Fall 2012

Fall 2012 Forums:

Thursday, September 6, 2012
Self-Love and Self-Respect in the Meaningful Life
Erica Stonestreet
Quad 264 - SJU

Most people have the sense that there's something wrong with living a meaningless life.  Since most meaningless lives seem morally blameless, however, it's not obvious exactly what is wrong with it.  Starting with a plausible conception of a meaningful life as a life engaged with values beyond oneself, I suggest that the problem is that someone living outside of this conception is not according herself a kind of recognition she deserves as a human being.  Comparing self-respect and self-love as candidates for this recognition, I argue that lacking self-love is actually the more fitting explanation for what goes wrong in a meaningless life.

Thursday, September 13, 2012
Marital Ideology, Life Scripts and the Pressure to Marry
Karyl Daughters & Courtney Hanson
Little Theatre (Quad 346) - SJU

Students attend college to continue their education, earn a degree, develop as an individual, and in some opinions, find a mate. This last goal, to find a mate, is critically analyzed in a research collaboration between Karyl Daughters (Communication), Courtney Hanson (CSB, 2010), and the students of Spring 2011 COMM 385A: Love, Sex, and Commitment. This forum presentation will discuss results from a study exploring various factors associated with students' perceived pressure to marry. The relational dynamics examined in this study provide insight into why college students do, or do not, feel pressure to find and marry a mate.

Specifically, the study explores relationships between marital ideology and social scripts and the pressure to marry. Marital ideology (e.g., traditional or egalitarian) is of particular interest to the extent that it prescribes expectations for adherence to certain sex-role behaviors in the marriage. A conceived social script is also important as it may have implications for a student's desire to adhere to what is deemed a normal life sequence. If emerging adults feel some urgency about getting married it may be because they experience pressure to adhere to a life transition sequence, or what can also be referred to as a relational script. The presentation will include analysis of these two main factors along with an exploration of how pressure to marry varies by sex, religiousness and parental relationship status. The implications of the results, along with limitations and recommendations for future research, will also be discussed.

Thursday, September 20, 2012
Catholic Manhood: Form and Function
Miguel Salazar
Little Theatre (Quad 346) - SJU

Since the cultural revolution of the past century, the role of Men in American society has been questioned and renegotiated, especially in the Catholic Church. The question "What is a Man?" has taken on new urgency as traditional definitions are being rapidly tossed out. The need for a new understanding of Manhood is far more pressing than ever before, as redefinitions of Marriage and the Sacred Priesthood are sought and fought over. What does it mean today to be a Catholic Man?
This Thursday Forum explores the question holistically, drawing from personal experiences of the audience, modern and classical visual art, poetry, traditional folk music, authors such as C.S Lewis, G.K. Chesterton, Mark Twain, and more. At the end, perhaps we will find that the crisis of the modern era will be resolved not by eliminating our ancient knights, but by summoning them.

Thursday, September 27, 2012
Share Your Smarts:  New Models of Scholarly Communication
Kathy Parker
Little Theatre (Quad 346) - SJU

The traditional system of scholarly communication through journals and monographs has been eroded by rapidly rising costs of academic periodicals, increasing control by commercial publishers, the decline of university presses, and challenges to fair use of copyrighted information. These trends are producing significant losses in access to scholarship. Libraries are cutting journal subscriptions and facing legal action for using reserve readings. At the same time, new models of scholarly communication are emerging, such as open access journals, multimedia projects in digital humanities, preprint repositories, and freely available video lectures. Economic necessity is driving some of this change, but it is also fostered by technological developments and evolving cultural expectations of access to information. This presentation will summarize the Library's investigation of the most promising new strategies for scholars to share their research.

Thursday, October 11, 2012
A Longitudinal Assessment of Leadership Development at CSB/SJU
Don Fischer
GDCC President's Conference Room - CSB

Fueled by the notion that leadership can be learned, institutions of higher learning have been called upon to provide effective curricular and co-curricular leadership development programs. However, leadership development has been shown to extend beyond formal programs. Leadership development has been associated with variety of college student life experiences such as involvement in clubs and organizations, community service, positional leadership roles, and participation in intramural and intercollegiate athletics. Demographic variables such as gender and cultural background have been associated with leadership development. The purpose of this study was to 1) examine the effectiveness of the Inspiring Leaders Certificate Program in bringing about desired changes in students' leadership attitudes and beliefs during their four years at CSB/SJU and 2) to examine changes in students' leadership attitudes and beliefs relative to gender, culture, and a variety of other college student life experiences. The results of this study are examined in relation to established theories and models of leadership development, including the Leadership Identity Development theory and the ecological leadership model.

Thursday, October 18, 2012
The Art of The Saint John's Bible
Susan Sink
Little Theatre (Quad 346) - SJU

Now that the seven volumes of The Saint John's Bible (SJB) are complete, what can we say about the art contained within them? Susan Sink has written three volumes of "The Art of The Saint John's Bible" for Liturgical Press and is currently working on combining them into a single book that considers the works in order from Genesis through Revelation.

