Susan Griffin Delivers 2012 Cobb Peace Studies Lecture


susan-griffin-2012-cobb-lectureBOULDER, Colo. (February 27, 2012) -- Naropa University Peace Studies program presents the 2012 Bayard and John Cobb Peace Lecture series with Susan Griffin, author, poet, filmmaker, and winner of a MacArthur Grant, Wednesday, March 21, noon to 1:30 p.m., at the Performing Arts Center, 2130 Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Conceived and endowed by former (and current) university president John W. Cobb andhis wife, Bayard, in 2007, the Cobb Peace Lecture is designed to heighten awareness of peace-oriented philosophies and innovative conflict-resolution strategies, ranging from psychological perspectives, to religious themes, to socioeconomic activism and more. The lecture series has supported public talks with such luminaries as the Sakyong Jamgön Mipham Rinpoche; Sister Helen Prejean, CSJ; and John Paul Lederach. "Naropa University is honored to present Susan Griffin as the 2012 Bayard and John Cobb Peace Lecture Series recipient," states John W. Cobb. "Ms. Griffin's lifelong commitment as a writer, visionary, and as an engaged citizen of the world represents the valued and rich perspective the Cobb Peace Lecture Series is dedicated to bringing to our campus, and to the Boulder community."

An award-winning writer, poet, playwright, and filmmaker, Susan Griffin is the author of nineteen books, including A Chorus of Stones, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. Her works include The Book of Courtesans, What Her Body Thought, Woman and Nature, Bending Home: Poems Selected and New 1967-1998, and she is the co-editor of the forthcoming Transforming Terror: Remembering the Soul of the World. Named by Utne Reader as one of the top hundred visionaries for the new millennium, she is the recipient of an Emmy Award, a MacArthur Grant for Peace and International Cooperation, and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. The author's work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, Ms Magazine, and several other publications. She lives in Berkeley, California.

Ms. Griffin will talk on "Wrestling with the Angel of Democracy," based on her book of the same title, which contemplates the ways in which we have, and have not, upheld our founding vision of democracy. Booklist has called Wrestling with the Angel of Democracy "unique . . . fresh and probing. . . strikes at the very heart of America's cruel paradoxes. With a light yet devastating touch, Griffin charts our continued 'wrestling' with democratic ideals--her incisive search for the soul of democracy stirs up pride, despair, and hope."

As well, while at Naropa, Griffin will conduct a seminar with Peace Studies and Religious Studies students. "The intimate exchange with students has become an integral part of the Cobb Peace lecture over the past three years," says Candace Walworth, PhD, Associate Professor in Peace Studies. "In 2009 the Cobb lecturer, Sister Helen Prejean, challenged students and faculty to launch a production of the Dead Man Walking School Theatre Project, which we did. Last year's Cobb lecturer, John Paul Lederach, stirred the Naropa community to consider the role of the moral imagination in peacemaking. We chose Susan Griffin as the 2012 Cobb Peace Lecture because we anticipated that she would challenge us to think deeply and critically about the promises and challenges of the democratic process in this election year."

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