Humanities Council Symposium: Building A Just World

Wednesday, October 2, 2019
8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Rough Ridge, Room 415, Plemmons Student Union

The event is free and open to the public.

The Humanities Council fall 2019 symposium will focus on “Building A Just World.” The symposium features a number of presentations about how we build a more just world through specific institutions. 

Building A just World Symposium Schedule

Symposium Schedule: 

8:30 a.m.     Registration and Welcome

9:00 a.m.     "Should Domestic Violence Be Decriminalized?"
Leigh Goodmark, J.D. 
Professor of Law
University of Maryland

Goodmark co-directs the Clinical Law Program; teaches Family Law, Gender and the Law, and Gender Violence and the Law, as well as directs the Gender Violence Clinic, a clinic providing direct representation in matters involving intimate partner abuse, sexual assault, trafficking and other cases involving gender violence. Goodmark’s scholarship focuses on intimate partner violence. She is the author of “Decriminalizing Domestic Violence: A Balanced Policy Approach to Intimate Partner Violence” and “A Troubled Marriage: Domestic Violence and the Legal System,” which was named a CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title of 2012.  


10:30 a.m.      Break (refreshments provided)

11:00  a.m. “Barbarians at the Gates: On the Religious Right or Building a Just World When Justice, Itself, Is Contested”
Julie Ingersoll, Ph.D
Professor of Religious Studies
University of North Florida

In her teaching and her research, Ingersoll approaches religion as a mechanism for social formation, blending history and ethnography as research methods to explore religion in American culture, especially related to politics, gender, the religious right and religious violence. She has written about gender conflict in conservative religion; her book “Evangelical Christian Women; War Stories in the Gender Battles” examines the construction and maintenance of strict conservative gender norms by telling the stories of women who challenge them. More recently, “Building God’s Kingdom: Inside the World of Christians Reconstruction” traces the rise of the religious right by focusing on the efforts to an obscure group that transformed conservative Protestantism beginning in the 1950s but culminating in today’s religious right. Her current project looks at the construction and deployment of martyrdom and persecution narratives in contemporary political discourse.


12:30 p.m.   Lunch

2:00 p.m.    “The Feminist Social Imaginary: A New Topography of Space”
Maria Pia Lara, Ph.D
Professor of Philosophy
Universidad Autonoma Metropolitano
Iztapalapa, Mexico

María Pía Lara is a Full-Time Professor and Researcher at the Department of Philosophy at the Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (Mexico City) since 1983. She has written many articles and book chapters about feminism, secularism, populism, critical theory, conceptual history and other subjects. She is co-director of the annual Colloquium “Philosophy and Social Sciences”, in the Institut of Philosophy at the Czech Academy of Sciences in Prague. Known for her work on evil, the public sphere and the understanding of self through narrative, she is the author of “The Disclosure of Politics: Struggles Over the Semantics of Secularization,” “Narrating Evil: A Postmetaphysical Theory of Reflective Judgment,” “Rethinking Evil:  Contemporary Perspectives” and “Moral Textures: Feminist Perspectives and the Public Sphere.”


3:30 p.m.      Appalachian State Faculty Panel
Building Just Institutions: Perspectives From Four Appalachian State Faculty

Co-Sponsored by “Careers For Impact,” Appalachian’s Career Development Center

  • Brandy Bryson, Ph.D, MSW, Director of Inclusive Excellence, Associate Professor, Leadership and Educational Studies, "Educational (In)Justice: The Intersection of Institutional and Individual Responsibility"

  • Cary Fraser, Ph.D, Associate Professor of Political Science, "The Violence of Injustice - America in Contemporary Context"

  • Rick Elmore, Ph.D, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, "Monuments to Injustice: Prisons and the Failure of Equality"

  • Jennifer Westerman, Ph.D, Sustainable Development, "The Literary Art of Environmental Justice"

4:45 p.m.    Future Thoughts and Closing Remarks

The Humanities Council, housed in the College of Arts and Sciences at Appalachian, works to enhance support for and recognition of Humanities scholarship throughout the University and to encourage interdisciplinary research and communication among scholars from different areas of expertise. Through its varied programming initiatives, the Humanities Council aims to promote understanding of work in the Humanities, its relationship to other fields of inquiry and the important role it plays at our university and in our world. 


About the Humanities Council

Appalachian State University’s Humanities Council provides interdisciplinary opportunities and events on campus throughout the year, promoting the importance of the humanities in relationship to other fields.

About the College of Arts and Sciences
The College of Arts and Sciences is home to 16 academic departments, one stand-alone academic program, two centers and one residential college. These units span the humanities and the social, mathematical and natural sciences. The College of Arts and Sciences aims to develop a distinctive identity built upon our university's strengths, traditions and unique location. The college’s values lie not only in service to the university and local community, but through inspiring, training, educating and sustaining the development of its students as global citizens. There are approximately 6,100 student majors in the college. As the college is also largely responsible for implementing Appalachian's general education curriculum, it is heavily involved in the education of all students at the university, including those pursuing majors in other colleges. Learn more at

Art sculpture at Appalachian State
Published: Sep 9, 2019 10:16am