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Briefly: upcoming events

Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2012 12:00 am

Grinnell, IA - >Broken Mirrors on stage Mar. 8-10

Broken Mirrors, three short stories by Salman Rushdie, will be performed by an ensemble of 15 in Flanagan Theatre, Thur., Mar. 8, Fri., Mar. 9, and Sat.,Mar. 10 at 7.30 p.m.  The Sun., Mar. 11 performance is at 2 p.m.  Tickets are free at the Bucksbaum box office starting at noon, Mon., Mar. 5. 

  Adapted and directed by Lesley Delmenico, associate professor of theatre and dance, the three stories are set in imaginative and conflict-laden times and places: following the 1964 theft of a religious relic in Kashmir, in a dystopic near future in New York where everything is for sale, and in the swinging but also anti-immigrant London of the 1960s, where Rushdie came of age.   The production includes violent subjects and adult language.

Festival of Humanities Mar. 6-9


Grinnell’s first Festival of Humanities, Mar. 6-9, will include two key speakers and a wide range of student presenters. On Tues., Mar. 6, Richard Handler, director of the Program in Global Development Studies at the University of Virginia, will give a talk on “Global Development Studies in a Liberal Arts Curriculum: Humanistic Approaches to Global Modernities” at 4:15 p.m. in Room 101 of the Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center.  Handler served as dean of the undergraduate College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Virginia between 2000 and 2010. He is a cultural anthropologist whose research interests include nationalism, ethnicity and the politics of culture.

On Wed., Mar. 7, Harrell Fletcher, associate professor of art and social practice at Portland State University, will give a 4:15 p.m. gallery talk in Faulconer Gallery on making public art.   Fletcher will also lead a social practice workshop on Thurs. at 4:15 p.m. in the Bucksbaum Rotunda. Fletcher has produced a variety of socially engaged, collaborative and interdisciplinary projects since the early 1990s, including work shown at the Berkeley Art Museum, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in the San Francisco Bay area, The Sculpture Center, The Wrong Gallery, Apex Art, and Smackmellon in New York City, and the Seattle Art Museum. His lecture is co-sponsored by the Art Department, Center for Humanities, and Faulconer Gallery. 

Student presentations begin on Thurs. at 11 a.m. in JRC 101 and continue through Fri. p.m. in various campus locations. Topics range from “Deciphering the Source” to “Culture and Hybridity” and “Telling Stories, Making Music,” among others.

Questions about the Festival of Humanities? Contact Shuchi Kapila, director, Center for the Humanities, kapilas@grinnell.edu, 641-269-3655.

Early Music from Aula Harmoniae Baroque Trio


New York-based baroque trio Aula Harmoniae will perform on Tues., Mar. 13, at 7:30 p.m., in Sebring-Lewis Hall of Bucksbaum Center for the Arts. The early music trio includes Sang Joon Park on flauto traverso, Martha McGaughey on viola da gamba, and Arthur Haas on harpsichord. The group made its debut in 2009 at the Boston Early Music Festival and is dedicated to a repertoire of Renaissance and classical works.

Advisory: Social Entrepreneurs group finalist in White House competition

Wednesday, Feb. 29, 2012 12:00 am

Grinnell, IA -  

The Social Entrepreneurs of Grinnell (SEG), a student-run nonprofit microfinance lending organization at Grinnell College, is one of 15 finalists in the White House “Campus Champions of Change Challenge.”

SEG was chosen from more than 1,400 submissions and is the only small college finalist and the only from Iowa. The Campus Champions of Change initiative highlights innovative ideas on college campuses across the country and aims to inspire others to get involved in their communities.

In its five years of operation, SEG has expanded from providing international loans in remote communities to also working to improve conditions in local communities. The microfinance organization has loaned more than $37,000 to 44 countries, with $13,000 going to 25 individuals in the Grinnell area.

The project selected for the competition—SEG’s Local Loans Project—provides emergency, no-interest microloans to individuals for medical expenses, automobile repairs, education, and repayment of high-interest loans from payday loan sharks.

Voting for the Challenge continues until Sat., Mar. 3 at 11:59 p.m. EST. The top five finalists will be invited to an event at the White House, will be featured on mtvU and MTV Act, and the overall winner will host an episode of mtvU’s signature program, “The Dean’s List.”

