Williams College Announces Schedule for 2020 Faculty Lecture Series

Media contact: Noelle Lemoine, communications assistant; tele: (413) 597-4277; email: [email protected]

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass., January 7, 2020—During February and March, Williams College will sponsor its annual Faculty Lecture Series. The aim of the series is to present big ideas beyond disciplinary boundaries. The lectures will be offered on February 13, 20, 27, and March 5, 12, and 19. All lectures will begin at 4:15 p.m. in Wege Auditorium, Thompson Chemistry, and will be followed by a reception in Schow Atrium. The lectures are free and open to the public.

The first lecture in the series is scheduled for Feb. 13 with Jessica Chapman, associate professor of history, and she will present “Running to School: Kenyan Athletics in the Era of Olympic Boycotts.”

On Feb. 20, Ashok Rai, associate professor of economics, will discuss “From Muslim to Christian: How Coffee Went Global.”

On Feb. 27, Ileana Perez Velazquez, professor of music, will talk about “Creating Music as an Out of the Box Composer.”

Julie Blackwood, associate professor of mathematics, will speak on March 5. Her talk is titled “Diseases, invasive species, and other ecological systems: insights from mathematical models.”

On March 12, Matt Carter, associate professor of biology, will present “The Food Network: How Your Brain Makes You Feel Full.”

The final talk, “‘The Faraway Brought Close’: Poetry and the Work of Feeling” will be presented by Jessica Fisher, associate professor of English, on March 19.

The Faculty Lecture Series was founded in 1911 by Catherine Mariotti Pratt, the spouse of a faculty member who wanted to “relieve the tedium of long New England winters with an opportunity to hear Williams professors talk about issues that really mattered to them.” From these humble and lighthearted beginnings, the Faculty Lecture Series has grown to become an important forum for tenured professors to share their latest research with the larger intellectual community of the college.

The series is organized by the faculty serving on the Lecture Committee: Claire Ting, Professor of Biology, Brahim El Guabli, Assistant Professor of Arabic Studies, and committee chair, Thomas Kohut, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III Professor of History.


For building locations on the Williams campus, please consult the map outside the driveway entrance to the Security Office located in Hopkins Hall on Main Street (Rte. 2), next to the Thompson Memorial Chapel, or call the Office of Communications (413) 597-4277. The map can also be found on the web at www.williams.edu/map