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BYU's David M. Kennedy Center hosts international lecturers March 15-16

Three speakers will cover topics from American diplomacy and security to nations and catastrophes in a series of lectures Thursday and Friday, March 15-16, at the David M. Kennedy Center for International Studies on the Brigham Young University campus.

Admission is free, and the public is welcome.

  • Thursday, March 15, Alan Tansman, chair of the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of California, Berkeley, will discuss “Jewish and Japanese Responses to Atrocity” at 11 a.m. in B094 Joseph F. Smith Building.

His lecture will be followed by a panel discussion, titled “Cultural Responses to Atrocity,” from 1 to 2:30 p.m. in 238 Herald R. Clark Building. Joining Tansman on the panel will be Ilona Klein, associate professor of Italian; Steven Riep, assistant professor of Chinese; and Aaron Skabelund and Michael Murdock, assistant professors of history, along with moderator Jeff Ringer, director of the David M. Kennedy Center.
Tansman received his education at Columbia University and Yale University. He specializes in modern Japanese literature and culture and is currently working on a book comparing Japanese and Jewish responses to atrocity. His works include “Writings of Kôda Aya” and the forthcoming “The Culture of Japanese Fascism” and “The Aesthetics of Japanese Fascism.”

  • Also Thursday, March 15, an International Relations Lecture will feature Mitchell A. Seligson, Centennial Professor of Political Science at Vanderbilt University, at 11 a.m. in 238 Herald R. Clark Building.

Seligson’s topic will be “Challenges to Democratization in Latin America: Evidence from the AmericasBarometer 2006.”
In addition to his work at Vanderbilt, Seligson founded and directs the Latin American Public Opinion Project, which conducts the AmericasBarometer surveys that cover 20 countries in the Americas. The project conducts public opinion polls focused mainly on democracy. Before joining the Vanderbilt faculty, Seligson held the Daniel H. Wallace Chair of Political Science and served as director of the Center for Latin American Studies at the University of Pittsburgh.

  • “Securing American Diplomacy Worldwide: Life as Special Agent” will be the topic for the keynote lecture of the University and College International Safety/Security and Health Seminar Friday, March 16, at 11 a.m. in 238 Herald R. Clark Building.

The featured speaker will be Frederick R. Stolper, a special agent with the Bureau of Diplomatic Security at the U.S. Department of State and executive deputy director with the Overseas Security Advisory Council.
Since receiving a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Southern Illinois University in 1983, Stolper has worked with the Secretary of State’s protective detail and the Washington Field Office. Internationally, he has served as the assistant regional security officer in Berlin and the regional security officer in Baku, Azerbaijan.

These lectures will be archived online. For more information on David M. Kennedy Center events, see the calendar online at

Writer: Lee Simons

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