Spring 2024 Events

Speaker Event with Professor Shibley Telhami

January 25 | 4:00PM | 223 Moses Hall

American college campuses have been at the center of charged political disputes in the weeks since Hamas attacked Israel on October 7, and the subsequent attacks by Israel on Gaza. These heated debates have focused on the pressures on university presidents to take a stand, the behavior of student groups, allegations of antisemitism, and the censorship of pro-Palestinian speech. But less attention has been paid to one group directly affected by the controversies: the scholars who work on and teach about the Middle East, who often concentrate professionally on issues related to the Israeli-Palestinian issue. Presenting findings from opinion polling among scholars before and after the war started, carried out by the Middle East Scholars Barometer, Shibley Telhami will discuss the results and the ramifications.

IIS Spring Undergrad Reception

February 5 | 5:00-6:00PM| 223 Philosophy Hall

Interested in a career in foreign policy, international relations, law, or human rights? Want to meet likeminded students? Learn more about the Institute of International Studies' career talk series, affiliated student groups with an international focus, and ways for you to get involved. This is an excellent opportunity for you to connect with other student organizations and individuals who share a passion for international studies.Food provided and an added 30 minutes to mingle.

National Security in an Uncertain World

February 13 | 4:00PM-6:00PM | Banatao Auditorium

Dr. Kimberly S. Budil will join BRSL for a discussion on the role of the national laboratories, specifically Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, in today’s strategic ecosystem. She’ll discuss the Lab’s scientific vision, goals, and objectives, and touch on its critical programs related to national security and frontier challenges to strategic stability.

Ace Your Interview: A Comprehensive Workshop for Student Success 

February 15 | 5:00-6:00PM | 223 Philosophy Hall

Find out how to successfully present yourself and stand out in an interview with our workshop! You will learn about how to prepare for interviews including choosing the right attire and researching the employer. We'll delve into showcasing your strength, responding to common interview questions and connecting with the interviewer/s. This workshop will be led by Heidi Yu, Associate Director, Counseling & Programs at the UC Berkeley Career Center.

How Understanding Moral Thinking Can Help Us Understand Debates About Academic Freedom

Moral thinking is inescapable in social life—we naturally see behaviors as deserving praise or condemnation and people as heroes or villains. Shared moral values bind groups together and motivate people to punish deviants. Disagreements about academic freedom on campus are so charged because for many people, the underlying issues are moral. In this talk, he will describe some insights from the scientific study of morality and how they can help us understand current debates about academic freedom and campus culture. 

Political Interference and Academic Freedom in Florida--A Discussion on the Recent AAUP Report

In their self-proclaimed “war on woke,” Florida’s governor Ron DeSantis and his supporters employed increasingly inflammatory rhetoric, “pushing back against the tactics of liberal elites." The Florida House and Senate passed legislation and the DeSantis administration took executive actions that further aimed to censor the teaching and learning of certain historical topics; potentially criminalize some discussions of race, gender, and sexuality; stigmatize, marginalize, and exclude transgender people; curb labor rights; restrict immigration; and stringently limit access to abortion. The threat to higher education and, more specifically, to foundational principles of shared governance and academic freedom, intensified in early January 2023. In light of these developments, and reflecting a national movement largely led by conservative Republicans, the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) completed a formal report by a special committee: Political Interference and Academic Freedom in Florida’s Public Higher Education System.

Post-Imperial Possibilities: Eurasia, Eurafrica, Afroasia

Based on a recent book, this lecture examines three transcontinental projects aimed at finding alternatives to both empire and nation-state: Eurasia, Eurafrica, and Afroasia. The theory of Eurasianism was developed after the collapse of imperial Russia by exiled intellectuals alienated by both Western imperialism and communism. Eurafrica began as a design for collaborative European exploitation of Africa but was transformed in the 1940s and 1950s into a project to include France’s African territories in plans for European integration. The Afroasian movement sought to replace the vertical relationship of colonizer and colonized with a horizontal relationship among former colonial territories that could challenge both the communist and capitalist worlds. Both Eurafrica and Afroasia floundered, victims of old and new vested interests. But Eurasia revived in the 1990s, when Russian intellectuals turned the theory’s attack on Western hegemony into a recipe for the restoration of Russian imperial power. Although both the system of purportedly sovereign states and the concentrated might of large economic and political institutions continue to frustrate projects to overcome inequities in welfare and power, Post-Imperial Possibilities explores wide-ranging concepts of social affiliation and obligation that emerged after empire and the reasons for their unlike destinies.