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Academic Speaker Series

The mission of the Academic Speaker Series is to promote the intellectual environment of the College and to facilitate discussion of important issues in the community.

2018–19 Academic Speaker Series

All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.

Photo of Peter Shumlin
Climate Change and You: The Role of Engaged Citizenship
Peter Shumlin
Tuesday, October 2, 7 p.m.
Greenhoe Theater, Fine Arts Building

Former Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin will discuss renewable energy policies he championed as governor, and how students can take a leadership role in addressing climate change.

Shumlin is our Visiting Lecturer in Politics and Leadership in 2018, a founding trustee of Landmark College, and a strong advocate for students who learn differently who bases his advocacy in his own experience as a person with dyslexia.

Watch the video 

Photo of James Sturm
Cartooning: Past, Present, Potential
James Sturm
Tuesday, October 23, 7 p.m.
Brooks M. O’Brien Auditorium, East Academic Building

From cave paintings and hieroglyphics, to comic books and emoji, visual expression has been a cornerstone of human communication. With screens in the palms of so many hands, the language of the future will continue to be written in pictures.

In this thought-provoking lecture, James Sturm, the co-founder of the Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction, Vermont, will explore a brief history of the language and art of comics, and the new ways that cartooning and visual storytelling are changing the world.

Watch the video

Photo of Linus Owens
Divisiveness is Not Diversity—Academic Freedom & Free Speech on Campus
Linus Owens
Tuesday, November 13, 7 p.m.
Brooks M. O’Brien Auditorium, East Academic Building

This talk will focus on the issue of free speech on college campuses. Owens brings first-hand experience of the challenges faced by Middlebury College during the March 2017 visit by author Charles Murray, which was disrupted by hundreds of student protesters.

As an Associate Professor of Sociology at Middlebury College, Owens thinks about movements, places, and the conflicts that bring them together and push them apart. In past work, he has brought these interests together in exploring how anarchists organize online and the place-making and storytelling practices of squatters in Amsterdam. His books include both academic—Cracking Under Pressure: Narrating Decline in the Amsterdam Squatters’ Movement (Amsterdam University Press & Penn State University Press, 2009)—and popular—Lost in the Supermarket: An Indie Rock Cookbook (Soft Skull Press, 2008).

Photo of Rusty DeWees
A Journey from Pumping Gas to Hollywood
Rusty DeWees
Tuesday, February 12, 7 p.m.
Brooks M. O’Brien Auditorium, East Academic Building

Entertainer, comedic artist, actor, producer, writer, musician, master of duct tape (and the Logger, of course!) Rusty DeWees skillfully blends humor with life lessons, painting meaningful images that resonate with audience members; the familiar and the foreign merging to create a synergistic puree of two parts gifted stand up entertainer, one-part old time crusader, and one-part journeyman seeker.

In this presentation, DeWees will share a bit about his process, his life, his unique take on the world, and anything else that comes to him in the moment.

Photo of hip-hop dance moves
The Use of Hip-hop Rhetoric to Combat the Criminalization of Black, Brown, and Red Youth
Marcos Del Hierro
Tuesday, March 5, 7 p.m.
Brooks M. O’Brien Auditorium, East Academic Building

University of New Hampshire Assistant Professor Marcos Del Hierro will provide insight into how hip-hoppers produced sustainable models for recycling knowledge and technology to produce art, criticism, and pleasure, allowing them to respond to social discourses that represent young people of color as inferior and deviant.

This interactive presentation will invite the audience to participate in a “cipher,” or hiphop circle, as a way to experience one example of how knowledge is made in hiphop communities. Young and old audiences are invited to engage with one of the most influential and funky cultural forces of the last forty years.

Photo of Tamara Stenn
A Robin Hood Story with a Surprise Ending
Dr. Tamara Stenn
Tuesday, April 9, 7 p.m.
Brooks M. O’Brien Auditorium, East Academic Building

What does it mean to export a super grain that was gifted to you by the Gods thousands of years ago? Come discover how ancient culture and world markets intersect as Dr. Tamara Stenn shares three years of Fulbright research in the quinoa fields of Bolivia.

Dr. Tamara Stenn teaches Economics and Entrepreneurship and Innovation in the Professional Studies Department at Landmark College. She is a bilingual (Spanish/English) eco-business developer, sustainability trainer, Fair Trade business owner, Fulbright researcher, economist, and author.


Past Speakers

Our speakers’ talks are recorded and broadcast by Brattleboro Community Television (BCTV).

Watch videos of past speakers



Eve Leons, Speaker Series Coordinator

Watch a behind the scenes video about our speaker series

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