Who is a refugee? What distinguishes refugees from immigrants? When and how is refugee status recognized by nations and governments? How do refugee crises arise and what can be done to aid refugees in resettlement? What’s the history of refugee resettlement in the Midwest? These are just a few of the questions WorldCanvass guests will address on the April 5 program “Refugees in the Heartland.” The program takes place from 5-7 p.m. in the Senate Chamber of Old Capitol Museum and is free and open to the public.
In October 1833, a book purporting to be the autobiography of the famous Sauk and Fox leader, Black Hawk, appeared in Cincinnati. In the 1830s, Euro-Americans were clamoring for “Indian stories,” and this volume of recollections by the principal warrior in what became known as the Black Hawk War — whose final battle was pitched on the Mississippi River between Iowa and Illinois — was an instant sensation.
Although some contemporary reviewers dismissed the book as the fabrication of Antoine Le Claire, the biracial (French-Canadian/Potawatomi) founder of Davenport, others continued to believe in its authenticity, their views bolstered by the undeniable fact that in the 1830s there were many books written and published by Native Americans — books recounting Native writers’ objections to the Jackson administration’s policy of removal, the erosion of their treaty rights, or often simply their life stories.
The stories of our lives and our histories are carried from one generation to the next through language. Whether spoken, signed, or written, languages are complex systems of communication that evolve over time and are rich with cultural and social meaning. As the centuries go by, some of the keys to understanding these languages and the cultures they reflect may be lost. On the March 8 WorldCanvass, we’ll investigate the painstaking work of uncovering and interpreting age-old documents and written records, and we’ll try to get a fuller picture of the people who produced them. WorldCanvass takes place before a live audience in the Senate Chamber of the Old Capitol Museum in Iowa City and is taped for television, radio and internet distribution. The program begins at 5 p.m., March 8, and is free and open to the public.
Like all new technologies, genetic medicine brings a new set of societal questions. If DNA sequencing uncovers an untreatable genetic defect, do you want to know? It is not a hypothetical question; we are already facing this ethical dilemma for selected diseases. Because you are genetically similar to your siblings, what are the implications for them if you fit a particular disease profile? What is the appropriate ethical and economic balance between personalized health care treatment and cost, particularly if you choose a lifestyle that worsens your health, given a genetic predisposition to a disease? How do we protect individual privacy in a world of “big data” and inexpensive health monitoring devices?
Jesse Skinner Wilkerson was a 33-year-old farmer from Hamburg, Iowa, when he was drafted to serve in the 13th Iowa Infantry, Company C. His wife, Sarahett, was pregnant with their third child and left to run the farm in his absence.
The year was 1864, and the U.S. was embroiled in a civil war that ultimately cost three-quarters of a million lives among the Union and Confederacy ranks. Wilkerson, by his reckoning, traveled over 5,000 miles to seven states during his service. Though he survived the war, he was murdered in a barroom in 1869, only four years after the war’s end.
Ron McMullen held a phone to his ear in May 2000. The unfolding situation seemed like a plot from a Hollywood film starring the latest actions stars, but it wasn’t.
On the other line was the voice of the spokesman for George Speight, who listened to McMullen’s demands. Speight and his followers had stormed the Fijian Parliament in May and held Prime Minster Mahendra Chaudhry and most of his Cabinet hostage for 56 days, according to Radio New Zealand.In the midst of the conflict, an American journalist who had attempted to interview Speight was taken hostage.
McMullen, now a University of Iowa visiting associate professor of political science, was set on having the journalist freed.
The study of genetics has come a long way since Gregor Mendel’s groundbreaking work with pea plants in the mid-19th century. To see just how far we’ve come and where research into genetics is taking us, join WorldCanvass host Joan Kjaer and her panel of expert guests on Friday, February 15, at 5 p.m. in the Old Capitol Senate Chamber, when the topic is "Genetics and New Technologies." The program is free and open to the public.
Although more than 150 years have passed since the first bullets were fired in the U.S. Civil War, Americans retain a deep interest in the conflict, its causes, the major players, and the impact the war and our complicated history have on our national identity. WorldCanvass guests will continue the conversation on January 25 at 5 p.m., in the Senate Chamber of Old Capitol Museum, when the topic is “The Rupture of Civil War.” The program is free and open to the public.
What do the University of Iowa’s 1,245 Chinese students, Whirlpool appliances from Middle Amana, Johnson County’s cornfields, Kirkwood’s STEM outreach and West Liberty’s Dual Language Programs have in common?
They represent some of Iowa’s considerable assets in the world-wide competition for growth and prosperity. Thanks to advances in communication and transportation, globalization means that Iowa is more connected to and affected by world events than ever before.
What is globalization and how does it affect the world economy? What implications does globalization have for the United States, for Iowa, and for individuals? WorldCanvass guests will explore these and other questions when they gather in the Senate Chamber of the Old Capitol Museum on Friday, December 7, at 5 p.m. The program, which is produced by International Programs and hosted by Joan Kjaer, is free and open to the public.
This WorldCanvass Studio features participants in a collaborative writing project called "Face to Face," a project aimed at engaging Iowa's underserved youth with the liberating and expressive powers of creative writing.
Toward the end of “One Tree Three Lives” — a documentary on the life and work of Hualing Engle, the Chinese novelist and co-founder of the International Writing Program — there is a shot of her dining room table where, she reports, more than 600 writers have come to eat during her time in Iowa City.
It is a telling moment: hospitality is a recurring theme of Angie Chen’s film, which had its U.S. premiere on Sunday at the Landlocked Film Festival. And Engle’s spirit of generosity is what will be celebrated at 5 p.m. Friday in the Old Capitol Senate Chamber, when the UI’s International Programs awards her its International Impact Award for her contributions to global understanding.
Co-founder and tireless supporter of the International Writing Program (IWP) at the University of Iowa, Hualing Nieh Engle will receive the 2012 International Impact Award as part of the November 2 WorldCanvass program “IWP: Writing the Stories of the World.” The program, which is free and open to the public, will take place from 5-7 p.m., in the Senate Chamber of the Old Capitol Museum. A reception will follow.
Earlier this year, Iowa Chief Justice Mark Cady used his annual State of the Judiciary address to give Iowa lawmakers a somewhat unexpected reason why the state needs to support a healthy court system: because it’s good for business.
On Thursday, Cady visited with the Press-Citizen Editorial Board and made a similar pitch invoking the language of economic development.
And that’s not surprising. Like every other business or governmental venture, Iowa’s court system needs to keep pace with the rapid changes in information technology.
The long history of Latino presence in the Midwest and the changing demographics of our region will be among the topics discussed on the October 5 WorldCanvass program, The Latino Midwest. The free program will take place in Room 2780, University Capitol Centre from 5-7 p.m. and the public is invited to attend. WorldCanvass is produced by International Programs and hosted by Joan Kjaer.