ensue. Working in memoir, the writer revisits her family’s Kansas City flower shop and its unusual neighborhood.
- Tuesday, Nov. 12: Xin Zhang, professor of history, will present “Reexamining the Opium War in China” in Room 309. Zhang’s talk offers a closer look at the development of modern China in this examination of the at times overstated influence of the Opium War on the changes in China in the past 40 years.
- Tuesday, Nov. 19: Ain Haas, professor of sociology, presents “Folk Music Traditions in Estonia” in Room 307. Many contemporary Estonians are making and playing ancient instruments like the Baltic psaltery, bowed lyre and bagpipe. Hear how the processes of modernization, which did much to undermine this country's musical traditions, now contribute to their revival.
The series opened Oct. 1 with a lecture by Edward E. Curtis IV, professor of religious studies. Curtis presented “Islamic Jihad or Just Revolt? Muslim Political Violence in Latin America and the Caribbean.”
The lecture discussed jihad, sometimes considered the sixth pillar of Islam, and its role in fueling political violence. Curtis compared the influence of jihad in two rebellions among African Americans: an 1835 uprising in Bahia, Brazil, and a 1990 coup attempt in Trinidad.