The Columns

U.Va. Professor Deborah Johnson to Lecture on Ethics in Engineering

— by on February 14th, 2017

“Codes of ethics are not meant to be a simple set of rules that engineers are to follow blindly. They are promulgated with the intent to set expectations for others, to present the collective wisdom of engineers in a form that can broadly guide members, help socialize new members and inspire engineers to behave well and exhibit moral courage in situations where it is needed.”

Deborah Johnson

Deborah G. Johnson, the Olsson Professor of Applied Ethics and Emeritus, Science, Technology and Society Program in the Department of Engineering and Society at the University of Virginia, will lecture at Washington and Lee University on March 8. Her talk will be at 5 p.m., preceded by a reception at 4:30 p.m., in the Hillel House Multipurpose Room.

Johnson will speak on “Does Engineering Need a Code of Ethics?” Her talk is sponsored by the Roger Mudd Center for Ethics and the Physics and Engineering Department.

“A multitude of engineering organizations in the U.S. and worldwide have adopted codes of ethics and professional conduct,” said Johnson. “Yet the necessity of such codes has been challenged. Criticisms vary from claiming that codes of ethics are merely window dressing, to the claim that they lead to complacency, to the claim that they are ineffective because they lack enforcement power. Although these criticisms are worthy of attention, they fail to acknowledge that engineering codes of ethics are part of a broader strategy that engineering has adopted to clarify its role in the world and to set expectations by communicating that role to multiple audiences, including the public, employers, individual engineers and others who are affected by the work of engineers.

“Codes of ethics are not meant to be a simple set of rules that engineers are to follow blindly,” she added. “They are promulgated with the intent to set expectations for others, to present the collective wisdom of engineers in a form that can broadly guide members, help socialize new members and inspire engineers to behave well and exhibit moral courage in situations where it is needed.”

Best known for her work on computer ethics and engineering ethics, Johnson’s research examines the ethical, social and policy implications of technology, especially information technology.

In 2015, Johnson received the Weizenbaum Award from the International Society for Ethics and Information Technology and in May 2009, received an honorary degree (Doctor of Philosophy honoris causa) from the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Linköping University in Sweden.

Northwestern University Professor to Speak on the Causes and Consequences of Food Insecurity

— by on February 14th, 2017

Diane Whitmore Schanzenbach

Diane Whitmore Schanzenbach, associate professor of education and social policy at Northwestern University and director of The Hamilton Project, will speak on “The Causes and Consequences of Food Insecurity” at Washington and Lee University on March 9 at 6:30 p.m. in Stackhouse Theater. The lecture is free and open to the public.

The Hamilton Project, launched in 2006 by a combination of leading academics, businesspeople and public policy makers, is an economic policy initiative at the Brookings Institution aimed at developing a strategy to address serious economic challenges.

Schanzenbach is also a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and a research consultant at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. Much of her recent research investigates the impacts of major public policies such as the Food Stamp Program and early childhood education on the long-term outcomes of children.

Her research has been published in the Quarterly Journal of Economics, American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, the Review of Economics and Statistics and the Journal of Public Economics, among other publications.

Prior to Northwestern, Schanzenbach taught at the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago and was a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation post-doctoral scholar in health policy research at the University of California, Berkeley.

Cornell Professor Filiz Garip to Lecture on Mexican-U.S. Migration

— by on February 14th, 2017

Credit: Jesse WinterFiliz Garip

Filiz Garip, professor of sociology at Cornell University, will give a lecture at Washington and Lee University as part of the Borders and Their Human Impact series. It will be on March 9 at 4:30 p.m. in the atrium of the Ruscio Center for Global Learning.

Garip will be speaking about her book “On the Move: Changing Mechanisms of Mexico-U.S. Migration” (2016). The talk is free and open to the public.

“Why do Mexicans migrate to the United States? Is there a typical Mexican migrant? Beginning in the 1970s,” said Garip, “survey data indicated that the average migrant was a young, unmarried man who was poor, undereducated and in search of better employment opportunities. This is the general view that most Americans still hold of immigrants from Mexico.”

Using survey data from over 145,000 Mexicans and in-depth interviews with nearly 140 Mexicans, Garip reveals a more accurate picture of Mexico-U.S migration. “In the last 50 years there have been four primary waves: a male-dominated migration from rural areas in the 1960s and ’70s, a second migration of young men from socioeconomically more well-off families during the 1980s, a migration of women joining spouses already in the United States in the late 1980s and ’90s, and a generation of more educated, urban migrants in the late 1990s and early 2000s.” For each of these four stages, Garip examines the different reasons why people migrate and migrants’ perceptions of their opportunities in Mexico and the United States.

