Radical hospitality

radical hospitalityIn an era of border anxiety and increased refugees and migrants, a new book co-written by Charles Seelig Professor of Philosophy Richard Kearney and Melissa Fitzpatrick, an assistant professor of the practice in the Carroll School of Management Portico program, seeks to cultivate a willingness to be open and welcoming to new voices and new understandings. In Radical Hospitality: From Thought to Action (Fordham University Press, 2021), Kearney and Fitzpatrick show how radical hospitality happens by crossing borders, literal or figurative, and opening oneself in narrative exchange to someone else, a stranger or perhaps even an enemy. According to the authors, amidst the fears, dogmas, and demands for certainty and security that push us toward hostility, we also desire to wager with the unknown, leap into the unanticipated, and celebrate the new. Radical Hospitality will be formally launched at the Guestbook Project’s April 24 symposium on “Digital Peace Pedagogy: The Risk of Narrative Exchange.” Read more on BC News.

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Review of Paul Farmer’s book

Canisius Professor of Theology James Keenan, S.J., vice provost for global engagement at BC, reviewed Fevers, Feuds, and Diamonds: Ebola and the Ravages of History by Dr. Paul Farmer. In his new book, Farmer, the renowned physician and anthropologist who founded Partners in Health, details his experience in West Africa during the 2014 Ebola epidemic. He relays harrowing stories of Ebola victims while tracing the region’s chronic health failures back to centuries of exploitation and injustice. Fr. Keenan calls Fevers, Feuds, and Diamonds “astonishing” and “unforgettable” and writes that “there is much wisdom throughout this magisterial work.” Read Fr. Keenan’s review of Dr. Farmer’s book in America magazine.

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Poet Martín Espada

Poetry Days presents award-winning poet Martín Espada—whose poetry collections include The Republic of Poetry, a Pulitzer Prize finalist, and Floaters, his most recent collection—at a Lowell Humanities webinar on April 14 at 7 p.m. Floaters is a topical reflection on immigration, bigotry, politics, and love. An English professor at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, Espada has published more than 20 books as a poet, editor, essayist, and translator. His honors include the 2018 Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, the National Hispanic Cultural Center Literary Award, and an American Book Award. His reading will be followed by a moderated discussion and audience Q&A. Pre-registration is required and can be found at bc.edu/lowell.

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50 years of the Campus School

campus school historySince its doors opened in 1970, the Campus School at Boston College has served some 2,500 students with special needs. The school’s vibrant 50-year history and important work has been chronicled in a new book co-authored by two of its former directors. The Boston College Campus School Story, 1970–2020, written by Phil DiMattia and Don Ricciato, highlights the school’s achievements, collaboration with BC faculty, and engagement with BC students. The history also includes many testimonials from parents of students, staff members, student volunteers past and present, and teachers. Read more on BC News.

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Book prize for Summers

Cultural historian Martin Summers, a BC professor in the History Department and in the African and African Diaspora Studies Program, has been named a recipient of the 2021 Cheiron Book Prize for his work Madness in the City of Magnificent Intentions: A History of Race and Mental Illness in the Nation’s Capital (Oxford University Press). Presented by Cheiron, the International Society for the History of Behavioral and Social Sciences, the book prize recognizes an outstanding monograph in the history of the social/behavioral/human sciences. Madness in the City of Magnificent Intentions is a study of Saint Elizabeths Hospital, once one of the country’s preeminent research and teaching psychiatric hospitals, and its and its relationship to Washington, D.C.’s African American community. The book traces the hospital from its founding in 1855 to the 1980s and demonstrates how race was central to virtually every aspect of the hospital’s existence. Read more on BC News.

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Novelist Emma Donoghue

Novelist and screenwriter Emma Donoghue, author of the international bestseller Room, will read from and talk about her latest novel, The Pull of the Stars (Little, Brown and Co., 2020), at a Lowell Humanities webinar on April 7 at 7 p.m. Set in a Dublin hospital during the 1918 flu pandemic, The Pull of Stars tells the story of a nurse midwife, a doctor, and a volunteer helper who fight to save patients in a maternity quarantine ward. It is a story of hope and finding the light in the darkness. Donoghue’s other novels include The Wonder and Akin. Her novel Room has been published in more than 40 languages, and Donoghue adapted the book into an Academy Award-nominated screenplay. Donoghue’s appearance is co-sponsored by the Irish Studies program. Pre-registration is required and can be found at bc.edu/lowell.

