Democracy 101: A Series of Critical Conversations

This series of co-curricular lectures, panel discussions and workshops focuses on the idea and practice of democracy. 

We welcome faculty, staff, students and community partners to present. Possible topics may include: student activism, how to run for office, the history of social movements, democratic values, the idea of commons, student civic development, the role of media in a democracy, how to organize for social change, and more!

LIB 100/201 approved and pizza will be provided.


Winter 2019 Events

Date        

Event

Location(s)

Time

01/23/2019

This is What Democracy Looks Like! Breaking the Silence and Living the Legacy of MLK Jr. - Open Mic

This interactive open mic session will be dedicated to the expressing the living, democratic legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.! Participants are invited to express, discuss and share their ideas about "what democracy looks like" through spoken word, storytelling, performance, music, art, film and poetry.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

02/13/2019

Democracy in Ancient Athens - Dr. Michael Crane and Dr. Charles Pazdernik

We're taught that the ancient Greeks "invented" democracy, but how did they organize and perform it? Join Dr. David Crane and Dr. Charles Pazdernik to learn how democratic norms and values were built into the fabric of life, institutions and interactions in ancient Greece and consider how we can use the example of the Greeks to build a more robust civic life today!

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

02/20/2019

Lessons in Democracy from South Africa  - Jeff Kelly Lowenstein

Khulu Radebe worked to make his native South Africa a vibrant democracy for more than four decades. He began his contributions by helping to plan what became the June 16th student uprising, fought against the oppressive apartheid regime while imprisoned on Robben Island for six years, and traveled the world spreading the anti-apartheid and pro-democracy message as a member of Amanda Cultural Ensemble. This session will place Radebe's actions in the context of South Africa's emerging democracy and reflect on that nation's actions in light of the current authoritarian direction in which many countries appear to be going at the moment.

Kirkhof Center 2266

12:00-1:00pm

02/27/2019

What is Fascism? - Dr. Gary Stark

Learn about the various forms of fascism—the most serious threat to democracy in the 20th century—and what these threats all had in common from Dr. Gary Stark.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

03/13/2019

Democracy as Thriving - Dr. Stephen Rowe

Democracy is grounded in the awareness and experience of a certain kind of relationship as the source of human thriving.  In this session, Dr. Stephen Rowe will attempt to "unpack" or make sense of this statement as it pertains to us in the here and now at GVSU.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

04/03/2019

The Building Bridges Experiment

An interactive experience facilitated by GVSU Democracy Fellows to build bridges of understanding and mutual respect between people who hold differing backgrounds, identities and political perspectives.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

04/17/2019

Democratic Legitimacy: A Precarious Balance of Values - Dr. Danny Balfour and Dr. Neal Buckwalter

The water crisis in Flint, MI, provides an important and poignant case study for considering competing values and the implications of our research question: To what extent can democratic legitimacy be supported and maintained through bureaucratic means and authority?

Kirkhof Center 2270

12:00-1:00pm


Past Democracy 101 Events

Fall 2018 Events

Date

Event

Location(s)

Time

09/12/2018

Who are We, as Americans?

Watch and discuss "American Creed," a PBS documentary film about the values that hold us together as Americans—and what happens when those values come in to question.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

09/19/2018

Promote the Vote: A Michigan Voting Rights ballot initiative

Learn about the history and importance of voting rights in a democracy—then learn more about the Promote the Vote ballot initiative.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

09/26/2018

Proposal 1: Should Marijuana be Legal in Michigan?

Learn about Proposal 1 and discuss the pros and cons of marijuana legalization with representatives from MI Legalize and Healthy & Productive Michigan.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

10/03/2018

Proposal 2: Drawing Lines, Gerrymandering & Independent Redistricting

What is gerrymandering? Does your vote count? Should you care? Experts from the GVSU Department of Mathematics and Political Science, along with a representative from Voters Not Politicians will discuss Proposal 2.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

10/10/2018

Making Your Voice Heard: A First Time Voter Workshop

Are you a first time voter? What do you need to know in order to cast your ballot and make your voice heard? Join Ottawa County election officials to learn, step by step, how to be an educated and prepared voter.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

10/17/2018

Are Elections Rigged? Election Security in 2018

Are threats to our elections real? Why does it matter? What are local election officials doing to ensure the integrity of the election process? The Ottawa County Clerk will answer your questions about election security.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm

10/24/2018

Laker Elected Officials Forum

GVSU Lakers are making an impact all over the world! Come meet Lakers who are currently serving as elected officials or who have done so. Learn what it's like to campaign and serve in public office.

Mary Idema Pew Library Multipurpose Room

6:00-8:00pm


Do Protests Matter?

 

 

The Role of Media in Democracy

Human Rights and the Promise of Democracy

Educating Toward Direct Democracy

Laker Elected Officials

Laker Elected Officials

The Common Ground Initiative

Have an Idea for a Democracy 101 Event?

Do you have a question about democracy, civic life or student democratic participation that you would like to explore?

Are you interested in presenting or facilitating a workshop or a conversation about a current public issue?

Do you have an idea or a project that promotes civic life and democratic participation that you would like to share?

If so, please submit your idea here!

 

Democracy 101 is a co-created, shared, public space meant to provide an opportunity for community to gather and explore public issues, learn together and practice democracy.



Page last modified January 11, 2019