To speak to a SEG student coordinator, please contact Cindy Deppe, communications, deppec@grinnell.edu, 641-269-4834.


Writers@Grinnell hosts sportswriter Marty Dobrow Feb. 16

Thursday, Feb. 2, 2012 4:00 pm

Grinnell, IA - Writers@Grinnell expects to increase its RBI with a Feb. 16 reading by noted sportswriter Marty Dobrow. The author of “Knocking on Heaven’s Door: Six Minor Leaguers in Search of the Baseball Dream” and “Going Bigtime: The Spectacular Rise of UMass Basketball” will read from his books and talk about his lifelong passion for sports at 8 p.m. in Room 101 of the Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center on the Grinnell College campus. During a 4:15 p.m. roundtable discussion with Grinnell students, Dobrow will talk about the sportswriting craft for which he has received numerous national awards.

On Feb. 24, fantasy and short story writer Kevin Brockmeier will read from his published works which include two children’s novels, two fantasy novels, and two story collections. The Little Rock, Ark.-based writer is teaching a short course in fiction writing at Grinnell, as well as teaching at the University of Iowa this semester. Brockmeier will read at 8 p.m. in Faulconer Gallery in the Bucksbaum Center for the Arts.

In April, Writers@Grinnell will continue with weekly activities featuring Shakespeare, novelists, poets, and memorists. Grinnell welcomes the participation of people with disabilities. Information on parking and accessibility is available on the college website. Accommodation requests may be made to Conference Operations at 641-269-3235 or calendar@grinnell.edu.


Writers@Grinnell kicks off fall semester programming

Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2011 4:30 pm

Grinnell, IA - Writers@Grinnell will open its fall semester program with a reading by novelist and faculty member Dean Bakopoulos on Thurs., Sept. 8 at 8 p.m. in Room 101 of the Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center on the Grinnell College campus.

Bakopoulos’ latest novel, “My American Unhappiness,” was reviewed this summer by the Los Angeles Times and Wall St. Journal and listed as the “#1 Title to Pick Up Now.” He is currently at work on a television series based on his first novel, “Please Don’t Come Back from the Moon,” set in his hometown of Detroit. Bakopoulos is a member of the Grinnell English faculty and also teaches in the creative writing and environment program at Iowa State University.

Poet Nell Regan will read on Sept. 13 from her debut collection, “Preparing for Spring,” reviewed as a “stingingly clear outdoor light.” Regan has also published historical biography in “Female Activists: Irish Women and Change.” Regan will read in Room 102 of Alumni Recitation Hall.

On Sept. 29, author Ed Pavlic will read from his most recent books, “But Here Are Small Clear Refractions,” “Winners Have Yet to be Announced,” and “Labors Lost Left Unfinished.” Pavlic’s works have drawn recognition from the African American Review, the American Poetry Review, and the Georgia Writers Association.

Non-fiction writer Susanne Antonetta will discuss her work in the fields of environment, mental health, diversity, spirituality, and the sciences during a reading on Oct. 6 co-sponsored by the Environmental Studies concentration. Antonetta is the author of “Body Toxic,” a New York Times Notable Book, as well as four books of poetry under her legal name Suzanne Paola and a soon-to-be released book on adoption titled “Inventing Family.”

All Writers@Grinnell events will be held at 8 p.m. in Room 101 of the Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center, 1115 8th Ave. on the Grinnell College campus, unless otherwise noted. Grinnell welcomes the participation of people with disabilities. Information on parking and accessibility is available on the college website. Accommodation requests may be made to Conference Operations at 641-269-3235 or calendar@grinnell.edu.


Nov. symposium celebrates Liberal Arts in Prison Program

Friday, Oct. 28, 2011 12:00 am

Grinnell, IA -  

Grinnell College’s Liberal Arts in Prison Program will celebrate its First Year of College Program offering at the Newton Correctional Facility during a Nov. campus symposium with national speakers on the benefits of education for incarcerated individuals.

Since 2003, Grinnell students and faculty have taught courses at Iowa correctional facilities, and in 2009, the college began a pilot program at the Newton facility to offer courses for Grinnell credit. Last summer, the Grinnell Liberal Arts in Prison Program admitted the first class to its new First Year of College Program, which enrolls incarcerated students in a rigorous course of study equivalent to a first year at Grinnell.

