The topic “Middle East Realignment” will kick off the 32nd year of the Great Decisions program at Monmouth College on Jan. 25
Sociology and anthropology professor Petra Kuppinger and dean of faculty David Timmerman will provide a joint introduction of the topic at 7:30 p.m. in the Tartan Room of the college’s Stockdale Center. Following their opening remarks, there will be approximately one hour of group discussion.
“The discussants are a rare, maybe even unique, combination of town folk, faculty and students,” observed professor of political science Ira Smolensky, one of the program coordinators. “Those of us who venture out on chilly winter evenings to participate in Great Decisions are not only exercising our vocal cords and enjoying the joy of discussion. We are also ‘doing something’ about the world in which we live.”
Since 1981, Great Decisions has operated as a forum where the public and the academic community can freely meet in a congenial setting and talk about world affairs. All eight Great Decisions programs this semester are free and open to the public. They will be held Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. through March 21 and are typically moderated by a member of the college’s faculty or staff.
Great Decisions is a nationwide program sponsored by the Foreign Policy Association, a non-partisan, non-governmental association that works to increase Americans’ understanding of significant foreign policy issues.
For those who don’t mind a little homework, a companion guide called “Great Decisions 2012” can be ordered online at www.fpa.org. It includes eight chapters, each of which takes about a half-hour to read.
“The book is optional, but I encourage people to read it because it presents an excellent and well-balanced introduction to each topic and does so in a very non-partisan way,” said Smolensky.
For more information about Great Decisions at Monmouth College, contact Smolensky at 309-457-2102 or Mohsin Masood at 309-457-2113. Each of the sessions will be hosted by Masood and by Olivia Leonard, a 2011 Monmouth College graduate who is a reporter for Monmouth’s Daily Review Atlas.