Upcoming Events

  • Sep
    Threat of Dissent: A History of Ideological Exclusion and Deportation in the United States
    Book Talk by Author Dr. Julia Rose Kraut, in Conversation with Professor Jeannette Estruth 
    Time: 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
    Location: Online Event
    more >

  • Nov
    Archives of the Self: Short Film as Historical Source
    Dr. Swetha Regunathan, New York University Tisch School of the Arts, in Conversation with Professor Jeannette Estruth
    Time: 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm EDT/GMT-4
    Location: Online Event
    more >

  • Dec
    Black Lives Matter and the Muslim Ummah: Historical Roots of Contemporary Connections
    A Conversation with Professor Alaina Morgan, University of Southern California, and Professor Jeannette Estruth
    Time: 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm EDT/GMT-4
    Location: Online Event
    more >

Past Events



Monday, December 3, 2018

Commemoration Walk

Aspinwall  3:00 pm – 5:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
We will tour new campus signage designed to encourage critical reflection on community practices of public memory, recognition, and forgetting through geographical markers.Walk beginning outside Aspinwall Hall, Bard College, on Monday, December 3, at 3:00 pm.

Reception following in the Campus Center Multipurpose Room will feature student art and performances.

This is a project of students in Professor Myra Young Armstead's "Inclusion at Bard" course, an Engaged Liberal Arts and Sciences course sponsored by Bard's Center for Civic Engagement. This event is part of the Difference and Justice Symposium, and is underwritten by a grant from the Lumina Foundation.
Contact: Myra Young Armstead  845-758-6822
Friday, November 30, 2018

U.S.-Russian Relations:
From Tehran to Yalta and Beyond

A Symposium Marking the 75th Anniversary of the Tehran Conference
Olin Hall  9:00 am – 6:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
Organized by the Bard College Center for Civic Engagement, in association with the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Smolny) of St. Petersburg State University, Boris Yeltsin Presidential Library, the Roosevelt Institute, and the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum

For most Americans, the most controversial—and famous—summit meeting of the Second World War remains the Yalta Conference, where, in the minds of many conservative critics, Winston Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt essentially handed over control of Poland and much of Eastern Europe to the Soviet Union. What is often overlooked, however, is that most of the agreements achieved at Yalta were first discussed over a year earlier at the Tehran Conference. Viewed from this perspective, the Yalta Conference represents the moment at which “the Big Three” put the finishing touches on what was already agreed at the Tehran gathering.

The aim of this joint U.S.-Russian symposium is to gain a deeper understanding of the Tehran Conference and what impact the decisions taken at this first, all-important summit meeting had on U.S.-Russian relations, not only during the Yalta Conference but also in the years that followed. The event will include presentations from leading historians and political scientists from the United States, Russia, and Great Britain, touching on historical topics such as Poland, the Second Front, future of Germany, postwar planning, shifting balance of power, Soviet entry into the war against Japan, as well as the current state of Russian-American relations.

The symposium will be accompanied by an exhibition of key documents and photographs from the FDR Presidential Library and the Boris Yeltsin Presidential Library at the Stevenson Library at Bard College from November 26 to December 24, 2018.

The symposium is free and open to the public. No registration is required.
We will be webcasting via Facebook Live on the Bard Center for Civic Engagement Facebook page, beginning at 9:00 am on November 30.

You can download the symposium program via the link at the bottom of this page.Symposium Schedule9:00-10:00 a.m. Conference Opening: Understanding Tehran and Yalta A Moment in U.S.–Russian Relations - Jonathan Becker, Bard College What Tehran 1943 and Tehran 2018 Tell Us about Russian-American Relations - Darya Pushkina, Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences, St. Petersburg State University, Russian Federation [via video-feed] New Documentary Evidence Regarding the Organization of the Tehran and Yalta Conferences – Olga Golovina, Boris Yeltsin Presidential Library, Russian Federation [via video-feed]10:00–11:00 a.m. Keynote Address The Soviet Union in U.S. Strategic Planning during World War II – Mark Stoler, University of Vermont11:00–11:15 a.m. Coffee Break

11:15–12:45 p.m. Tehran in Retrospect: The Turning Point of the Second World War? Chair and Discussant – Yana Skorobogatov, Williams College Tehran and Stalin’s Grand Strategy - Sean McMeekin, Bard College At the Peak of Friendship: Soviet-American Perceptions from Tehran to Yalta – Ivan Kurilla, European University at St. Petersburg, Russian Federation Tehran as the Foundation of the Postwar World – Andrew Buchanan, University of Vermont12:45–2:00 p.m. Lunch Break

