The World Beyond the Headlines from the University of Chicago
Summary: The World Beyond the Headlines series is a collaborative project of the Center for International Studies, the International House Global Voices Program, and the Seminary Co-op Bookstores and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. Its aim is to bring scholars and journalists together to consider major international issues and how they are covered in the media.
Thanks to demand from big emerging economies, most South American governments have become increasingly “resource nationalistic” and have ramped up social spending to meet the needs of the poor and the indigenous, causing poverty levels to drop – at the same time as poverty has been on the increase in the United States. Will the U.S. continue losing influence in Latin America? Will China soon dominate the area both commercially and strategically? Can the U.S. do business with countries from Mexico to Argentina without interfering in their internal affairs? Journalist Hal Weitzman provides an in-depth analysis of these questions in Latin Lessons: How South America Stopped Listening to the United States and Started Prospering.
A talk by David Scheffer, Director of the Center for International Human Rights at Northwestern University. As senior adviser to Madeleine Albright and then as President Clinton’s ambassador-at-large for war crimes issues, David Scheffer was at the forefront of the efforts that led to criminal tribunals for the Balkans, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, and Cambodia, and that resulted in the creation of the permanent International Criminal Court. All the Missing Souls: A Personal History of the War Crimes Tribunals is Scheffer’s gripping insider’s account of the international gamble to prosecute those responsible for genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity, and to redress some of the bloodiest human rights atrocities in our time. Introduction by Susan Gzesh, Executive Director of the University of Chicago Human Rights Program and Senior Lecturer in the College.
For the last decade, Venezuela’s “Bolivarian Revolution” has captured international attention. Poverty, inequality, and unemployment have all dropped, while health, education, and living standards have seen a commensurate rise. Venezuela Speaks! is the real, bottom-up account of the country's bloodless uprising and reorganization. Co-editor Carlos Martinez will explain how the stories in Venezuela Speaks! offer a different perspective than that of the international mainstream media, which has focused predominantly on Venezuela’s controversial president, Hugo Chavez.
In this talk, Robert Pape presents findings from the Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism demonstrating that, contrary to popular belief, religion alone motivates only a tiny minority of suicide attacks. Instead, the root cause is foreign military occupation, which triggers secular and religious people to carry out suicide attacks. From The World Beyond the Headlines series.
A speech by Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Secretary General of NATO. In his first visit to Chicago as Secretary General, Anders Rasmussen discusses Afghanistan, the lessons learned after eight years, and implications for future operations.
A multi-disciplinary panel, held at the Shedd Aquarium, provided a public examination and discussion of the threat of Asian carp to Chicago and the Great Lakes. Experts in biology, economics and policy shared the most up to date information about how these species threaten the ecology of the Great Lakes, how closing Chicago waterways would affect the regional economy, and the broader implications for the Great Lakes region and environmental management. Cosponsored by the Program on the Global Environment and the Chicago Council on Science and Technology.
A talk by political scientist Gilles Dorronsoro, visiting scholar in the Carnegie Endowment's South Asia Program. His research focuses on security and political development in Afghanistan, particularly the role of the International Security Assistance Force, the steps required to achieve a viable government in Kabul, and the conditions necessary for withdrawal scenarios. From the World Beyond the Headlines lecture series. Cosponsored by the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, the South Asian Language & Area Center, and the Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies.
A talk by journalist and author Roger Thurow. For more than thirty years, humankind has known how to grow enough food to end chronic hunger worldwide. Yet while the "Green Revolution" succeeded in South America and Asia, it never got to Africa. Now, an impending global food crisis threatens to make things worse. In the west we think of famine as a natural disaster, brought about by drought; or as the legacy of brutal dictators. But in this powerful investigative narrative, Roger Thurow and Scott Kilman argue that in the past few decades, American, British, and European policies conspired to keep Africa hungry and unable to feed itself. As a new generation of activists work to keep famine from spreading, Enough sheds light on a humanitarian issue of utmost urgency. From the World Beyond the Headlines lecture series. Cosponsored by the Program on the Global Environment.