Grinnell program coordinator Emily Guenther credits Grinnell students' and faculty commitment to academic rigor and social justice for the success of the program. “Education is one of the most effective ways to prevent repeat offenses and help the incarcerated leave prison better able to lead constructive lives,” Guenther said. “The November symposium celebrates Grinnell’s commitment to the Liberal Arts in Prison Program and offers opportunities to engage with experts in criminal justice and education.”

The following events are free and open to the public:

• Nov. 3, 4:15 p.m.: Marc Mauer, one of the nation’s leading experts on criminal justice policy, will present “America’s Race to Incarcerate” about the rise in mass incarceration. Mauer’s reports and publications on sentencing policy, race, and the criminal justice system are among the most widely-cited in the field.

• Nov. 16, 8 p.m.: Max Kenner, founder and executive director of the Bard Prison Initiative in New York, will present about the role of liberal arts colleges in prisons. The Grinnell program, which is supported by the Lilly Endowment, a gift from a Grinnell trustee, and Bard College, was among the first members of the Consortium for the Liberal Arts at Bard College.

• Nov. 17, 4:15 p.m.: Grinnell alumni Katie Jares and Noga Ashkenazi, who have done extensive prison-related work since graduation, will join a former inmate and student in a panel discussion about the college’s Liberal Arts in Prison Program. Jares and Ashkenazi volunteered in the program while Grinnell students.

• Nov. 17 at 8 p.m.: Noga Ashkenazi, a 2009 Grinnell graduate, will present clips from a documentary she is producing based on her teaching experiences at the Iowa Correctional Institution for Women. Ashkenazi will be joined in the discussion by a former inmate and student who is featured in the film.  The screening will be held in Alumni Recitation Hall, Room 302.

More than 50 Grinnell students volunteer regularly at the Newton and Mitchellville correctional facilities, tutoring and facilitating a variety of classes that have earned the respect of the Iowa Department of Corrections. Grinnell students also tutor at the Iowa Juvenile Home in Toledo.

All events will be held in Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center, Room 101, located at 1115 8th Ave. in Grinnell. For more information about the Grinnell Liberal Arts in Prison Program or the Nov. symposium, contact Emily Guenther, coordinator, at grinnellinprison@grinnell.edu.


First Young Innovator for Social Justice Prize Symposium Oct. 25-27

Thursday, Oct. 6, 2011 12:00 am

Grinnell, IA -  

Grinnell, IA

Grinnell College will host its first symposium dedicated to the Young Innovator for Social Justice Prize on October 25-27. The Symposium – co-sponsored by the college’s Rosenfield Program in Public Affairs, International Relations and Human Rights – includes an awards ceremony and presentations by the 2011 prize winners: Boris Bulayev and Eric Glustrom (Educate!); James Kofi Annan (Challenging Heights); and Rabbi Melissa Weintraub (Encounter). Noted civil rights lawyer Morris Dees, founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center, will present the keynote address, “With Justice for All,” on the final day.

The Young Innovator for Social Justice Prize, established by Grinnell in 2010, recognizes individuals under the age of 40 who have demonstrated leadership in their fields and who show creativity, commitment and extraordinary accomplishment in effecting positive social change. The 2011 winners, selected from more than 1,000 nominations from 66 countries, will receive $100,000 awards, half to the individuals and half to their respective organizations. On Tuesday evening, Oct. 25, President Raynard S. Kington, M.D., Ph.D., will honor the inaugural winners during an awards ceremony.

Over the next two days, winners will deliver public presentations on their work:

• Boris Bulayev, co-founder and executive director, and Eric Glustrom, co-founder and president, Educate! (shared award / presentation), on “Why I Quit the Basketball Team to Join Educate!- Jumping in the Deep-End”

• James Kofi Annan, president, Challenging Heights, on “Passion, Commitment, and Innovation: The Critical Success Factors in Community Project Sustainability”

• Rabbi Melissa Weintraub, founding executive director emeritus, Encounter, on “Authentic Peace-building: A Justice That's Not Just Us”

In addition to formal presentations, award winners will meet with students, faculty and staff in classrooms and informal settings to discuss their approach to social justice, sources of inspiration and success in overcoming obstacles.

“Social justice has been an integral part of the Grinnell mission since our founding in 1846. It contributes to our academic programs and culture on campus, and it inspires our alumni throughout their lives,” explained Kington. “The Grinnell College Young Innovator for Social Justice Prize and Symposium program underscores our deep commitment to fostering positive social change.”

