RIT Kern lecture series welcomes leading Africana philosopher

Lewis Gordon’s Nov. 13 talk will address questions of humanism, freedom




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Lewis Gordon, professor of philosophy and Africana Studies at the University of Connecticut, will speak at RIT as part of the Kern lecture series on Nov. 13.

Philosopher Lewis Gordon is a critic of what he calls “disciplinary decadence,” and instead encourages scholars and lay people to relish in the openness of the ideas on which their disciplines were born.

Gordon, professor of philosophy and Africana studies at the University of Connecticut, shares his perspective on disciplinary decadence and other ideas during his talk “Living Thought, Living Freedom: Themes in Africana Philosophy,” the next installment of the 2013–2014 William A. Kern Lecture Series at Rochester Institute of Technology. Gordon will speak at 4 p.m. Nov. 13 in Eastman Hall, room 2000.

Gordon, who is also visiting professor of Europhilosophy at Toulouse University in France and the Nelson Mandela Visiting Professor at Rhodes University in South Africa, is an Afro-Jewish philosopher, political thinker, educator and musician. Throughout his RIT presentation, Gordon will offer answers to three central questions in Africana philosophy: What does it mean to be human? What is freedom? And, do these questions pose limits on reason and practices of justification?

Gordon’s research includes Africana philosophy, existentialism, phenomenology, social and political philosophy, and philosophy of human sciences. He is the author of Disciplinary Decadence: Living Thought in Trying Times, Bad Faith and Antiblack Racism and Her Majesty’s Other Children: Sketches of Racism from a Neocolonial World, among other publications. In addition, he has written for political forums, newspapers and magazines.

For more information about the free presentation—co-sponsored by the Department of Philosophy in the College of Liberal Arts—contact Jonathan Schroeder, the William A. Kern Professor in Communications, at 585-475-2075 or jesgla@rit.edu. Interpreters will be provided upon request.

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Lewis Gordon, professor of philosophy and Africana Studies at the University of Connecticut, will speak at RIT as part of the Kern lecture series on Nov. 13.