Her articles have been published in Population and Development Review, Demography, Social Forces and the American Journal of Sociology. She serves as a consulting editor for the American Journal of Sociology and Sociology Science.

Borders and Their Human Impact is a two-year faculty colloquium sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The colloquium addresses the concept of borders and border crossings from a variety of perspectives that tie humanity to political, geophysical, physiological, epistemological and spiritual borders.

University of Cincinnati Classics Professor Kathleen Lynch to Give Hoyt Lecture at W&L

— by on February 14th, 2017

Kathleen Lynch

Kathleen Lynch, associate professor of classics at the University of Cincinnati, will give the 2016-2017 Hoyt Lecture at Washington and Lee University on March 7 at 7 p.m. in Staniar Art Gallery, Wilson Hall.

She will be speaking on “The ‘End’ of the Greek Symposium?” The talk is free and open to the public. Her talk is sponsored by the Classics Hoyt Fund and the Department of Classics.

Lynch is a classical archaeologist, with a focus on ancient Greek ceramics. Having worked on archaeological projects at sites in Turkey (Gordion, Troy), Greece (Athenian Agora, Corinth, Pylos), Italy (Morgantina) and Albania (Apollonia), her research considers what ancient ceramics can tell us about their use and users.

Athenian figure-decorated pottery from Athens is her specialty, and her recent book, “The Symposium in Context” (2011), won the Archaeological Institute of America’s (AIA) 2013 James R. Wiseman Award for best publication in archaeology. The book explores the kitchen cupboards of an archaic Athenian house.

Lynch co-edited “The People of Apulia: New Evidence from Pottery for Workshops, Markets and Customs” (2014); “Drinking Cups and the Symposium at Athens in the Archaic and Classical Periods” (2014), which appeared in “Cities Called Athens”; and “Trade of Athenian Figured Pottery and the Effects of Connectivity” (2014), was in “Athenian Potters and Painters III.”

She has lectured on four AIA-sponsored cruises. Some of the topics she addressed during her Black Sea cruise include Greek colonies in the Black Sea, the Jason and the Argonauts myth and ancient views of Eastern barbarians.

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Quincy Springs IV ’02 to Give W&L Black Alumni Reunion Keynote

— by on February 14th, 2017

Quincy Springs IV

Washington and Lee University’s Black Alumni Reunion will take place March 3-4 featuring social activities and educational opportunities. Quincy Springs IV, Washington and Lee Class of 2002, a general manager for Wal-Mart, a Chick-fil-A franchisee and a motivational speaker, will give the keynote address on March 3 at 6:30 p.m. in Stackhouse Theater, Elrod Commons.

Springs will speak on “It Costs to Care.” The keynote is free and open to the public.

While at W&L, Springs was a member of Pi Kappa Phi, a peer counselor and played basketball. He majored in philosophy and graduated cum laude from W&L. He also served in ROTC at Virginia Military Institute where he was a distinguished military graduate.

After graduation, Springs served as a field artillery officer and company commander in the U.S. Army. He served for eight years, achieving the rank of captain. Some of his awards include: the Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, and Combat Action Badge.

Over the past three years, Springs has served the community through various programs held at his Wal-Mart store. He has organized food drives that have fed over 1,500 homeless men. Additionally, he has held back-to-school drives, where 2,500 children received book bags and school supplies. Over 700 families were fed during the holidays through partnerships with the Atlanta Falcons and various other community organizations. Springs’s commitment to the community will grow with his new role as Chick-fil-A operator in Vine City, Atlanta.

Springs is a board member of the New Leaders Council, Atlanta Beltline’s Young Leaders Council and the City of Refuge. He also serves as the vice president of membership for the Peachtree Toastmasters.

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R.T. Smith’s Poem Featured in The Best American Poetry 2017

— by on February 10th, 2017

R.T. Smith, editor of Shenandoah: The Washington and Lee Review, and the Writer in Residence at Washington and Lee University, will have his poem, “Maricon,” featured in The Best American Poetry 2017.

“Maricon” was originally published in the journal Prairie Schooner in the summer edition, 2016. This marks Smith’s second appearance in The Best American Poetry series.

The subject of “Maricon” is a controversial boxing match in the 60s in which Benny “Kid Peret” was dealt a death blow by Emile Griffith. “Woven into their story,” said Smith, “is a reluctant teenaged boxer’s continuing struggle to understand blood sport, race, gender identity and personal responsibility.”