2:00–3:30 p.m. Yalta in Retrospect: Start of the Cold War? Chair - Richard Aldous, Bard College Looking Beyond Victory: FDR and the Russians at Yalta – David Woolner, Roosevelt Institute/Marist College/Bard College “I don’t think I’m Wrong about Stalin:” Churchill’s Strategic and Diplomatic Assumptions at Yalta - Richard Toye, University of Exeter, United Kingdom Stalin’s Victory at Yalta – Harold Goldberg, Sewanee–The University of the South Discussant – Yuri Rogoulev, Moscow State University, Russian Federation3:30–4:00 p.m. The Student Perspective Presentation of the Bard College Student-Curated Digital Exhibition on the Tehran and Yalta Conferences4:00–4:15 p.m. Coffee Break

4:15–5:45 p.m. The State of U.S.-Russian Relations Today Chair and Discussant – Robert Person, United States Military Academy, West Point The Puffer Fish and the Eagle: Russia and the United States since the End of World War II – Timothy Naftali, New York University A New Yalta? Is There an Affirmative Project in Russian Foreign Policy and Are We to Take It Seriously? – Artemy Magun, European University at St. Petersburg, Russian Federation Putin and America: U.S.-Russian Relations Today - Nina Khrushcheva, The New School5:45 p.m. Closing Remarks – David Woolner
Sponsored by: Center for Civic Engagement
Contact: Bryan Billings  845-752-4857
Download: SYMPOSIUM PROGRAM.pdf View the program
Monday, November 5, 2018

The Germs of Rome: Modern Science and the Fall of an Ancient Empire

Jon K. Harper, Senior Vice President and Provost, Professor of Classics & Letters, University of Oklahoma
RKC 103  5:00 pm – 6:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
This lecture will explore the ways in which the natural sciences, particularly paleogenomics, are providing us exciting new insights into important questions about the ancient past such as the fall of Rome. And it will consider how the study of human history can deepen our understanding of health, disease, and the evolution of pathogens like smallpox and plague.
Sponsored by: Biology Program; Classical Studies Program; Environmental and Urban Studies Program; Historical Studies Program
Contact: James Romm  845-758-7283
  Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Socioeconomic Integration of U.S. Immigrant Groups over the Long Term: The Second Generation and Beyond.

Stephen J. Trejo, Department of Economics, University of Texas at Austin
Olin, Room 102  4:45 pm – 6:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
We document generational patterns of educational attainment and earnings for contemporary immigrant groups. We also discuss some potentially serious measurement issues that arise when attempting to track the socioeconomic progress of the later-generation descendants of U.S. immigrants, and we summarize what recent research has to say about these measurement issues and how they might bias our assessment of the long-term integration of particular groups. Most national origin groups arrive with relatively high educational attainment and/or experience enough improvement between the first and second generations such that they quickly meet or exceed, on average, the schooling level of the typical American. Several large and important Hispanic groups (including Mexicans and Puerto Ricans) are exceptions to this pattern, however, and their prospects for future upward mobility are subject to much debate. Because of measurement issues and data limitations, Mexican Americans in particular and Hispanic Americans in general probably have experienced significantly more socioeconomic progress beyond the second generation than available data indicate. Even so, it may take longer for their descendants to integrate fully into the American mainstream than it did for the descendants of the European immigrants who arrived near the turn of the twentieth century.
Sponsored by: American Studies Program; Economics Program; Historical Studies Program; LAIS Program; Levy Economics Institute; Sociology Program
Contact: Joel Perlmann  845-758-6822 x7667
  Monday, September 17, 2018

Mustering a Military in Black and White: America’s World War II Draft and the Making and Meaning of Race

Thomas A. Guglielmo, Associate Professor of American Studies, George Washington University
Olin, Room 102  4:45 pm – 6:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
Anyone with a passing knowledge of the World War II–era U.S. military likely knows that it was segregated. Less well known, surprisingly, is who was segregated from whom, exactly, and how the military made these decisions. Neither was simple or straightforward. My talk will explore a long-forgotten chapter of this larger story: the fraught and complex struggle over inductees’ “proper” racial classification and placement in the segregated World War II–era military. Drawing on a variety of federal records from the army, the Selective Service System, and the courts, I trace the stories of an eclectic mix of Americans —Waccamaw Siouans, Chickahomines, Creoles, Puerto Ricans, Cape Verdeans—who fit neatly into neither of the military's catchall categories of “white” and “colored.” In the process, I shed light on the evolving meaning and boundaries of race—from official state policy down to ordinary people’s attitudes and actions.
Sponsored by: Africana Studies Program; American Studies Program; Historical Studies Program; Sociology Program
Contact: Joel Perlmann  845-758-6822 x7667
  Tuesday, September 11, 2018

