Shweder to speak on diversity, conflict at Coe

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2012-02-15 08:30:22 - General

Professor Richard Shweder

Professor Richard A. Shweder, a cultural anthropologist at the University of Chicago, will speak about moral challenges faced during cultural migration in an upcoming lecture at Coe College. Shweder’s lecture is a part of the Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar Program, and will be held on Thursday, Feb. 23 at 7:30 p.m. in Kesler Lecture Hall of Hickok Hall. This event is free and open to the public.

In “When Cultures Collide: The Moral Challenge in Cultural Migration,” Shweder will examine a series of legal and moral questions about the proper response to norm conflict between mainstream populations and cultural minority groups in the United States. Specifically, Shweder will focus on the famous Supreme Court case Wisconsin v. Yoder, 406 U.S. 205 (1972), which ruled that Amish children could not be placed in compulsory education beyond the eighth grade, as it conflicted with their parents’ right to freedom of religion.

Shweder serves as a cultural anthropologist and the William Claude Reavis Distinguished Service Professor of Human Development at the University of Chicago. In addition to his professorial duties and his many published works, Professor Shweder has conducted cultural psychology research for the past 30 years in the Hindu temple town of Bhubaneswar on the East Coast of India.

A fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and former president of the Society for Psychological Anthropology, Shweder was twice a fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, as well as a visiting scholar at the Russell Sage Foundation and at Stanford University. During 2008-09, he was a member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.

Shweder graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 1966 with a degree in anthropology. He went on to earn his Ph.D. in social anthropology from Harvard University’s Department of Social Relations in 1972.

The purpose of the Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar Program is to contribute to the intellectual life of collegiate institutions by making possible an exchange of ideas between the Visiting Scholars and the resident faculty and students. Now entering its 56th year, the Visiting Scholar Program has sent 586 Scholars on 4,845 two-day visits since the program’s inception in 1956.

Founded in 1776, Phi Beta Kappa is the nation’s oldest academic honor society. Its mission is to champion education in the liberal arts and sciences, to recognize academic excellence, and to foster freedom of thought and expression.