Democracy Symposium to be held tomorrow and Wednesday

Derek Lenehan

The seventh annual Symposium on Democracy, which is being held tomorrow and Wednesday, will feature multiple speakers on the selected topic of “Irreconcilable Differences: Democratic Policy Deliberations in Science, Religion and Politics.”

Paul Rusesabagina, who protected 1,200 refugees during the Rwandan crisis and was depicted in the Oscar-nominated film Hotel Rwanda, is one of four keynote speakers.

Rusesabagina is speaking tomorrow from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. in the University Auditorium. He will discuss what can be learned from the Rwandan genocide.

David Zarefsky, professor of communication studies at Northwestern University, is speaking 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. tomorrow in the Kiva on the theme of “Democratic Debate in the Public Forum.”

Philip Kitcher, professor of philosophy at Columbia University, will speak from 1:30 until 2:30 p.m. tomorrow in the Kiva. He will discuss science, religion, and democracy.

John Campbell, professor of communication at the University of Memphis, is speaking on Wednesday morning from 9:15 until 10:15 a.m. in the Kiva. His topic is “Darwin, Democracy, and Public Education: Is There a Constructive Way to Put This Issue on a Path to Extinction?”

Between keynote speakers the university will hold several different events, including panel discussions, theater performances and art exhibitions.

Following the speakers, a poetry reading and a presentation of papers will be held in the Kiva.

Scott Juba, graduate student of public relations, who is promoting this year’s symposium, said the event is about public debate and people finding common ground.

“We want people to come together to solve things before they take more drastic measures,” he said.

Contact academic affairs reporter Derek Lenehan at [email protected].