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Endowed Lectures

The Institute for Research on Women and Gender is proud to sponsor or cosponsor with Women's Studies two specially endowed lectures appealing to students, faculty, and the general public. Click on a lecture title to see more information.

Ta-Nehisi Coates

The 2014-15 Motorola Lecturer is Ta-Nehisi Coates, writer and senior editor at The Atlantic.

2015 Motorola Lecture

Ta-Nehisi Coates
Senior Editor, The Atlantic

A Deeper Black: Race in America
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
5:10 p.m.

Rackham Auditorium
915 E. Washington Street, Ann Arbor

Free and open to the public.

Accessibility: ASL interpretation, ramp access and power doors to left of stairs at south (main) building entrance, accessible seating and restrooms. Contact irwg@umich.edu for more information.

Ta-Nehisi Coates delves into the conflicted and hopeful state of black America today. What does "black culture" mean? What is the continuing role of both the older and younger generations in shaping it? Where will gentrification, education, and the splintering (or unifying) of families take it? This talk asks the small personal questions as well as the big historic ones.

An senior editor and writer for The Atlantic, Ta-Nehisi Coates has penned many influential articles on race, masculinity, and politics. His June 2014 cover story on slavery and race, "The Case for Reparations," is one of the most talked-about pieces of nonfiction in recent memory. Last year, his lively Atlantic blog was named by Time as one of the 25 Best in the World. Coates is a former writer for The Village Voice, and a contributor to Time, O, and The New York Times Magazine.

The 2015 Motorola Lecture is presented by the Institute for Research on Women & Gender and the Women’s Studies Department, with cosponsorship from the Office of the Vice Provost for Equity, Inclusion, and Academic Affairs; the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies; the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy; and the Center for the Education of Women.

The Motorola Lecture

The Motorola Lecture, cosponsored with the Women’s Studies Department, is presented biennially by an outstanding journalist who routinely addresses issues concerning women and gender in his or her reporting. Established in 2001, with support from the Motorola Foundation, the Motorola Lecture aims to expose U-M students to the work of exceptional journalists and to inform students about ways the media can reframe public understanding of complex issues. Recent Motorola lecturers have included: Rinku Sen, president and executive director of the Applied Research Center (ARC) and the publisher of Colorlines.com; Bothaina Kamel, Egyptian TV news anchor and presidential candidate; Melissa Harris-Perry, associate professor of politics and African American studies, Princeton University; and Meenakshi Gigi Durham, associate professor of journalism and mass communication, University of Iowa.

The Vivian R. Shaw Lecture

Ellen S. Agress endowed the Vivian R. Shaw Lecture to honor her mother’s memory.

The Vivian R. Shaw Lecture, cosponsored with the Women’s Studies Department, is presented biennially. Guest speakers address “real world” issues affecting women and/or gender. The Shaw Lecture was established in 1997, by Ellen S. Agress (U-M, 1968), to honor the memory of her mother, who passed away, at age 50, of breast cancer. Ellen Agress is the senior vice president and deputy general counsel in communications at News America Incorporated in New York City. Not only does her contribution promote the study of women and gender in an interdisciplinary and collaborative way, it also provides an example of the power of philanthropy to advance causes of concern to women.

Lilly Ledbetter

The 2013 Shaw Lecturer was equal pay advocate Lilly Ledbetter

Recent Shaw lecturers have included: Lilly Ledbetter, Equal Pay advocate and author of Grace and Grit: My Fight for Equal Pay and Fairness at Goodyear and Beyond (Crown Archetype; 2012); Mariana Chilton, associate professor, Drexel University School of Public Health; director, Center for Hunger-Free Communities; and coprincipal investigator of Children's Health Watch; Robin Givhan, Washington Post fashion editor; Faye Wattleton, cofounder and president of the Center for the Advancement of Women, and former president, Planned Parenthood Federation of America; and Jane Evelyn Atwood, a photojournalist.