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A time for Kearney

The world is increasingly polarized along religious, ethnic, race, gender, class, and ideological lines. According to Richard Kearney, holder of the Charles Seelig Chair of Philosophy at Boston College, the cause of division often lies not in difference but in a lack of creative imagination. He believes poetics and narrative imagination can break the hold of hostility and open new possibilities of reconciliation, accomplishing what moral arguments alone cannot. Imagination Now: A Richard Kearney Reader (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2020), edited by M. E. Littlejohn, is an overview of Kearney’s writings addressing crisis and division and providing pathways of creative response and healing. This book follows Kearney’s journey through the fields of philosophy of the imagination, hermeneutics, philosophy of religion, ethics, psychology, practical philosophy, and politics.

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Legal implications for changes in marriage, adoption, divorce

A third edition of Family Law in America (Oxford University Press, 2021) by Darald and Juliet Libby Professor Emeritus Sanford Katz of BC Law School has been published. In this new edition, Katz analyses the majority and dissenting opinions in the case of Obergefell v. Hodges, the United States Supreme Court case that lifted the ban on same-sex marriage. The volume also covers topics such as the tension between individual autonomy and governmental regulation in all aspects of family law, the extent to which relationships established before marriage are being regulated, and how marriage is being redefined to take into account gender equality and the legal recognition of same-sex marriage. It also examines fault and no-fault divorce procedures and how new assisted reproductive technologies are having an impact on family formation. | Coming out in May is the third edition of The Law of Domestic Relations in the United States (West Academic Publishing, 2021), by Katz and Homer H. Clark, Jr., which looks at the continuity and changes in the law of domestic relations. In this volume, the authors examine alternatives to marriage like contract cohabitation and civil unions, and marriage itself, in light of state supreme court and United States Supreme Court cases. Other topics include the economics of divorce and division of property, as well as the new regard for openness in adoption. Katz is a former Chair of the Family Law Section of the American Bar Association and former editor-in-chief of Family Law Quarterly. He retired in 2015, having taught at BC Law School for nearly 50 years.

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So You Want to Talk about Race

Ijeoma Oluo, author of bestseller So You Want to Talk about Race (Seal Press/Hachette Group, 2018), will give a presentation on her book on March 24 at 7 p.m. as part of the virtual Boston College Lowell Humanities series. Oluo’s acclaimed book guides readers through subjects ranging from intersectionality and affirmative action to the model minority myth in order to foster honest conversations about race and racism in the United States. Publishers Weekly called her book “a topical book in a time when racial tensions are on the rise.” Oluo’s writing, focused on issues of race and identity, feminism, social and mental health, social justice, and the arts, has been featured in the Washington Post, Guardian, and Elle and Time magazines, among other outlets. She was named one of The Root’s 100 Most Influential African Americans in 2017, and won the 2018 Feminist Humanist Award from the American Humanist Society. Her most recent book is Mediocre: The Dangerous Legacy of White Male America. Her Boston College appearance is supported by an Institute for the Liberal Arts Major Grant Award and co-sponsored by the Connell School of Nursing, the Center for Teaching Excellence, and Intersections. Pre-registration is required; details and a link can be found at bc.edu/lowell.

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The social forces that shape moral character

In his book, The Structures of Virtue and Vice (Georgetown University Press, 2021), School of Theology and Ministry Associate Professor of Moral Theology Daniel J. Daly uses the lens of virtue and vice to reimagine a Catholic ethics that can better scrutinize the social forces that both affect moral character and contribute to well-being or suffering. In doing so, he creates a Catholic ethical framework for responding virtuously to the problems caused by global social systems, from poverty to climate change. Drawing on the works of Thomas Aquinas and other sources, Daly defines the virtuous structures that facilitate a love of God, self, neighbor, and creation, and the vicious structures that cultivate hatred, intemperance, and indifference to suffering. Daly, who earned a master’s degree and Ph.D. in Theological Ethics from Boston College, teaches courses on health care ethics, Christian ethics, virtue ethics, and end-of-life ethics at STM. Last fall, he gave a talk for the STM Continuing Education program on “Catholic End of Life Ethics and the COVID Crisis.”

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