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Smith students talk about their work to Smith faculty at 2017 Collaborations, Smith College

Each academic year the Office of the Provost and Dean of the Faculty offers a variety of lectures, luncheons and faculty development workshops that feature Smith faculty and visiting professors.

Liberal Arts Luncheons

Liberal Arts Luncheons are sponsored by the Committee on Academic Priorities (CAP) and take place from 12:00-1:00 in the Paradise Room of the Smith College Conference Center, uness otherwise noted.  There are no Liberal Arts Luncheons on November 1, 22 or 29.

Date Lecture Presenter(s)
November 15, 2018 Why Does Science Need Your Cells
This presentation will discuss whether there is a conflict of interest between patients and medical professionals in the use of patient bio-specimens. Oprah’s film on Henrietta Lacks showed how her cells have generated a multibillion dollar industry. Yet the source of the cells, HL and her family, have benefited nothing. Should patients be informed of the possible financial benefits of their bio-specimens?
Albert Mosley, Philosophy
December 6, 2018 Humanities and Arts Strategic Planning Group
How can we sustain a real and robust Liberal Arts model at Smith when there is a widespread public misunderstanding that this is no longer the pathway to success? How does Smith shape a thriving future for the Arts & Humanities in which students, faculty, and curriculum partner more extensively with each other, and with other divisions, in more intentional, creative ways, with greater impact?
Alex Keller, Film & Media Studies and Hélène Visentin, French Studies

The Katharine Asher Engel Lectureship at Smith College was established in 1958 by the National Council of Jewish Women to honor the memory of Mrs. Engel, its onetime president, a graduate of Smith College, 1920. Mrs. Engel's life was one of generous participation in educational, civic, religious and welfare activities. In endowing the lectureship, the council hoped to "create a bond between a remarkable woman, her college, and the organization to which she was devoted." Under the terms of the grant, the holder of the annual lectureship must be a member of the Smith College faculty who has made an outstanding contribution to knowledge in his or her field.

In 2018-19, the 61st annual Engel lecture will be presented by Michael Gorra, Mary Augusta Jordan Professor of English Language & Literature, on Monday, February 25, at 5:00 pm in the Alumnae House Conference Hall

Photo of Michael Gorra
Michael Gorra came to Smith in 1985, and works primarily with 19th- and 20th-century fiction.

His most recent book, Portrait of a Novel: Henry James and the Making of An American Masterpiece (2012) was a finalist for several prizes, including the Pulitzer Prize in Biography. Earlier books include The Bells in Their Silence: Travels through Germany (2004); After Empire: Scott, Naipaul, Rushdie (1997); and The English Novel at Mid-Century (1990).

As editor Gorra has put together volumes of stories by Joseph Conrad and Henry James for Penguin, along with the Norton Critical Editions of Faulkner's As I Lay Dying and The Sound and the Fury. He has received a Guggenheim fellowship, two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, including a Public Scholar Award, and a National Book Critics Circle award for his work as a reviewer. His essays and reviews have appeared in the New York Review of Books, the TLSThe Atlantic, and The New York Times Book Review, among others, and his travel essays have twice been included in the annual volumes of Best American Travel Writing. In 2014 he was a judge for the National Book Award in fiction.

Gorra's current book-in-progress is William Faulkner’s Civil War.

All lectures are free and open to the public.

Photo of Professor Nalini Bhushan in navy blazer

Monday, April 22, 2019

5-6 p.m., Seelye Hall 106
Presented by Nalini Bhushan, Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities and Professor of Philosophy

Photo of Professor Ogee
This Spring, Frédéric Ogée joins the Smith College community as the 2018-19 William Allan Neilson Professor. Ogée will deliver a series of three public lectures in a series; informatoin on the series will be posted in late fall, and videos of the lectures will be available on the Kahn Institute website following each lecture. 

Frédéric Ogée is professor of English literature and art history at Université Paris Diderot. Ogée comes to Smith most recently from the Clark Art Institute, as the Kress Fellow in the Literature of Art before the Age of Art History. His main period of research is the long 18th-century, and his publications include two collections of essays on William Hogarth, as well as ‘Better in France’? The Circulation of Ideas across the Channel in the 18th Century (Lewisburg, 2005), Diderot and European Culture (Oxford, 2006), and J.M.W. Turner, Les Paysages absolus (Paris, 2010). In 2006-07, he co-curated the first-ever exhibition on Hogarth for the Louvre. In 2014–2017 he was a member of Tate Britain’s Advisory Council. He is currently preparing a monograph and exhibition on Thomas Lawrence for 2019.

The Smith College Department of English is pleased to host Bruce Smith as the 2018-19 Ruth and Clarence Kennedy Professor in Renaissance Studies.

Bruce Smith is Dean’s Professor of English and Professor of English and Theatre at the University of Southern California. He studies the literature and culture of early modern England, including Shakespeare, gender, sexuality, acoustic ecology and historical phenomenology. Among his six published books, The Acoustic World of Early Modern England won the 2000 Roland H. Bainton Prize for Literature, attracting the attention of theater professionals, communications specialists and musicologists. His current work explores what it was like to live in the kind of body imagined by early modern medicine and to perceive the world through that body. He is particularly interested in how important the senses and the passions were to perception before Descartes divorced the thinking mind from the sensing body in the middle of the 17th century.

Sigma Xi Luncheons

Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society, meets regularly for talks and a complimentary lunch throughout the year. Talks are open to all faculty, staff and students.

Talks begin at approximately 12:10 p.m. in McConnell Auditorium. A complimentary lunch is offered in McConnell Foyer. Please visit the Sigma Xi website for the schedule.