Southwestern is launching a new lecture series that, in an unprecedented way, will encourage members of the campus community and the general public to engage in thought-provoking discussions with each other.

The first “Paideia Connections: Engaging Scholarly Conversations” event will be held on Monday, March 24, at 4 p.m. in the Jones Theater.

The event will open with two Southwestern faculty members each delivering a 20-minute address for a general audience about their recent scholarly work. Following the two brief presentations, instead of the typical Q&A session, the audience will have the opportunity (responsibility!) to share connections they discovered while actively listening to the two presentations. 

The two faculty members who will be featured in the program are Alison Kafer, associate professor of feminist studies, and Maria Todd, associate professor of biology. Kafer will give a talk titled “Edgework: Disability in Relation” and Todd will give a talk titled “Breaking the Ties That Bind: The Role of Tight Junction Deregulation in Breast Cancer Metastasis.”

“Paideia Connections” takes its name from Southwestern’s Paideia program, which encourages students and faculty members to make connections between various disciplines and disparate ideas.

President Edward Burger initiated the new series, in collaboration with Southwestern University’s Brown Chairholders and University Scholars, and will serve as moderator for the March 24 event. The first Paideia Connections: Engaging Scholarly Conversations program is among the events scheduled during the week of President Burger’s inauguration, which will be held March 25.

A reception will be held following the event.