Upcoming Event: Distinguished International Visitor Fund Lecture

Yakin Ertürk, former special rapporteur to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights on violence against women, its causes and consequences, will deliver the J. Jobe Soffa and Marguerite Jacqmin Soffa Distinguished International Visitor Fund lecture at 4 p.m. on March 18, 2010, in the AT&T Lounge of the Pyle Center.

Ertürk,  professor of sociology and head of the Gender and Women’s Studies Programme at the Middle East Technical University (METU) in Ankara, Turkey, will present  “Universalizing Women’s Human Rights: The Quest for Gender-Just Peace.”

The public lecture is sponsored by the UW–Madison Division of International Studies’ J. Jobe Soffa and Marguerite Jacqmin Soffa Distinguished International Visitor Fund which provides regular lectures on contemporary issues of global significance. Visit http://www.international.wisc.edu/awards/soffa.html for additional information on the annual lecture and to learn more about Yakin Ertürk.

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Panel Discussion: Islam, Muslims, and the West

Hosted by the Pakistani Students Association

Wednesday, March 17 at 6:30 p.m. – Play Circle Theater, Memorial Union

Join the PSA in a speakers panel consisting of renowned UW Professors to discuss the situation of the Muslim world, in particular the Middle East, Afghanistan and Pakistan. Come and explore the reasons behind the tensions between Muslims and the West, and clear misperceptions about Islam. The speakers will also deliberate on possible solutions. The floor will also be opened up to a Q&A session. Speakers include: Professor Jennifer Lowenstein (Middle East Studies Program) Professor Joe Elder (Centre for South Asian Studies). The event is free and open to all. Doors open at 6:00 p.m.

Upcoming Event: Teach-Ins on Afghanistan and Pakistan, Sponsored by the Madison Institute

Friday, March 19th and Saturday, March 20th

A group of UW-Madison faculty, students, and alumni have organized a “Teach-In” on the Afghanistan-Pakistan War. The purpose of the Teach-In is to provide a public discussion of the war in Afghanistan and Pakistan that presents alternative information and viewpoints from the official Washington pro-war policy and its justifications. The faculty and community presenters will reflect a variety of views, united only in their opposition to the current pro-war policy. The panel lectures and workshops will cover the major issues of the war and then invite audience questions and discussion.

“The Current Crises in the Afghanistan-Pakistan War”

Friday at 7 pm: Pyle Center, 702 Langdon Street

“President Obama’s Afghan War: What His Policy Leaves Out”

Saturday 9 am-noon and 2-5 pm: Check ‘Today in the Union’ listings for locations

Lecture & Film: Josh Broiler Reports on Gaza Freedom March followed by ‘Return to the Land of Wonders’ (Iraq, 2004)

6:00 pm Wednesday March 17

1101 Humanities

Joshua Brollier, an activist with Voices for Creative Nonviolence (formerly Voices in the Wilderness) in Chicago, will give a slide presentation and reflect on his participation in the Gaza Freedom March in January 2010.

The Gaza Freedom March aimed to challenge Israel’s ongoing siege and blockade of Gaza and to commemorate the lives lost during last year’s Operation Cast Lead, a 22-day Israeli military assault that killed 1,400 Palestinians and wounded 5,300.

One of over 1300 delegates from 43 countries, Joshua found the original plans for a march across Gaza and through the Israeli border at Erez thwarted by the Egyptian government, which in support of Israel refused to allow passage through the Rafah crossing from from Egypt into Gaza. The resulting large and small unsanctioned demonstrations in support of Gaza in Cairo were also met with disruption and force. While the original plan was not achieved, the actions in Cairo raised awareness, strengthened international solidarity and resulted in the Cairo Declaration, a South African-led call for sustained international action against Israeli policies.

Sponsored by Kavanah and the Middle East Interest Group

Following the lecture, the film ‘Return to the Land of Wonders (Iraq, 2004) will be screened at 7:30 pm in Room 1101 Humanities as part of the Center for Middle East Studies Iraq Film Series.

Synopsis: Not long after the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, filmmaker Maysoon Pachachi returns to her home city of Baghdad after 35 years. She accompanies her father, 80-year-old Adnan Pachachi, who is returning to head the committee responsible for drafting Iraq’s temporary constitution and Bill of Rights. We follow this tortuous process, with its arguments over wording changes demanded by U.S. leaders in Washington and compromises made to satisfy Iraqi sectarian interests. Moving between the political sphere and everyday life on the streets, Return To The Land Of Wonders offers a unique glimpse into the resilience of the Iraqi people as they struggle to sustain their lives without succumbing to despair and defeat.