A talk by Columbia University professor Joseph Stiglitz. The current global financial crisis carries a "made in America" label. In "Freefall", Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz explains how America exported bad economics, bad policies, and bad behavior to the rest of the world, only to cobble together a haphazard and ineffective response when the markets finally seized up. Drawing on his academic expertise, his years spent shaping policy in the Clinton administration and at the World Bank, and his more recent role as head of a UN Commission charged with reforming the global financial system, Stiglitz then outlines a way forward building on ideas that he has championed his entire career: restoring the balance between markets and government; addressing the inequalities of the global financial system; and demanding more good ideas (and less ideology) from economists. "Freefall" combines an account of the current crisis with a discussion of the broader economic issues at stake. From the World Beyond the Headlines series.
A talk by American University professor Deborah Brautigam. Is China a rogue donor, as some media pundits suggest? Or is China helping the developing world pave a pathway out of poverty, as the Chinese claim? This well-timed book provides the first comprehensive account of China's aid and economic cooperation overseas. Deborah Brautigam tackles the myths and realities, explaining what the Chinese are doing, how they do it, how much aid they give, and how it all fits into their "going global" strategy. Will Chinese engagement benefit Africa? Using hard data and a series of vivid stories ranging across agriculture, industry, natural resources, and governance, Brautigam's fascinating book provides an answer. Cosponsored by the Center for East Asian Studies. From the World Beyond the Headlines lecture series.
A talk by author and Earth Policy Institute founder Lester Brown. As fossil fuel prices rise, oil insecurity deepens, and concerns about climate change cast a shadow over the future of coal, a new energy economy is emerging. Wind, solar, and geothermal energy are replacing oil, coal, and natural gas, at a pace and on a scale we could not have imagined even a year ago. For the first time since the Industrial Revolution, we have begun investing in energy sources that can last forever. Plan B 4.0 explores both the nature of this transition to a new energy economy and how it will affect our daily lives. Cosponsored by the Program on the Global Environment. From the World Beyond the Headlines lecture series.
20th Anniversary Roundtable with the Consuls General of Austria, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary and Poland. A discussion concerning the historic events of two decades ago in Central and Eastern Europe, and the paths taken since then - through personal reflections and recollections of how the process developed, the spirit of the movements, the leaders, the political atmosphere, and the ways in which the transition has resonated through the past twenty years. Cosponsored by the Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies and the International House Global Voices Program. Part of "With Immediate Effect": The Events of 1989 Revisited
A talk by New York Times journalist Neil MacFarquhar. His book, "The Media Relations Department of Hizbollah Wishes You a Happy Birthday" reveals a cross-section of unsung, dynamic men and women pioneering political and social change. There is the Kuwaiti sex therapist in a leather suit with matching red headscarf, and the Syrian engineer advocating a less political interpretation of the Koran. MacFarquhar interacts with Arabs and Iranians in their every day lives, removed from the violence we see constantly, yet wrestling with the region's future. Cosponsored by the Center for Middle Eastern Studies. From the World Beyond the Headlines lecture series.
A talk by professor and author David Bosco. From the Berlin Airlift to the Iraq War, the UN Security Council has stood at the heart of global politics. Part public theater, part smoke-filled backroom, the Council has enjoyed notable successes and suffered ignominious failures, but it has always provided a space for the five great powers to sit down together. Five to Rule Them All tells the inside story of this remarkable diplomatic creation. Drawing on extensive research, including dozens of interviews with serving and former ambassadors on the Council, the book chronicles political battles and personality clashes as it opens the closed doors of its meeting room. What emerges here is a revealing portrait of the most powerful diplomatic body in the world. From the World Beyond the Headlines lecture series.
A talk by South African author and journalist Mark Gevisser. Mark Gevisser is currently The Nation's Southern African correspondent. In South Africa, his work has appeared in the Mail & Guardian, the Sunday Independent, the Sunday Times and many magazines and periodicals. Internationally, he has written widely on South African politics, culture and society, in publications ranging from Vogue and the New York Times to Foreign Affairs and Art in America. Read Mark Gevisser's featured CIS article connecting Barack Obama's election and the legacy of liberation in South Africa... From the World Beyond the Headlines lecture series. Cosponsored by the Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory (3CT), the Political Science Department, the African Studies Workshop, and the Human Rights Program.