Public events during the three-day symposium on the Grinnell campus include:

• Oct. 25, 8 p.m., Herrick Chapel: Grinnell Prize awards ceremony.

• Oct. 26, 4:15 p.m., Herrick Chapel: Presentation by Kofi Annan, Challenging Heights.

• Oct. 26, 8 p.m., Herrick Chapel: Presentation by Bulayev and Glustrom, Educate!

• Oct. 27, 11 a.m., Herrick Chapel: Convocation by Dees, Southern Poverty Law Center.

• Oct. 27, 4:15 p.m., Herrick Chapel: Presentation by Weintraub, Encounter.

The Symposium coincides with the Call for Nominations for the 2012 Young Innovator for Social Justice Prize, with entries accepted through November 14, 2011. Details of the program and the nomination process are available at www.grinnell.edu/grinnellprize.

For additional information about symposium events, contact Sarah Purcell, director of the Rosenfield Program,purcelsj@grinnell.edu, 641-269-3091. Grinnell welcomes the participation of people with disabilities. Information on parking and accessibility is available on the college website. Accommodation requests may be made to Conference Operations at 641-269-3235 or calendar@grinnell.edu.



"Listening, Learning, Leading on the Global Stage" by World Food Prize lecturer Jo Luck

Monday, Sep. 26, 2011 12:00 am

Grinnell, IA - 2010 World Food Prize laureate Jo Luck, president of Heifer International, will deliver a public lecture at Grinnell College on Wed., Oct. 12 about her experiences in leading the world hunger assistance organization. Her lecture, “Listening, Learning, Leading on the Global Stage,” will be held at 5:30 p.m. in Harris Center Cinema on the Grinnell campus. A light buffet dinner will precede in the Harris Center atrium. At 6:30 p.m., following the lecture, there will be a public reception in the atrium with music by Too Many Strings Band.

Luck served as president and CEO of Heifer International from 1992 to 2010, and director of international programs from 1989 to 1992. Under her leadership, the organization, which brings food- and incoming-producing livestock to impoverished families, grew from 20,000 to 500,000 supporters and expanded scope of efforts throughout Africa, the Americas, Asia and the South Pacific, and Central and Eastern Europe.

Grinnell has hosted World Food Prize lecturers for more than six years as part of a World Food Prize outreach program at Iowa educational institutions during the week the prize is awarded. The 2011 World Food Prize will be awarded at the state capitol Oct. 13 to John Agyekum Kufuor, former president of Ghana, and Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, former president of Brazil, who led significant hunger and poverty reduction efforts in their respective countries.

Luck’s lecture is sponsored by the Rosenfield Program in Public Affairs, International Relations, and Human Rights. Harris Center is located at 1114 10th Ave. on the Grinnell campus. For more information about the Rosenfield Program, contact Sarah Purcell, purcelsj@grinnell.edu, 641-269-3091. Grinnell welcomes the participation of people with disabilities. Information on parking and accessibility is available on the college website. Accommodation requests may be made to Conference Operations at 641-269-3235 or calendar@grinnell.edu.


"Live in HD" bringing the Metropolitan Opera to Harris Center

Friday, Feb. 10, 2012 12:00 am

Grinnell, IA - Grinnell College has partnered with New York City’s Metropolitan Opera to offer the final three shows of the 2011-12 season “Live in HD” at the Harris Center Cinema on the Grinnell campus. Each show will be preceded by a half-hour opera talk by Jennifer Williams Brown, associate professor of music at Grinnell.

On Sat., Feb. 25, the Italian opera “Ernani,” composed by Giuseppe Verdi, will be presented with English subtitles. Audience members should plan to arrive by 11:30 a.m. for the opera talk, with the performance to begin at noon.

The French opera “Manon,” composed by Jules Massenet, will be performed on Sat., Apr. 7. Audience members should arrive by 10:30 a.m. for the opera talk, with the English-subtitled performance to begin at 11 a.m.

Verdi’s “La Traviata” will be performed on Sat., Apr. 14 at noon, with the opera talk to begin at 11:30 a.m. The opera will be sung in Italian with English subtitles.