What Majority-Minority Society? The Rise and Significance of Ethnoracially Mixed Parentage

Richard Alba, Distinguished Professor of Sociology, The Graduate Center, City University of New York
Olin, Room 102  4:45 pm – 6:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
Based on demographic projections, most Americans believe that their society will transition soon to a majority-minority one. But the projections fail to adequately account for a major social and demographic phenomenon of the early 21st century: the rise of a group of young Americans with mixed minority-white ancestry. In a departure from the one-drop regime of past racism, these individuals appear to be growing up in mixed family settings, but because of the binary, zero-sum rigidities that still guide our thinking, they are mostly classified as minorities in demographic data. Without this classification, however, the emergence of a majority-minority society in the foreseeable future is far from certain. Moreover, the evidence we possess about the characteristics, social affiliations, and identities of mixed individuals contradicts an exclusively minority classification, except for partly black individuals, who suffer from high levels of racism. Taking into account the ambiguous social locations of most mixed minority-white persons, I suggest that, even should a majority-minority society appear, it will not look like we presently imagine it.
Sponsored by: American Studies Program; Historical Studies Program; LAIS Program; Political Studies Program; Sociology Program
Contact: Joel Perlmann  845-758-6822 x7667
Friday, May 11, 2018

"What is Modernity?"

Professor Greg Moynahan
Olin LC 210  3:00 pm – 4:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
Sponsored by: Historical Studies Program
Contact: Jonas Park  845-758-6822
Friday, May 4, 2018

Franz Schubert and the Political Culture of Vienna

A talk by Professor Greg Moynahan onThe Political Culture of Schubert's Vienna: Metternich and Domestic Life,” followed by a performance of Schubert’s String Quintet in C Major, D 956, “Two Cellos”
László Z. Bitó '60 Conservatory Building  4:00 pm – 6:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
Due to popular demand, the lecture and concert program that was presented in March at Montgomery Place will be repeated at the Conservatory Performance Space. The program features an expanded, illustrated talk by Professor Greg Moynahan on “The Political Culture of Schubert's Vienna: Metternich and Domestic Life,” to be followed by a performance of Schubert’s String Quintet in C Major, D 956, “Two Cellos,” performed by Conservatory students and director Robert Martin.
 No reservations required. Free and open to the public.
Sponsored by: Bard College Conservatory of Music; Historical Studies Program
Contact: Ann Gabler  845-758-7866
Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The Real World of James Bond   

Simon J. Ball
Olin, Room 102  4:45 pm – 6:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
Simon Ball is professor of international history and politics at the University of Leeds. He is the author of five books and in recent years has been one of the leaders of the Anglo-German Cultures of Intelligence project. Professor Ball’s Eugene Meyer lecture will explore how Britain developed Intelligence as a distinctive field of action in both fact and fiction.
Sponsored by: Historical Studies Program
Contact: Richard Aldous  845-758-6822
Friday, April 6, 2018

Capitalist Pasts, Post-Capitalist Futures 

Inaugural Conference, History of Capitalism at Bard 
Reem-Kayden Center Laszlo Z. Bito '60 Auditorium  10:00 am – 6:30 pm EDT/GMT-4
Speakers include:
Kevin Duong (Bard)
David Kettler (Bard)
Zak Rawle (Bard)
Jane Glaubman (Cornell)
Joseph Sheehan (Bard)
Simon deBevoise (Bard)
Zeke Perkins (SEIU)
Ed Quish (Cornell)
Maggie Dickinson (CUNY)
Joy Al-Nemri (Bard)
Ella McLeod (Bard)
Laura Ford (Bard)
Holger Droessler (Bard)
Sponsored by: Anthropology Program; Dean of the College; Division of Social Studies; Economics Program; Historical Studies Program; Human Rights Program; Levy Economics Institute; Political Studies Program; Sociology Program
Contact: Holger Droessler   845-758-6822 x6430
Thursday, April 5, 2018

Robotic Racism: A Public Defender’s Perspective on Automated Decision-Making in the Criminal Justice System