The anthology has been published annually since 1988. A guest editor is chosen each year who then selects one poem from the previous year’s poetry books and journals for addition in The Best American Poetry for that year. The 2017 guest editor is U.S. Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize winner Natasha Trethewey. She has read from her work at W&L and been published in Shenandoah.

Former Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky commented, “The series provides a vivid snapshot of what a distinguished poet finds exciting and memorable, and over the years it’s as good a comprehensive overview of contemporary poetry as there can be.”

Smith haedited Shenandoah: The Washington and Lee University Review since 1995. His 14 books of poetry include “In the Night Orchard” (2014) and “Outlaw Style” (2007), which received the Library of Virginia Poetry Prize.

Another volume, “Summoning Shades,” will be released in 2017, and new poems are scheduled for Southern Review, Five Points and Carolina Quarterly. Smith’s sixth collection of stories, “Doves in Flight,” will appear in spring 2017.

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Antioch Chamber Ensemble to Perform at W&L

— by on February 8th, 2017

The Antioch Chamber Ensemble will give a performance at Washington and Lee University on Feb. 11 at 8 p.m. in the Concert Hall of Wilson Hall. Tickets are required.

The Antioch Chamber Ensemble is currently celebrating its 17th season of music-making. The ensemble performs choral works ranging from Renaissance polyphony to contemporary masterpieces.

In 2008, Antioch was awarded first-place honors in the Tolosa International Choral Competition in Spain. The ensemble has performed at Lincoln Center, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Piccolo Spoleto Festival, the American Choral Directors Association Eastern Division Conference and the Festival des Choeurs Laureats in France.

This will be a 90-minute performance.

Order your tickets online today at lenfest.wlu.edu or call the Lenfest box office at (540) 458-8000 for ticket information. Box Office hours are Monday-Friday, 9-11 a.m. and 1-3 p.m. and will be open 2 hours prior to performance time.

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Neil Brodie to Keynote Conference on “The Ethics of Acquiring Cultural Heritage Objects”

— by on February 8th, 2017

“Central to this interdisciplinary inquiry—which brings together the fields of anthropology, archaeology, art, art history, economics, ethics, law, religion and museum studies—is the issue of ethics.”

Exhibit on the Theft of Nepal’s Sacred Sculptures in Staniar Gallery Up until Mar. 17

Neil Brodie

Neil Brodie, senior research fellow in Endangered Archaeology in the Middle East and North Africa at the University of Oxford, is the keynote speaker for the Mudd Center for Ethics’ interdisciplinary conference on “The Ethics of Acquiring Cultural Heritage Objects” at Washington and Lee University.

Brodie’s lecture will kick off the conference at 5 p.m. on March 2 in Stackhouse Theater. He will speak on “Controlling the Globalized Market in Cultural Object: Closing the Gap Between Law and Ethics.” His talk is free and open to the public.

Staniar Gallery is partnering with the Mudd Center to host an exhibition that is part of the conference. The show, “Remembering the Lost: Community Responses to the Theft of Nepal’s Sacred Sculptures,” will be on view in Staniar Gallery from Feb. 9-March 17.

The artist, Joy Lynn Davis, uses photos, paintings, research and interviews to document the community reaction to the theft of sacred stone sculptures from the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal. She is one of the conference speakers.

15th Century Lakshmi Narayan, Patan, Nepal; 2013; acrylic with 23 karat gold on cotton rag paper; 40 x 30 in.

For more information about the conference and to register, please see https://www.wlu.edu/mudd-center/programs-and-events/2016-2017-markets-and-morals/conference-on-the-ethics-of-acquiring-cultural-heritage-objects. Click on the free registration (for a head count only).

Brodie, an archaeologist by training, has been researching the illicit trade in cultural objects since 1997. He has worked on archaeological projects in the United Kingdom, Greece and Jordan, and he continues to work in Greece.

“International regulatory policy aimed at protecting cultural heritage seems to be floundering,” said Brodie. “Whether taken remotely by satellites or close-up with cell phones, images of looted landscapes in Syria tell the same story – widespread destruction of cultural heritage is an ever-present accompaniment to conflict and is out of control. The carefully worked out systems of legal and normative regulation developed since the middle years of the 20th century seem unable to cope, overwhelmed by the liquid reality of the twenty-first century market.”

His publications include “The Internet Market in Antiquities” (2015), which appeared in “Countering Illicit Traffic in Cultural Goods: The Global Challenge of Protecting the World’s Heritage”; “Aramaic incantation Bowls in War and in Peace” (2014), in Journal of Art Crime; and “The Antiquities Market: It’s All in a Price” (2014), in Heritage and Society.