Synopses of the shows are available at http://www.metoperafamily.org/metopera/history/stories/. Details for the 2012-13 “Live in HD” season will be announced at a later date.

Tickets are required for each performance and can be purchased at the Harris Center on the day of the show: $15 for adults, $10 for students. Tickets will also be on sale at the Pioneer Bookshop in downtown Grinnell, beginning Feb. 17. For ticket questions, call 641-269-3235.

Harris Center is located at 1114 10th Ave., with available parking east of the center on 10th Ave. Grinnell welcomes the participation of people with disabilities. Information on parking and accessibility is available on the college website. Accommodation requests may be made to Conference Operations at 641-269-3235 or calendar@grinnell.edu.


"Family Album" reconstructs memories at Faulconer Gallery

Friday, Jun. 10, 2011 12:00 am

Grinnell, IA - Family photos, old and new, reconstruct memories in the summer exhibition opening at Grinnell College’s Faulconer Gallery on June 24.

Using digital photographic techniques, California-based artist Liz Steketee offers creative insights into the art of photographs that explore the dynamics of family life and the lasting effects of memories. The artist combines old and new family photographs as a means of revisiting “the epic scenery of the everyday,” documenting her life as a wife and mother, and “the joy, the agony, and the irony of life’s experiences.”

“‘Family Album’ makes an immediate connection with gallery visitors because nearly everyone has or takes family photos,” said Daniel Strong, curator of the exhibition and associate director of the gallery. “Many of the scenes depicted in Steketee’s works will be familiar: family gatherings, trips to the beach and to the ice cream parlor, or sitting at home in front of the TV.

“We also hope the exhibition will encourage visitors to experiment in their everyday lives with photography’s creative potential. Not everyone is inclined to draw or paint but everyone takes pictures, and thanks to the genius of a camera on every cellphone, we’re all artists now.” Faulconer Gallery will host several “Family Album” public events this summer:

  • Fri., June 24, 11 a.m.: exhibition opens.
  • Sun., June 26, 3 p.m.: flute and piano concert with Rebecca Stuhr and Royce Wolf.
  • Thursdays, June 30-Aug. 18, 12:15-12:50 p.m.: yoga with Monica St. Angelo.
  • Sun., July 24, 3 p.m.: concert by Turlach Ur, including traditional and contemporary bagpipe tunes
  • Thurs., Aug. 4, 5-7 p.m.: Families@Faulconer, an exhibition and reception for young artists who created work during summer outreach programs.
  • Fri., Aug. 26, 4:15-6 p.m.: “Family Album” back-to-campus reception.
  • Thurs., Sept. 1, 4:15 p.m.: gallery talk by artist Liz Steketee.

“Family Album” is open June 24 through Aug. 21 during summer gallery hours: Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; closed Monday. From Aug. 23 to the exhibition closing on Sept. 4, “Family Album” will be open during regular gallery hours: Tuesday-Wednesday, noon to 5 p.m., Thursday-Friday, noon to 8 p.m., Saturday-Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.; closed Monday. For more information about the exhibition and related programs, call 641-269-4660 or visit www.grinnell.edu/faulconergallery.


"Can China Save the World?" convocation by modern China historian Karl Gerth '88

Monday, Sep. 19, 2011 12:00 am

Grinnell, IA - Modern China historian Karl Gerth will question “Can China Save the World?” at a Scholars’ Convocation on Thurs., Sept. 29 at 11 a.m. in Room 101 of the Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center on the Grinnell College campus.

Drawing on research in his latest book, “As China Goes, So Goes the World: How Chinese Consumers are Transforming Everything,” Gerth explains how—from brand choice to environmental quality—citizens around the world are affected by the everyday choices made by the Chinese population.

Gerth, a 1988 Grinnell graduate, has conducted research in China and Japan for more than 25 years, with special interests in consumerism, nationalism, environmentalism, and everyday life under communism. His previous book, “China Made: Consumer Culture and the Creation of the Nation,” focused on the role of nationalism in forming a consumer culture in pre-World War II China. He currently teaches at the University of Oxford, where he is a fellow and tutor at Merton College.

Gerth’s Grinnell lecture is part of the college’s ongoing Scholars’ Convocation series. Grinnell welcomes the participation of people with disabilities. Information on parking and accessibility is available on the college website. Accommodation requests may be made to Conference Operations at 641-269-3235 or calendar@grinnell.edu.