Cynthia H. Conti-Cook '03
Staff Attorney, Special Litigation Unit
Legal Aid Society

Reem-Kayden Center Laszlo Z. Bito '60 Auditorium  4:40 pm – 6:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
Governments have swiftly embraced automated decisions about policing and criminal justice despite very little evidence that these tools are fair or accurate. We will survey the various stakeholders investing in, using, and subject to these tools, as well as the types of decisions that are being automated, and examine how these tools are created. The discussion will then move to the training data that these tools are built on, how human bias gets baked into the automation, and how competing stakeholders’ definitions of fairness struggle to define success.
Sponsored by: The Historical Studies Program, Science, Technology, and Society Program,The Sociology Program and The Center for Civic Engagement
Contact: Tabetha Ewing  845-758-6822
Thursday, March 29, 2018

FDR: The Last 100 Days, a Conversation with David Woolner

Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College, 47-49 E 65th St, New York, New York 10065  6:00 pm – 7:30 pm EDT/GMT-4
The first hundred days of FDR's presidency are justly famous, often viewed as a period of political action without equal in American history. Yet as historian David B. Woolner reveals, the last hundred might very well surpass them in drama and consequence.

Drawing on new evidence, Woolner shows how FDR called on every ounce of his diminishing energy to pursue what mattered most to him: the establishment of the United Nations, the reinvigoration of the New Deal, and the possibility of a Jewish homeland in Palestine. We see a president shorn of the usual distractions of office, a man whose sense of personal responsibility for the American people bore heavily upon him. As Woolner argues, even in declining health FDR displayed remarkable political talent and foresight as he focused his energies on shaping the peace to come.

David B. Woolner is senior fellow and resident historian of the Roosevelt Institute, professor of history at Marist College, and senior fellow of the Center for Civic Engagement at Bard College.

This event is part of the James Clarke Chace Memorial Speaker Series, cosponsored and hosted by the Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College and supported by Foreign Affairs magazine. It is free and open to the public by RSVP.
Sponsored by: Bard Globalization & International Affairs Program
Contact: Rachel Meyer
Thursday, March 29, 2018

Children as Imaginary Citizens:
The Politics and Poetics of Childhood in Meiji Japan, 1868-1912

Wakako Suzuki
PhD Candidate, UCLA

Olin, Room 102  4:45 pm EDT/GMT-4
How and why did the political discourse of “little citizens” become a rhetorical tool enabling both national mobilization and social contestation in modern Japan? Despite the print media’s celebration of children’s citizenship and their status as subjects in Meiji Japan, the rights bestowed upon children were inconsistent, as were expectations of their actions as “little citizens” with a political identity. In this talk, I discuss how the development of formal education and the circulation of children’s magazines, such as The Boy’s World (Shōnen sekai, 1895–1933), created the historical conditions necessary to mobilize children as “little citizens.” At the same time, heterogeneous configurations of linguistic and literary practices in different cultural settings demonstrated various ways in which the vernacular conventions of childhood occasionally deviated from the operation of the state apparatus, functioning as a subversive force against the standardization of childhood. To exemplify such power dynamics, this talk highlights a series of literary works called shōnen-mono (stories about children and childhood), which emerged right after the First Sino-Japanese War (1864-1865) as a site of poetic imagination to resist social normalization and negate children’s subjection as imperial subjects under state power. By unpacking various symbolic constructions of “little citizens,” I demonstrate how the multilayered representation of children, as a part of discursive practices, lead to a complex interplay between standardization and decentralization in the politics and poetics of childhood in a modern capitalist society. 
Sponsored by: Asian Studies Program; Dean of the College; Division of Languages and Literature
Contact: Nathan Shockey  845-758-6822
Monday, March 5, 2018