Brodie’s current research interests are cultural, criminal and economic aspects of the illicit trade in cultural objects; the failure of international public policy to suppress trade; novel regulatory solutions; and the legal and ethical contexts of scholarly engagement with illicitly traded cultural objects.

The March 3 conference on the “Ethics of Acquiring Cultural Heritage Objects” will look at the ethical and cultural heritage concerns surrounding the looting and trafficking of art objects in the Middle East, South Asia and the West.

“Central to this interdisciplinary inquiry—which brings together the fields of anthropology, archaeology, art, art history, economics, ethics, law, religion and museum studies—is the issue of ethics,” said Melissa Kerin, assistant professor of art history at W&L and co-organizer of the conference. “Conference participants will examine, from a multitude of perspectives, ethical matters related to systems and networks of trade in conflict antiquities, policies and practices of protection, rightful stewardship, repatriation, and digitally and artistically re-imaged cultural heritage sites and objects. The conference provides an opportunity to parse the many intertwined layers related to cultural heritage and its ethical treatment.”

The speakers included in the conference are:

Marina Silva is Keynote Speaker of Brazilian Economy in the 21st Century, a Faculty Colloquium

— by on January 25th, 2017

Brazilian Economy in the 21st Century, a faculty colloquium on Brazil, will be held at Washington and Lee University on Feb. 3-5. The first talk of the colloquium is in Northen Auditorium, Leyburn Library. The rest is in the Hillel House Multipurpose Room.

The keynote speaker is Marina Silva, Brazilian environmentalist and politician. Her talk is Feb. 4 at 4:15 p.m. in the Hillel House. The colloquium is free and open to the public with limited seating.

The conference will examine the obstacles and challenges facing Brazil as the country seeks to advance its economy and the quality of life of its citizens. It is sponsored by the Center for Global Learning with the support of the Christian A. Johnson Endeavor Foundation.

Marina Silva

Silva was the minister of environment of Brazil from 2003 to 2008. She has been a member of Brazil’s National Assembly since 1994.

As a native Amazonian and a senator, she built support for environmental protection of the reserves, as well as for social justice and sustainable development in the Amazon region.

As Minister of Environment, Silva took drastic measures to protect the Amazon forest, clamping down on illegal activity, and reducing deforestation by almost 60 percent from 2004 to 2007.

She also helped establish the Amazon Fund, preventing greenhouse gas emissions through rainforest conservation. The fund is financed by national and international contributions.

In 2008, Silva resigned as minister of the environment, citing “the increasing resistance in central parts of government and the society.” She continues her struggle from her place in the National Assembly and still has great influence on environmental policy in Brazil.

In 1996, Silva won the Goldman Environmental Prize for South and Central America, which honors grassroots environmental activists. In 2007, the United Nations Environment Program named her one of the Champions of the Earth, which recognizes outstanding environmental leaders at a policy level. In 2014, she was named one of its Women of the Year by the British newspaper Financial Times.

For more information about the conference and a list of the speakers, see here or visit: https://www.wlu.edu/center-for-international-education/events/conference-on-the-brazilian-economy-in-the-21st-century.

W&L Department of Theater Presents “Dracula”

— by on January 24th, 2017

The W&L Theater Department presents “Dracula”

The Washington and Lee Department of Theater, Dance, and Film Studies presents  “Dracula” on Feb. 9 and 11 at 7:30 p.m.; Feb. 10 at 10 p.m.; and Feb. 12 at 2 p.m. in the Keller Theater, Lenfest Center. Tickets are required.

Traveling to Transylvania to finalize the purchase of some real estate for a nobleman, London solicitor Jonathan Harker (Jim Grant ’19) unwittingly releases an ancient supernatural power upon the world. After Dracula (Hunter Ward ’18), follows Harker to his home it seeks to bleed every last drop of life and sanity from his world.

Harker and his faithful allies, his fiancée Mina Murray (Hannah Palmatary ’18), the practical Dr. Seward (Mac Evarts ’17) and Professor Van Helsing (Charlotte Cook ’19) uncover the vampire’s secrets in time to stop his plans.

Don’t miss out on the ultimate battle between the forces of good and the master of evil and the struggle to reconcile pure logic with superstition.

“Dracula” includes violence, sexual content and coarse language, and is therefore recommended for mature audiences only.

Order your tickets online today at lenfest.wlu.edu or call the Lenfest box office at 458-8000 for ticket information. Box Office hours are Monday-Friday, 9-11 a.m. and 1-3 p.m. and will be open 2 hours prior to performance time.

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