This presentation will look at how the SJB uses illumination and text treatments to promote particular themes and address some key objectives of the overall project. Bring your questions!

Thursday, October 25, 2012
The Production of Knowledge in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
Jessica O'Reilly & Stephanie Pinkalla
Little Theatre (Quad 346) - SJU

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has been producing reports assessing the state of climate science since 1990. IPCC assessors consist of scientists nominated by their governments, who perform the work of assessing all of the peer-reviewed literature on their topic on a volunteer basis for the purpose of compiling the state of climate science into a single set of documents.
In this project, researchers O'Reilly and Pinkalla are interested in conflict and consensus within the scientific community-those people who accept the reality of anthropogenic climate change and have stakes in ascertaining that the most recent scientific findings are presented clearly to policy makers. To study this, the researchers analyzed the archived draft review comments for Fourth Assessment Report (AR4). Anyone can nominate themselves to serve as expert reviewers of the draft IPCC reports and the authors are required to respond to each comment submitted.
We categorized levels of conflict through the draft report comments and pieced together a trajectory showing how the reviewers and authors interacted to produce the final IPCC assessment report documents. As we did this, we characterized how politics at multiple scales shape a purportedly policy-neutral document and how climate scientists grapple with interjections from climate denialists out of the public eye. Ultimately, our study demonstrates how a diverse community of experts works discursively to produce knowledge while navigating the sociocultural dynamics associated with politically important scientific facts.

Thursday, November 1, 2012
Campaign Finance Ethics - It's Not an Oxymoron
Ryan Wold
Quad 264 - SJU

When it comes to campaign finance discussions many people are concerned that democracy is being sold. The media regularly covers stories about spooky anonymous donations, greedy super PACs, and evil millionaires. In this presentation I will discuss the real philosophical issues at stake that evoke these strong emotions in people. These real issues include the merging of economic and political inequality, and the how campaign finance regulations approach a paradox as they aim to protect free speech by limiting it. I will also touch on how perceptions of campaign finance differ dramatically as some view it as certain corruption and others see it as noble civic duty.

Thursday, November 8, 2012
A Sun in No Hurry to Set:  Essays about the Physical and Spiritual Landscape of Minnesota
Betsy Johnson-Miller
GDCC President's Conference Room - CSB

Betsy Johnson-Miller received a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board to travel around Minnesota and to weave her own stories into the physical and spiritual landscape of the state. She will read from a selection of her essays as well as a few poems from her recently published book, Fierce This Falling.

Thursday, November 15, 2012
Head in the Sand:  Ignoring the Potential Loss of Your Privacy by Using Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Google+
LIttle Theatre (Quad 346) - SJU
Lisa Lindgren

Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter were all launched between 2004 and 2006. Google+ launched in 2011. These four sites collectively have almost 2 billion users, which is amazing given how young the sites are. The users of the sites willingly post very personal and intimate details of their lives and seem not to care about the privacy implications of doing so. They appear to have their heads stuck in the sand, ignoring the potential harm. There are psychological reasons that users love to use the sites and discount the risk of doing so. They trust the companies providing the services they love will do nothing with that information except perhaps display advertising that is based on their demonstrated behavior or expressions. Yet the companies make no such promises, and in some cases explicitly state that they will gather and share whatever information they want. The reason they would do this is obvious - it is extremely profitable and in most cases the source of the majority or totality of the companies' revenue. Absent any universal privacy law in the U.S., the Federal Trade Commission has charged many internet companies, including the providers of these four top sites, of deceptive and unfair practices. The industry is pushing for self-regulation at the same time they are busily scooping up every bit of personal information they can in order to deliver targeted advertising and engage in information sharing.

Thursday, November 29, 2012
Catholic Worker Movement Today
Craig Gould
GDCC President's Conference Room - CSB

The Catholic Worker, begun in New York City during the depression in 1933 by Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin, continues today in St. Joseph, just two blocks from St. Bens. The Central Minnesota Catholic Worker house of hospitality opened just last year and offers a place of friendship to those in need and a challenge to all injustice in society. We live in community, practice healthy, environmentally sound eating and purchasing, all as a matter of faith. Come hear who we are and how we're trying to change the world.

Thursday, December 6, 2012
Prisoners of History:  Is There Stable Peace in Bosnia?
Kelly Kraemer
GDCC President's Conference Room - CSB

The late Kenneth Boulding, a pioneering scholar in the field of peace studies, defined stable peace as "a situation in which the probability of war is so small that it does not really enter into the calculations of any of the people involved." Traveling to Bosnia just seventeen years after the end of a devastating war of ethnic cleansing, I wondered if that country today could be anywhere close to stable peace. In this presentation, I'll describe what I learned when I asked Bosnians--including CSB/SJU alumni, Franciscan monks, a Muslim imam, and a survivor of the Srebrenica genocide-- "Could another war happen here?".