GOOD NEWS: Series to look at healing from cultural trauma

Staff reports  |  The College of Charleston is offering a semester-long series to give voice to sociological trauma and the ways in which societies, countries and cultures have worked to heal from conflicts born out of issues such as systemic racism, slavery, genocide and political oppression.

According to a news release, the loosely unified series, titled “When the War Is Over: Memory, Division, and Healing,” brings together a collection of public lectures and forums that address historical trauma and the ways in which sites that have experienced such trauma have moved, or might move toward building a sustainable, peaceful community. From slavery and segregation in the United States to the Holocaust and the impact of the native Brazilian peoples upon the arrival of the Portuguese in the 17th century, the series explores the complexities of how groups move on from a collective feeling of trauma.

“In broadening the discussion from Charleston and the United States to include the Northern Irish ‘Troubles’ and the Holocaust, the series aims to provide a discursive context within which a fundamental commitment to human rights governs policy decisions that lead toward peaceable coexistence, the eradication of racism and other forms of discrimination, and the prevention of genocide,” says Simon Lewis, associate dean for the School of Languages, Cultures, and World Affairs and director of the Carolina Lowcountry and Atlantic World program.

The series will culminate in a two-day conference on April 28-29 titled “Memory, Monuments and Memorials.” The featured keynote speaker is Israeli-American architect Michael Arad, designer of the 9/11 monument in New York City and designer of the proposed Emanuel A.M.E. Church memorial in Charleston.

Other notable events in the series include:

“Resilient Injustices, Unyielding Resolve.”  Part of the Conseula Francis Emerging Scholar Lecture Series, this talk will feature Clifton Granby, assistant professor of ethics and philosophy at Yale Divinity School, who will examine the significance of James Baldwin and Howard Thurman for ongoing struggles against racial, gender and economic injustice. The event will take place at 6 p.m. on Jan. 25, 2018, in Room 227 of Addlestone Library.

“The Stages of Memory: Reflections on Memorial Art, Loss and the Spaces Between.”  An examination of the role of monuments as a nation’s collective memory, James E. Young, professor of English and Judaic Studies Emeritus at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, will trace what he calls an “arc of memorial vernacular” and discuss how nations commemorate against the grain of their national legacies, remember their victims and their national shame. This lecture will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 7, 2018, in the Stern Center Ball Room.

“Freedoms Gained and Lost: Reinterpreting Reconstruction in the Atlantic World.”  In honor of the 150th Anniversary of South Carolina’s 1868 Constitutional Convention, the College of Charleston will host this three-day conference that will include an original exhibit in Special Collections at the Addlestone Library, showcasing the documentary heritage of Reconstruction and the post-emancipation era in South Carolina and the Atlantic world. The conference, sponsored by the Carolina Lowcountry and Atlantic World program, will take place March 16-18, 2018.

Also in Good News:

100 Things To Do In Charleston Before You Die.  This is a new book by Lynn and Cele Seldon that is filled with easy-to-follow suggestions of where to go, what to see, can’t-miss dining, outdoor recreation, events and entertainment, and where to shop ’til you drop—along with seasonal activities, suggested itineraries, and lots of insider tips.  The book launch will be 5:30 p.m. Feb. 27 at Buxton Books, 2A Cumberland St., Charleston.

Nominations for volunteer award.  The city of Charleston will accept nominations for the twentieth annual “Harold Koon Award for Excellence in Volunteer Service” until Friday, February 9, 2018. Any resident of the city of Charleston can nominate another who they feel has demonstrated continuous and outstanding volunteer service to their neighborhood.  The online nomination form can be accessed here or by calling the city of Charleston Neighborhood Services Office at 843-724-3791.

New Aviation Authority leaders.  Former Mount Pleasant Mayor Billy Swails has been elected to chair the Charleston County Aviation Authority board for the next year.  Vice chair is Charleston attorney Walter Hundley; secretary is Helen T. Hill of the Charleston Area Convention and Visitor’s Bureau; and treasurer is Spencer Pryor, spokesman for the North Charleston Police Department.


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