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Tocqueville Lecture Series ‘Crisis of Liberalism’ opens Oct. 29

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Panayiotis Kanelos, president of St. John’s College in Annapolis, Maryland, presents the first Tocqueville lecture in the 2019-20 series.

The 2019-2020 Tocqueville Lecture Series, “The Crisis of Liberalism,” begins with a literary perspective. “‘This Thing of Darkness I Acknowledge Mine:’ A Shakespearean Education for Liberty,” by Panayiotis Kanelos, president of St. John’s College in Annapolis, Maryland, will be Tuesday, Oct. 29, from 5 to 6:30 p.m. in Johns Hall 101 on the campus of Furman University.

This event and all other Tocqueville Series lectures are free and open to the public. All lectures in the series are part of Furman’s Cultural Life Program.

Kanelos, an ardent Shakespeare fan and scholar, has authored and edited numerous books, articles and essays on Shakespeare, including the “Shakespeare and the Stage” series. He previously served as dean of the honors college at Valparaiso University, during which time he also oversaw the administration and finances of the Lilly Fellows Program in Humanities and the Arts, a network of 100 colleges and universities that advances liberal arts education through conferences, workshops, publications and fellowships.

Kanelos began his academic career at Loyola University Chicago, where he was the founding director of the Interdisciplinary Shakespeare Studies Program. He holds a doctorate from the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago, a master’s in political philosophy and literature from the University Professors Program at Boston University and a bachelor’s in English from Northwestern University.

The Tocqueville Program is an intellectual community devoted to seeking the truth about the moral and philosophic questions at the heart of political life. Every year, The Tocqueville Program coordinates a series of lectures by distinguished scholars and public intellectuals on a particular theme with a special course created specifically to address that theme.

“The Crisis of Liberalism” addresses the liberal political order that has dominated the world since the second world war, but which has recently come under unprecedented challenges to its legitimacy. For the next two years, the Tocqueville Program will consider the nature and history of liberalism and the challenges to it, with a view to helping us navigate the unsettled age that is dawning.

Talks include “Taking Populism Seriously” on Jan. 23, 2020, with Patrick Deneen from the University of Notre Dame; “Can Liberalism Survive in an Age of Populism?” on Feb. 25, 2020, with Shadi Hamid of the Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institute; and “Why Institutions Matter” on March 24, 2020, with Yuval Levin of the American Enterprise Institute.

For more information, visit the Tocqueville Program. Or contact Paige Blankenship in the Department of Politics and International Affairs at 864-294-3547.

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