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February 12, 2001

Workshop smorgasboard
has something for everyone

By Eric Rangus

The Reconciliation Symposium turned out its lights two weeks ago, but Emory’s Year of Reconciliation remains in full swing. In fact, the next few months may provide some of the most interesting programming of the entire year.

Through May, workshops will be scattered across the University, further expanding some of the issues raised during the Jan. 25–28 symposium. Other workshops explore fresh subjects, further widening Emory’s reconciliation discussion.

“Because there is no grand narrative for reconciliation, there is no single kind of workshop,” said Bobbi Patterson, visiting assistant professor of religion and chair of the workshop committee. “The range and what [people] can learn is phenomenal.”

More than a dozen workshops are planned through May, the first one (“Examining the Cognitive Foundations of the Conflicts Between Religion and Science”) having taken place on Jan. 30, just two days after the close of the symposium.

The next workshop is one that should prove to be one of the more popular offerings. “Reconciling Our Pasts: Gender, Sexuality and Oral History” will have two 25-participant sessions, one this afternoon from 4–6:30 p.m. and a repeat engagement Feb. 13 at the same time. Both are in Cox Hall.
Karen Krahulik from Duke University will introduce the use of oral history as a means to uncover the experiences of people whose past have gone written because they were outside the prevailing public realm—specifically women and LGBT people.

It will serve as a follow-up to the “Reconciliation, Sexuality and Gender: Poetics, Politics and Pragmatics” panel discussion of Jan. 26. Each of the symposium’s panel discussions has a corresponding workshop that will look at the original material from a different angle.

The large majority of the upcoming workshops have participant limits (usually 25, but some are as small as 15). Patterson said all workshops still have space available, and overflow attendees can be accommodated.

Signup information, as well as a full list and description of reconciliation workshops, is available at

Because of their small size, the workshops will have a different feel than the panel discussions that dominated the symposium. They will be more interactive and, in some cases, fully active.

For instance, Saralyn Chesnut, director of the Office of LGBT Life, will host a walking tour of Little Five Points on March 8. Participants will visit several historical landmarks in the eclectic community, which was home to a thriving lesbian-feminist community in the 1970s and ’80s.

“The response has been overwhelming,” Chesnut said. “We are full and overflowing.”

“Nurturing a Green University,” March 22–23, should prove to be another heavily interactive offering as faculty, staff, students and administrators will tackle a variety of environmental issues.

The Student Committee for the Year of Reconciliation debuted its programming Feb. 8 with a discussion on affirmative action. Each Thursday through March 8, the student committee will hold discussions aimed at student concerns.

The Feb. 15 topic will focus on LGBT issues. Successive events will turn an eye toward global concerns, such as the conflict between India and Pakistan (Feb. 22) and Arab/Israeli issues (March 8).

Workshops are not limited to the main Emory campus, either. Grady Hospital will host Nicole Lurie, principal deputy assistant secretary for Health, Depart-]ment of Health and Human Services, March 20, who will discuss “Reconciling Disparities in Health Care.”

Another interesting offering is “Emory and Atlanta: Challenges and Opportunities for Creating University-Community Partnerships.” It will serve as an introduction to Emory’s Office of University-Community Partnerships and will discuss ways to reach out to the Atlanta community.


Back to ER symposium page