Shared Activities and Communal Bodies: Sports in Late Ottoman Istanbul

Murat C. Yıldız
Assistant Professor of History, Skidmore College

Olin, Room 203  5:00 pm EDT/GMT-4

By the early 20th century, gymnastics, athletics, and team sports, particularly soccer, had developed into a wildly popular set of activities and pastime for many residents of the capital of the Ottoman Empire. Because of the global popularity of sports during the period and the diverse threads through which they spread throughout Istanbul, sports were envisioned as a shared civic activity. At the same time, young men from an expanding middle class treated these civic activities as the means through which they could build a fraternity of like-minded (and bodied) men from the same ethnoreligious community. Sports clubs, which were almost exclusively male spaces, were ethnically and religiously homogeneous private institutions. Muslims, Christians, and Jews joined them in order to train their bodies, exercise, and compete, as well as to socialize and build ethnic-based solidarity. Multilingual periodicals projected both civic and ethnoreligious ties, too. Together, the institutions and discourses of sports demonstrate that civic and exclusive ties were often mutually constitutive rather than exclusive in the Ottoman Empire. Drawing on a diverse array of primary sources, such as sports club records, memoirs, novels, government reports, newspapers, periodicals, and unpublished letters, written in Ottoman Turkish, Armenian, Armeno-Turkish, French, English, German, and Greek, this talk will focus on the implications of using sports as a lens through which to study urban centers, communal boundaries, public space, and fun in the Middle East.

Murat C. Yıldız is assistant professor in the department of history at Skidmore College. He is currently working on a book manuscript that focuses on the making of a shared physical culture among Muslims, Christians, and Jews in late Ottoman Istanbul.
Sponsored by: Middle Eastern Studies Program, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program, and Historical Studies Program
Contact: Omar Cheta  845-758-6265
  Friday, March 2, 2018

Working Papers: On Historical Method and Innovation

Finberg Library  1:00 pm – 2:30 pm EDT/GMT-4

Ebony Coletu
Assistant Professor of English and African American Studies, Penn State
“Chief Sam and the Undocumented Origins of African American Migration to Ghana Carina Ray
Associate Professor of African and Afro-American Studies, Brandeis University
“Africa as a Refuge” Abosede George
Associate Professor of History and Africana Studies, Barnard College
“Death of a Building: Unearthing the Politics of Modernity and Migration Histories in Architectural Conservation Projects in Lagos”
Sponsored by: Africana Studies Program; American Studies Program; Division of Social Studies; Historical Studies Program; Human Rights Program
Contact: Tabetha Ewing  845-758-6822
Monday, February 26, 2018

A Reading by Karan Mahajan

The Bard Fiction Prize winner and National Book Award finalist Karan Mahajan reads from his work.
Campus Center, Weis Cinema  2:30 pm EDT/GMT-4

On Monday, February 26, at 2:30 p.m. in Weis Cinema, Bertelsmann Campus Center, novelist Karan Mahajan reads from his work. Presented by the Innovative Contemporary Fiction Reading Series, introduced by novelist and Bard literature professor Bradford Morrow, and followed by a Q&A, the reading is free and open to the public; no tickets or reservations are required.

Karan Mahajan studied English and economics at Stanford University before earning an M.F.A. in fiction from the Michener Center for Writers. His first novel, Family Planning (2012), was a finalist for the International Dylan Thomas Prize. His second novel, The Association of Small Bombs (2016), won the Bard Fiction Prize, the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Fiction, and the NYPL Young Lions Award and was a finalist for the National Book Award, in addition to being named a Best Book of the Year by the New York Times Book Review, New York Magazine, Esquire, Buzzfeed, Huffington Post, and others. In 2017, Mahajan was selected as one of Granta’s Best Young American Novelists.

 “The Association of Small Bombs is wonderful. It is smart, devastating, unpredictable, and enviably adept in its handling of tragedy and its fallout. . . . Mahajan is the real deal.” —Fiona Maazel, New York Times Book Review

“A voracious approach to fiction-making . . . Mahajan has a cinematic attunement to the spectacle of disaster.” —New Yorker

“Mahajan is an incredibly assured stylist. . . . Hugely promising.” —Jay McInerney, Daily Beast

“Even when handling the darkest material or picking through confounding emotional complexities, Mahajan maintains a light touch and a clarity of vision.” —London Review of Books

“Mahajan . . . has already developed an irresistible voice with a rich sense of humor fueled by sorrow.” —Washington Post Book World
Sponsored by: Innovative Contemporary Fiction Reading Series
Contact: Nicole Nyhan  845-758-7054
Thursday, February 22, 2018

Bad Art, Its Cause and Cure

David Bromwich, Sterling Professor of English, Yale University
RKC 103  5:00 pm EDT/GMT-4
Aesthetic judgment presumes that there is such a thing as bad art, and that it warrants careful description and analysis; with examples from 19th- and 20th-century poetry, didactic criticism and its opponents, and one or two recent Hollywood films.
Sponsored by: American Studies Program; Hannah Arendt Center; Historical Studies Program; Literature Program
Contact: Matthew Mutter  845-389-8618